At an Igbo friend’s child dedication ceremony after party, deep in the belly of Ikotun, in Lagos state, I witnessed the quite surreal and sublime art of djing. The DJ for the event was a young Yoruba boy, Opeyemi Hassan aka DJ Pokar.
It turned out to be an all Igbo affair, but DJ Pokar stepped to the plate big time, dishing out classics from legends, Late Chief Osita Osadebey, Chief Dr Morocco Maduka, Late Oliver De Coque and other old school acts and fusing their tunes and lyrics effortlessly with mad hits from ace Igbo Rappers, Phyno, Ill Bliss, Mr Raw and a few others and chipping in bangers from P-Square, Kcee and a host of others.
I watched this young man do his thing. I watched him censor the crowd with Eagle eyes and listen to the dance floor with Dog ears. I felt him feel the soul of the crowd. I watched his fingers dance deftly over buttons, clicking and toggling. I watched him enjoy himself immensely.
He was the soul of the party…and he knew it. He knew it, not in the simple, normal way of knowing things, but in a deep consciousness of the every pulse of the dancing crowd born of respect for the dance floor.
DJs do more than just push the play button on a CD player, they are artistes too, skilled in the knowledge of beat-matching, but the big and best DJs know exactly where and how to mix.
They create their own music with the aid of instruments such as Synthesizers, DJ Consoles etc, rearranging sounds and beat by stripping off layers and adding their own unique bits and pieces. Yes! They remix other’s songs, but give the major credit to the original artiste.
It’s the DJ’s job to respond to the crowd or audience and keep things rolling nicely. They mix up music, lining up delicately, tunes and hits according to the occasion, venue, mood and a lot more.
Today, in this digital age of music, an incredible number of new tracks are released on a steady, regular basis and the DJ’s role in the music industry has become more important.
The advanced hustle and bustle of today’s lives leaves most music fans with the ability to access just a small fraction of the music out there. This is where the DJs step in.
They do all the extensive and exhaustive research, get the latest and hottest new music and deliver a stunning listening experience to the audience or crowd they service.
The art of disc jockeying is no mean task. In simple words…the DJ is a Curator and Connoisseur of music. An exceptional artiste on the wheels of steel, A supreme turntablist on the ones and twos.