DJs: some people love them and value them as musicians, while others feel that they are simply capitalizing on and taking advantage of other people’s hard work in the music business. But it doesn’t really matter how you view DJs because they are not going anywhere. In fact, from radio stations to nightclubs, bars, and even special events, these talented and creative individuals play an important role in entertaining people and keeping the party going long into the night.
Whether you already work as a DJ, doing parties or mixing the best music at nightclubs where people can dance their stress away and meet new friends, or you are interested in learning about how you can become a DJ and make money doing what you love while bringing music to the masses, you should know about harmonic mixing. This technique is especially valuable to DJs who want to create customized mixes of the most popular songs from both the past and the present in order to make a name for themselves and establish their reputation as one of the world’s best.
To learn more about harmonic mixing and what it has to offer you, continue reading. But also be sure to check out this blog post, which details the best DJ equipment available. After all, the tools you use are just as important as your unique flair when it comes to putting together mixes or planning party tracks for a special event.
What is Harmonic Mixing?
Harmonic mixing is the ability to take two songs and mash them together so that they blend perfectly and almost create a whole new track. If you are a fan of dance music and remixes, if you have ever been to a club or party where a professional DJ has played, or if you are a fan of world-renowned DJs, you have already heard harmonic mixing in action. It is this technique that enables DJs to create something brand new and fresh from songs that are decades old or today’s latest hits. And harmonic mixing is what allows one song to flow seamlessly into the next to keep the party going without ever having to deal with a break in the music.
The objective behind harmonic mixing is to find songs that are written in the same keys, or at least in related keys. This will prevent clashes in keys and ensure the songs flow perfectly together. Therefore, DJs should be musical in the sense that they can determine what key a song is in and also be aware of what keys are compatible with one another and which keys should not be mixed together or placed one right after the other in a sequence of songs.
If you need to brush up on musical keys, consider taking a course that teaches you music theory for electronic music in particular. Then you can consider expanding into a course that teaches you all about how to use minor keys to develop brilliant mixes that everyone will enjoy listening and dancing to.
If you are unable to detect a song’s key with your ears, with a piano, or with your education in music theory, you can always use specialized software developed for professional DJs. These programs can scan through each song and let you know what key it is in, making your job a lot easier and saving you a lot of time as well.
Beatmatching and Harmonic Mixing
Beatmatching is a technique used by DJs that allows them to play one song and slowly fade out of it towards the end as they introduce a new track with a similar beat. This keeps the momentum going and ensures that there is no interruption in the music being played.
In order to be a good DJ, you should learn the basic art of beatmatching. Once you have nailed it, you can move on to harmonic mixing to take beatmatching to a new level and make it easier to find a complementary track to play next.
What is the Camelot Wheel?
The Camelot Wheel is a tool for DJs that was developed by Mark Davis in order to make it easier for DJs to grasp the concept of harmonic mixing and put it to work. Remember, by using harmonic mixing, you can create your very own mixes, and this can be extremely valuable when trying to get more work at clubs or special events. So if you want to make more money doing what you love but you are having trouble with perfecting your harmonic mixing technique, get a copy of the Camelot Wheel, which will certainly be an indispensable tool you can use whenever you need it.
When you look at the Camelot Wheel, you will easily be able to see right away which keys are compatible with one another and which ones aren’t. This will help you avoid mistakes while mixing songs together for a recording or for a live event. The wheel is also set up like a clock, so you will notice that there are twelve numbers that run along the outer edge of the wheel. These run from 1B to 12B. Another set of numbers, running from 1A to 12A, is found surrounding the center of the wheel. Each key is assigned one of these numbers. So, for example, the key of E Major is associated with the code 12B, while D-Flat Minor is associated with 12A.
How Can You Use the Camelot Wheel for Harmonic Mixing?
Once you understand the layout of the Camelot Wheel, you will be able to use it to mix songs together by choosing keys that are compatible with one another. You can begin by mixing two songs in the same key, such as two songs in the 1A key, which is A-Flat Minor. Once you are comfortable with that, you can move on to mixing different keys together to make stellar mash-ups and transitions. And once you get really comfortable, you can move all around the Camelot Wheel during every mix you create and during every live event.
The idea is to use keys that are within one “hour” of each other on the Camelot Wheel. So, for example, if you were playing a song in 2A, you can play a song that is in 1A or 3A. You can also mix major and minor keys by choosing a song within the same “hour.” In that case, if you were playing a song in 6B, you can transition to 6A, or vice versa.
Let Your Creativity Soar
Harmonic mixing is a technique that every great DJ should fully understand and utilize. It allows the creative individual to develop unique mixes within any genre of music. And the really great thing about harmonic mixing is the fact that it never gets old, it will always be valuable, and it gives you countless opportunities to let your creativity run wild.
With harmonic mixing, there are only a few rules to follow, but so many incredible songs to work with, so you can definitely continue evolving as a DJ and grow your fan base to generate higher profits, whether you work locally or you plan on putting out albums and touring the world. So when someone asks you or tries to debate with you about whether or not a DJ is a musician, you can prove that you know how to use music theory and complex DJ equipment to take something that someone else has created and turn it into a whole new musical masterpiece.