This course won’t just teach you to DJ. This course will teach you the skills to become a successful DJ, in an extremely competitive industry.
Taken from a beginner level, 4 months will ground you in solid DJ technique, open doors into music production, educate you in self promotion, and expose you to the secrets behind getting ahead.
In this fast moving sector, our equipment and curriculums are constantly reviewed so that you are kept at the cutting edge of both technical developments and artistic trends in the industry.
Believe it or not, one of the most crucial minutes of your life as a DJ is setting up. Imagine the swap-over scenario – the DJ before you is playing their last track and it’s your turn to plug in your controller and gear, or get your vinyl decks going after someone has been on CDJs: you’ve got about 3 minutes to get it right and get your tune lined up, in the dark!
Another scenario is you’re mid-set and the sound dies – what’s happening with the signal flow, and what are you looking for when you stick your head round the back of the mixer?
Having a fundamental understanding of how different DJ gear connects together and how to set up monitoring speakers correctly is essential to avoid killing the dancefloor, and will certainly give you DJ kudos if you can be another DJ’s saviour if it’s happening to them and you can step in!
Looping, hot cue juggling, off-beat mixing, acapella overlay and use of effects – what do these things have in common? Quite simply, they can clear a dancefloor when they’re done wrong, or set a dancefloor off if they’re done right.
These techniques will be looked at in detail using a range of different musical styles, to give you versatility as a DJ, and some secret weapons to add to your sets.
Pioneer’s Rekordbox sets a new standard for set preparation. This piece of software (free to download) will enable you to prepare your tracks for performance on CDJ2000s and 900s from memory sticks, with features such as setting cue points, loop points and hot cues, super-fast track searching, high-definition waveforms, and quantized beat-grids. Understanding how to utilise Rekordbox properly will be the foundation for a smooth, stress-free set.
Digital DJing: EFX, Traktor and Serato
Digital DJing gives DJs the power to hook up a controller to their laptop, having their entire musical collection at their fingertips to be used as artillery in their sets. Depending on the controller and software that’s used, the scope of manipulation of these tracks far supersedes ‘just beatmatching’
Like the CDJ2000 Nexus, digital DJing often offers the contested use of the sync button – the pros and cons of which will be explored! Other benefits of digital DJing include visualisation of the track’s waveform and detailed track filing – so you’ll never have to panic whilst trying to find that CD in the club again!
Native Instruments’ Traktor, Pioneer’s Rekordbox and Rane’s Serato DJ are the industry standard digital DJing solutions. At the MIDI School, we’re a Native Instruments Education Partner and Rane Training Centre, so we have these covered – we’ll be showing you the full extent of digital DJing using the latest controllers and software.
DJing using vinyl records has always been considered by some as the holy grail of techniques, and vinyl itself has had a resurgence over the last few years.
We’ll teach you key techniques to help you master this difficult skill using industry standard Technics 1210s and the new Pioneer PLX-1000 turntables.
You’ll also learn about DVS systems (Traktor) : take control of your entire digital record collection using your turntables – the feel of vinyl but the flexibility of looping, cueing and FX.
Boosting your public DJ profiles.
Now at some point during the DJ Course you will start to get the itch and desire (if you don’t have it already!) to get out and start playing to a live audience. The issue is, you’ll have all of the skills, but probably not many people at this point will know you have them!
This is where the DJ promotion module comes into play. By educating you in a mixture of web based platforms, profiles and sound-oriented distribution sites, we’ll help you understand how to build a DJ profile for yourself – so you can showcase your skills, get bookings, and ultimately pull in a crowd.
There are many aspects that go into creating a successful brand – especially if the brand is yourself. Many DJs who are switched on to this go on to study our Music Business Course, which further explores how you can promote yourself in a world where the musical landscape is constantly changing, and how you can have the edge in keeping on top.
The basic scratching techniques from which all advanced scratching techniques evolved will be looked at: the baby scratch, the chop, the chirp, and the transform. Mastering these will give you the edge in your mixing, and show you how to play the decks as an instrument, if you will!
If you are solely interested in learning to Scratch or learn advanced techniques to develop your DJ skills, we offer a DJ Scratch Lab course that focuses on the more adventurous elements of DJing.
The Scratch Lab is taught on a one-to-one basis, due to the intricate nature of these DJ skills. You will be given the opportunity to gain key DJ scratching and turntablism techniques, at your level, from beginner to pro standard.
The DJ scratch lab course can be booked to suit your schedule
At Manchester Midi School, we believe that after you have the skills to DJ and perform your sets in any environment, that you will inevitably turn to the production side of the industry as there is nothing more satisfying than hearing your own music in a club, apart from when you are playing it yourself!
As a Certified Ableton Training Centre, an Education partner of Native Instruments and Propellerhead, we have the facilities and the staff to be able to show you three of the most groundbreaking pieces of software that will start you on your production journey, and could also help you with your DJing in the long run.
We will look at Ableton Live, to show you how to start making mashup-ups and editing your mixes with voxpops, or if you’re looking to turn it into a podcast.
Creating a podcast or a regular mix series will really help push your name forward in the world of DJing, so this is an essential area where we can help improve your DJ profile.
Don’t expect an exam at the end of the DJ course – this is a lot more fun! For the final lesson the DJ class students are taken to one of the most prominent clubs in the city – Sankeys – and each given the opportunity to play a DJ set to a live audience.
We’ll be taking high-quality shots of you DJing to a crowd for you to use as promotional material in your future DJ careers.
As a venue, Sankeys is a world-reknowned super club with a capacity of 1,200, which has since opened franchises in New York and Ibiza. During the closed private session you’ll meet the club’s sound engineer and learn what you need to check for in a live situation, and what you can expect when you play in a range of diverse locations. When you jump on the decks you’ll be playing through a massive sound system – you’ll be suitably impressed! All classmates can bring their friends along for the experience; it’s a great way to finish the course.
So – you can setup, now let’s get to the music! Your track selection is what will set you apart – and playing tracks other people don’t have access to is what will create demand for you as a DJ. We’ll be disclosing the secrets on how to find the hardest to find tunes, how to think outside the box when it comes to sourcing music, and how to get many of your tunes for free (not illegally!)
Club and Radio Edit Mixing
Next comes the part that impresses even the likes of the self-taught, well-practiced DJ students who on the course: the science behind DJing. DJ Mark One will show you that you don’t even have to know the tracks you’re playing to seamlessly piece them together on the decks. It’s the e=mc2 of DJing, and after the penny-drop moment you’ll be a jedi knight amongst other DJs!
If you’d like to view our facilities and chat to a course advisor, please contact us below.
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