I know you’re probably wondering, what does this girl know about DJing? Or, how does she know what DJs do and don’t like? For the past year, I’ve surrounded myself with a band of DJs. My first year of college, I spent most of my time behind the DJ booth. Even in high school, I’ve had my share of helping the residential DJs for my school’s events. I think I have a knowledgeable idea of what DJs do and don’t like, especially, during party time! And hopefully, some of you who admit to doing any of these acts of disturbances, will probably think twice before doing it. So, here are the 5 things that annoy DJs!
- “Let me get the mic, bro?”
This individual usually lurks around the DJ booth, almost as if he knows the DJ. But, in actually the DJ doesn’t even know why this person is standing so close to his thousands of dollars of equipment. This person has on his agenda to retrieve the microphone and to say as many “hilarious” puns and shouts outs as possible. At first, it’s funny, and maybe the guy had a couple of drinks or is happy to be alive; but eventually it gets annoying and the DJ just wants his mic back.
- “OMG! It’s my friend’s birthday, can we request a song?”
When it comes to making requests, whether if it’s your friend’s birthday or yours, don’t do it! There’s nothing wrong to ask the DJ to request a song, it shows that you’re actually listening to songs that are being played, and you’re somewhat enjoying yourself. Although, that doesn’t mean that there are not ridiculous requests. If the DJ just went through a set of Reggae and Dancehall songs then transitions into Hip Hop, there should be no reason for you to request anything from what they just transitioned out of. The DJ was hired to play a set at the event, let him do his job. Eventually, he will get to your song, and if not, he’s not just reading one person. The DJ tends to read the crowd, therefore, he’s gonna play what he knows the crowd will go crazy for next. And to be honest, you probably heard enough of “Trap Queen” when you were on your way to the event.
- “Where’d you find this?”
Going back to the person who may be lurking around the DJ booth, there’s several types of people who do this. They don’t always want to hog the mic, but they may be interested in being a disc jockey themselves. This person may not be a total nuisance, especially if this person knows the DJ personally. I myself admit to doing this, but sometimes I ask later on or the next day what he played. As for a total stranger, it’s very annoying. This person tends to hover around the DJ and his laptop to see what song is being played at the moment. Whether it be to get the song he’s playing or just want to know what song it is that has him so full of energy. Tapping the DJs shoulder and asking him where’d he find this song or taking out your phone and taking a picture of the song just causes a disturbance. Some DJs actually put their set online; this is the opportunity to follow the DJ on social media and find it there.
- “Let me touch the turntables!”
Whether the DJ uses a controller, CDJs, or vinyls, they all hate when people come and touch the equipment while they’re in a middle of a set. You’re distracting them, and most of the time, DJs practice a lot beforehand to get the transition right, and they can’t execute it properly because you’re in the way. It’s cool and all that you DJ too and you know how to cue and use the crossfader, but it’s not your gig at the moment. Also, telling the DJ that “such and such song” will get the party off the ground doesn’t make you an expert. Did you survey the crowd? Let the DJ do his job. For the time being, enjoy yourself and let him do his thing. It’s only fair and everyone else can have a good time!
- “Can I put my drink down right here?”
Sometimes people forget just how much money all the equipment costs for a DJ. They range from $89 to $5000. So leaving your drink on the laptop stand, by the sound board, or even the controller/CDJs is a huge no-no! People will be dancing, so the chances of the drink being tipped over onto the equipment is not a 1 in a million chance. It is bound to happen at any given second. Usually the DJ has a drink himself and leaves his drink by his own equipment, but he knows where his hands will be and it’s far away from where people’s hands and possibly butts, will knock it over.
These are some of the things that annoy DJs constantly. Of course, some DJs have their own preferences and other peevish occurrences that happens to them when they’re at a party. At the end of the day, the DJ is there for your entertainment, and you should be having a good time. There is just some unspoken etiquette that you would think everyone will understand, but not everyone does. The DJ loves that you aren’t afraid to approach them and ask them a couple of questions, but simple things like telling them how to do their job, hogging the mic, and leaving your drinks by the equipment, are just a couple of things that irk them.
Ebony Anderson-Brown, Editor in Chief & Publisher
Photography by Ebony Anderson-Brown
(Disclaimer** Originally submitted to the Odyssey Online. You can find the original piece at The Odyssey at CCNY)