DJ TIna T. > Master Of The Mix w/ DJ Tina T. Behind The Scenes (Episode 2)
The “Auditions” are over and I’m thankful the judges trusted I am capable of much more than I did in the last episode. So now the pressure is on to prove it…
After my first set, I guess a lot of the producers were very “concerned” about me and how nervous I seemed during the audition. I was pulled aside a few times on set without any cameras around and talked to about if I was feeling ok. They wanted to make sure I was comfortable being on the show. Not sure if this was a mind trick or if they were genuinely looking out for me, but It definitely got in my head, made me self conscious and want to prove I CAN perform under pressure!
After we get introduced to “The Lab”, which is our new practice hub for the season and has 3 DJ set ups to use, I’m most focused on getting to know the Rane 62 mixer! Unfortunately, with 12 of us, we are limited to 10 minutes of practice time on each set up and someone actually uses a stop watch to time us in order to make sure everyone has the same amount of time.
Somewhere in a meeting, I can imagine producers realizing that by supplying each of us with our own DJ set up would make it impossible for them to get footage of us talking to each other. When I prepare for a battle, I usually spend weeks on my turntables for hours every day. Being cut off after 10 minutes of working on a set I just created and am about to perform on national TV caused major anxiety and frustration!
The first challenge: “Shake It up”
This was my favorite challenge! We were each given 3 songs: A “crowd favorite”, a “rarely heard” and a “hard to mix.” The tricky part to this challenge was that the crowd we were playing to had to hear all the same songs several times in a row since DJ’s had the same 3 songs. It was interesting to see how every DJ approached this challenge differently with the same songs. Everyone has a completely different style.
It was also hard to fit all the songs required into 4 minutes. Most of us were using Ableton, a music production/editing program to make edits. Knowing how to do this gave you a major advantage in this competition. I threw in a transition by DJ Steve1der that gave me the tempo build up I needed to get into “I Got A Feeling” and “Titanium” from the hip hop I played in the beginning.
The biggest difference from last week is now we are introduced to our live studio audience/Miami club crowd. These extras were found by good old fashion flyers and promotion around south beach Miami advertising an open bar and dope DJs! Keep in mind that they were not guided in any way, no cue cards, just free booze. If they were feeling you, they would dance and if not, they would stand and stare. This part was as real as it gets!
Watching the other DJs before me and especially paying close attention to the crowd, I was worried that they were more of a hip hop crowd and I would lose them by playing David Guetta’s “Titanium”, but it ended up being the standing ovation song to end my set and got the most response. People were singing along and I was on a major high! I will never forget the comment from Kid Capri that night: “Last week you were trash to me, but tonight, you owned this!”
These are the moments I dream about as a DJ.
As I headed backstage after my set, I remember passing one of the producers and mockingly asking “Are you still concerned?” He started laughing and said “no.” 🙂
Oh and a special shout out to the girl in the front with the blue dress who kept glaring at me the entire time with your arms crossed… it didn’t phase me, but nice try!
I knew I was safe tonight, but waking up each day is like starting from scratch and you have no idea what to expect…
Watch my set from episode 2 by clicking here!
– Tina T.