...my “skills” and other PRODUCERS skills shine where it needs to shine… in the goddamned studio, and on the fucking releases. thats what counts...
Various DJs chimed in on Twitter with A-Trak providing my favourite response:
@deadmau5 DJing isn't about beatmatching, duh. It's about selection. If your set is your own songs, it's another thing, a performance.— A-Trak (@atrak) June 23, 2012
@deadmau5 i get that you don't see yourself as a DJ but i also wonder if you appreciate that craft, even if it's not what you do.— A-Trak (@atrak) June 23, 2012
Out of this debate came a terrific piece by Dancing Astronaut on the whole issue called 'Dance music has gone mainstream, but it doesn't have to sell out'
What worries me is not that DJs are simply “pressing play,” but that they’re pressing play on the same tracks in the same order night after night after night. There’s new music being released at a breakneck pace, but many of the big name DJs are still spinning the same freaking sets every time. They are playing the same bootlegs, making the same transitions, and delivering the same exact shtick every day of the week.
Great point. This should be apparent for all of those EDM fans that have paid any attention to track listings of major DJs in the past 6 months. With all of this technology available to the modern day DJ this cookie cutter approach to live shows should no longer be acceptable.
Sometimes I wish that the EDM scene could look to the comedy world for the way forward out of this stagnation. Louis C.K is one of the biggest comedy acts in the business and he's almost universally praised by his peers for his work ethic. Louis C.K is famous for literally throwing out all of his old jokes and creating a solid new hour of material every year. When developing this material he is known to refine his jokes in New York comedy clubs until he gets it just right. Sometimes he bombs on stage and that's okay because what's important is that he's constantly challenging himself to create something new. DJs shouldn't be afraid to take a little risk to give fans something new to listen and dance to instead of simply sticking to what has worked in the past.
What happens if EDM continues its current trajectory? Well DJ Sneak offers some insight by using the current state of Hip Hop as an example in this interview:
Hip Hop went through the same stages House music is currently going through, people wanted to make money and make Hip Hop into POP music. I mean look at the state of Hip Hop today, it’s awful, good rappers are a dime a dozen, and the rest of the fools are rapping about some bullshit nonsense, they all want the same thing - Money, Hoes and Fame. It’s really a global musical epidemic. This is what you see on MTV or other TV channels; there is no love, no pride, and no integrity.
I leave you with this clip of Paris Hilton's DJ debut in Brazil:
No comment necessary as the video speaks for itself. Deadmau5 couldn't have timed his post any better.