You know a common question that I get asked by djs especially sort of more up and coming djs is how do I get more gigs right or like um how do you even go about getting a gig? Andi I think for those of you who maybe are not digging quite yet and wish to be or those of you who are digging and wish to be getting more no again uh as with all of this stuff that we're teaching today I have my knowledge in my experience which you know in no way am I saying this is the way it is absolutely has to be this is what you need to follow but more so me sort of like sharing my advice of things that have worked for me and also full well knowing that like, you know, this is one thing that's great about the academy is that at the academy all of our instructors one of the requirements to be an instructor at the academy is that you're working deejay that like the information that we're sharing with you is is information that's relevant to us in its current state and that were right there alongside you so ...
you know, I myself and I don't know if we mean we obviously getting my intro yesterday and a quick intro um today but you know, I've been dejan since ninety six um and this has been for me quite a journey to be honest, and definitely one of those, like, I have to pinch myself sometimes, um, you know, especially when I'm sharing the stage with, like, idols of mine or even in these moments where, you know, and I don't think I could have ever dreamt that in nineteen, ninety six or even in two thousand, the year two thousand that, like, you know, I would be standing in front of you and then an online audience that's out there, you know, picking my brain for like, you know, what I've done that has worked well, so again, all of this being said, though, I'm here to also learn just the same. I just have a little bit of a different seat in a little different perspective, but ultimately, like, I also want to hear, especially from the folks that are online as well, and those of you who are in studio as we go through some of these topics, like what works for you, I'm constantly looking for ways to improve what it is that I'm doing, not only here, but also what we're now talking about outside of that, um, you know, so we're all here, tio definitely learn and to share, and I think the tap, all of the resources that we have available, so first of all, though, I just kind of want to jump right into it and out of curiosity for those who are in studio and are giving do any of you have any of you established a business? Have you created a business for d j ok, so you guys have on do you have a l l c do you have an s corp? Like, what have you guys established specific mean it's, not an official business according to the government. Ok, it's an official business according to us as far as how we carry ourselves and how we promote ourselves and talk about it so still doing the paperwork still the means of getting it all together, but we have everything but the license and, you know, agreements for our names in our business. Okay, okay. In the attitude, yeah. So eventually I mean, yeah, obviously like an llc or whatever it is that we decide to go with, but currently, I mean, its logo all the social media I mean, you name it, we've we've covered all all all angles. Ok? Actually, before I had partnered up with trevor, I was going by my soul name and I had a trademark for my name, okay, so I had gone to the process of filling the paper were paying for the, you know, finds I mean, whatever you want to call it just so you can have your name trademark to your right, right? Okay, so good s o I'm almost going to say that, you know, again in this section I am definitely approaching this as a deejay coach and then deejay mentor and not as an attorney or somebody that would be able to offer legal advice. So I just want to make sure that, like everybody was out there knows that as well. That, like, if you do have a lawyer who could help with some of these things or another friend who like, you know, has more extensive knowledge when it comes to setting up a business when it comes to trademarks on things like that, that that would probably be a good person seek out, and I think more than anything that's a good that's a good rule to follow, too, which is that you know, if there are things that you don't know how to do that number one, you try and learn a little bit about them to figure out how they work and number two that you seek somebody who is an expert in that field that can aid in that obviously there's so much to focus on as a deejay here from a creative standpoint, but there's a whole bunch that needs to happen also behind the scenes it's like off the stage that needs to happen that like does require some expertise like even in terms of like simple accounting simple invoicing like how to make sure that you're getting paid you know like things like that I mean, you guys mentioned some marketing things right? So like brandon in your your logo and you know if you can if you're a designer and you can create your own logo great go for it if you're not find that friend who can help you with that find that person out there who is a designer that can help you with that so a big part of this section two is talking about like, you know, look, nobody can do it all not many people can do it all at least you often times will need a team to help with that and that team can take on many different forms, you know? So just keep this in mind with this, but I'm going to kind of run through a list of like, um this is this is sort of ah simple power point that was created by some of the folks at the academy that we're going to use today the kind of service a little bit of a template it's important in my mind one of