Traveling around the world we get the opportunity to see how different communities, scenes, and cultures interact. It’s truly a blessing to meet so many wonderful dancers, organizers, DJs, and people. We can tell you the Hip Hop vibe is alive everywhere we go and each community has its own way of connecting to the culture and the street dance styles.
As we travel to different communities we also notice certain things which the community needs help with. From the music selection to the judges choices to how well a jam is organized, we see different ways of throwing an event. We respect the efforts these organizers put in, even if they really are not trying or they are throwing an event because its the popular thing to do. At the end of the day its getting people out of their crib and into the community, and we respect that.
One thing we notice at some of these jams is not every DJ knows how to spin a jam. From the cypher to the battle, the DJ is THE MOST IMPORTANT selection in getting your name out as an event and keeping the community coming back. The DJ sets the vibe with the music over the whole event and if that vibe is off, it won’t be a successful event.
DJ’s need to prepare for the event to the highest priority. If you are DJ’ing an event you need to understand what the event is: Breaking, Popping, Freestyle (All Styles/OpenStyles), and prepare your music to keep that vibe. The cypher is just as important and possibly more important than the battle, so make sure you understand what to bring out at the necessary time.
Organizers need to really do their research on DJs who can not only keep the vibe at jams, but will be involved in the process of marketing the jam. If you are pushing out DJs music before the jam, you can easily set a hypeness before the event even starts.
If the event has a battle, do not use all your fire power in the cyphers, even though its important to keep the spirits up with the music. If you spin battles a lot and you are using the same tracks…YOU ARE NOT PREPARING. As a DJ, your job is to prepare ways to push these dancers in their music, so in a way you are the instructor to these students.
We’ve enlisted Step x Step Official DJ to give 5 Ways DJs can prepare for a jam.
- Know your crates and be prepared to change on the fly depending on the energy of the event
- Have zero regrets in song choices, but in the same breath realize that not every-time at bat is a home run
- Be ready to make mistakes, but own then and don’t dwell on them
- Have fun, smile, and truly immerse yourself in that moment you are creating
- Pay attention to those moving to what you are providing
Here’s a few interviews from DJs in the scene who been keeping it real and keeping the vibes for some time.