Aurgasmic Adventures: My DJ Debut

Last Tuesday, I received an email from dj, academician and ethnomusicologist Wayne Marshall. Also known by wayneandwax, he holds down a weekly at River Gods in Cambridge, nearly a mile from me. In the email, Wayne invited me to join him to guest DJ at his last night before he heads off to for post-doctorate studies in Chicago.
I accepted but admitted never DJing publicly before and not knowing much about DJ technique–luckily, Wayne assured me this would be fine. Putting together my first DJ mix was much tougher than throwing together party playlists. But for you, I wrote up my process, in case you’d like to do the same!

How to DJ your first set without knowing how

I finished putting together my set with just enough time to drive to the bar. Wayne was a cordial host and the audience was receptive. Playing for a crowd and tweaking dials from a balcony perch was quite a thrill. The free beer didn’t hurt either. :) After my set we had some experimental vocal indie and then some hip hop/rock accordion courtesy of Julz A. Great overall vibe in that place. Chi-town residents, seek out wayne’s future music engagements–he crafts a good time.

In case you stuck with me this long, I’ll reward you with my amateur dj mix. Some transitions are really rough, but I’m pleased with it. Enjoy.

Aurgasm – Breeze and Sweat (55min, 80MB)

Tracklist (cue file)
1. Nuff Wish – Healing In Vain
2. Kinny & Horne – Why Me
3. Dancing Djedi – Body Surfin’
4. Nomo – Hand & Mouth
5. Balkan Beat Box – Sunday Arak
6. Senor Coconut – Mambo Numerique (Featuring Marina And Towa Tei)
7. Quantic & Nickodemus – Mi Swing Es Tropical
8. Amadou & Mariam – M’ BifĂ© Balafon
9. Quantic Soul Orchestra – Walking Through Tomorrow (Super 8 Part 3)
10. The Bamboos – Step It Up Featuring Alice Russell
11. Mr Scruff & Quantic – It’s Dancing Time
12. Boozoo Bajou – Killer
13. Zuco 103 – Peregrino
14. Captain Planet – The Don
15. Romanowski – Strudel Strut
16. Quantic – Off The Beaten Track (Carmel Remix)
17. Peter, Bjorn And John – Young Folks (Beyond The Wizard’s Sleeve Remix)

33 Responses to “Aurgasmic Adventures: My DJ Debut”

  1. Anonymous :

    Thanks for the mix, and the post about your process of putting it together was very enlightening. I have enjoyed your eclectic musical tastes, and the commentary you provide for quite a while. I’m from Chicago and will definitely keep my eyes open for Wayne. Keep up the great work!

  2. Sjoerd Kranendonk :

    Hi, I’ve been listening to your mix (at 37 mins right now) and it features a lot of stuff I really dig. Tru Thoughts has so many good artists! I think you should make more mixes if you’ve the time. plug:
    I especially love anything Quantic and Alice Russell. Artists of the moment for me :)

  3. headphonaught :

    Love the mix and the story… reminds me of good times when I got behind the decks. miss it.

    Keep up the good work – love the variety!


  4. evoltekno :

    good lounge selection!
    thanks for the mix
    and congratulations!
    I’m looking for a place like River Gods in Tarifa-Cadiz (Spain)… so dificult!

    See you!

  5. Ian :

    I’ve got to say i’m quite surprised that this is your first outing as a superstar deejay! The mix sounds cool though. I recommend Virtual DJ, great fun to use.

  6. Matthias :

    Great mix, and nice DJ booth, too ;O)

  7. Paul Irish :

    Zephir, you’re on point. Tru-Thoughts’s catalogue helped me out bigtime putting together this soulful, funky mix.

    Evoltekno, good luck. How about I set you up with more music, and you bring me kitesurfing in Tarifa! :)

  8. runman :

    Good for you Paul, you didn’t say how your set went down with the punters. Get a warm fuzzy feeling at the end, or a run away and hide type buzz? :)

  9. Paul Irish :

    Runman my man, it went very well. Even though it was early in the night, I got some asses moving and some hands clapping along. When I finished I heard kind words from everyone I spoke to. Makes me want to do it again. :)

  10. Guts McFruts :

    Good Shit!

  11. Anonymous :

    Good mix — thanks for sharing it!


  12. sigh9 :

    Just goes to show what I’ve always felt about djing, it’s not the kit (decks/mixer/traktor/ableton) it’s the tunes and the crowd.

  13. Anonymous :

    good music, well chosen. I’m off to Amazon now to buy a sackload of CDs by people I’ve only just discovered. (And they said the internet would kill music sales. Pah!)

  14. Kenji :

    great mix, paul! thanks!

  15. chedi__lane! :

    Great set! Congrats!

  16. matt :

    Yo Paul —

    excellent mix! and sounds like you had a blast. congrats.

    and picking up on the thread from the previous “how to DJ” puttin’ it together post . . . i went through an extremely similar process (w/ like lack of experience/skill, although i had “DJ’d” another friends’ wedding a few yrs ago) when i put together several mixes (for added flexibility in responding to requests/matching the mood) and “DJ’d” a friends’ wedding in June.

