Weekend Recap – Let The Trap Games Begin

Trap music is what all DJ’s are talking about this week, but will it be around next week and does your club-going crowd even care? Plus a recap of the DJ Expo 2012 in Atlantic City, the lowdown on fake twitter followers, Z-Trip speaks out on the lack of Dj creativity and much more…

LINKS:
Fatboy Slim at the closing ceremony
Avicii Will Be The First DJ To Perform At Radio City Music Hall
Leaked: Dj Mag Internal Documents Reveal Secret Payments…
Marley Marl Recreates “Mama Said Knock You Out”
Fake Twitter Followers
DJ’s Should Bring Back The Danger

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13 comments

  1. Regarding the topic of hopping on the newest trend / creating the next trend, I feel like it is hard to create a musical trend unless you are big enough to feed it to the masses and get it the proper exposure. Most of us haven’t made it that far, so instead we try to channel the creativity into the latest trend, because people are going to want to hear the latest trend, and not necessarily something new and innovative that is completely unfamiliar. That is why there was a dozen remixes of afrojack’s Rock The House only a week after the song came out.
    Personally, I haven’t been hopping on the latest trend or trying to be the first one with a remix of a new song. I feel like most remixes like this have no longevity, and will be playable and relevant only through a certain window of time. In my remixes, I typically try to bring back a classic song, and do it in a style that nobody else has, or I sample different tracks to create something totally new. Either way, I try to make sure that the I create something that will last for years, at least in my sets.
    As far as Trap music, I like some of it, but coming from someone who loves bass, has a 10″ KRK subwoofer in his home studio set up, and 12″ subs in his car, the bass in a lot of these songs is just damn obnoxious. Can we bring the levels down people???

  2. I think your right Spring, not often do you hear this type of discussion as the norm from Djs within the community! I don’t think I ever went that far into thinking about this too much, however now that you mention it, it allows me to reflect and think about it!

    I agree on what you both mention in regards to a DJ not being able to get his or her fair shine based on what night he or she gets, especially if you are just starting out. The DJ can be a top notch DJ and having a great night musically, but if the crowd is small and no energy vibes are flowing, the DJ may to some look less than what he or she really is. Unfair to the DJ? Most definitly.

    We all know that a bigger crowd helps the DJ look good via the energy they express(i.e. hands up, etc) and bigger crowds, if they happen to be on a Saturday night for instance, the DJ, as long as he or she is providing and satisfying the crowd with energetic music in Primetime, the DJ can press play on LMFAOs Shots, like you mention Spring, and the crowd will go insane. The crowd and the DJ become unison, vibeing off each others energy, and it spreads across the sea of dancers on the dancefloor and creates high energy within the club in which keeps the management happy!!

    Dancers, like at where you guys DJ, also help bring up the crowds energy levels, and sometimes they are left out of the equation, but should be recognized for their dancing skills and ability to inspire all to get out on the dancefloor and dance, which on a slower Friday night, say the crowd isn’t as big, those dancers can actually help bring up the energy levels and hopefully inspire others who may not be dancing to get out on the dancefloor and dance. Those dancers do a great job at lifting energy levels up, especially within VIP!

    Comparing Friday club nights to Saturday club nights, as you did, I think it is a more than a fair assessment and an on point conclusion that you came to. Overall, for the most part I would agree as well that Saturday nights are the “going out nights”.

    When I first started out DJing before doing clubs, I was strictly mobile, and I was faithfully going to clubs every Thurs(college night) Fridays and Saturday nights as a patron. Friday nights seemed to have energy, but for some reason everyone came later, and the crowd wasn’t as big usually. If the crowd did get bigger, it was usually much later than that of the crowd of Saturday nights! Out of the 2 weekend club nights, I was always looked forward to partying Saturday nights, as the energy level seemed to be maxed out vs Friday nights. My assessment for Friday nights use to be that, people were working Friday, and they either hit a Happy Hour straight from work with friends, then went home and were so drained from the work week, they wouldnt want to go back out, so they instead might of wanted to relax and maybe take in a movie or stay home and watch a movie and continue their happy hour drinking home, OR, if they didn’t hit Happy Hour, they would go home, rest a bit from their busy work week, then shower and get ready to head out to the club, thus why they would show up on the later side on Friday nights.

    I noticed at one gig I did about 6 years back, I was DJing a clubs patio for the summer on both Friday and Saturday nights, and noticed the ongoing trend for that summer was that people showed up much earlier on Saturday nights vs. Friday nights. I don’t really know why, but from what I explained above in the last paragraph, this seemed to be also what I would hear girls talk about as well when it came to why they chose a Saturday night to go all out, and a Friday night to go to a smaller bar or stay home.

