DJing Discussion

This area is for discussion about DJing in general. Please remember the community rules when posting and try to be polite and inclusive.

How much do most nightclub dj's get paid?

DJ NoNseNse 5:17 AM - 6 June, 2007
I was just wondering whats the average amount dj's get for the night?
allenbina 6:51 AM - 6 June, 2007
i just got bumped to 275/night and ive been at the same place for 16 months! 9-1:30 last call, and im usually in my car by 2. i dont get parking. all equipment is provided by the club. I also have to manage other djs, make sure they're bringing at least their B game, not playing the same shit day in day out. I was making 200 a night for ages, which was better than the occasional school party / house party, even though they paid more. i couldnt go any longer without knowing when i was going to get another gig, and i was tired of working for 10-15 dollars an hour.
allenbina 7:42 AM - 6 June, 2007
oh. in LA 200 is the norm for half a night from what ive heard. some places pay more, but i havent heard of anything more than 400 a night.
Audio1 3:20 PM - 6 June, 2007
I would guess 100-150 an hour at the very list, if you bring your A game... Depends on location, club, promoter, many variables. Ive seen some super wack DJ's on the local level make scrill. Sad!
lvmez 2:25 AM - 7 June, 2007
in nyc, big clubs pay at least $500-$1000
smaller clubs(lounges)$350
djskiggz 7:33 AM - 7 June, 2007
wasnt there a thread like this like yesterday?
Gamble 1:54 PM - 7 June, 2007
Quote:
in nyc, big clubs pay at least $500-$1000
smaller clubs(lounges)$350


Smaller clubs/lounges pay a lot less in my experience (talking about LES spots, bar/lounges, etc).
DJ STINKFINGER 2:15 PM - 7 June, 2007
I make $20 an hour. Clubs love me because I'm cheaper than most DJ's. Ever since I got Serato last month, I've been making like $200 a month DJ'ing 4 times a week! Its AWESOME!
poloi3eai2 3:17 PM - 7 June, 2007
Quote:
I make $20 an hour. Clubs love me because I'm cheaper than most DJ's. Ever since I got Serato last month, I've been making like $200 a month DJ'ing 4 times a week! Its AWESOME!


$20 an hour!? You're nuts man. That's only about $80 a night! You need to up your price man. The clubs dont love you because you're good but because the bartenders make more money than you! You must be a newbie that's undercutting and taking all the good DJ's spots.
Niro 5:01 PM - 7 June, 2007
Quote:
I make $20 an hour. Clubs love me because I'm cheaper than most DJ's. Ever since I got Serato last month, I've been making like $200 a month DJ'ing 4 times a week! Its AWESOME!


That's Awsome, I use to be at $20/hour. But with the influx of Serato/Tracktor/...Ipod. I've had to lower my rates to $15/hour plus drinks. The problem is I don't drink, so I get the drinks and put them in water bottles and sell them to the bums outside after my gigs. What's really cool, is they buy them with food stamps, so I can charge double the price. Than I go and buy muffins at the Cosco, family pack. Comes out to about 25 cents per muffin. I take them home and individual rewrap them and put a fresh sticker on em (get those from the super market fish department) and resell them to the local drive thru espresso stands for 50 cents. I'm starting to understand when DJs talk about "you gotta hustle" shit's getting tired after weeks end, but hey if I wanna sport XXXXXL shirts, it's gonna cost extra.

Niros
dirtbag filthy 5:12 PM - 7 June, 2007
man soon people are gonna be djing for 10 bucks a night
shiestO! 5:16 PM - 7 June, 2007
Quote:
Quote:
I make $20 an hour. Clubs love me because I'm cheaper than most DJ's. Ever since I got Serato last month, I've been making like $200 a month DJ'ing 4 times a week! Its AWESOME!


That's Awsome, I use to be at $20/hour. But with the influx of Serato/Tracktor/...Ipod. I've had to lower my rates to $15/hour plus drinks. The problem is I don't drink, so I get the drinks and put them in water bottles and sell them to the bums outside after my gigs. What's really cool, is they buy them with food stamps, so I can charge double the price. Than I go and buy muffins at the Cosco, family pack. Comes out to about 25 cents per muffin. I take them home and individual rewrap them and put a fresh sticker on em (get those from the super market fish department) and resell them to the local drive thru espresso stands for 50 cents. I'm starting to understand when DJs talk about "you gotta hustle" shit's getting tired after weeks end, but hey if I wanna sport XXXXXL shirts, it's gonna cost extra.

Niros


u serious about the muffin business man? that's just too much work.
shiestO! 5:17 PM - 7 June, 2007
free drinks-water bottle-bum- food stamps- muffins- wrapping- resale- how often?
Bigfourty4 5:22 PM - 7 June, 2007
Im at 10 per hour...been there done that.

Lowest I go is minimum wage.
albuddah 6:00 PM - 7 June, 2007
man. on the real, i did a calculation of how much time i put in during the week for prep, and how much time from setup to teardown a gig took, and it came down to about ten dollars an hour. but i don't see any of it as work, so it still feels like i just found three hundred and got to rock a party.
Niro 6:24 PM - 7 June, 2007
Quote:


u serious about the muffin business man? that's just too much work.


Gotta do it for the love, like some would say on this board, if you're doing it to get rich, than you shouldn't be doing it at all.

