Thanks to the rise and rise of Laptop DJs and live music, the era of the turntable-spinning superstar Dj may soon be over…or not? Read to find out.
[originally from LA Weekly] At the indie-meets-dance club Echoplex in Echo Park, DJs spin, but just as often these days a floor-friendly sound will emerge in the form of a band, a laptop act or something in between, as was the case with Love Grenades on a recent winter night.
The quartet’s three frontwomen dressed up like pinup girls, opera-length gloves and all, and cooed and sang in a correspondingly sultry haze, complemented by ’80s-inflected musicians on bass, guitar, drums and sequencer. The Grenades’ dance-punk sound has been remixed by friend-of-the-band Sam Sparro, another local artist who has skipped deejaying on the way to dance-floor stardom. Love Grenades don’t deejay, but their recent single, “Tigers in the Fire,” is being peddled on DJ culture’s No. 1 online retailer, Beatport. Clubland is being invaded by artists like these, dance-friendly acts that don’t need turntables to get their point across.
The dance world has been rocked in recent years by laptop-, sequencer- and band-based acts ranging from Justice and the Black Ghosts to Booka Shade. Daft Punk’s Kanye West–led resurrection last year highlighted the duo’s own immersive, turntable-free live act. And the local nu-electro festival HARD Haunted Mansion surpassed the 5,000-ticket mark in the fall with nary a superstar DJ in sight. All this has even some jocks asking if the spin is no longer in.
One of the hottest acts to emerge from the electronic–dance music arena in the past few years is Toronto-based producer Deadmau5, who got his start as a computer programmer before graduating to successful bedroom production. Because he came to deejaying from the tech-geek world, he faced culture shock on the club circuit. We can imagine him meeting all those douche jockeys caught up in drug-filled hazes of their own perceived stardom, egos stroked by groupies, guest lists and MySpace comments — all this stoke for, as Deadmau5 wrote on his own MySpace page, “some dude” who presses “the ‘play/stop’ button and occasionally move[s] a pitch slider.” Late last year, Deadmau5 was interviewed by Irish Daily Star and gave a money quote heard around the DJ world: “I don’t really see the technical merit in playing two songs at the same speed together, and it bores me to fucking tears. I’d like [DJs to] dis-a-fucking-pear. It’s so middleman. They’re like fucking lawyers. You need them, but they’re all fucking cunts.”
Here’s an artist whose music is required spinning for the biggest DJs, and he can’t hold his tongue (but his label can, and they declined to have him speak for this piece).
Deadmau5 admirer and former Angeleno Dave Dresden has worn many hats over the past two decades, including radio host, dance-music journalist, music scout for BBC Radio 1’s Pete Tong, and half of defunct DJ duo Gabriel & Dresden. He says Deadmau5 is right. “The day of the DJ as a guy who plays other people’s records might be done,” he says, pointing to newer acts like Morgan Page, who often play their own music live via laptop.
The superclub Avalon Hollywood has in recent years made more and more room for the post-DJ act while giving a cold shoulder to superstar DJs, especially those spinners who play straight-line hypnotic trance. While it still hosts plenty of big-name jocks — mostly of the minimal-techno variety — the venue has seen more than its share of hybrid live acts, including Booka Shade, Gui Boratto and Martin Buttrich.
“I don’t think it’s over, I think it’s evolving,” Avalon co-owner Steve Adelman says of DJ culture. “I think people are going more into electronic bands, live acts and semilive acts. We strive to have a whole production and visual experience that’s not just focused on watching a guy on two turntables.”
L.A.’s Frank Dominguez, a.k.a. down-tempo electronic act Aime, started deejaying 10 years ago but switched in recent years to incorporating nonturntable elements, such as keyboards, effects pads, a drum machine, a laptop and even an iPod. At 31, he plays for a generation of clubgoers more accustomed to the shuffle-play dynamics of an MP3 player than the ecstasy-fueled Botts’ dots of a superstar DJ. “People now would much rather see an artist performing with more than just changing records back and forth,” he says. “The kids go with what’s more stimulating.”
Adelman, who’s been in the superstar-DJ-booking business since the mid-’90s, says those most affected by the demise of the name DJ are local “midlevel” spinners, not huge trance names like Tiësto and Armin Van Buuren. URB magazine editor Joshua Glazer adds that some of the so-called midlevel DJs who had settled stateside around the DJ boom of the new millennium have gone back to Europe, replaced locally by nu-electro bands. Still, Glazer argues, the DJ isn’t going anywhere anytime soon.
“I think the reports of the death of the superstar DJ have been greatly exaggerated,” he says. “I was one of the first people to declare that death. But compared to five years ago, I definitely think the DJ is on the rise.”
He notes that cheap laptops and easy-to-use software, such as Serato Scratch Live and Ableton Live, have made it easier than ever to deejay — virtually — for a new generation of point-and-click jocks. “It might not be like 1999,” Glazer says, “but maybe we’re just not noticing.”
