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A few months ago I decided to start documenting my journey from wannabe to superstar DJ after being coerced into it by a few of my friends who insisted it’d make for an interesting read. I wasn’t quite so sure…
However, since posting my first instalment, quite a lot has happened, so I figured I’d give you all an update.
When I first started learning I was mixing on a borrowed pair of decks, with a borrowed collection of music. Now don’t get me wrong – early 00’s house will always hold a special place in my heart, but there are only so many times you can play Benny Bennassi’s Satisfaction before you want to strangle yourself with your head phone cable.
So it was time for a change. But where to start…?
In a very uncharacteristic move I actually did some research. Yep…I actually took the time to see what other people recommended, rather than blundering into the shop like a looter who wants to pay for things and buying the first thing I laid my eyes on. Well done me.
What I ended up buying, after much deliberation, was the Numark Mixtrack Pro – a compact, lightweight, nifty piece of kit which you can use to control MP3s through your laptop, otherwise known as a MIDI controller.
The Numark Mixtrack Pro plugs into your laptop and works with a programme called Traktor, which allows you to load up your MP3s and control, mix and manipulate your tracks using either the Mixtrack controller itself, or just via the software. It’s pretty bloody clever.
The beauty of using a MIDI controller is that it does a lot of the leg work for you. Granted, this could very easily be deemed as cheating, as you don’t have to worry about beat matching at all, but this does mean you have far more freedom to actually work on the mixes themselves. Needless to say, using a MIDI controller saw me improve considerably quicker than I had when learning on vinly (sorry old school!)
Throughout this time, Frankie (of It’s Just Nice dream team fame) was also hatching a plan to become a superstar DJ, and had invested in a Numark Mixtrack Pro exactly the same as mine. So one night, after far too many cans of Red Stripe, we decided to team up and Duchess was born!
So far we’ve only played one gig (which I hasten to add was a resounding success!), but there’s plenty in the pipeline. Here’s a taster of what we played out, but I’ll be sure to keep you updated with the latest on Bristol’s newest female DJ duo!