    For some, not having to work Saturday and being able to rest up vs. going on Friday nights from a full Friday work day may have been a reason, and plus, they are quite rested from the work week, and if you are a DJ that sees an earlier crowd on Saturday nights, maybe its because they want to start drinking early before it gets too crowded so by the time it gets busy, they are plenty drunk enough to join in on the mayhem out on the packed dancefloor. I’m not saying those to be the end all reasons to why this is, just some of my observations and speculations over the years.

    Spring, what you mentioned about how playing LMFAO on Saturday nights to a packed house, and the crowd going insane without you having to magically come up with a mixing formula to get them insane, is exactly on point. I think many DJs can attest to this. Its funny, because I never really thought about it too much, untill hearing you break it down in the vid. If you were, say on a Friday night where you only had a small crowd and you did the same, its kind of like what you guys mentioned in another episode video, about how you don’t want to be caught out playing a Dirty Dutch breakdown in an opening set because when you have a mega ton of energy blaring out your speakers during opening, people will look to you as, really? you are really playing this now! Non DJ People might not know about much behind the scenes within how to pull off a successful DJ night, but what they do know is how and when they want their energy served up to them…Prime time! They know or should know, lol!

    In conclusion of all this, for me I think having a small crowd weather your venue is as big as an airplane hanger or as small as a neighborhood bar, when it comes down to it, a smaller crowd anywhere gives off a more intimate setting, which is why many if not most DJs keep there music at a lower volume at opening and gradually raise the volume based on the crowd getting bigger. As 10 people turn to 100, than 200, etc, the volume, music selection and pace at which you mix also tends to rise. Im sure other factors I may have not thought of play into all of this Fri vs, Sat night, just my contribution!!

  3. Just wanted to chime in on the fake twitter followers…this is an awesome find. Its funny (and sad) to see how someone in my area, who many people follow (or so we thought) and who is even a good friend of mine, has a MAJORITY (thats over 50%) of his “followers” as FAKE…way too funny and its nothing I’m going to point out to him or his followers, I would never want to take away from the work he does because, hell he is very talented, but what makes me think, if someone, who is supposedly one of the bigger djs in our area is willing to “cheat” to look better on twitter, I am curious as to what he and others have done to make themselves “better”. Excellent find, glad you posted, and as someone who is great at faking it til i make it, this still wont be a vehicle i will be using to get to where I want to be. And to also add, as someone who does mobile djing on the side, the DJ Expo was…somewhat…informative…but as a nightclub/bar AND mobile DJ, the expo’s best tool is being able to network. I was able to sit and meet with some very humble people in the industry, both mobile and club, and just to be able to shake the hands of the guys who are inspirational to us in a setting where we are basically “big fans” but them allowing me to feel on the same level as they are, its just incredible. Its good to know there are very humble and not HOT HEADED people who succeed, that remember where they came from and understand that bit of a struggle. S/O to the boys from Video Report (Josh and Eloy) who I was able to meet up with at Harrah’s and JD the quick hand shake at mur.mur…(you didnt want to see me much later than that, after Enferno came our second bottle and it got a little rough). But just thought I’d say from someone (I consider myself a rookie who has just gotten very lucky in my career path) who is young in the game and popped my first DJ Expo Cherry, it was very well worth it. If your on the fence, save up a couple bucks, take a vacation, and treat yourself to a good few days. Thanks again guys. Loving what you do with this site & def keep up the work.

  4. Great recap! Spring, I loved that you raised the point about how DJ’s play different and might seem worse to some on nights that aren’t as busy, as opposed to playing prime time on a saturday. I’m currently working in my first residency at a local club, and I had been doing thursdays and sundays, and the odd fill in shift on saturdays. It was almost painful at times when playing on sundays because I’d have maybe 15-25 people on the dance floor max at any one time. I rarely felt that energy from the crowd that I could feed off of and vibe with. As a newer DJ, I often thought at times that it was all my fault and that I maybe wasn’t putting forth my best effort. I was having a conversation with a co-worker tonight actually, and he was telling me that it would be nice to hear more underground house and stuff at the club (this is a top 40 club I work at). He told me that he’s heard staff talking about how mainstream I play. Most of the times he would hear me play would be on these off nights where turn out is not great to begin with. On these nights I find myself constantly playing the poppiest of music because when trying to keep a small dance floor I can’t go experimenting with random shit that people don’t know. It’s unfortunate that some staff doesn’t understand this aspect of DJ’ing. But, the times that I’ve played on a sunday night on a long weekend when monday is a holiday and the club is jam packed, its a whole different story. When I drop a hit song and hear that reaction from hundreds of people it’s so much easier to keep a vibe and push the limits further and further.

