Whether you like to get behind vinyl, CD players or a controller, we all need a little help and inspiration from the major players from time to time.
Personally, I like to get in the mix and test out new things and add unfamiliar techniques to my routine that in my head sound great, and I find the best way to test it is through this sort of trial and error in a practice session. But I often find I learn the most from watching other people perform, whether it’s another DJ during a live set or a walkthrough video online.
So, to help refine and improve your set, here’s my top 5 YouTube DJ tutor pick:
5 – Laidback Luke
As a DJ that’s already cemented his place as one of the greatest, Laidback Luke’s tutorials offer valuable insight into how the professionals put their sets together and perform. Particularly interesting is Laidback Luke’s tutorial “In My Mind – DJing Tutorial by Laidback Luke.” In this tutorial, Laidback Luke writes over the video to explain what he’s thinking during his performance, and what his actions are. Again, this provides valuable insight into the mind of a pro, and when you realise that their thought processes and actions really aren’t that different from ours, it helps ease any beginner’s worries you might have.
4 – DJ Blighty TV
With some videos covering vinyl techniques, DJ Blighty appeals mostly to digital DJs, with many of his tutorials covering FX, loops and cue points. DJ Blighty started creating YouTube tutorials in January 2016, and since then has attracted over 2000 subscribers. DJ Blighty also offers insight beyond the decks, covering how to promote yourself and your sets, and where to upload your mixes.
3 – Digital DJ Tips
Although Digital DJ Tips isn’t a single tutor, it offers a bank of information so exhaustive that it can’t be overlooked. With various channels covering all types of gear, Digital DJ Tips provides guides on any and every aspect of DJing, for the beginner or the professional.
2 – djTLMtv
With tutorials aimed at the vinyl user looking to perfect their scratch techniques, DJ TLM has an engaging and easy-to-follow teaching style that can help both digital and vinyl DJs master the art of scratching. DJ TLM publishes different series, with each episode numbered like progressive lessons, and with each series covering different aspects of DJing, from scratching to beatmatching. Even if you’re not looking to add scratching to your repertoire, DJ TLM has something for you.
1 – Ellaskins
Arguably one of the greatest DJ tutors of all time and easily the most eccentric, Ellaskins is a name most people can attribute to helping them start out mixing. Ellaskins’ wacky attitude and humorous approach to teaching keeps it fun and interesting, and it’s easy to watch an hour of his tutorials in one sitting. His tutorials span years, and by virtue of this there’s a video on basically every bit of kit that’s been popular during at least one point in modern DJing history.