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first three records to start a set

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1 hour ago, earlvandykes6 said:

 You could play the 7"  Magnificent Men - From The 7" Capitol Box Set ? ( Unless You Think " Box Set's Not Legal ) ??  . 

No problem with the box set but playing out would need to be OVO  

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42 minutes ago, Timillustrator said:

I've noticed one or two DJ's seem to keep tweaking up the bass to the point where there's buzzing and feedback or the records jump due to the pulsing. It seems to be as the venue fills though after a couple of hours so there's more background noise and more bodies to absorb the reverberation. 

Exactly why you need a sound engineer or equipment supplier that knows what to do when the DJ,s start messing around with the controls 

Steve 

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4 hours ago, stanley said:

my first three i dj,d with last time was  del larks  issue , salvadors rarer first issue , professionals ,..... certainly got the reaction needed.

Del Larks - played out - you need to get rid of it. Give me a call!!!!😉

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45 minutes ago, eric catchpole said:

I have a Del Larks but its not for sale, I've had it for 20 years.

So do I - Maybe I should use that in my first 3 from now on :huh:

Len (Still learning) :thumbsup:

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6 hours ago, stanley said:

my first three i dj,d with last time was  del larks  issue 

Good job you had that in that format, otherwise the dance floor would have been empty. I for one would never dance to anything played on a demo/promo copy 😉

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I used to be a regular dj at a local all-dayer, i would get an early spot where i could play what i wanted (even surprised some people with what i had in my box) but i digress, i always started my main spot with "The Brothers"- "Are you ready for this" but after that it was never planned.

 

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Here’s my take on the subjects the discussion has now moved on to. When it comes to presentation, there are major differences between that of someone who has "the mindset of a music professional," versus someone just treating DJ'ing as a casual chance to spin some of their favourites and earn a few quid in the process. Let’s take a look at some of the differences between each of them as it’s important to evaluate any relationship that is based on performance and trust.

The casual DJ is often likely to just turn up with a couple of boxes, maybe even just one, without having spent any reasonable amount of time in advance researching various scenarios as described later in this posting. They are unlikely to have a designated, well constructed set, and will just be playing records ad hoc. If they're spinning records that are only an average of 3 minutes long, throughout the majority of the duration of each track they can be seen frantically looking through their boxes for the next spin. In such a self-inflicted pressure situation, it doesn't take long for bad decisions to be made. In the heat of the moment when tracks have less than 30 seconds to go, they throw on tracks in haste that have poor reactions then spend the next two minutes mulling over that rather than focusing on the next track. There may be only 20 seconds to go of a track and they still haven't got the next one on, so in desperation they put a 5 minutes 12" single on in order to free up some thinking time, but clear the dance floor as its tempo and style bear minimal resemblance to that which preceded it. They might get away with it if it’s an “impact” track which is a proven winner, but what are the chances? Their confidence is quickly shot and with well over an hour of their slot to play it becomes daunting. They may have two boxes of absolute gems but poorly presented they’re going to mean little. If the mess is made in the first half of a set, the relationship with the crowd is likely to run its course sooner than expected. 

In complete contrast, a good DJ with the mindset of a music professional will have spent hours in the days leading up to a function planning a choice of sets [something I may address in a different posting] and a strategy that has multiple options taking into account all of the following:

The knowledge the crowd is likely to have. What percentage will be serious punters whereby obscurities must be considered? What age groups are likely to be present? Will I need to take records from multiple eras and styles in order to satisfy a broad range of ages? If I don't have that back up am I putting the promoters and my reputation at risk? What are the other DJ's likely to play, should I ask them a few days in advance? Where are they coming from? Is the weather likely to be bad with potential for delays, or are there road works? Thus should I take back up records to cover their potential absence?

Is the equipment well maintained? What TT’s are being used and will I be able to use my own head shells or are those in place sealed? Will the promoter be acting responsibly in regards to how the system is set up? If the speakers are right next to the decks the answer is no, as the likelihood of damaging ones ears is increased as I know from personal experience. Does the system have a limiter [hopefully]?