    • Your sunday night sounds a lot like my recent residency on Thursdays. The crowd started small and built up a good amount of momentum, and my partner and my style is walking that thin line between the underground and the mainstream. People loved it when they came out, and we had a pretty consistent following. In the end they re-formatted our night to all EDM, but we definitely made a name for ourselves with that party. I think it has a lot to do with each individual venue, and their clientele as well as the night you create. Try it out, and it might just work.

  5. Another great vid fellas!! I just wanted to put my 2 cents in about Pauly D. I went to Paulys car show last sunday and I must say i was Impressed. He has really stepped his game up and all the haters do need to chill out. His hip hop set has improved so much, his house set is solid and even his scratching is greatly improved from those youtube vids from 2009 that everyone loves to hate. I’m lucky enough to be a good family friend of him and whenever he has a show here i always get the vip treatment with the fam, which i greatly appreciate. That crew always puts on an awesome show and are all really cool people. I also got the opportunity to meet Danny Rockz that day, who was real cool dude. Guy had a dope set and was quick to give out solid advice to a young DJ like myself.
    I agree with JD and Jay Spring that he doesn’t get enough credit on his improvements and that haters can just be so ridiculous sometimes. This is an argument with haters that will never end, so I just wanted to put my 2 cents in about the situation and show some support for my dude Pauly.

  6. I’m not touching the trap creativity argument, but it has given me a bit of insight into how to “make it” a little farther. I don’t see the hype & sudden popularity jump of trap music, but I did remember thanks to JDs comments that it’s really about the clubgoers experience, and they have no idea what the hell we’re arguing about here. The music is new, and they haven’t heard this delivery of the songs they know, so it’s all good. Ultimately that’s the fuel behind where the whole mashup era came from.

    I am really starting to see where you guys are coming from, when you were talking about the size of the crowd in the club has a lot to do with how the DJ plays. A lot of times I am only playing to 100-300 people, and that makes it a lot harder than when I’m playing for a larger crowd. I feel like I’m spending a lot more time trying to quick mix and trying to actively keep the floor energetic. To the same effect I see a lot of my peers doing the exact same thing in large and small crowds.

    I’m really glad spring brought up the point of “Be different”. That story about Apathy makes a lot of sense, especially if you listen to his music. There is this interesting duality in being a bottle service club DJ, let alone an open format club DJ that I’m dealing with right now. I come from a background in soulful house, breaks, funk, and disco music so I don’t get to play the music that I really love, because of the gigs that I get. I’ve accepted that over the years, and I think that it’s a necessary skill to learn how to play to the crowd enthusiastically, even if you don’t like the music, as long as the crowd wants to hear it. Keeping that in mind, I’ve been listening to a lot more of the European DJs which I guess would be the equivalent of their open format, like A-skillz. I like that I hear a lot of the music that I love, as well as a lot more mainstream top 40, and in the right context, crowds are very receptive to that style of mixing. I also know that I have a Fanbase that’s split between the two. I’m feeling kind of inspired, and I think I’m going to take more risks when I’m DJing now. At least it makes sense in my head. I know how to play to mainstream crowds, and I know how to play to underground crowds, so might as well try to bridge the gap. “Be different”!

  7. Trap music in my estimation is taking onto the music scene in very much the same way Dubstep has, although there is one difference. Dubstep didn’t share Mainstream success back in the day, it was more underground, however Trap music had its share of Mainstream success already back in the mid 2000s, especially around 2006-07 with songs I mention below. I know a lot of DJs, including myself who were spinning Trap music back in those days and didn’t even know it. We considered it to be just Down South Hip Hop, in which in its basic form was, but the genre “Trap” hadn’t caught onto us yet, although Artists such as Jezzy and Yung Joc had the words Trap right in their choruses! Then you had the 2007 album entitled “Trap Muzik” by T.I.

    Does anyone remember these lyrics from this 2006 song:
    “Meet me in the trap its going downMeet me in the mall its going down
    Meet me in the club its going down
    Any where ya meet me guaranteed to go down”
    Those lyrics are from Yung Joc , “Its Going Down” I’m sure we were spinning these tracks, and even Chamillionaires “Riding Dirty” had the Trap bounce and flow to it, especially within how the beat was structured, with those pitched up and down snares and signature kick!
    Then there are these lyrics from another well known track:

    “You Know We Trap All Day Play All Night This Is the Life Of A Go Getta”

