Leave Mr. DJ alone

I have a friend who is a disc jockey, a k a DJ. For more than 20 years DJ O (most people call him Rodney) has been spinning records at clubs, parties and weddings.

I’ve known DJ O for five years. We became acquainted after he became my barber (he’s a jack of all trades).

During the course of our friendship, which turned into a relationship and is now back to a friendship, I’ve had the pleasure of accompanying him to various DJ gigs. I’ve been to numerous weddings (the stories I could tell), many clubs and a few birthday parties.

I’ve come to this conclusion – it is very annoying when people bother the DJ.

I used to be one of those people who would walk up to the DJ booth and request this song and that song. I’d stand there until the DJ would play my song and then go back to dancing.

I don’t do that anymore.

After seeing more than one drunk person come up and ask for that “song” – as if DJ O should instantly know what “song” they are talking about – I’ve determined that you should leave the DJ alone.

DJing is not easy work. You have to make sure each song flows into the next one and you have about one to two minutes to find that next song. Shifting through records, pulling it out the sleeve, dropping it on the turntable and finding just the right spot for the song to begin is a skill I’ve come to admire and appreciate.

Although DJ O now uses a laptop, the premise is still the same – he has to scroll through thousands of songs and find the right one before the one currently playing stops.

Try doing that for hours at a time – while standing.

Music is what makes any party and if the DJ becomes annoyed, the party can go downhill quick. Not saying I’ve witness this with DJ O – he’s the utmost professional – but there have been a few times he’s told people to just relax and enjoy themselves.

I remember one time he was working a party and the birthday girl was so worried about people dancing that she spent a better part of the night telling DJ O what to play. She didn’t realize that her so called “friends” weren’t interested in dancing – they just came for the free food and liquor.

The next time you’re at a party or grooving at the club, please resist the urge to make a special request. Chances are your song will eventually be played. And if it isn’t, go home, put your song on and turn up the volume like you are still at the party.

There’s nothing better than dancing in the middle of your living room!

Upcoming concert alert!
I began 2008 seeing Chris Botti at Yoshi’s in San Francisco and I will end it seeing him at Yoshi’s in Oakland. He’s playing at both venues and trust me when I say tickets will sell out for ALL shows.


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