PDJ 009 – Struggles in Small Town Promotion w/John Chapel

PDJ 009 – Struggles in Small Town Promotion w/John Chapel

Episode 9 – Now Includes YOUR Questions!

Hey folks!  It’s been a while, but we’re back with episode 9 of the podcast… and I think it’s safe to say that it’s one of the best episodes yet!  First, we start out with a Q&A session featuring YOUR questions!

After the Q&A and announcements, I have a conversation with my good buddy John Chapel… a local promoter/DJ in my home town.  He’s been running a successful weekly electronic music night in our town for over four years, based on a local guest rotation.  I wanted to get his insight on the struggles that come along with small town promotion.

As you’ll hear, John is loaded full of personality and really adds some spice to today’s episode.  (I started loading him full of beer, which didn’t hurt.)  It gets fairly humorous/ridiculous towards the end.  I hope you guys enjoy!

In episode 9, John and I discuss:

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The “DJ-in-a-Box” is Back (Epsilon Inno-Propak)

The “DJ-in-a-Box” is Back (Epsilon Inno-Propak)

Most DJs who have been doing this for a while will remember the old “DJ-in-a-box” setups, which consisted of a pair of belt-driven Gemini turntables and a basic 2-channel mixer.  Truth be told, this was the first kind of setup I ever tried mixing with.

Those old setups were a nice entry-point for people wanting to get their feet wet in the DJing world, before the days of controllers.  But they were belt-driven and low-torque, and were kind of a pain.

Epsilon-Pro, based in the US, has somewhat revamped this concept with the introduction of the Inno-Propak… a scratch-based bundle consisting of a pair of DJT-1300 turntables and a 2 channel mixer (equipped with a mini-Innofader) for $799.

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Reloop’s Terminal Mix 8 (Review & Video)

Reloop’s Terminal Mix 8 (Review & Video)

Reloop’s newest controller, the Terminal Mix 8, has been out for a little while now. But, while I was in Detroit for Movement this past May, I had the opportunity to play a small gig at the festival in an area they call the “Technology Room”. I played on a Terminal Mix 4 (this controller’s little brother).

So impressed was I at the build quality and feel of the TM4, that I decided I needed to review their flagship all-in-one controller. So now, I present to you, my review of the Terminal Mix 8… which comes with a copy of the FULL version of Serato DJ (a huge plus at this price point… $699 USD.)

Let’s have a look!

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The DJ’s Special Problems

The DJ’s Special Problems

It doesn’t take someone very long after deciding to pursue their new DJing passion, before they realize that a number of hurdles are in the way of making their goals.  These goals vary from person to person: fame, fortune, day-job, personal enjoyment, and so-on.

Most DJs start interacting and connecting with others on some level, and they start to notice patterns.  They feed off each other’s thoughts and feelings toward the scene, the music, the figureheads, or the equipment.

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Trance Music: The Last 5 Years

Trance Music: The Last 5 Years

Trance has been through a lot since it’s emergence in the 90s.  The genre is probably my “first love” as far as dance music goes (though, not electronic music in general).  Over the years, I’ve let trance fall off my radar to a large extent… having moved on to more house, techno, disco, garage, and lounge-type sounds.

I had the idea to start a series of “The Last 5 Years” posts, and it only seemed appropriate to start with trance.  Mainly, because I’m  curious to what I’d dig up during my research.  Though I do occasionally indulge, I don’t know much about the current goings-on, and what’s been happening for the past few years.

So, let’s see what trance music has brought to the table since 2009.

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Allen & Heath’s Xone:23C [Review & Video]

Allen & Heath’s Xone:23C [Review & Video]

Allen & Heath’s latest mixers, the XONE:23 and the XONE:23C, are the company’s entry-level replacement for the somewhat aged XONE:22.  In this review, we’ll be focusing on the 23C, which is essentially the base model with an integrated soundcard and a few new styling touches.

I really enjoyed my time with the mixer, and while I admittedly have a few minor gripes, I feel very confident in saying that this an excellent choice for anyone looking for a 2 (+2) channel mixer with soundcard at this price point (around $399 USD).

Let’s dive in to the details and see what the latest XONE has to offer!

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Things That Don’t Actually Make You A Better DJ

Things That Don’t Actually Make You A Better DJ

One of the funniest (yet frustrating) things about many DJs is their incessant ability to invent things that they think make someone a “real”, or “better” DJ.

It seems like we would have a whole lot more good DJs in the world if we spent more time focusing on things that matter.  Things like observation, intuition, crowd-reading, programming, moods, empathy, music theory, marketability, and so on.

Yet, most people spend their time complaining about the myths listed below.  Here’s a list of things that don’t inherently make you a better DJ.

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Why Pioneer is Making Turntables Now

Why Pioneer is Making Turntables Now

Originally teased at this year’s Musikmesse, Pioneer’s new PLX-1000 turntable is a no-frills, but seemingly solid, analog unit which is clearly geared towards filling the Technics gap.  Pioneer calls it a celebration of 20 years in the DJ industry.

The PLX is not something I’ve covered so far, but the comments on other blogs show quite a reactionary mixed bag.

While some people are stoked about the idea of a Pioneer-branded analog deck, an equally-sized market segment are skeptical at best.  Reactions range from “thank god” to “Pioneer is for sheep”.

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Are 3D-Printed Records The Next Big Revolution in Music?

Are 3D-Printed Records The Next Big Revolution in Music?

Vinyl records have been making a strong comeback to the music industry since 2006.  The reasons are many, but they primarily break down into two: people’s resonance with collecting something tangible in order to establish a sense of “ownership”, and their perception that it sounds better.

Of course, as a DJ, there is also the tactility (being able to “feel” the music, especially as a turntablist) and the plain-old coolness factor.

The 3D printing revolution, while still in its infancy, is showing constant proofs-of-concept regarding the technology’s usefulness.  It only makes sense that it would intersect with the vinyl resurgence.  The first prototypes are already starting to pop-up.

But how do these first runs hold up on the practicality scale?  Is this a novelty item, or the first step in yet again revolutionizing the distribution of music?

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Numark’s NV is an Example of Where Controllers are Headed

Numark’s NV is an Example of Where Controllers are Headed

Today, Numark has officially announced a new piece of gear which further closes the gap between those that hate having a laptop in their faces, and those that can’t deny the benefits of computer-based mixing.

Meet the Numark NV for Serato DJ.  This new controller isn’t terribly different from Numark’s other offerings, with one big exception: it boasts two full-color, high-res screens onboard.  It offers full control over the Serato DJ software, includes the performance pads and touch-sensitive knobs that you see on the NS7II.

Numark started teasing this idea a few months back, and they’ve finally made it official.  And it gives a good indication of where DJ gear companies’ heads are at right now.

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