Here’s one I expect not a high percentage of DJ’s consider: Is the venue in a residential area whereby excessive noise may risk repeat functions there being barred? Regardless of whatever spot I have at a function, I will make several announcements [never forget to take own mic] reminding people to leave the premises in an orderly manner to protect the venues reputation. I won’t go as far as saying the following over a mic, but my thoughts towards this include the possibility of a heated argument between a resident and someone pissed up, resulting in a fight. This is going to be the lasting impression that anyone unfortunate enough to witness it, will remember of the night, one that ended badly and thus ruined the occasion.

It’s small details such as this that can set one DJ or promoter apart from others. I learnt a hell of a lot at a residency I had in the early 2000's. I'd never previously worked at any venue on a weekly basis that was so large. This was a club that attracted just short of 700 per Friday night, average age mid 40’s. It was successful because all of the aforementioned considerations were in place. There’s a lot more to DJ’ing than just spinning records. You need to consider the crowd, the surroundings, those who are paying you, and those who are employed at the venue.

Martin

Edited by Martin S

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As has been mentioned previously the ability to read a crowd of people on a dancefloor, judge their reactions and what they want or expect to hear is paramount.

Please bear in mind  that I'm not a Northern Soul DJ,I just appreciate the music, so I'm coming at this from a background which is immersed in Hip Hop,Funk and Breakbeat culture,where often as much emphasis is placed on the skill set of a DJ as the records they spin..sometimes more so,in fact.

That said I'm a firm believer in programming sets if its just playing records,ideally having several options to cover all bases and spend time really working hard on how certain records can be mixed or sequenced together to the best effect.Most importantly you need to know your records inside out, where the breaks or breakdowns are at certain points on the record for example which can be mixed in and out to create cue points for the next record to be dropped etcetera. 

One of the main issues I take with certain DJ's (or people who like to call themselves one) is often their inability to mix with cohesiveness which is something I just don't understand as theres no point in having boxes of great sounding vinyl if you cant mix them together properly. 

When I've paid good money to go to an event I expect to see a DJ with a charismatic stage presence,great sounding tunes with well-composed routines, and precise technical control.Sloppy or inadequate mixing I just cant tolerate,personally.

I could list loads, but here's an example of 3 tracks out of many that I could easily start a set with providing that the records hadn't been played earlier in the night by another DJ obviously.These are all in similar tempos and also very simple to mix together too!

 

 

 

Edited by Soulsides

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13 hours ago, eric catchpole said:

Have you had the Del Larks a long time and did you have to pay a lot for it Len?

Yes lots I'm afraid as not long ago - I'm having a sort out over Christmas, so may be in the sales (Not sure as yet though mate)

No PMs please! :D

All the best,

Len :thumbsup:

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4 hours ago, Martin S said:

Here’s my take on the subjects the discussion has now moved on to. When it comes to presentation, there are major differences between that of someone who has "the mindset of a music professional," versus someone just treating DJ'ing as a casual chance to spin some of their favourites and earn a few quid in the process. Let’s take a look at some of the differences between each of them as it’s important to evaluate any relationship that is based on performance and trust.

The casual DJ is often likely to just turn up with a couple of boxes, maybe even just one, without having spent any reasonable amount of time in advance researching various scenarios as described later in this posting. They are unlikely to have a designated, well constructed set, and will just be playing records ad hoc. If they're spinning records that are only an average of 3 minutes long, throughout the majority of the duration of each track they can be seen frantically looking through their boxes for the next spin. In such a self-inflicted pressure situation, it doesn't take long for bad decisions to be made. In the heat of the moment when tracks have less than 30 seconds to go, they throw on tracks in haste that have poor reactions then spend the next two minutes mulling over that rather than focusing on the next track. There may be only 20 seconds to go of a track and they still haven't got the next one on, so in desperation they put a 5 minutes 12" single on in order to free up some thinking time, but clear the dance floor as its tempo and style bear minimal resemblance to that which preceded it. They might get away with it if it’s an “impact” track which is a proven winner, but what are the chances? Their confidence is quickly shot and with well over an hour of their slot to play it becomes daunting. They may have two boxes of absolute gems but poorly presented they’re going to mean little. If the mess is made in the first half of a set, the relationship with the crowd is likely to run its course sooner than expected. 

