How to Become a DJ in Five (Almost) Easy Steps
The thought of becoming a professional DJ holds appeal that needs no explanation. Precisely why millions of music-lovers worldwide share the same dream. Still, there’s a big difference between wanting to become a DJ and actually committing to making it happen. Those in the latter bracket existing in much more compact numbers.
From choosing DJ equipment to making music to scoring your first big gigs, you can’t realistically expect an easy ride. That said, there are really just five steps separating you from becoming a pro DJ and accessing the career of your dreams.
…and here they are:
Step 1: Take Inspiration from the Masters
First up, there’s a lot you can learn from your idols. Not to mention, anyone who’s made a successful career of DJing and is willing to share a few tips. There’s a ton of helpful information, resources and video tutorials online to get you started. Rather than getting caught up in the glamour of what’s to come, focus on the basic skills and knowledge you’ll need to take those essential first steps.
Step 2: Get Some Decent Gear
The worst thing you can do as a DJ (professional or otherwise) is let your gear hold you back. Unless you set yourself up with some decent quality DJ equipment, you’ll remain confined to amateur hour indefinitely. Rather than selling yourself short or wasting time, it’s worth considering an affordable DJ finance package from a reputable seller. This will help you get your hands on the gear you need sooner, rather than later.
Step 3: Get Your Brand Off the Ground
Working as a pro DJ, your music is your product and you as a musician are a brand. Like any other business venture, you need to market and promote yourself as heavily as possible to make your presence known. You’ll need a strong online presence, including active profiles on various social media channels. You’ll also need to attend as many gigs, events and DJ shows as possible – anywhere you might meet someone who can help you get started. On that note, networking is a big deal – never pass up the opportunity to expand your contacts list.
Step 4: Free Gigs and Guest Slots
So what if you’ve got to travel 200 miles to play a 10-minute slot at a lousy hour? When your goal is to get things off in the ground in the first place, every gig and appearance is golden. Along with expanding your fanbase, you’ve no idea who might be in attendance at the time. Fellow musicians, promoters, head-hunters – you really can’t afford to pass up these kinds of opportunities. Even if you’re playing for free and it’s costing you to perform, it could be worth your while.
Step 5: Take the Next Step
After which, it’s simply a case of persevering until you get where you want to be. It could be a while before you’re able to fund your lifestyle with music alone, so it’s best not to make any rash decisions – i.e. telling your boss where to stick it. There’s a time and place for all this, but for now it’s a case of working hard, building a fanbase and making sure everyone knows your name. Hiring help for marketing, promotion and bookings etc. comes highly recommended, but it’s by no means mandatory.