Actually since summer is approaching, I figure out I can buy water at Cosco for about 17 cent a bottle and sell it at the beach for $1 and cut out the middleman (espresso stands) But, I'll probably go back to muffins in the fall, unless I can find another hustle. What's cool is I can use the dolly I use to use for hauling crates around to haul the cooler full of water.

Man only if I was in Oregon, than I could pick up the bottles afterwards and cop another 5 cents off each one. You Oregon guys (Evil One, Wicked...) are some lucky guys.

Niros
grrillatactics 9:29 PM - 7 June, 2007
Niro, you are a funny dude.
AlexRage 9:46 PM - 7 June, 2007
don't worry about being replaced by a dj that's undercutting you..worry about having enough skills and killer sets that a club would never concider replacing you.
Crickett 9:46 PM - 7 June, 2007
150 an hour plus drinks and parking.
Pretty standard stuff.
CMOS 9:51 PM - 7 June, 2007
Quote:
Quote:


u serious about the muffin business man? that's just too much work.


Gotta do it for the love, like some would say on this board, if you're doing it to get rich, than you shouldn't be doing it at all.

Actually since summer is approaching, I figure out I can buy water at Cosco for about 17 cent a bottle and sell it at the beach for $1 and cut out the middleman (espresso stands) But, I'll probably go back to muffins in the fall, unless I can find another hustle. What's cool is I can use the dolly I use to use for hauling crates around to haul the cooler full of water.

Man only if I was in Oregon, than I could pick up the bottles afterwards and cop another 5 cents off each one. You Oregon guys (Evil One, Wicked...) are some lucky guys.

Niros



I think Michigan gets 10cents a bottle.
J.J. 10:22 PM - 7 June, 2007
OMG Niro, LMAO. You actually had me going at first with the whole pour the drinks in water bottles.
lvmez 1:40 AM - 8 June, 2007
Quote:
Quote:
in nyc, big clubs pay at least $500-$1000
smaller clubs(lounges)$350


Smaller clubs/lounges pay a lot less in my experience (talking about LES spots, bar/lounges, etc).


your about the les. they pay around $200. i was taking about the meat packing district.
Mr. $weetlife 3:03 AM - 8 June, 2007
Quote:
I make $20 an hour. Clubs love me because I'm cheaper than most DJ's. Ever since I got Serato last month, I've been making like $200 a month DJ'ing 4 times a week! Its AWESOME!


You are either 15 or you are seriously joking...Right? Right?

web.mac.com
Niro 6:52 AM - 8 June, 2007
I'm moving to Michigan this fall and gonna get rich bitches. I saw a episode of the simson's where Mr. Burns gets rich by recycling. Recycling's going to be the new recycling, just wait and you'll see.

Niros
dj cubicle 6:54 AM - 8 June, 2007
I don't think you understand how competitive the can picking up game is here Niro. You might want to consult your health insurance policy and see if being sliced open with a hanger by a rabid homeless person is covered...
DJ Michael Basic 9:31 AM - 8 June, 2007
Dude, I heard Niro bumping "Now I am the muffin man" in one of his sets the other night.
IAMDJDK 5:19 PM - 8 August, 2013
$10 and $20 per hour? You guys are crazy and killing the game for other DJs. I charge $225 if the club has equipment, $300 if I have to bring my own.
XCAKID 5:38 PM - 8 August, 2013
Depending on the club. Smaller sports bar or lounge maybe $200-250, larger trendier clubs $300.
XCAKID 5:41 PM - 8 August, 2013
Oh, if they want video, add another $50-100
IAMDJDK 5:44 PM - 8 August, 2013
Quote:
Depending on the club. Smaller sports bar or lounge maybe $200-250, larger trendier clubs $300.


This sounds way more logical than these other guys charging $10 and $20 per hour. I put in a lot of time and effort to undercut myself like that.
IAMDJDK 5:49 PM - 8 August, 2013
Quote:
Oh, if they want video, add another $50-100


Extra $100 for that.
XCAKID 6:21 PM - 8 August, 2013
Telling ya man, you bucks f'ing up the game. They learn their sh*T on youtube, but never bother to learn the business side of things. They pirate everything else, so its no cost to them. Same cats that open for you and burn through all the hot tracks cause they wanna be Tiesto in a weeks time. SMH
XCAKID 6:23 PM - 8 August, 2013
I've actually had to drop my prices to compete. That's barebones low for me.
XCAKID 6:24 PM - 8 August, 2013
I got $150-200 going out to record/video pools a month. So I have to gig out at least once a month just to break even.
IAMDJDK 6:27 PM - 8 August, 2013
Quote:
I've actually had to drop my prices to compete. That's barebones low for me.


I know. I went from charging $100 per hour to $75 to compete but I can't go any lower than that if I'm using my own equipment.
 6 6:46 PM - 8 August, 2013
You two cry too much.

nm
XCAKID 7:14 PM - 8 August, 2013
It's that time of the month, I'm a bit emotional.
dougefresh0126 7:25 PM - 8 August, 2013
Quote:
Quote:
I make $20 an hour. Clubs love me because I'm cheaper than most DJ's. Ever since I got Serato last month, I've been making like $200 a month DJ'ing 4 times a week! Its AWESOME!