In complete contrast, a good DJ with the mindset of a music professional will have spent hours in the days leading up to a function planning a choice of sets [something I may address in a different posting] and a strategy that has multiple options taking into account all of the following:

The knowledge the crowd is likely to have. What percentage will be serious punters whereby obscurities must be considered? What age groups are likely to be present? Will I need to take records from multiple eras and styles in order to satisfy a broad range of ages? If I don't have that back up am I putting the promoters and my reputation at risk? What are the other DJ's likely to play, should I ask them a few days in advance? Where are they coming from? Is the weather likely to be bad with potential for delays, or are there road works? Thus should I take back up records to cover their potential absence?

Is the equipment well maintained? What TT’s are being used and will I be able to use my own head shells or are those in place sealed? Will the promoter be acting responsibly in regards to how the system is set up? If the speakers are right next to the decks the answer is no, as the likelihood of damaging ones ears is increased as I know from personal experience. Does the system have a limiter [hopefully]?

Here’s one I expect not a high percentage of DJ’s consider: Is the venue in a residential area whereby excessive noise may risk repeat functions there being barred? Regardless of whatever spot I have at a function, I will make several announcements [never forget to take own mic] reminding people to leave the premises in an orderly manner to protect the venues reputation. I won’t go as far as saying the following over a mic, but my thoughts towards this include the possibility of a heated argument between a resident and someone pissed up, resulting in a fight. This is going to be the lasting impression that anyone unfortunate enough to witness it, will remember of the night, one that ended badly and thus ruined the occasion.

It’s small details such as this that can set one DJ or promoter apart from others. I learnt a hell of a lot at a residency I had in the early 2000's. I'd never previously worked at any venue on a weekly basis that was so large. This was a club that attracted just short of 700 per Friday night, average age mid 40’s. It was successful because all of the aforementioned considerations were in place. There’s a lot more to DJ’ing than just spinning records. You need to consider the crowd, the surroundings, those who are paying you, and those who are employed at the venue.

Martin

Jeeeeze, I thought I always over think DJing - Now I also have this lot to worry about! (I might print this off) :D

Joking aside, all valid points sir :wink:

All the best,

Len :thumbsup: 

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4 minutes ago, Steve C said:

Like many questions in life there is no right or wrong answer there is only the persuasiveness of the  argument that you attach to your answer.

That's all fine and dandy hehe, but this is a thread about which 3 records you'd choose to start a set with.

The 'Soul Source Armchair Philosophers Mega Thread' can be located in another section of the forum.. 

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Respects to you seasoned Northern soul DJs. And thanks to the DJs who have put up and impart their great knowledge, to me. I spend hours sorting a set and always do different on the night lol I djayed in 71/72 but slightly different in them great pioneering days, The Torch had just started and we didnt know the 30000 plus imports existed lol. I was asked to do a one off, around 5 years ago to do a TW set at the local pub in Cambridge, but to discerning soul folk. I cleaned me ol toons incredibles, sammy ambrose, and other british gems ovo I was always taught back then if its on blue stax ya dont play it on yellow stax lol .....

I had just heard its bad you know and got the lp so decided to open with it, maybe the signs of a DJ who was willing to play different, well the crowd just stared at me :}  from, then on opened up with Tommy Neal Goin to a happening, Garnet Mimms looking for you, Gladys Knight just walk in my shoes my first motown demo in 1970. The crowd really enjoyed it, you cant beat family and good friends lol

For me this was my first and last set, however I havnt stopped since.

And what a learning curve, have ya any Wigan toons mate, 100 club, xover, RnB, proppa toons, Mecca toons, funky edge! and so it goes on lol

However ive muddled through , to the standard of seasoned DJs, no way lol but maybe my enthusiasm to learn, helps me win over the wide range of great soul folks I encounter.