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Tags: Ableton Live 8, Is the superstar DJ era over?, Justice - Electro Music With Punk Attitude, Serato Scratch Live, superstar DJ, the era of the turntable-spinning superstar Dj may soon be over, The future of DJ'ing
Categories : DJ Articles, Laptop DJ, News, Serato Scratch, Turntables
Introducing Traktor Scratch Duo – part of the traktor family – the standard for reliability and creativity in DJing. Features the new Duo DJ Software, plus the award winning Audio 4 DJ Multi channel soundcard, and timecoded vinyl and CD’s.
Scratch Made Simple
For aspiring DJs who want to start spinning their digital tracks on vinyl and CD, TRAKTOR SCRATCH DUO is the complete solution that provides both the software and hardware to perfectly fuse the worlds of analog and digital DJing. TRAKTOR SCRATCH DUO comes with the powerful TRAKTOR PRO-based TRAKTOR DUO software, the professional AUDIO 4 DJ interface, ultra-precise control records and CDs plus many more valuable features to get you spinning in no time.
The included TRAKTOR DUO software features two state-of-the-art playback decks, an intuitive graphic interface with a Crate Flick cover art browser and unmatched sound quality. Advanced looping capabilities, with multiple loop and cue points plus up to three tempo sync’d effects per channel let you get deep inside the tracks you spin. The result of years of research and development, TRAKTOR DUO combines unparalleled creative potential with ease of use and rock-solid dependability.
TRAKTOR SCRATCH DUO comes with AUDIO 4 DJ, a superior USB buspowered audio interface built specifically for DJing with two decks. This low-latency 24-bit/96 kHz interface uses super high-end Cirrus Logic® AD/DA converters for pristine audio quality – just like its big brother AUDIO 8 DJ. Four switchable inputs and four hi-gain (9.7 dBu) outputs let you connect to an external mixer and turntables or CD decks in a matter of moments.
Digital Tracks On Wax
TRAKTOR SCRATCH DUO enables you to seamlessly fuse analog and digital DJing. With high-resolution 2 kHz control signal the included vinyl and CDs boast double the resolution of the competitors. This unmatched responsiveness means that everything from slow rubs to quick backspins and even motor-offs responds just like vinyl. Pressed with extreme care onto high-quality 120g discs, it really feels like each digital file is cut into the wax.
TRAKTOR SCRATCH DUO is designed for easy set up and comes with a dedicated set of high-quality Multicore cables (patent pending). Within a few seconds, you can hook up the AUDIO 4 DJ interface to your turntables / CD players and mixer and you’re ready to rock. And with the included TRAKTOR DUO software you can also spin without CD decks and turntables.
For more info, please visit the Traktor Scratch Duo product page
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Tags: easy set up Computer DJ package, Native Instruments Audio 4 DJ, Native Instruments Duo DJ Software, Native Instruments Release Traktor Scratch Duo, Starter DJ package, Traktor Scratch Duo
Categories : Digital, Laptop DJ, Music Software, New Releases, Traktor DJ
She might have already been somewhere around Tom Cruise-jumping-on-Oprah’s-couch crazy before, but now Lil Kim has pretty much gone off the charts, nearing Michael Jackson-crazy (and we’re not talking about her plastic surgery). Oh, you hadn’t heard? Biggie talks to Kim in her dreams, and apparently he is not happy with his recent biopic, Notorious. Not happy at all.
Lil Kim told RapRadar.com that she is ticked about the way she was portrayed in Notorious, and said beyond-the-grave-Biggie agrees.
“I’m a very spiritual person and he’s come to me many times in my dreams,” she said. “But I don’t think he’s happy at all, at all! Because Ms. Wallace doesn’t know Biggie at all and she barely knows Christopher, if you know what I mean. At all! And I was around. Even before he blew up so crazy, so I know how he felt about his mom. And Biggie was so much more than what they put him out to be in that movie. And to be honest with you, I know for a fact he’s not happy. He’s not satisfied at all. At all. And regardless of the fact, everybody who is involved in this movie, he has love for. Everybody. But at the end of the day, he knows who’s who and what’s what. Believe that. And let me tell you something, the way he’s feeling is going to come out later. You’re going to see who he really loved and the ones that’s standing up for him the right way is the ones representing him the right way.”
This is just the latest in an on-going tiff between Kim and P. Diddy, Biggie’s mom Voletta Wallace and former wife Faith Evans. Kim was upset because she wasn’t involved in the production of the film, even though one of the screenwriters said he contacted Kim and worked with her on the development of her character. Of course, she’s also not thrilled with the casting.
“I wouldn’t have picked a known actress,” Kim said. “I would’ve went to Brooklyn [and] had a casting call, to be honest with you. Because there is nobody who could’ve pulled off that Lil’ Kim/ Brooklyn feeling besides a Brooklyn girl who grew up in Brooklyn and knows what that’s like. That’s what I would’ve done.”
Knows what it’s like to speak to dead rappers in her dreams? No Kim. Nobody knows what that’s like. Even in Brooklyn.
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Tags: B.I.G., Biggie, Brooklyn, Lil Kim, Notorious
Categories : Uncategorized
Dolphin Music and Steinberg are presenting the new advanced music production system Cubase 5 exclusively at Leaf Tea Shop & Bar in Liverpool.
