I owe the title of this post to a loyal follower of Traktor Tips (Thanks Kevin). We were having a Twitter conversation when the subject of DJ Psychology cropped up. I felt it might make a great subject to discuss here on Traktor Tips. So here I attempt to delve into the seedy underbelly of DJ Psychology, wish me luck…….
In the beginning there was a groove…..
DJ’s come from all walks of life, from simple upbringings to the most grandiose of backgrounds. The majority however, I would say are born from humble beginnings, with a hankering for music in some form or other. I myself, for example, would never be without music, wherever I was. I would take the small cd player into the bathroom when I was taking a bath, and by threading the cable under the door, I would listen to the essential selection on tape that I had recorded the previous night. There has to be that love of the music there, or at least in most cases.
Pre-requisites of the Psyche
Music is the underlying pre-requisite, that goes without saying but what other aspects make up the Psychology of a DJ?
SHY – When people think of DJ’s many would instinctively place them as egocentric, the need to be up on stage and showing off. The thing is, it could be the complete opposite. It may be that there are elements of the Pshyce that cause those behind the facade of a ‘DJ’ to be very shy. The exposure as a DJ can slightly massage the ego enough to curb the shyness for a temporary amount of time. But being securely locked away behind the DJ booth; the DJ is safe from the need to converse with others, keeping him at arms length. The attention can, however, go to some peoples’ heads and then it becomes more about them than the music. This is why you see absolute nightmare scenarios involving people such as Paris Hilton. In the main though, I would suggest the majority of DJ’s start off quite shy.
RECLUSE – Leaning on the shy aspect a little more here: DJ’s spend much of their time working with their music; on DJ sets, maybe even producing. This is a lonely task, or at the very best involves a small select group of friends or collaborations. This Reclusiveness also brings with it a quality of quirkiness to many DJ’s.
CREATIVE – As DJ’s are in the main, creative people, they have strong ‘Right-Brain’ capabilities. This is the side that deals with creativity, music, intuition and reading emotions, therefore placing DJ’s on the more artistic side of life.
GEEKY – A Geek is someone heavily interested in a particular hobby to the point where they don’t mind being open about it and love talking about it, more conducive to the definition of passion. This is contrary to the word Nerd, which is someone equally interested in their chosen passion, but doesnt like to mention it, therefore making this quality more akin to an impressive knowledge base rather than a passion. DJ’s are Geeks, very proud of their affiliation with music and even with Technology.
TECHNORATI – Being able to DJ, involves an ability to understand technology. Even in its simplest of forms; there are cables to plug in. The technorati clan however, is a group of people who’s lives would be incomplete without the technology they use, they are almost half machine and occasionally bore people with their incessant talk of technology. As the Techorati element is also encased in the GEEK psyche, they do not think twice about boring these people, their self awareness however, causes them to proudly admit they are a GEEK and move on to a subject chosen by their now, bored, yet timidly impressed acquaintance.
CONTROL FREAK – There may be an element of Control Freak in many DJ’s. It may only stretch as far as the music, but they certainly like being in control. As you twist those knobs and slide those faders, you are not just controlling the music though, you are controlling an entire room of people. You are manipulating their physical movements and their emotions. Do you have control issues? (Editors note: This could be dangerous, get yourself checked if you do! Haha) Sometimes you need to let go of certain situations you can’t control (Such as that warm up DJ – just let him do his / her stuff – you were there once!)
LOGICAL – I said above that DJ’s are creative ‘Left Brainers’, yes, they are, but due to all the technology involved, they must be ‘Right-Brainers’ too. Right-Brainers are critical thinkers, expressing reason, logic and a way with numbers (not the computer programs; the qualities) Completely ‘up in-the-clouds’ creative people would not be unable to deal with too much technology. This makes DJ’s very balanced and more than capable of using both sides of the brain. Congratulations, you’re not a complete freak!
So if you are a shy, geeky recluse, who enjoys getting creative with technology and are capable of logical thinking, then you too can become a Control Freak Technorati.
Do you posses these qualities? I would love to know of any other elements of the Psyche you feel make up a DJ. Drop a line in the comments……
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