My last 3 first uns....10 oclock spot.....Its alright Turley Richards, 2. The los santos adolemces one, I call it the Mexican wade in the water lol 3. Betty Lloyd Im catching on...............all ovo, I dont put that to boast, it was just ingrained in me in the early 70s and cant do anything else.

So im special guest at the Right Track Peterborough friday night, my first 3 oh ug no real idea lol I shall arrive early, I shall watch the dancers and chat with the great resident DJs, they know I know little lol but always will to help Gwasshoper on his journey...great thread by the way xxx   and yep a;ways got me precious TW toons with me x

 

 

 

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Hell, I was aiming for deeply profound and now I'm sat in the corner wearing a funny shaped hat !

OK, I'll play. For me Northern was all about young, frustration, and an outlet to burn it off with like minded people resulting in copious amounts of sweat. So, I'll make a mark of intent opening with ,Turnin My Heartbeat Up, and then I want you gasping so next comes, Your Magic Put A Spell On me, and then I am going to remind you that Northern was always capable of surprising you with something beautiful and unexpected so we finish with the San Remo Golden Strings,Festival Time.

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2 hours ago, Soulsides said:

As has been mentioned previously the ability to read a crowd of people on a dancefloor, judge their reactions and what they want or expect to hear is paramount.

Couldn't agree more! It's vital.

 

2 hours ago, Soulsides said:

Please bear in mind  that I'm not a Northern Soul DJ,I just appreciate the music, so I'm coming at this from a background which is immersed in Hip Hop,Funk and Breakbeat culture,where often as much emphasis is placed on the skill set of a DJ as the records they spin..sometimes more so,in fact.

 

Yep, me too. Although as far as my DJing goes (well went) it was always music first, mixing second.

 

2 hours ago, Soulsides said:

That said I'm a firm believer in programming sets if its just playing records,ideally having several options to cover all bases and spend time really working hard on how certain records can be mixed or sequenced together to the best effect.Most importantly you need to know your records inside out, where the breaks or breakdowns are at certain points on the record for example which can be mixed in and out to create cue points for the next record to be dropped etcetera. 

 

I used to work out mixes in small sections (maybe 3 or 4 records) and then mix and match those sections as needed, luckily I also had the ability to improvise if the crowd seemed more receptive to something I played in particular.

 

2 hours ago, Soulsides said:

One of the main issues I take with certain DJ's (or people who like to call themselves one) is often their inability to mix with cohesiveness which is something I just don't understand as theres no point in having boxes of great sounding vinyl if you cant mix them together properly. 

 

I always thought great music was most important, it does add an extra dimension if the DJ can do something exciting with them.

 

Anyway, back to the original question, obviously it depends on what sort of night it is, what part of the night, but I'd always start with guaranteed dance floor bombs to announce my arrival and get everyone on the floor....

Jimmy Castor - It's just begun   -   Mighty Ryders - Evil Vibrations   -   Locksmith - Far Beyond

 

The northern soul fans might be heading for the doors though! 😱

 

 

Edited by Jimmy Disco D

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my first 3 last time were (all girl sounds);

Patti austin    Didn't say a word    Columbia    US Issue
Ivorys    Please stay    Despenza    US Issue
Passions    If you see my baby    Elvitrue & satelite    US Issue
 

 

Edited by bbrich
forgot the links

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1 hour ago, Soulsides said:

That's all fine and dandy hehe, but this is a thread about which 3 records you'd choose to start a set with.

The 'Soul Source Armchair Philosophers Mega Thread' can be located in another section of the forum.. 

Can you post the link please? :D

I might re-start my 'Philosophical Soul Nights' again one day :wink:

All the best,

Len :thumbsup:

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My first three plays at the moment would be  

 

Soulful suspects " funky drop " black prince

Impressions " potent love "  custom lp followed by  

Lee fields & Sharon Jones  " I'll be around " unissued daptone  .I carry both 60 rarities underplayed modern & crossover and a handful of oldies .get to the venue  early study crowd reaction and always be prepared for anything.   :-):-)

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1 hour ago, Steve C said:

I can't tell you how much I appreciate that degree of detail and planning.  I think it applies in any field of endeavour if you really want to excel. First you have to do the unexciting ,but necessary grunt work.

