Interactive DJs Bpm or key ?

EVDEANDA

New DJ
Nov 5, 2018
3
46
I'm new to the dj seen. So I've been learning on my own and by watching YouTube videos. What's your opinion on mixing in key verses mixing in bpm ?

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jaswrx

DJ Extraordinaire
Feb 15, 2015
205
33
mix in both...

I usually prioritize BPM, but then I try hard to mix in key, (same time) while keeping BPMS close although it doesn't always happen.
 
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EVDEANDA

New DJ
Nov 5, 2018
3
46
I started by just mixing in bpm but was told that it was better to prioritize in key and if possible both. Just trying to get different opinions. Thx for the feedback.

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djcrazychris

DJ Extraordinaire
Jun 12, 2018
2,601
45
Definitely learn bpm first... key is a new school thing that us old heads had to do by ear back when it couldnt be displayed on a screen... though important for the overall sound of a perfect house set at a festival... it isnt the end all of a good party/wedding set... (im now prepared to get bashed by albatross lolol )

the key to a good party set is "heart" and "soul".... and infectious hooks...mixed seamlessly and at the exact right moment.... i could spend months categorizing songs by key and get stuck in that headspace and end up lulling my audience to sleep with one long brown note

move people with your selections and dont get too caught up in much else

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djcrazychris

DJ Extraordinaire
Jun 12, 2018
2,601
45
this brings up a good topic tho...

im glad i learned to dj by myself in my basement... without even so much as a book from a library to help me.... this whole thing of learning by commitee...or being bombarded by so many opinions would make me bonkers.... no youtube video or post on a forum will ever make a good dj... it requires being locked in a room with your music until you figure out how YOU are going to dj... your style...

Then you go out into the world...a club...or a party....and you learn quite fast what to change about your style... u see what makes people react...what songs...what techniques ...etc....and after a couple years you relax into a definitive style
 

Proformance

DJ Extraordinaire
Nov 6, 2006
3,297
My mix priority is the audience. The BPM and the Key are just tools to be used. The key is less important if you are mixing at the breakdowns and it will change if you change the pitch.
 
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jaswrx

DJ Extraordinaire
Feb 15, 2015
205
33
with pitch n time from Serato, the key is locked, and when you move the slider, it actually controls the tempo.

You can also change the key too, while having separate control over tempo.
 

Jeff Romard

Administrator
Staff member
Sep 4, 2006
12,326
48
Sydney, Nova Scotia
Definitely learn bpm first... key is a new school thing that us old heads had to do by ear back when it couldnt be displayed on a screen... though important for the overall sound of a perfect house set at a festival... it isnt the end all of a good party/wedding set... (im now prepared to get bashed by albatross lolol )
Then again you could do the whole thing by ear...Actually I find that easier than looking at a screen and hoping the BPM and key were calculated right. Back in the day you had to know your music and listen for transitions these days it's damn near idiot proof
 

djcrazychris

DJ Extraordinaire
Jun 12, 2018
2,601
45
Then again you could do the whole thing by ear...Actually I find that easier than looking at a screen and hoping the BPM and key were calculated right. Back in the day you had to know your music and listen for transitions these days it's damn near idiot proof
Agreed!!

I have so many tracks that seem to have been allocated the wrong bpm by rekordbox...makes me wonder what the "synch" button people do...

I used to use a click counter and a watch to label all my records for bpm

cc
 

Albatross

DJ Extraordinaire
Sep 7, 2016
3,806
I'm new to the dj seen. So I've been learning on my own and by watching YouTube videos. What's your opinion on mixing in key verses mixing in bpm ?

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What style of DJing are you interested in?

BPM is always critical if you're beat matching, but when and how you use it will depend on your format. For example...

A house music DJ might stay in a similar range all night. And they also might use long layering techniques with 2-4 tracks running simultaneously. Having the key right is important if you're going to be doing this.

Mixing open format, hip hop, or general party mixes... they key is much less critical. Most mixes are not as long, and you'll generally avoid having melodic components on top of each other.
 
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EVDEANDA

New DJ
Nov 5, 2018
3
46
I'm still fairly new and haven't determined a style. I haven't preformed in any events. I'm just trying to get experienced Dj's perspective on the topic so I can get better. Any advice on any dj topics will be great appreciated.

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Albatross

DJ Extraordinaire
Sep 7, 2016
3,806
I'm still fairly new and haven't determined a style. I haven't preformed in any events. I'm just trying to get experienced Dj's perspective on the topic so I can get better. Any advice on any dj topics will be great appreciated.

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Where are you from? And do you go out to hear other DJs that you enjoy?
 

EVDEANDA

New DJ
Nov 5, 2018
3
46
I'm from the bay area, California. I have been going to local spots to hear everyone's styles.

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Jas

DJ Extraordinaire
May 22, 2013
1,798
Matching BPM is most important if you want to keep the same tempo (and hopefully the same beat) as a way to keep dancers on the floor. Every once in a while I run across two songs that fit together all 3 ways. BPM, Key, and both songs the dancers know and like to dance to.

Matching keys only would be more geared toward musak or radio programming IMHO.
 

wifedj

DJ Extraordinaire
Mar 20, 2008
1,345
Read crowd (primary), BPM (important but secondary) & Key (utilized if beneficial & possible).
 
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