That's Awsome, I use to be at $20/hour. But with the influx of Serato/Tracktor/...Ipod. I've had to lower my rates to $15/hour plus drinks. The problem is I don't drink, so I get the drinks and put them in water bottles and sell them to the bums outside after my gigs. What's really cool, is they buy them with food stamps, so I can charge double the price. Than I go and buy muffins at the Cosco, family pack. Comes out to about 25 cents per muffin. I take them home and individual rewrap them and put a fresh sticker on em (get those from the super market fish department) and resell them to the local drive thru espresso stands for 50 cents. I'm starting to understand when DJs talk about "you gotta hustle" shit's getting tired after weeks end, but hey if I wanna sport XXXXXL shirts, it's gonna cost extra.

Niros


I dont think thats what they mean by u gotta hustle, most people i know are talking about putting in work as a DJ when they say that, not selling muffins. Damn. And to all the DJ saying they gettin paid $10 or $20 a hour u need to say u aint taking that low a price, it f's it up for everyone else, we trying to get more money not less
CMOS 8:56 PM - 8 August, 2013
Lmao that's 60 bucks for a 6 hour gig.


DA FUCK OUTTA HEA.
CMOS 8:56 PM - 8 August, 2013
Even if its 120 for 6 hours

STILL GET DA FUCK OUTTA HEA
IAMDJDK 11:19 PM - 8 August, 2013
Quote:
Lmao that's 60 bucks for a 6 hour gig.


DA FUCK OUTTA HEA.


Quote:
Even if its 120 for 6 hours

STILL GET DA FUCK OUTTA HEA


lol they fucking themselves with no vaseline
Rdent 2:25 AM - 9 August, 2013
Quote:
Quote:
Lmao that's 60 bucks for a 6 hour gig.


DA FUCK OUTTA HEA.


Quote:
Even if its 120 for 6 hours

STILL GET DA FUCK OUTTA HEA


lol they fucking themselves with no vaseline


maybe they like to fuck themselves?? o_O in the end it all levels out if you are doing it right
4mydawgz 8:04 PM - 9 August, 2013
i don't usually do club gigs. but when i did, the promoter said he pays 75 for openers and 200 for closers. caught me off guard. i didnt know it was so low out there.
IAMDJDK 10:19 PM - 9 August, 2013
Quote:
i don't usually do club gigs. but when i did, the promoter said he pays 75 for openers and 200 for closers. caught me off guard. i didnt know it was so low out there.


$75!!!! Damn!!!! How long is the opener spinning?
dj jamalot 5:45 PM - 10 August, 2013
I have a guy that plays for free using you tube ripped music and virtual dj what is this world coming to peeps will do anything to get sum nookie he doesn't even mix SMH.
 6 5:58 PM - 11 August, 2013
Quote:
i don't usually do club gigs. but when i did, I chose club Dos Equis
phonze 6:14 PM - 11 August, 2013
Can still find gigs for 100 an hour here, so long as you're willing to sell tickets/promote/bring a big crowd. Otherwise you won't get hired.
 6 5:58 AM - 12 August, 2013
Quote:
Can still find gigs for 100 an hour here, so long as you're willing to sell tickets/promote/bring a big crowd. Otherwise you won't get hired.


After doing all that promotion and selling of tickets, I really doubt it's really 100 an hour.

nm
phonze 1:09 PM - 12 August, 2013
Well, a little more depending on the venue. 100 an hour was just a general example.
XCAKID 3:14 PM - 12 August, 2013
Quote:
so long as you're willing to sell tickets/promote/bring a big crowd. Otherwise you won't get hired.



Hmmm.....so since you have to do the promoters job for him/her, does the promoter have to DJ so you can just kick back??
phonze 3:57 PM - 12 August, 2013
lol I wish. it's a shitty deal and I'll never do it. but that's the game nowadays, you either become a big name, or you become a DJ/promoter. rarely are nightclub DJ's hired solely on skill anymore. hell, that aspect has probably become the least important.
XCAKID 8:34 PM - 12 August, 2013
Yep, that's why I stick to the bars in the suburbs. Big clubs are not worth it nowadays. I make a decent living. I DJ, promoting is optional. I'll never have the fame local or otherwise, but I play every weekend. :D And for the most part, its open format. So within reason, I get to play whatever I want.
IAMDJDK 8:42 PM - 12 August, 2013
If you really wanna make some money, host/dj your own events. I do 3 sale out boat parties a year in Austin and on each on I profit $1360.
DJ Evil One 12:40 AM - 13 August, 2013
whaaaaat? you guys get paid to DJ? man, i've been paying like $250 a night just to get on and do a one hour set. how do you make the transition from having to pay to DJ to getting paid to do it? help.
eugguy 10:02 AM - 13 August, 2013
Get paid in "Maslow's Hierarchy of Needs." this is the lowest row on the pyramid, the psychological portion. So this means getting paid in sex, food, water (beer, liquor). As you move up in your career and become more self-actualized (creative, aware, accepting) you will probably make the most you can make as a dj. If you are truly aware, you will never do a club gig for less than $500.
XCAKID 1:12 PM - 13 August, 2013
Quote:
you will never do a club gig for less than $500.