'Fail to prepare - Prepare to fail' :wink:

Or whatever works for you :D

Len :thumbsup:

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Great topic last djing spot I played these for my first three .Barbara banks .anti I worth a dime smash records. Frederick hymes. Time ain't gonna do me no favour fab records. The fantastics. Me and you sound stage records. Always put about 8 records together then go with the flow rest of the spot .

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2 hours ago, Greedy Mick said:

Just wondering if anyone has ever started with these for a joke

Jimmy radcliffe 

Toby legend 

Dean parish 

There's always a possibility, although I'm guessing they probably didn't exit the venue on foot afterwards, hehehe..

Edited by Soulsides

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"Sorry but I completely disagree.   The only planning is what to put in the box in the first place and then spontaneity is where I come from, feel the moment and go with your gut instinct."

Even though I disagree with you I'd defend your right to have a different opinion. However, for me it's simple, I look back at my life and I can't spot anything significant that I have done very well that was not first planned out in as much detail as was practicable. The spontaneity that you allude to can actually work out ok, but in reality it's not because you are being spontaneous it's because the intuition you refer to is the product of a lot of experience. Spontaneity without experience equals --doesn't work that well. Positive experience (i.e something was learned) ,on the otherhand ,probably was founded first on good planning  :)

Edited by Steve C

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On 13/12/2018 at 12:02, Jimmy Disco D said:

 

Jimmy Castor - It's just begun   -   Mighty Ryders - Evil Vibrations   -   Locksmith - Far Beyond

 

The northern soul fans might be heading for the doors though! 😱

 

 

And thats why I would be a useless DJ because Jimmy Caster Its just begun is the best record to start any set anywhere regardless of genre  fact 😉

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52 minutes ago, Mark S said:

And thats why I would be a useless DJ because Jimmy Caster Its just begun is the best record to start any set anywhere regardless of genre  fact 😉

I'd have left by the peace speech section.

On the other hand if this was played instead... I could have stayed!

Ed

 

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On ‎13‎/‎12‎/‎2018 at 10:20, LEN said:

Yes lots I'm afraid as not long ago - I'm having a sort out over Christmas, so may be in the sales (Not sure as yet though mate)

No PMs please! :D

All the best,

Len :thumbsup:

Just talking to my wife Jayne and she said we came over to one of your do's many years ago in Wellingborough she said Mick Smith was djing.

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8 hours ago, Steve C said:

"Sorry but I completely disagree.   The only planning is what to put in the box in the first place and then spontaneity is where I come from, feel the moment and go with your gut instinct."

Even though I disagree with you I'd defend your right to have a different opinion. However, for me it's simple, I look back at my life and I can't spot anything significant that I have done very well that was not first planned out in as much detail as was practicable. The spontaneity that you allude to can actually work out ok, but in reality it's not because you are being spontaneous it's because the intuition you refer to is the product of a lot of experience. Spontaneity without experience equals --doesn't work that well. Positive experience (i.e something was learned) ,on the otherhand ,probably was founded first on good planning  :)

Hi Steve,

And I respect yours.  Not sure we are miles apart as I think experience, which usually includes an element of learning from mistakes, is slightly different than planning which can be over regimented.

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1 hour ago, MGM 1251 said:

The Mello Souls disc is way over rated,for me that is....but the  Johnny Rodgers is an absolute corker...always loved that one....what’s going rate for it these days...?

Mello Souls is as good as it gets and is certainly ‘top trumps’ as a party starter. So few copies around and when do you ever see a DJ copy? Anyone who hears this played in public is sure to have a jolly good time. Tricky record to surpass so drop it down a tad to Four Tracks, Sandy Golden, Timi Yuro, anything to give the dancers a breather.

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