    Those lyrics are from Young Jezzy and R Kellys “Go Getta” This track is more of a crossover Radio Trap song IMO, but has a ton of energy for within the Trap style. And Jezzy is definitely Trap style! Again, most of us were playing these in our sets, and if not, we most likely heard of them!
    The reason I call to attention these tracks from Chamillionaire, Jezzy, and Yung Joc, they were just some of the more bigger tracks within Trap music back in 2006. Not all Trap has the signature “Heys”, and “Ohs” (i.e. the track “Riding Dirty) but most incorporate it to some degree)
    What I have noticed, like all Trends, the reemergence of Trap today in 2012 has it coming back as just Trap. In other words, it was called Trap back in the mid 2000s, and now with its reemergence, it is still called Trap, however within this new Trap phenomena, we are seeing elements such as EDM that were not present in original Down South Hip Hop style Trap. Trap music that went Mainstream for a bit back then was strictly Hip Hop, and Trap music back then consisted of certain lyrical content that you would rap about. Compare that with the new Trap craze, and you see a lot of EDM infusion. I think that is mostly due to the fact that the Trap music that is reemerging is coming out in the form of Remixes so far. Take the songs “Epic” and “Sandstorm” for example, each with their own Trap remixes.
    I’m sure, if not already, we will see stuff like “Trap-Step” and other sub genres emerge from this and have some sort of presence. I dont think I heard anyone doing “Trapbahton” yet, although Trapbahton in that respect would have its BPM at 106 BPMs and up, meaning that you would probably utilize the Moombahton beat, and incorporate some Trap drums at a faster pace utilizing the pitched up and down snares and “Heys” and “Ohs” of Trap. Like JD mentions Traps BPM and Dubsteps BPMs have more in common, as they are “halved” BPMs (double up 70 BPMs and get 140 BPM) Where as Moombahtons BPMs are not halved, rather slowed down to about 106 BPMs and up from their original 128 BPM speed, so if you doubled a 106 BPM Moombahton beat, you would be well in the 200 BPM range, lol!
    Trap in the past couple of weeks took me by surprise, because as I saw more and more of it emerge both on the Internet and from hearing it around, I sort of said to myself, “Didn’t we already have a Trap phenomena back around 06?” Than I realized the delivery in which the new Trap is being presented to us, more in the form of Remixes utilizing EDM/House elements so far, with some originals as well starting to make some noise!

  8. some of these trap remixes sound cool some just come off sounding like dubstep for pussies lol….I find myself wishing it was a bit heavier….like the drop will come and i’ll be like wow…THAT was a letdown lol

  9. Since twitter is limited to only 140 characters, I should probably further explain my thoughts on EDM trap remixes since it came up here on the blog.

    When I wrote that tweet, I had just finished listening to approximately 50 trap remixes of EDM songs… all of which sucked except 1. That’s a 2% success rate, pretty terrible by any measuring stick. One of my main problems with the genre is the completely amateur production surrounding the majority of the remixes. They just sound awful. And while I will concede that Trapstorm is a BIG EDM trap remix that gets a good reaction and is well done, it doesn’t mean that trap remixes of EVERY classic EDM song (Bennasi’s Satisfaction, Samir’s Theme, etc) need to be made. DJ’s / Producers tend to get completely carried away with this idea. Recently, we saw it with the mashup era, we saw it with moombahton and now we are seeing it happen almost overnight with trap.

    If we want to be real about the trap movement, I think it’s fair to say it’s the DJ’s flavor of the month. Open format DJ’s tend to play many of the same popular records for months on end and are always looking for something new to keep THEMSELVES interested in the job, whether it be a new remix, a new music movement, etc. It’s just the way its always been, and right now that new thing is trap. I get it, but in reality, it’s a fringe genre (like moombahton, bmore,
    etc) that will have a moment in time of popularity before DJ’s move onto
    the next “it” thing. It’s not as if crowds suddenly got into this genre and started requesting it all over the place, it originated with DJ’s & DJ’s only and essentially we are pushing it down the crowd’s throats to varying degrees of success.

    Above & beyond that, the primary reason I think EDM trap won’t last long term is for the simple reason that they are primarily remixes and not original tracks. It takes original tracks that are HITS for a genre to really flourish.

    Although I still contend that I’m not sure exactly who (crowdwise) is going to love these remixes (Maybe the guy who frequents the club all the time and wants to hear something new?), I will admit that an EDM trap remix can be really useful as a tool or a bridge between hip hop & EDM sets. In that context, I think it works fine. Playing one or two tracks for that purpose makes sense to me. As a whole set or used for an entire mix cd, I think EDM trap remixes are an EPIC FAIL.

    Hopefully that helps make my opinion on EDM trap a bit clearer. I think both of you guys had good points about it and to each their own, this is just my two cents… backed by years & years of watching music styles come & go.

    • I think you hit the nail on the head. Trap is very reminiscent of B-more and Moombahton. A few key remixes to spice up your set, but also lot’s of junk to sift through. Thanks for the reply! – JD

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