things that's really worked well for me has been setting goals, setting concrete goals um sending long term goals and short term goals and setting realistic goals as well on dso it's tough because you know I mean you could set a goal that is then hard to measure like I want to be I want to be the best deejay aiken be that's my goal well that's not really that's not really something that you can really measure in that way like how do you know when you're the best that you can be and technically aren't you always trying to get better like that's a then a completely unattainable goal in a lot of ways so I think it's really important to set attainable goals? Does anybody in here have a goal that they would like to share? They have yeah toward to tour and what does that mean exactly? It could be across the country it could be overseas we'll be satisfying what would that goal be? Let's get more specific I would say just being able to enjoy the experience in many different places as possible get more specific, more specific play across the northwest there you go okay? And what would across the northwest consist of? Like how many shows like what does that look like we're talking about? You know, maybe a month full of gigs you're looking at back to back gigs all through the week I'm just moving your way down south she looking like and maybe like twelve gigs over the course of a month in the northwest twelve to fifteen okay this is what I'm talking about this type of goal setting is exactly what I feel like is important and in what time frame this year this year so sometime within the next twelve months that yeah two thousand percent in two thousand fifteen and here's the other part of it which is like a bit psychological but I feel like is definitely for some reason has worked for me is to write these goals down like it's one thing to think them it's one thing to dream this up at night you know before you go to sleep of like man I really wish I could tour you know but like without something specific without writing it down you have then like that's just a thought you have thousands of thoughts some of you probably have millions of thoughts that pop into your mind throughout the day you know and it's important that you write these things down so I would you know, one exercise that I would encourage everybody out there to do would be to just simply do this set up take its sheet of paper of some kind and think through what is your goal as a result as it relates to d jane for what is your goal ten years from now? What is your goal ten years from now with d j do you see yourself still deejaying ten years from now and if you do them what does that look like like imagine it like actually envision it what does it like right down to like what it tastes like what it feels like everything like it's gotta be really that you imagine this to be you know so this is ten years from now which is what? Two thousand twenty four uh where are you are you still are you living here in seattle? Are you still living in your home town? Are you living somewhere else? You know what is the rest of that look like are you um are you making music also or you just hear the performance as a deejay? What kinds of gigs are you doing? You know what is your day to day look like are you in the studio like during the day and then at night you're playing out and you're playing out maybe what once a week playing out twice a week what does that what does that look like? Um envision what that looks like and get down to the smallest details that you possibly can um and then go from ten years and then maybe set like what does that look like? Ok, what does that look like in three years and then what's that look like one year from now which you guys gave us that goal for you you know? And then what does that look like six months from now you know and like really break down like what this looks like for you and it's ok, if you don't get to that goal but I get my guest will be your you'll get closer to that goal and so start to set goals that you can actually then see the results of like sooner so set a goal for six months okay, maybe even set a goal for three months maybe even set a goal for one month one month from now what has happened in your world as a deejay? Okay, one month from now um you had mentioned this just earlier right and saw the use you as an example like one month from now you have mentioned in passing that this seems like something that might be interesting to you and that like, you know you occasionally get a phone call about like, hey, you know, do you d j as well and you have to say, well, no, I don't. And so one month from now what would be maybe a goal for you? You know, when it comes to deejay figure out what how much time in my schedule I could have to do it come up with like a business plan and a schedule and then figure out what the gear list would look like, what I would need toe that do all my research and maybe have purchased my gear in kind of a yeah, I mean, these air good like, attainable goals like, you know, a month from now we'll be able to go back and say, hey, did you do all of those things? Did you get those things done and it's like, well, maybe you did too out of the three, you know, and maybe research the give them one that you didn't do is you read research the gear, but you haven't bought anything yet, but you've kind of little did down to these two things, okay, well then now you khun set another golden like the point of gold setting is toe set a goal, meet the goal set another goal like it's it's important, that step is actually just is important that you reset ago whether or not you hit it or you didn't hit it, maybe maybe need to reconfigure it like, you know