I’m not going to lie, I’m a massive fan of unboxing videos. Whether it’s new gear, or camera accessories, or guitar pedals, or pieces for my audio rack – the list goes on and on – there’s something mysterious and intriguing about getting to the bare bones of stuff inside the boxes to me. When I did my Technics Headphones Unboxing, I sat in front of the camera for hours to get a video that was just right, but unfortunately nothing came of it.
There’s something cool about getting into the meat and bones of how the most famous DJs do what they do. I think it’s one of the reasons I obsess over “how I play” videos and articles online. It’s intimate, and personal, and I feel like I have a tiny connection with the guys behind the booths because of it. When I first saw a picture of Kygo playing on a DDJ SX, it blew my mind. The fact that he does what he does, on mid-level gear shows how talented he is. Seeing Porter Robinson unpack his messy suitcase with a Traktor S4 at the bottom brought the goofiest smile to my face – he’s just like us “smaller DJs,” who don’t tour worldwide, but our bags are just as messy after a long string of shows.
So, in the same way, I’ve decided to take you through a tour of my own DJ bag! Let’s get started:
Backpack: Magma Riot XL
I absolutely love this bag. It’s spacious, comfortable, tough, and has more pockets than I need. I take it to all my gigs in the city and it works like a charm – it might as well be my security blanket. My bag never leaves my side when I’m on the road. I could go on and on about this bag but I’ll save that for another review next week.
Controller: Pioneer DDJ SR
My DDJ is hands down my best friend. It’s the perfect size for club booths while remaining just small enough to fit into my RIOT – barely bigger than an S4. I love having 4 channel control at my fingertips, too – it gives me freedom to add loops and acapellas in my sets. The simplicity of plug-n-play makes set ups a breeze. Read more about my favorite controller in my full length review here.
Cables: Mogami and Monster
The DDJ SR only features 1/4 inch jacks as the main output, so special cables are a must. (The booth RCA jack has a Booth/Master switch, but I’d rather not use it.). I was never one to buy into the hype of name brand cables, but the associate at Guitar Center seemed genuine enough, so I took a chance. I wasn’t disappointed. Now, I rely on Mogami 1/4-to-XLR cables for mobile gigs, and Monster 1/4-to-RCA cables for when I’m in clubs. The sound quality in Mogami cables is superb, and the Monsters really live up to the hype. I keep them in a tablet sleeve in my bag – that way, they don’t get tangled. Plus, they both carry a lifetime manufacturer’s warranty!
I also keep two short RCA cables in my bag, in case I decide to play on CDJs and something goes wrong, or if another DJ at the club is in a pinch. I’m a firm believer that good karma always comes around. Plus, short RCA’s are a dime a dozen, anyway.
The Other Stuff
Deodorant/Sanitizer/Toothbrush – Long days can lead to long nights, and sometimes I don’t have enough time between school and gigs to get completely ready. Trust me, after a long night in a hot, sweaty club, you’ll want to freshen up too.
Starbucks/Dunkin Donuts/Panera Gift Card – Future you will thank you for this. Nuff said.
My Emergency Flash Drives – Check out how to make your own here.
Earplugs – My mom says I already don’t listen to what she says, so I should probably protect what hearing I still have left. On a more serious note, DJ’s, protect your ears. I keep at least two pairs in my bag at all times.
Notebook/Pen – for writing down mix ideas, songs to download, and contacts for your mailing list!
What’s in your DJ bag? Let me know in the comments for a chance to be featured!
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