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-Origins of DJ Techniques- by Marc Hype

  • Location: GRETCHEN / Berlin
  • Symposium: 2015
  • Event: Sample Music Festival
  • Topic: DJing

The history of DJ playing techniques dates back long before the invention of digital music and the circulation of vinyl records. In the early days of DJing, back in the days of the cave men, music was produced by hitting, rubbing, or shaking objects to produce sound. This was a crude way to create an early form of danceable music.

It wasn’t until the mid-20th century that the modern DJing style was developed. Prior to this, radio stations relied heavily on their live bands to create and play popular music for their audience. As records become more accessible and popular, a new type of artist was born – the disc jockey. The job of the DJ was to play the hit songs and mix different tracks together. This was achieved through turntables with manual pitch control, as well as vinyl records.

In the world of hip-hop, scratching was developed by DJs in the late 70s to add an extra element of creativity to their music sets. This was achieved by moving the record back and forth underneath the stylus. As technology advanced, scratching was replaced by beat looping and looping samples. Around this time samplers and sequencers such as the Roland 808 and 909 began being used.

Marc Hype`s DJ career went through the several decades of hip hop with countless releases, tours and competitions like the ITF championships, which he won twice in 98 & 99. Berlins legendary DJ will show at the festival the development of Hip Hop culture which resulted in a new way of music making - turntablism. Step by step he explained in his lecture at Sample Music Festival 2015 DJ playing techniques in correspondence with the genesis of music technology. From the first Parkjams in the Bronx in the early 70s to the nowadays standard techniques, covering 42 years of music history.

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