Congratulations, you landed your first gig as a working DJ! You’ve taken the first in what will be many amazing steps on your journey as an independent working DJ and artist. This is a moment that is worth celebrating. Be sure to savor every minute of what’s soon to happen and be proud of the work you’ve put in to get here. Remember, you can only do your first gig one time! So we’ve decided to share some tips on how to handle your first DJ gig!
As much as this should be a happy moment, it’s understandable that you may have some nerves as well. Trying something for the first time always leaves us with a feeling of anticipation mixed with nervousness. This is perfectly normal! If you weren’t nervous that would mean you didn’t care about your craft, and at the end of it all, it’ll feel like you’ve accomplished something astronomical. Here are a few tips to help put those nerves to rest so you can enjoy this special moment even more!
Tip 1- Check, Check, and Check Again…
Nothing leaves a working artist, musician, or performer with a bigger pit in their stomach than realizing they’ve forgotten something. Keeping track of your equipment is essential on any given gig day, and that goes double for a DJ. You want to make sure you have all the important cords and cables with you before you head out for the show. One of the worst feelings is realizing you forgot one cable and spend the rest of the night trying to fix that one tiny mistake.
It helps to create some sort of checklist if you have an immense amount of gear. Another practice you could do to ensure nothing goes missing throughout the day is make sure your gear is always gathered in one central location with each other. By making sure everything is in one place the odds of something going missing goes way down. This is something you can do after the gig as well. Just make sure you’re checking over your gear to make sure you have all the necessary tools you need so you don’t put more stress on yourself when you should be excited!
Tip 2- Checking Your Tracklist
As the DJ you control the flow of the event. Every song, track, and drop should mean something. Your mix dictates the pace of the evening and it’s important to keep this in mind before you even step foot into the event or gig. It’s helpful to go over the track list multiple times beforehand and even once more the night before. Make sure you plan when things should pick up, and when things should slow down. Plan your drops accordingly and make sure they fit with what is going on in the track list. Also make sure to pick up drops that work best with your set.
Sites like NYE Countdown makes it easy as the variety of drops and countdowns ensures that there’s something for any working DJ! By picking the right tracks and drops you are curating how the set will dip and flow. Be mindful of your choices and sound. Take into account the event itself and what would be most appropriate for that particular setting. By picking the right tracks and drops it shows you can adapt and DJ in any situation! Couple that with some possible video graphics from NYE Countdown as well, then you’re ready for a night that people won’t soon forget!
Tip 3- Capture Content
It’s very easy to block out the outside world on the day of your first gig. You can find yourself getting tunnel vision and solely focusing on what the night will be like. Although this is totally understandable it’s important to remember there are still other business matters you can be taking care of! As a DJ it’s important to remember that you must constantly fuel your online presence, and nothing screams interesting online content more than capturing your first gig! It’s as simple as taking a few photos throughout the day and posting them. You can also use other various social media tools like video or going live to give people a behind the scenes look at how your day is going.
Audiences like to feel like they’re connected with whoever they’re looking into. By giving your online base a look into your world you’re building a stronger relationship with them. Engaging content like this is a way to interact with potential fans and clients. It also helps to capture content after the gig as well. By doing this, it makes it seem like all went well ( we all know it will.) This can lead to more bookings as it now makes you a more established DJ. If you’re unsure how to go about creating or using this content, places like Killerspots Agency can guide you through it so you can ensure you’re maximizing your online presence!
Tip 4- Communicate and Update
Communication is key in any field. Whoever booked you for this gig is putting a great amount of trust in you, so it’s important that you have a clear line of communication between the two of you. Make sure any and all business matters were taken care of before the day of the gig and that the two parties have clearly communicated their expectations. Remember, you’re trying to leave a good impression to possibly establish a long-term business relationship. Entertaining a crowd that night will be a blast, so why not do everything you can to make sure you can come back and do it all over again?
You’ll also want to make sure that you are updating the host or booker on any possible updates that happen throughout the day. They can be pretty forgiving of most things as long as you’re being open, honest, and constant in terms of communicating. Remember that you are now a professional. You booked the gig and can view yourself as a certified professional DJ, so make sure you’re communicating as a professional! Arrive early and let your voice be heard.
Tip 5- Just Breathe
You didn’t get to where you are by some fluke accident. If you’ve managed to book your first gig, then that means you’ve put in the legwork to get to where you are. You’ve probably spent months practicing, investing in gear, doing outreach to potential clients. Now is the moment to reap the rewards for all that hard work.
Sure it can be scary and intimidating, but this is what you’ve been wanting! There’s no need to let nerves get in the way of a day that you will remember for the rest of your life. No matter what happens you can only go up from here. Focus on what’s important and that’s the big picture. You’ve put all the pieces together yourself and now you get to go out and do what you do best. So have fun, give them a show they won’t soon forget, and just breathe!