10 DJ Etiquette Fails

March 31, 2020
Written by
Mark Butcher
10 DJ Etiquette Fails

Becoming a successful DJ requires skill and talent but there are plenty of fantastic DJs out there who struggle to get a slice of the action because they haven't promoted themselves in the best way. If you want regular bookings at the most successful events and parties you will want to start developing your PR skills by becoming the type of talented DJ that promoters and others in the industry love to work with, and remember for all the right reasons. First impressions go a long way and it's important you remember this as you establish a name for yourself. So before becoming world famous and a regular headlining act it's likely that your first bookings will be alongside other DJs like yourself. You may be warming up for another DJ, or you may be lucky enough to have someone warming up for you. Or you may be playing a night where you are just one of several DJs. So adopting a little DJ etiquette and exercising a few good manners will help you on the journey to the top. LSA has put together a list of 10 DJ etiquette fails many DJs make that eventually result in them becoming unpopular, very fast!

  1. ‍Using the DJ booth as your own personal cloakroom check for you and your mates! One bag that belongs to you is all you should need. There's a cloakroom check for everything else.
  2. ‍Not respecting the equipment! Don't place your drink in spilling distance of the equipment! You don't want to be that guy who breaks equipment and ruines the night.
  3. When following someone's set you stop his or hers final record midway. It's far more respectful to mix your first record from their final record in a way that enhances both songs equally.
  4. ‍Not respecting a DJs personal space when they are working. DJing requires a level of concentration that means too much enthusiasm in the DJ booth when someone else is playing can be a little distracting. If you want to talk to the DJ wait until they are no longer in the middle of playing a big breakdown.
  5. ‍Just turning up to play your set then leave. This looks arrogant because it tells everyone else that you don't think they're worth any of your time or attention. You may not stay for the whole night but watching one other set at the least will help people remember you for the right reasons. 
  6. ‍A negative attitude and general rudeness! Treat everyone as if they were the club promoter. Nobody likes being ignored or spoken to rudely and you never know what influence and power other people around you may have, so make a bit of effort to be friendly, in a way that is genuine and consistent to everyone you meet.
  7. Passive aggressive offers of help in order to show off! Offering to help a fellow DJ whether they want it or not, in a way that under minds their abilities looks considerably less subtle than you think. Genuine help is nearly always offered discreetly so not to embarrass someone by pointing out their mistake in front of other people. Don't start tweaking their equipment and insisting they do everything your way simply because you think your way is the best way. Everyone is entitled to have their own way of doing things.
  8. Not using your +1! It isn’t exactly rude to turn up to play your set on your own but if you invite a friend or even better actually turn up with a great crowd of people you are not only taking part, you are showing your support in a big way. If you are filling the dance floor with people who look like they are up for a great night out you will get booked again for sure. This is a must for any DJ who is still in the process of learning and developing their skills.  
  9. Lazy, half-hearted support! Get involved and offer to help make the night a success! Make a genuine effort to help promote the party you are booked for in a way that is impossible for organisers not to notice! 
  10. Turning up but going unnoticed! Be memorable creatively and professionally! This could be anything at all really, the thing you should ask yourself is did my contribution to the night just blend in with everyone else's or did it stand out? If you can be sure that your creativity stood out and you grabbed everyone's attention in the way you operated and organised yourself, then you can be safe in the knowledge that you won't be forgotten in a hurry. Remember to be original and consistent, a lack of consistency shows a lack of sincerity.

Are you passionate about music? Discover a new musical talent by learning how to DJ or produce music. Or if you already have some experience behind the decks, why not build upon and refine your existing DJ skills. Are you looking for a unique gift experience for a music obsessed friend? Take a look at our range of intermediate and advanced DJ courses. We offer 1 to 1 tuition for all experience levels and music genres? Our students learn faster, gain more success and regularly secure gigs at Ministry of Sound, Egg and Electric Brixton and our Music Production students have been signed to Spinnin, Universal and Island Records! This is probably why London Sound Academy has been rated the best DJ and Music Production school in London since 2010.

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