· 4 min read
Business Techno Institute Presents: How to Make It as a Street DJ
Written by Mitch, CEO of the Business Techno Institute
DJ's have been the mainstay frequenter of the club and bedroom since time immemorial. Henry VIII used to have court DJs spinning for hours at a time while he guzzled mead and pointed at horses, laughing in hysterics. (Important details like this were omitted from the Netflix special, The Tudors.)
Charles Dickens' Great Expectations was a triumphant piece of literature about a DJ seeking his fortune in London, with many references to the bedroom version of the craft — although they would only DJ on MySpace Live back then in 420p.
One type of DJ that’s scrubbed from the collective memory, however, is the Street DJ - a soft sausage of a DJ that goes about life unnoticed, DJing only in the streets...You may ask yourself, "Are they buskers?" No; unlike the busker, they're an introverted orchid of a person, moving in silence and only DJing for the love of the craft but brazenly in public space. Next time you're in a City Centre, look around and notice... Do you see anyone walking around with turntables like you would at a club, with their headphones on, bopping away, but no music coming out at all? You have just spotted - the Street DJ.
Street DJs DJ for themselves, but the difference is they do it in public. It's part of their art. If you mention silent discos or ask them if you can have a go, you will be met with flying vinyl directed at the noggin with laser-guided precision. They do it for themselves and themselves only.Now, you're likely wondering how to become a Street DJ , but look no further as I was one myself before starting the Business Techno Institute.
Get used to being cold
It's cold on the streets, but even in summer, a street DJ will get colder than most because of the weather or the cold shoulder they shall receive. People will look through you and see through you. So you'll need a thick skin, firstly, to keep warm and secondly, to repel the ice-ray stares of strangers that see through your cloak of invisibility. Be prepared.
The last thing you would want is to be noticed — so make sure to dress appropriately. This can help with the previous rule, but it also adds to the excitement of the proceedings. Most DJs are known to be ignored. The latest census of the UK showed that almost 90% of the populace were thinking about DJing in the next quarter and the same percentage will be totally ignoramused. On the flip side, you can wear hi-viz and everyone will just think you're an unhinged builder.
Take no requests
You're an artist, so you need to play by your own rules. If a kid asks you to play his favorite song from TikTok, tell his father to take him away before he embarrasses the family name. The thing is, no one else can hear anyway, and if you get a spare pair of headphones for passing punters, congratulations — you're now a silent disco, aka not cool.
Enjoy the moment
There's nothing like “the moment” because everything else is either a forgotten dream or something in the future to dread. Gyrate your lower body and cut a few shapes. Your memory, and the person operating the CCTV, will thank you. Grab a snack and a bottle of vodka to loosen those seized hips and give yourself the performance of your life.
Read the crowd
Now you're DJing for yourself, no one can hear you or barely see you (unless you went full builder), so now is the time to allow the crowd to read you! Enjoy the anonymity of everyone trying their best to ignore you. But keep an eye on reactions. If you're noticed, you're doing it wrong. Keep that equilibrium flowing, and you'll be a pro in no time.
Now get out there, bold warrior of the urban front! Prepare for ecstasy as fortune favors the brave. And please send pics.
Mitch is the CEO of the Business Techno Institute, a shitposting platform dedicated to the corporate sponsored degradation of Techno and DJ culture in the U.K. and throughout the world's many club scenes.