That was me back in the 90's. But the DJing career path is the only one I know where pay has gone down. I blame it on the ease of becoming a DJ, and every monkey out there with a pirated software and music saturating the market doing gigs for free, bar tabs or just $50
phonze 2:46 PM - 13 August, 2013
I blame it on people like this

toronto.en.craigslist.ca

This is a guy that apparently gets hired by companies, and actually needs someone to sit through and find songs for him because he's too damn lazy to do it himself. Where is the work ethic? Where's the love and desire to actually find and discover and listen to shit yourself? It's DJ's like this that have fucked up the game.
XCAKID 3:17 PM - 13 August, 2013
Well at least he has someone sift through it. Some folks just download the Beatport 100 the morning of their gig. Beatgrid it, arrange by BPM and play out that night. LOL
DJ Benny B NYC 3:22 PM - 13 August, 2013
i will say there are DJs in westchester county NY doing weddings for $250! i just lost a job because of one of these guys...
gian13 2:00 PM - 14 August, 2013
Quote:
i will say there are DJs in westchester county NY doing weddings for $250! i just lost a job because of one of these guys...


lmao.... westchester county - the home of the undercutting djs
Dj-M.Bezzle 7:37 PM - 14 August, 2013
So far my best outting has been $600 for a two hour set. But to put it in perspective it was for a big name casino club so it was chump change for them vs some regular bar or club
DJ MDX 11:55 PM - 15 August, 2013
Quote:
If you really wanna make some money, host/dj your own events. I do 3 sale out boat parties a year in Austin and on each on I profit $1360.


Let me know next time you have one and I'll come thru - I'm in the ATX.

We do this also from time to time some turn out great and we've had one that was a total bust. That one was one with too many trying to call the shots and overspending on everything.
ral 3:02 PM - 16 August, 2013
$300k for a club dj (just bring sd card) :)

example pricing
mobile dj pricing - Watchwww.youtube.com
DJ MIXX MASTER TIM 12:53 PM - 25 September, 2013
I'm glad I saw this forum because for a long time I was messing up the game and didn't know the business side, but I learned through failures.

BUT NOW, ISH* HAS CHANGED!

Thank you DJs on this post!

Everything must be by contract/agreement or we don't play.

Kobe, Lebron, or Ryan Leaf don't play for crumbs. This is a business. Pros get paid
Soundshop 2:30 PM - 25 September, 2013
pay is a interesting thing. to me it should be and often is relative to the crowd you draw in. If your at some small bar down the street playing in the corner with 15-20 people nightly... yea maybe 10 bucks is about right. and nothing wrong with that type of venue to get experience. If your at a dance club with a $20 cover downtown and 200-300 people rolling in the door in a night, you should be seeing 500-1000 a night and they should be pleased to pay you that.

it should be more about the music and the thrill of making the fans have a good time. find that high and the drive to achieve that at every single show... and the money will follow.
4mydawgz 3:37 PM - 25 September, 2013
Quote:
Quote:
i don't usually do club gigs. but when i did, the promoter said he pays 75 for openers and 200 for closers. caught me off guard. i didnt know it was so low out there.


$75!!!! Damn!!!! How long is the opener spinning?


10 - 12
4mydawgz 3:44 PM - 25 September, 2013
Quote:
If you really wanna make some money, host/dj your own events. I do 3 sale out boat parties a year in Austin and on each on I profit $1360.


1360 is kool. But I always thought the profits on those boat rides were much higher. Unless that's just your cut.
IAMDJDK 8:34 PM - 23 December, 2013
Depends on the boat. I usually just get a summer time party barge. It only holds 70 people. Clearing $1360 for a guest list of 70 is a great profit. I have thrown parties on yachts but the initial cost to rent and set everything up gets expensive. I usually do those with a group. Party barges are something you can do with no help.
DJ Irv 9:25 PM - 23 December, 2013
Make a rate for yourself. Try not to undercut other DJs purposely because, it devalues us all. I have spots that say we'll give you (blank) for a Saturday night. If it's under my rate I just say respectfully my rate is (blank) you come up to it or find someone else but, I say it as respectfully as I can.

I know DJ's that will always rock it at a spot and if I owned the bar/lounge I would be giving them what they want (within reason) since they are able to keep people there drinking, dancing and providing good vibes furthering word of mouth advertising but, that is just me.

I live in NYC. The average for smaller venues seems to be $200. That's pretty low if you are killing it every night and I suggest you negotiate the rate but, places don't see it the way a DJ sees it.

I remember covering in a very popular hip-hop spot in the Lower East Side. They called me in desperation because, at the time because the owner hated the fact I spun a competing venue although I hung out at his spot a lot. I came thru in a pinch, killed it all night. At 4am they turned on the lights and nobody wanted leave. Did some of my best dj'ing honestly and I was proud of myself. At the the end of the night I got $150bucks hardly worth lugging 3-4crates of records and dissing my girl to go DJ. I was perplexed. These big name NY DJs are spinning the spot for $150 on Saturday night? The spot was probably pulling in $5000-$7000 a night at the bar, 300-500 at the door and gave their DJs $150bucks? I didn't ask what it paid before agreeing to spin because it was a favor. I never made that mistake again.
IAMDJDK 9:26 PM - 23 December, 2013
Quote:
Let me know next time you have one and I'll come thru - I'm in the ATX.