if for some reason, if for some reason you guys hit that that gold of yours, of, like setting of tour in the north, the northwest, um and you, you do hit that within the first two months of two thousand fifteen like you've set up a february tour, it's done, it's locked it's really important that you guys then set that next goal. Yeah and then the next one after that in the next one after that until then like you really like filled this out of like one foot in front of the next and what seems almost impossible then becomes really like tangible and I've seen I've seen a ton of people not just djs but other you know mentors of mine of friends of mine who set goals and just this like one foot in front of the next and next thing you know you're here and you had no idea that like you would even end up there so I'm really important to set goals also like gold citing will help keep a well it'll basically lay out a track for you to follow whether you deviate from that track or not that might be ok maybe that's a part of the journey is that like it? You know hey, I set this goal we set this goal the tour tour the northwest um and we set that goal and then what ended up coming to us was there was an agent or a booking agent out of europe who called who had heard our stuff and set and all of a sudden now we're flying out to europe to do a show on were meeting some people and now I think there might be a potential forested like set of a couple of dates in europe and to kind of have like a europe tour do you say no to that because your goal is the northwest no, you know and I think just by putting this out into the universe you then we'll start to attract all of like what it is that you actually do want on I think that this step of goal setting is absolutely first and foremost and that you set very, very attainable goals you said tangible goals and I didn't mean to like no, no more specific, more specific but it's true I find that like a lot of people that I that I mentor it's the same sort of thing to where it's like I have this goal tio to play on a regular basis. Okay, that is very, very broad to play on a regular basis to be interpreted a ton of different ways. Do you want to play weekly? Okay, do you want to what night do you want to play? You want play saturday? Night's? Okay, cool. So that already kind of has like them whittled it down then this like, gives you a little bit more to light you on. If there's the club that you want to play at and there's a deejay there on saturday night who that's the resident deejay on saturday night they may be, does he? Does somebody opened for this guy on saturday night? Nobody does why aren't you then doing that or why aren't you then like be friending this guy like figuring out like how you can like shadow this guy um and then maybe hopefully then that turns into something I think one of the other pieces of that though and this is kind of jumping around a little bit is that like, you know, a lot of these things there's opportunities that are out there but you have to ask for them you have to go and get them to and then at the same time like there's a very, very delicate balance between like you can't just go in with your own set agenda and want to take and constantly want to take like this should be for me this should be for me without giving a swell like a big part of this exchange business itself the exchange of businesses is an even exchange of goods or services even exchange that's good business that's creating a win win for people. So you know, even my way we're going to start to talk about even like if you were to throw your own events or, you know, like working with a venue or things like that like what is that then you're going to get out of that, you know, like how do you provide something back there? Like what? Where is the win win and trying to find the win win in in a lot of these situations equals good business, which then equals like great relationship building, which then equals more business later on, which then can lead to a lot of like you mean your goals so, um always like, you know, do not think about like, opportunities is like, oh, great, this is something I can take advantage or I can like, take advantage of this person in that way, it will certainly come back to you for sure. Um, ok, cool. So these air some different goals and again, like I'm saying, like, be a tour de j be more specific when it comes to that, you know, like I've worked with a lot of different artists and backed a lot of different artists over the years, you know, I think it through two and like, with a lot of these goals, the next step after setting these goals is to actually, like, actively go out and try and pursue this research is going to be key, you know, condi concept, I want to ask him about his goal there, and it was like, well, I would research the gear and then try and figure out what I was going to buy, you know, like doing your homework is going to be important if you want to be a tour de j it be important to know, like what it takes to be a tour de j be important to find, like a tour deejay that you really looked up tio actually a great tour d j uh I mean, jam master j was one of the best toward djs that ever walked the earth. Um but you know, there's a guy out there who's commons deejay who djs and backs j cole as well, his name is d j dummy who's one of the best best in the business in terms of a toward asia. If you wanted to be a tour de j, I would strongly recommend, like seeing him in live shows seen him in in situation that he's in so you know, with each of these things trying to find then ways that you can, like, get in there and do that research, you know, you want to be playing at that club on saturday