So this past week I heard every bullshit excuse in the book as to why some Open Format DJs won’t play “Timber”…
I heard, “I don’t play country”, from DJs who play “Wake Me Up” by Avicii.
I heard, “I’m doing my part as a DJ not to break a record I don’t like.” Umm, it’s already been #1 on Billboard. Are you trying to stop it from reaching the Rock N’ Roll Hall of Fame?
I heard, “It would ruin my vibe.”, because as we all know, no DJ could possibly overcome the adversity of playing the #1 song in the country.
Believe it or not, I had a DJ tell me he doesn’t play “Timber” because he likes to challenge himself. I know. It’s like dude, if you wanna challenge yourself, why take it out on all the girls in the club? Why not just go out and play blindfolded or something.
And of course, I had every DJ cliche in the world thrown at me. “I’m a DJ, not a jukebox!”. “Good DJs take risks.” I was waiting for someone to tell me they don’t play “Timber” because ‘Real DJs use vinyl!!’ ”
But yeah, as the title says, there is one reason I would respect if a DJ said it to me. But no one did. Digital Dave (after a lot of silly excuses) hinted at this reason and DJ Prime actually came the closest to saying it. The one reason I would accept is this:
“I don’t play ‘Timber’ because it doesn’t look cool, and I want to be known as a cool DJ.”
And that’s the truth right?? Seriously. Say it with me, “I don’t play ‘Timber’ because it doesn’t look cool, and I want to be known as a cool DJ. I know that it would make the girls happy, and I know it’s a bit selfish of me, but I feel like it would hurt my main goal of appealing to the cool crowd.” There’s no shame in admitting it. I mean, we’re all friends here so we can be honest with each other. And trust me, while it doesn’t really make it right, I get it. I would totally understand where you’re coming from. As I wrote in my counterpoint article, I’m not oblivious to why DJs these days are afraid to play Top 40.
JD and I have discussed it many times on our site over the last couple years. Plus check out what I said at 57:25 during our appearance on The Rock-It Scientists’ Podcast, “Shut Up And Talk”. (Go to what is currently Episode 27 and VIEW IN ITUNES) The people who like strictly Top 40 aren’t the one’s who will help your career. Trust me, you don’t have to explain it to me. And on the flipside, I get that the cool crowd will be the ones that care enough to follow you if you can make an impression on them.
I know we all have goals of playing large shows and festivals. And there’s more than just the mammoth ones that Hardwell and Afrojack play. Every local scene has some big shows somewhere close. So if you’re one of the bigger local DJs around that scene who does bottle service clubs, it’s not a stretch that you could find yourself being asked to do one of these bigger shows if you happen to meet the right promoter. And we all know that if that promoter happens to attend a club you’re spinning at, you better hope he hears you playing Trap and Electro tunes because obviously, no one at those large shows is playing stuff like “Timber.” I undertsand this X 100000000000. And a growing number of DJs are starting to understand this as well. For better and for worse. But since this is why you won’t play “Timber”, please don’t try to make up other excuses.