I'll let you know homie.
ninos 12:16 AM - 25 December, 2013
Local club i rock at on saturdays, i dj from 10-2, they have a 57 and 1200's. i get paid 300$
DJTARIQUE 5:18 PM - 26 December, 2013
$250 to $400 opening, $400 to $800 closing..... No Equipment must pay equipment rental prices... On Average you should be making between $400-$600 a night if your a talented seasoned DJ. Anything less is BS
the_black_one 8:00 PM - 26 December, 2013
Depending on the venue and the hours.. My rate is for 4 hours. If need to play longer then price changes to a per hour rate

Nm nh
Unit:E 2:37 AM - 27 December, 2013
$500, no matter how long they want me to play. And a bowl of green skittles in the booth....
DJYoshi 4:36 PM - 30 December, 2013
NYC depending on who you are is anywhere from $500 - 2500 + bottles for your personal party
some venues will even work out payment on a plus list basis.
Normal of $5-10 per paying person on top of your fee.
$30-50 per bottle popper you bring in
above the LES
there are a few spots downtown that have bank to pay.
But if you're coming to NY or are from here, you focus on getting booked by conglomerates
with ownership of venues in
MPD, Chelsea and Midtown spots that can pay your rates

want to break into the NY club scene the fastest way these days?
guarantee any club that you'll book 5 bottles and charge them $600
have the bottles booked before you spin... you'll be booked weekly.
BIGG BEAR 5:54 PM - 30 December, 2013
Quote:
guarantee any club that you'll book 5 bottles and charge them $600
have the bottles booked before you spin... you'll be booked weekly.


Hi I'm from the uk don't understand this, whats this about booking bottles?
XCAKID 9:13 PM - 30 December, 2013
Quote:
Quote:
guarantee any club that you'll book 5 bottles and charge them $600
have the bottles booked before you spin... you'll be booked weekly.


Hi I'm from the uk don't understand this, whats this about booking bottles?


Table booked for bottle service.

So if you have groups coming in, they book/reserve a table for bottle service, you guarantee the club XX amount of tables booked for bottle service the night you are spinning.

Clubs love it cause, it cost them maybe $20 for a bottle of Grey Goose for example, and they charge the group $500. Most big clubs will do 2 bottles minimum on a table.
XCAKID 9:14 PM - 30 December, 2013
BIGG BEAR 2:07 AM - 31 December, 2013
Thanks I get it now,you know I'm not aware of this being a regular thing in uk clubs maybe its an American thing,can anyone correct me?
XCAKID 1:31 PM - 31 December, 2013
Quote:
Thanks I get it now,you know I'm not aware of this being a regular thing in uk clubs maybe its an American thing,can anyone correct me?


Just a brief google search and I came up with this: www.designmynight.com
DJYoshi 3:38 PM - 2 January, 2014
Quote:
Thanks I get it now,you know I'm not aware of this being a regular thing in uk clubs maybe its an American thing,can anyone correct me?


bottle service became the thing in the mid 2000's. every venue that I've spun at since 2003 has pushed bottle service to anyone and everyone.
I've played at a few venues in the UK and they've been bottle service places.

models and bottles was a party that stemmed from France that the promoters eventually made their way into NY.
DJ Neza 5:33 AM - 9 January, 2014
Reading some of these posts on what DJ's charge makes me sad, and its the main reason why I jumped into the private event scene a long time ago. Gentleman, invest In equipment, keep your quality high, and in no time you'll be charging $2000 + per gig. I remember charging more then some of you 10 years ago!! And yes the game changed and clubs are crowded with undercutters which is exactly why I got the f*#k out of that scene!
Unit:E 8:04 AM - 9 January, 2014
There is no way I could charge more than I do without going the wedding route. For Festivals and larger outdoor parties I get what I ask for. This community on this island is very small and can not support a DJ that demands $2000. Now, maybe on O'ahu....

If I lived on the mainland I would definitely charge more.
HighGrade562 5:28 PM - 9 January, 2014
Quote:
Reading some of these posts on what DJ's charge makes me sad, and its the main reason why I jumped into the private event scene a long time ago. Gentleman, invest In equipment, keep your quality high, and in no time you'll be charging $2000 + per gig. I remember charging more then some of you 10 years ago!! And yes the game changed and clubs are crowded with undercutters which is exactly why I got the f*#k out of that scene!


This brings up another good question. Do you stay on the club/bar circuit for $200 a night or do you buy thousands of dollars worth of audio and lighting to do private events. A good amount of club DJ's don't have a PA that can properly handle a large room and setting up a PA for an event demands knowledge beyond just mixing, you need to know how to troubleshoot your equipment if something fails. So for a young DJ with just a controller and a laptop the club/bar route seems to be the most practical. There is a lot involved in the mobile game, you have to purchase the gear, this means everything from your DJ gear, Audio Gear, ALL cables plus extras, road cases for everything, Care & maintenance for your gear and your vehicle. Then you have to have a place to store everything. Now on top of all that you need a working knowledge of all genres of music, something a lot of young DJ's don't have.
It requires a substantial initial investment and a commitment to quality to make anywhere near $2000 for an event.
Unit:E 5:48 PM - 9 January, 2014
Quote:
Quote:
Reading some of these posts on what DJ's charge makes me sad, and its the main reason why I jumped into the private event scene a long time ago. Gentleman, invest In equipment, keep your quality high, and in no time you'll be charging $2000 + per gig. I remember charging more then some of you 10 years ago!! And yes the game changed and clubs are crowded with undercutters which is exactly why I got the f*#k out of that scene!


This brings up another good question. Do you stay on the club/bar circuit for $200 a night or do you buy thousands of dollars worth of audio and lighting to do private events. A good amount of club DJ's don't have a PA that can properly handle a large room and setting up a PA for an event demands knowledge beyond just mixing, you need to know how to troubleshoot your equipment if something fails. So for a young DJ with just a controller and a laptop the club/bar route seems to be the most practical. There is a lot involved in the mobile game, you have to purchase the gear, this means everything from your DJ gear, Audio Gear, ALL cables plus extras, road cases for everything, Care & maintenance for your gear and your vehicle. Then you have to have a place to store everything. Now on top of all that you need a working knowledge of all genres of music, something a lot of young DJ's don't have.
It requires a substantial initial investment and a commitment to quality to make anywhere near $2000 for an event.