night, you should be going to that club on saturday night, you know, you have to be in it. You should be the person that is in there every saturday night absorbing what is going on. You know, meeting the bartender's meeting the security people like just being like this great person that's in there and absorbing what's going on and being a part of the fabric that makes that up you know and then and then that could potentially lead to something like an opportunity but you also shouldn't see it that way just the same like you shouldn't see it only is that you know you should be also able to provide something back to that um make a certain living is a good one it's a good goal because ultimately like you know as much as sometimes I think we all um I despise that you know, money rules the world it certainly does and like, you know your love for music is your love for music your passion for d jane is awesome, but your passion of d jane is not going to be like how you can pay your rent unless you figure out a way to turn that into a way to pay your rent. So there's an incredible step there from like, hey, I love this to then like I'm able to them right rent checks based on, you know, this that's an incredible like a blessing to be able to have but to get to that point, I think that's also a part of goal setting um it can be a bit er I don't know like in some ways it can be a bit off putting to some people to say like, hey, I I need to make this like I need to make this amount per month for off of d j and in order for this to work and like you know I don't know maybe that means that like there would be gigs that you would maybe normally say no to that now you're saying yes to or vice versa but ultimately like setting a setting a monetary goal is not a bad way to go about it too because ultimately like that's going to be important otherwise maybe you are saying yes that tour but maybe it's you are losing money by going on tour that's definitely a possibly I know a ton of people that have gone on tour and lost money on toward just simply because there's a lot of stuff to figure out there if you're gone for a full month and you're still paying your rent back home and you're also you know depend on how things are worked out you could easily be like losing money on toward you know, so all these things do need to get sorted out and you do need to look at like the financial side of it again this isn't a class on like finance or personal finance at all but I do you know, one of the most simple ways to do this is I don't know if any of you guys are keeping track of like your expenses as a results to your d jane but like really even doing a simple balance sheet of checking like you know my income versus my expenses as it relates to then d j you know like ok, I just booked a gig the gig was four hundred bucks that's what I made I made four hundred bucks to do that what are my other though expenses that have come with that well, I'm spending thirty bucks a month on my record pool I'm spending um you know, I just bought a new controller for eight hundred fifty dollars like you know and and when you start to then look at it are you making money as a deejay? You know, what are your what's your income versus your expenses like as a results that so like you know, simple things like that are good sort of tools that like I feel like more djs should probably be doing and that will help, like, figure out if in fact you're on the right sort of path you know, because maybe you can't afford to be a deejay you know, I mean that in all honesty I mean sometimes that that's the reality is that like unfortunately, like, you know it's not as though this this is a service someone hand yes, your time is worth something but on the other hand there's some definite like fixed costs that we have as djs I mean the gear is not cheap, you know, as I mentioned mike music and all of that and now with all this other stuff that we're adding into it like you know what do you you paid a designer three hundred fifty dollars to create your logo? Okay that's something you're paying how much to host your website you're paying how much for this how much for that and all kind of adds up so it's important to run those numbers really quick getting back to the business side of it though the nice thing about establishing a business is that you can deduct a lot of those expenses against the business so that helps a cz well in terms of like then what? You end the pain at the end of the year when it comes to your taxes in your taxable income so if you've got then income coming in that is let's say you have income coming in that is ten thousand dollars a month I mean ah a year and then you had expenses of like all of this gear you can take that off of this, you know, let's say you had four brandon expenses, so now your taxable income is six thousand dollars this is them what you're going to be taxed on not this which is important and then you know, I mean the toughest part about being a d j is your then because you become a small business by default you become an entrepreneur by default and it's something that then, you know, many djs aren't trained at, like many djs didn't come into this as entrepreneurs. They came in as music lovers and people who want to play music and then are getting paid for it. So now, all of a sudden, now, you, like, are forced into this role and it's really important that you, like, take time to, like, understand it's, like some of these simple principles that are happening that aren't sometimes so simple. But, like, you know, I think, uh, things like finances and understanding. You know why you should establish a business and understanding, like the the's things and goal setting is important.