So You Wanna Be A DJ…

By DJ Tara

Anyone up for starting their DJ career should know that Guatemala is a great place to plant the seeds of inevitable DJ success. Only takes a few days (or for some a few hours) to get that steady reggaeton beat and blend it in with the next, especially with modern technology mixers that match the beats for you.

After polishing these beat-matching skills, the next step is choosing a catchy but cool DJ name. Some of your local DJs include Funkyshine, Wasabi, and Mosh. On the short and sweet side you have JK and JP. If you’re really lacking that wave of creativity, you can go just stick the letters DJ in front of your name (i.e. DJ+Tara = DJ Tara).

For the finishing touch, you’ll need a distinctive article of style. Some type of hat seems to be your best bet, because when looking down at the decks, you give off this super-cool incognito image. Don’t forget to look up once in a while, keeping a serious, yet playful expression. Only a half-grin is necessary, 1.5 seconds of eye-contact at the most.

Once you’re out there, you’ll find there are un monton of DJs in Guatemala. A lot of them seem to share the same taste in music so while getting into a groove at one of the steamy venues here in Xela, you might think, “Hey, I’ve heard this DJ before!” Up to the booth for a closer look and you’ll see the same enthusiasm in the eyes for “Hey Shorty, it’s your birthday” but not the same chavo (or chava) you thought.

But lo and behold, there are different tunes to be heard! Just takes a little effort to find a house music beat, psytrance rhythm, underground rhyme, or dub groove. Go to El Cuartito on one of their DJ nights and you’re sure to hear a tune or two that will inspire you to get on a table and dance. [Now closed] Marrakesh is a great new place working to bring on the music to make you dance with or without 5 Gallos. At the lake, San Pedro is worth checking out to get your fill of electronic music.

Once you begin throwing the beats down, you’ll no doubt gain new respect for all your fellow music mixers out there. It is not always a glamorous life of happiness and fame. Often one is forced to play “Hey Shorty” for the ???th time ‘cause that’s what the crowd wants to hear. The hours are late and the air conditions not always favorable. But its honorable work and not until a party is left without a DJ is it realized just how important their role is.

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