Agreed.

I got out of the wedding/corporate/mobile DJ side of things about 6 years ago. It cost too much to maintain and there are not enough gigs on this island and too many DJs doing it to support myself. The biggest mobile jock on island is actually ranked in the top 10 in weddings for the nation and I have no desire to compete with him. I now strictly play festivals and the occasional club night. I don't need to look for gigs anymore simply because I have built a good enough rep here to get called and asked to play at parties on a regular basis.
dj_ys 12:25 AM - 10 January, 2014
Quote:

This brings up another good question. Do you stay on the club/bar circuit for $200 a night or do you buy thousands of dollars worth of audio and lighting to do private events. A good amount of club DJ's don't have a PA that can properly handle a large room and setting up a PA for an event demands knowledge beyond just mixing, you need to know how to troubleshoot your equipment if something fails. So for a young DJ with just a controller and a laptop the club/bar route seems to be the most practical. There is a lot involved in the mobile game, you have to purchase the gear, this means everything from your DJ gear, Audio Gear, ALL cables plus extras, road cases for everything, Care & maintenance for your gear and your vehicle. Then you have to have a place to store everything. Now on top of all that you need a working knowledge of all genres of music, something a lot of young DJ's don't have.
It requires a substantial initial investment and a commitment to quality to make anywhere near $2000 for an event.


Not everything needs to be outright purchased though. For example, me and my guys rent larger sounds/lights until it makes sense to purchase.

Look at strategies other businesses use to grow.
HighGrade562 1:59 AM - 10 January, 2014
We'll your normal pa and lighting for a large indoor space runs at least $600 a night to rent. Rental rates are about 10% of retail.
DJ VEE 2:02 AM - 10 January, 2014
Quote:
We'll your normal pa and lighting for a large indoor space runs at least $600 a night to rent. Rental rates are about 10% of retail.


Plus the deposit which is almost retail, (at least that's what I had to do when I rented). Paid more than 10% too, I think. It made more sense for me to buy.
dj_ys 2:35 AM - 10 January, 2014
This was about $2,000 gigs though, no? I'd rather get the gigs and pay the $600 rental fees while saving up instead of not taking the gigs due to lack of equipment.

Also, renting eliminates the issue of needing a way to transport and store large equipment, lowering the "initial investment and commitment".
dj_ys 2:38 AM - 10 January, 2014
Also, building relationships with rental places can help to lower fees. It's not often that I rent but after working with the same spot for a while, I've been paying closer to 5%. Maybe because their business is kinda slow (it's Pittsburgh after all) but it's an option.
MYZE 2:48 AM - 10 January, 2014
We are 2 DJ´s we take 350€ with 2 DJ´s and with Equipment in the Club and 400€ with our own Equipment. I know that sounds a lot but we are doin a lot promo Jobs for free so people can see what they get, and honestly the most people accept our price after they heard us for the first time.
DJ VEE 11:04 AM - 10 January, 2014
Quote:
Also, building relationships with rental places can help to lower fees. It's not often that I rent but after working with the same spot for a while, I've been paying closer to 5%. Maybe because their business is kinda slow (it's Pittsburgh after all) but it's an option.


+1

Completely agree with that and your other post. When I was renting for a while, (same reason, did not want to lose the bigger gigs due to lack of equipment), my fees did not go down that much. The place I use was constantly busy, but the level of service was outstanding. That was really nice.
It got to a point where we forgot to include some speakers. My gig was starting soon. The guys there got them to me and said, " it's you who is using them, we will figure out the details later". No worries about paperwork or anything.
They made my gig the priority for the moment, and showed that there was a level of trust which I did not want to lose. I liked that. I still rent sometimes, it just made more sense to buy.
DJYoshi 9:51 PM - 10 January, 2014
If you establish great relationships with vendors... they'll eventually give you preferred rates.
Work on building the relationships with the same vendors that you'll rent/purchase from over the years if that's the route.
I never leave one area.
I still do private and corporate keeps me busy 50% of my year.
I hardly touch a club once football season starts.
It's just not worth it.
From August until Bowl season is over, there's early call times in stadium, traveling, and weeks where there's bye's, I can be in clubs...but when the team is home, and I have an early call time of 6AM, I'm not doing the club to the stadium weekly anymore.
I'll do the game, nap then do a club where I can take former players turned pro.
But I spend 75% of November and December doing corporate events which include sound, lighting and spinning. corporate $ is real $.
there's time and planning involved...but I'd rather dedicate 15 hours of planning that in a week, than spend 5 hours in a club taking home xxxx and your club night is just that... your club night. corporate events are great places to network to something bigger and better.
flip it to something else because it's a different atmosphere where you can pop in a pre-mix for 30 minutes and sell yourself and your services to the greater powers and obtain a sponsorship or be booked on a retainer.
monstersounddj 5:46 AM - 22 May, 2014
Thank you everybody for their input, I'll decided to charge 200, 250if it get packed, the place it's not that big and it holds about 200-250people tops, there isn't really a dj out here that plays the style of music they require Latin music, I have been doing this for 9 years now and know this crowd like the palm of my hand, have also had to do promotion in the past and since I didn't really know any better was charging 50per night 4years ago this post has made a lot of sense, I go on there and rock the shit out of my parties , just got offered 85dollar and 120 if it get packed by the promoter, not the actual owners, so I'll just deal with the owners directly thanks so much
John McC 7:46 PM - 22 May, 2014
Quote:
Quote:
I make $20 an hour. Clubs love me because I'm cheaper than most DJ's. Ever since I got Serato last month, I've been making like $200 a month DJ'ing 4 times a week! Its AWESOME!


