Fundamentals of DJ Performance

DJ Power
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6 Saturdays – Next class begins on July 29th, 2017

1 pm – 3 pm (youth session – 11 to 17 years)

3 pm – 5 pm (adult session 18 +)

Course description:

This is an extensive class focusing on the fundamentals of DJ performance brought to you by D.J. POWER ACADEMY OF SOUND TRANSFORMATION. Topics to be discussed will include: song structure, signal flow, equipment set-up, blending, beat matching, harmonic mixing, and more! At the end of the course, students will have a chance to mix a short set and receive feedback on their progress. Students will work with a combination of turntables and CDJs; this equipment is provided for students during class hours.

The last session will end with a  performance / show setup at a local venue or CCA itself where parents, friends and family can come and participate in the DJ experience of what the students have learned.


LOVE for music and if you have played around with mixing your own music, that is great but not required

Week 1: Beats, Bars, and Basics

– Introduction: History of DJ-ing
– Rhythm, Pulse, Time Signatures, Tempo (BMP), Breaks, Song Structure,
Phrasing, Breaks

Week 2: Beats, Bars, and Basics continue…

– Equipment Set-up, Signal Flow [diagrams and vocab]
– Blending 2 tracks
– Q&A session [the business of DJ-ing, etc.]

Week 3: Mixing and Matching

– Review of Session 1
– Mixing using Hand-claps
– Drop on the 1, Drop on the 2, Non-linear kick drum patterns, Syncopation

Week 4: Mixing and Matching continue…….

– Beat Matching
– Mixing by feel, by ear, by clock, by BPM
– Q&A Session

Week 5: Sets and Sequences

– Review of previous lessons
– Harmonic mixing
– Constructing & rehearsing a set
– Mixing across platforms (turntables to CDJs)
– Block mixing
– Q&A Session

Week 6: Putting It All Together

– Review previous lessons
– Warm-up, Preparing your set
– Student short sets (10 minutes, with feedback to follow each)
– DJ Jungle (DJ) set, with discussion to follow
– General Q&A, and wrap up session

DJ Careers

A  DJ provides the soundtrack to the party, and is usually the main event, similar to going to see a band. DJs must constantly work to refine their craft and to produce new music under their own names, if they want to stay competitive. They must have a deep love and knowledge of their chosen genre in order to keep the crowd on the dance floor. A Club DJ works most frequently with Promoters, Bookers, Talent Buyers, club General Managers, other DJs and his or her Personal Manager.

Most DJs initially get jobs through networking before building a fan base, and therefore a reputation. Competition is fierce. Many people get started in this career by offering to play sets for free, so that the bar/club gets to know them, their work ethic, and how audiences react.

DJs earn money from performing, and those who produce their own tracks earn royalty money. Income from Club DJing can vary greatly, based on if you live in a major metropolitan area, how often you perform and how popular your chosen musical genre is. Certain types of music draw bigger crowds, and therefore have a greater demand, and the opposite also holds true. Income also varies based on whether you’re just starting out, or if you’re a world famous DJ headlining festivals and raves across the globe. On average, a reasonably successful DJ can expect to make a few hundred dollars per show


In the meanwhile, here are a few day jobs that could really boost your DJ career:

  • Music Label Manager
  • Writer for a technology magazine (or writer for DJ technology blog…)
  • Working at a pro-audio manufacturing company
  • Managing a night club
  • Managing the music program at a night club
  • Managing the sound system at a night club
  • Working the lights at a night club
  • Working the door
  • Promoting parties
  • Graphic design or PR industry
  • Event production industry
  • Sound system rentals or design

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