Ever since JD and I started this site, we’ve been getting numerous emails (please keep them coming!) on a variety of topics. But one of the most common, is from younger remixers, who want to know how to get their remixes out there. We also run into some DJs who question whether it’s worth putting their mixes out there in the first place.
If you are looking to build your name beyond the local scene, then the answer to that last question is almost always YES!! For DJs who are just starting out, you obviously want as much exposure as possible. Nowadays, thanks to the many DJ/Remix related sites on the internet, it is relatively easy to get noticed — if you are consistently putting out quality stuff.
Another thing that the internet has made easy, is the ability for up-and-coming to DJs to find sets played by the DJs they look up to. When you catch one of these sets, you may very well hear an exclusive remix which the DJ has yet to make available to the public. DJ AM is a prime example. Anyone who’s watched the countless AM videos on youtube knows that he had some crazy material which he never released. Now let me state the obvious: You (nor I) am DJ AM. AM was a rockstar. He was one of the few DJs in this country that could really draw a crowd. He had a crazy schedule of bookings all throughout the globe, and people were really interested in what he played. You already how big AM was, but my point is, he didn’t have to release his mixes. He had enough people making the effort to go to his shows, and find his youtube videos, where he knew the people who cared would find a way to hear his stuff anyway. He was that rare DJ.
Now of course, the main point of being a DJ is to be heard. So unless you are on top of the game like AM was, where people are gonna search for your live sets, you’ll have to make the effort yourself to get noticed. That means making dope remixes, and putting them in everyone’s hands that you can. Being on the remix sites are dope, because your name is there for all to see. If you build a reputation that way, then people can go to the site to find your whole catalog. Plus, if you are consistent, you can make a nice little sum of cash. Still, many of the DJs on the sites have a good understanding of the previous concept I discussed. They already know that if they make a remix that’s especially dope, it’s likely in their best interest to give it out for free as well as put it up on the sites. In other words, the money you can make from selling a mix on a site is good, however the exposure you gain from giving a dope remix out for free, and getting it in as many hands as possible, can be PRICELESS!!
We all know that marketing is a very important aspect of being a successful DJ. However, business cards, flyers, and social networking, are only a small part. Putting dope remixes out on the web will likely trump all those. Ask Discotech or Rock-It Scientists. Ask DJ Scooter, who recently saw Def Jam put out his dancehall remix of Rihanna’s “Rude Boy”. It’s every DJs goal to work with the major labels, and Scooter agrees that if it wasn’t for his music being up for free on sites like DJCity.com and NewMusicServer.com, his mix wouldn’t have had the same success. “In retrospect, I’m defintely glad I had the music on those sites, or it might not have worked out like it did”, says Scooter.
Now thanks to sites like Beezo and Freakonomix, DJs can share more than just their remixes online. Because of sites like those, DJs can actually put up their live sets for fans to download. Hence, the same questions arrise with this as with remixes, and really, the answer is exactly the same. While you may be hesitant to put your best sets for download on the net, you have to understand the same issue. You do want as many people as possible to hear you, right?? And unless you are travelling the globe, and have fans posting youtube videos of all your performances, putting up your mixes for download is definitely the answer! Still not sure this is a good idea? Look at DJ Scene. He’s one of the top travelling DJs in the country, with a solid fanbase, yet he still makes the effort to give out his remixes and put up his live sets for download. If someone like Scene is still working for exposure, you should be as well!!