$20 an hour!? You're nuts man. That's only about $80 a night! You need to up your price man. The clubs dont love you because you're good but because the bartenders make more money than you! You must be a newbie that's undercutting and taking all the good DJ's spots.


True... you're hurting yourself and other DJs in the longrun. Up your price and don't be afraid to turn down gigs. Trust in your skill!
recklessmane247 12:28 PM - 24 May, 2014
anybody here ever thought about organizing your own event and taking the door? that's the best way to do it if you ask me.
KayPlaya 7:54 PM - 26 May, 2014
I knew opening this thread was gonna irritate me! Some of these DJs either ned to have more practice, business sense, and/or sense of pride when dealing with pricing. Damn shame at some of the rates I'm reading
Gui Macho 7:25 AM - 5 July, 2014
is 40$ per night, fine?
Demonstr8 1:14 AM - 6 July, 2014
How about working with a record label?

I am talking with a local record label and have an audition set up for next week.

I have an idea about what I would like to make, but I don't know what would be considered too high or too low. Anyone with some experience working with labels?
DjayRage 6:57 PM - 6 July, 2014
Quote:
How about working with a record label?

I am talking with a local record label and have an audition set up for next week.

I have an idea about what I would like to make, but I don't know what would be considered too high or too low. Anyone with some experience working with labels?

If you can get a label to pay/sponsor more power to you, but labels these days have almost non-existent budgets.
MYZE 7:22 PM - 22 July, 2014
Quote:
anybody here ever thought about organizing your own event and taking the door? that's the best way to do it if you ask me.


We´re doing this, we get the money for entrance and the club is getting the drinks, but you have to rent the club in this scenerio and you need at least 3-4 Persons plus security. In Germany you have to pay taxes, so we need about 250 people min. to get a profit, for a new DJ this could be hard.
DJ_Gold 4:09 AM - 27 July, 2014
Quote:
I make $20 an hour. Clubs love me because I'm cheaper than most DJ's. Ever since I got Serato last month, I've been making like $200 a month DJ'ing 4 times a week! Its AWESOME!


NEVER LOWER YOUR STANDARDS!
DJ Remix Detroit 4:13 AM - 27 July, 2014
Quote:
I am talking with a local record label


not trying to burst your bubble... but seeing that everyone and their mom has a "record label" now days... not sure if you should even waste your time man. you could probably spend that energy hooking up with a local dj and networking the right way.
John McC 11:06 PM - 7 August, 2014
I'm doing a small club in Manhattan Friday. Super mellow, easy gig... Getting $300 for about 4 hours. Been DJing for about 2 years. I am ok... not playing big gigs yet, but considering I fucking love what I do this is plenty dough for the night IMO.
ozfrombk 9:10 PM - 8 August, 2014
Quote:
I'm doing a small club in Manhattan Friday. Super mellow, easy gig... Getting $300 for about 4 hours. Been DJing for about 2 years. I am ok... not playing big gigs yet, but considering I fucking love what I do this is plenty dough for the night IMO.


What club?
Tsunamiqu 7:10 PM - 3 September, 2014
Quote:
Quote:
Quote:
I make $20 an hour. Clubs love me because I'm cheaper than most DJ's. Ever since I got Serato last month, I've been making like $200 a month DJ'ing 4 times a week! Its AWESOME!


$20 an hour!? You're nuts man. That's only about $80 a night! You need to up your price man. The clubs dont love you because you're good but because the bartenders make more money than you! You must be a newbie that's undercutting and taking all the good DJ's spots.


True... you're hurting yourself and other DJs in the longrun. Up your price and don't be afraid to turn down gigs. Trust in your skill!



I think some of you are missing the point that some DJ's are just starting out and don't have a name that draws anyone to the venue. In this case it is like asking for what Tom Cruse makes on a film, when I'm the dude no one has ever heard of before. It is ridiculous to even ask. You have to start somewhere, and its never at the top unless there is some nepotism or money involved. Nobody starts off, otherwise, pulling in more than $300-600 a night, unless your a Hilton, of course.

The other thing is location; a DJ in Cornfield, KS can not expect to get as much anyone playing in NYC, or Vegas. Just not gonna happen.

When I started out, I played for drinks for me and free cover whenever I wanted for me and 2-3 friends. Just playing out somewhere is where you have make a name for yourself, when you draw people on the floor and keep them going to the bar, then you can start setting minimums.

Once you are doing the pulling and can set minimums, unless someone [who can pull as much as you] comes along a lot cheaper, you don't have to worry about your slot ladies and gents. That's just how the free market works.

Peace
Dj-M.Bezzle 7:39 PM - 3 September, 2014
Quote:
Quote:
Quote:
Quote:
I make $20 an hour. Clubs love me because I'm cheaper than most DJ's. Ever since I got Serato last month, I've been making like $200 a month DJ'ing 4 times a week! Its AWESOME!