Cubase 5 comes with fully integrated new tools for working with loops, beats and vocals, such as LoopMash and VariAudio, combining with new composition features and the first VST3 convolution reverb to take musical creativity to new heights. With stunning innovations and additional enhancements that boost productivity and performance, Cubase 5 represents the absolute cutting edge in digital audio workstations.
The exciting new features and the revolutionary workflow with Steinberg’s Advanced Integration hardware, the MR816 CSX/X FireWire interfaces and CC121 USB controller for Cubase, will be presented by the Steinberg product specialists.
Cubase 5 Product Tour in association with Dolphin Music
Wed 25th March 09
7pm – 10pm
After party DJ by Dolphin Music
Leaf Tea Shop & Bar (http://www.thisisleaf.co.uk/)
27 Parliament Street
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Tags: Cubase 5, Dolphin Music, Leaf Tea Shop & Bar, VariAudio, LoopMash, FireWire, MR816 CSX, Steinberg, CC121 USB
Categories : MIDI controllers, Laptop DJ, Music Software, Digital
Carry case for the award-winning M-Audio DJ controller is now shipping.
M-Audio is pleased to announce that the Torq® Xponent® Gig Bag is now available online and in European stores.
The M-Audio Torq Xponent Gig Bag is the perfect carrying case for today’s mobile DJ. Padded sleeves protect your gear while the high-contrast orange interior makes things easy to find in low-light conditions. Separate compartments for the Xponent® control surface, a laptop and the necessary accessories means quick access to everything you need for a night in the club.
Built-in cable management prevents the dreaded ball of wires. Front-compartment mesh pockets accommodate headphones, hard drives, flashlights and MP3 players. With a rugged nylon shell and high-density stitching, the Torq Xponent Gig Bag is built to withstand the rigors of life on the road.
For more info:
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Tags: M-Audio, M-Audio Torq Xponent Gig Bag, Xponent, Xponent accessories
Categories : M-Audio, New Releases, Xponent
Happy new year. Let’s start with a prediction:
2009 could be the year the compact disc finally dies. It could be the year lots of other things die as well — polar bears, the high street — but CDs will be the big one. Don’t believe me? Sales are estimated to have slumped 27% in the last quarter compared with 2007, a year in which they’d already nosedived, and anyone who sells them has gone or is going out of business. The writing is on the wall.
How are we to feel about this? If you ask me, absolutely delighted, because CDs have always been, well, a bit rubbish.
What with their instantly crackable spines, tiny little inlay cards and infuriating frequency responce! Bah! [ed]
Consider, if you will, what we have lost because of the CD. First, it pretty much killed off vinyl, but it also murdered tape. What is childhood without tape? No wonder your modern teenager spends all day stabbing and binge drinking: it’s because he’s not at home struggling to record pop songs off the chart show when Bruno Brookes isn’t speaking. And how are boys supposed to express their unrequited love for girls without the compilation tape (complete with handwritten inlay card)?
So good riddance to the CD. With any luck it will help all those ageing, hysterical Take That fans who rushed out to make ‘The Circus’ the fastest-selling CD of the millennium get over their addiction.
This brings us on to the future, and, even though it won’t include Take That, it is bleak. Things are going to get worse before they get better. The death of the CD has not been brought about by a nostalgic return to tapes and 78s. No, the thing that killed the CD is the iPod. And the iPod is worse than the CD. Yes, it’s very nicely designed and pocket-sized. But clicking down a list of virtual albums is not the same as rummaging through an actual shelf of albums.
And there’s iPod-associated anxiety, a dangerous condition caused by the sheer inability to choose which track you want to listen to from the eight billion available. And why is it that the moment I set fire to my irritatingly scratchy CD collection, I know that the iPod will break? Or the computer will have a fatal error? And I’ll lose my virtual music collection because, well, it was virtual. And I didn’t back it up
What do you prefare to look at ? This??
Source: Matt Rudd
Features Massive 4.8kg/cm motor torque Low resonance metal chassis Fully adjustable S-Shaped tone arm Dual start/stop buttons Quartz Lock Adjustable Start Time (0.2 to 6 seconds) Adjustable Brake Time (0.2 to 6 seconds) Platter Reverse Motor Off switch Removable Strobe/Target light
PT-01USB permits users to listen to and transfer their vinyl records to digital MP3 files anywhere and anytime thanks to its convenient, rugged design and ability to run on either wall or battery power. An RCA line output is provided for simple connection to any DJ, PA, or stereo system. An auxiliary input allows conversion of audio from any…
The Easiest Way To Digitize Your Vinyl. The TTUSB is a unique, plug and play, USB compatible turntable that makes digitizing your vinyl record collection to your PC or Mac a snap. Packaged with all the necessary cables to connect with a computer or stereo playback system, along with software to remove clicks, pops, and other…
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Tags: CDs, iPod, Portable Vinyl-Archiving Turntable, Take That, virtual music
Categories : Blogroll, Digital, Turntables