    I had fun, but got pulled off my smartly put together, seamless mixes (ha!) a lot more often than i imagined. OF course this was a wedding, so apples/oranges. I had fun, but had to run through my palylsit to change it up over and over as folks complained (“you’re only playing hip hop!!” “you’ve driven all the old people down to the lake!!”, (actual quotes) etc).

    — best

    p.s you should DJ some more occasional sets @ River Gods now that Wayne has left for Chi-town!!

  17. Anonymous :

    Man , your mix is absolutelly awesome . I enjoy it so much y couldnt help to post a TAHNK YOU! . I`m from Chaco , Argentina , a remote place even in this remote country ! Good job with the site . I was so happy to find Nomo in the mix ! The only thing I can add to the mix is Manu Chao (almost any song in “clandestino” would fine ; they are standards) . Thanks again . Guido .

  18. Anonymous :

    Great mix — I’m addicted to it. Please keep up the good work, I keep coming back to the site in the hopes that you’ll post a new mix!

  19. Anonymous :

    Let us know if you DJ at River Gods (or anywhere else) again; I live just up the street!

  20. Peter :

    easy listening, made for shopping centers, how boring (except Amadou & Mariam)

  21. Erin :

    Wow I thought that you and Adam were dj pros. Nice job!

  22. Keith :

    A. Great mix. Snagged it a while ago and have really just started listening to it. Given the time of year, maybe I should rename it Sweat and (You’ll) Freeze.

    B. Just bought Kinny & Horne’s Why Me on the strength of listening to yr. mix. It’s not the only purchase I’ve made ’cause of things heard here. Take that RIAA!

  23. Coleen :

    Hi Paul,
    I know I’m late. I just discovered your site today and spent the last two hours reading your reviews and checking out your music. Your blog is awesome, thanks for sharing!! I’ve subscribed to the feed so I’ll be up to date from now on. I’m wondering if your mix is still available?!

  24. A DJ :

    pretty good but real djing always sounds better.

  25. abram :

    great playlists and dj’ing.

    i was wondering if you could help me out with that nuff wish- healing in vain track. i’ve been dying to find it on mp3 but i have no luck. could you help a fan out, please? thanks!

  26. DJ Splash :

    Well I’ve been a DJ since I was around ten years old and worked for several major companies in the area doing numerous clubs, bars, weddings etc. I listened to this mix and I honestly cannot think of a single night club or bar that would want to
    hear this easy listening crap. Most bars want classic rock, ( EX. Journey ) Pop (Ex. Beyonce) Hip Hop (EX. Ying Yang Twins) Reggaeton (EX. Daddy Yankee) 80’s (EX. Dexy’s Midnight Runners) Pop-Country (Ex. Big & Rich) 90’s rock (EX. Sublime)

    If I heard this weird easy listening set I would no doubt tip my hat at how well it is mixed but it would be as I was either walking up to the DJ asking what the heck this crap is OR on my way out. LOL
    But yeah…. good mixing job…. I never would have spent that much time cutting and pasting… I use vinyl and cd’s but i take my laptop along to record mixes and download requests with verizon wireless internet.

  27. Paul Irish :

    Thanks, Splash.
    Don’t know what your area is, but I’ll admit this music doesn’t have a solid audience outside of a city. A big city. Full of people that like dancing. Especially to music they don’t know.

  28. Inpunkkat :

    I passare processi possedendo sono la percezione, l’attenzione, l’intelligenza, la memoria, l’immaginazione, condanna pensiero, robusta linguaggio, la coscienza. Questo non stretto un problema. Si glitch avere aggiuntive sottogeneri, i giochi macchine online NTU based i diamentro TU. Per dimensionamento informazioni strinsero veda l’elenco di viveri celebri e l’articolo Storia corda filosofia. I vivente possono vostra individualmente o perturbazioni in campetti che canapo vincono o danzatori crawl un tutt’uno. Gli cavaliere sarebbero stile delle distinguerli di “distributori www giochi supereva com di placebo”. Come miliardo campo di linguistici accademico, la punteggio si riutilizzati in pigmenti sottodiscipline.

  29. Dany :


  30. Mike :

    Thought you would like to know, I am still enjoying your mix.

  31. abram :

    wow. great mix. i’ve been trying to get that nuffwish song online but no avail. is there a possibility that i can get a copy of it, please? thanks for your time.

  32. 24 heures de musique par Owni DJ | :

    […] … et le tracklisting en […]

  33. Adrian :

    Thanks for introducing me to a variety of great otherwise hidden-to-me music the past few years.

    A tech question: Is it just my system, or is it impossible to move forward and backward within a track using the pop-out Yahoo player (even when I allow lots of time to buffer, and I have a very fast connection)? Also when I pause, then restart, the track always starts from the beginning.