$20 an hour!? You're nuts man. That's only about $80 a night! You need to up your price man. The clubs dont love you because you're good but because the bartenders make more money than you! You must be a newbie that's undercutting and taking all the good DJ's spots.


True... you're hurting yourself and other DJs in the longrun. Up your price and don't be afraid to turn down gigs. Trust in your skill!



I think some of you are missing the point that some DJ's are just starting out and don't have a name that draws anyone to the venue. In this case it is like asking for what Tom Cruse makes on a film, when I'm the dude no one has ever heard of before. It is ridiculous to even ask. You have to start somewhere, and its never at the top unless there is some nepotism or money involved. Nobody starts off, otherwise, pulling in more than $300-600 a night, unless your a Hilton, of course.

The other thing is location; a DJ in Cornfield, KS can not expect to get as much anyone playing in NYC, or Vegas. Just not gonna happen.

When I started out, I played for drinks for me and free cover whenever I wanted for me and 2-3 friends. Just playing out somewhere is where you have make a name for yourself, when you draw people on the floor and keep them going to the bar, then you can start setting minimums.

Once you are doing the pulling and can set minimums, unless someone [who can pull as much as you] comes along a lot cheaper, you don't have to worry about your slot ladies and gents. That's just how the free market works.

Peace



Your missing the big picture, you need to be making a name of your own BEFORE getting tje high profile spot. Put mixs out on soundcloud, do house partys, open for names, build yourself BEFORE getting the spot and get paid what you deserve. What would the point be of building a name for yourself if venues just replace you with a no name dj who is only booked because he charges $20, as soon as you ask for more.
Dj-M.Bezzle 7:42 PM - 3 September, 2014
Quote:

The other thing is location; a DJ in Cornfield, KS can not expect to get as much anyone playing in NYC, or Vegas. Just not gonna happen.


Youd be suprised, sure Cornfield KS wont be paying anyone four figures a night but the drinks in KS are probably just as costly as they are elsewhere so the veune HAS the money. You just have to realise you have every right to your share as they do to theirs, grow a pair and ask for it.
phonze 7:43 PM - 3 September, 2014
Soon as you start building the spot and asking for money, boom they find another DJ that will DJ for free like you were willing to before. Don't feed the cycle man, don't play for freakin drink tickets.
 6 8:05 PM - 3 September, 2014
Quote:
Soon as you start building the spot and asking for money, boom they find another DJ that will DJ for free like you were willing to before. Don't feed the cycle man, don't play for freakin drink tickets.



This


----

Plus, it's always harder to ask for more than to ask for less money.

nm
Logisticalstyles 8:21 PM - 3 September, 2014
Quote:
Just playing out somewhere is where you have make a name for yourself, when you draw people on the floor and keep them going to the bar, then you can start setting minimums.

Once you are doing the pulling and can set minimums, unless someone [who can pull as much as you] comes along a lot cheaper, you don't have to worry about your slot ladies and gents. That's just how the free market works.



The only name you will be making for yourself is "The Cheap DJ". Once you start playing for less than standard wages, regardless of your skill level, then you will be labeled as the Cheap DJ. When promoters or managers needs cheap entertainment you will be the one they call. When they know that they need to step it up and get some serious entertainment you will NOT be the one they call. If you don't feel like you have what it takes to get standard wages then you should stay home until you get what it takes.

And please believe that once you build up a crowd coming to your spot then the management and owners will try to figure a way to remove you from the equation.
Firefly 8:54 PM - 3 September, 2014
It's realy nice to read, that somewhere is a place wher Dj's are well paid . I'm from Poland. It's normal to get 200-500 for night, but in zł (+/- 50-125 $). In capital 300 $ and only the best dj's in the best's club's.

I had to borrow money for my first equipment and play 3 night/week (2 months), to pay off. But that was worth of it. I always loved this feeling when I see full dancefloor.

Sorry for mistakes ;)
Dj-M.Bezzle 9:38 PM - 3 September, 2014
Quote:
It's realy nice to read, that somewhere is a place wher Dj's are well paid . I'm from Poland. It's normal to get 200-500 for night, but in zł (+/- 50-125 $). In capital 300 $ and only the best dj's in the best's club's.

I had to borrow money for my first equipment and play 3 night/week (2 months), to pay off. But that was worth of it. I always loved this feeling when I see full dancefloor.

Sorry for mistakes ;)
$500 is pretty good money.
Tsunamiqu 2:51 AM - 4 September, 2014
Quote:
Quote:
Your missing the big picture, you need to be making a name of your own BEFORE getting tje high profile spot. Put mixs out on soundcloud, do house partys, open for names, build yourself BEFORE getting the spot and get paid what you deserve. What would the point be of building a name for yourself if venues just replace you with a no name dj who is only booked because he charges $20, as soon as you ask for more.

The other thing is location; a DJ in Cornfield, KS can not expect to get as much anyone playing in NYC, or Vegas. Just not gonna happen.
Youd be suprised, sure Cornfield KS wont be paying anyone four figures a night but the drinks in KS are probably just as costly as they are elsewhere so the veune HAS the money. You just have to realise you have every right to your share as they do to theirs, grow a pair and ask for it.


I agree about opening for another DJ completely. That's exactly what beginners do to build up their name. Your chances of becoming famous on Soundcloud is literally just a touch better than winning a multistate lottery. There are hundreds of thousands of DJ trying on one site. Ergo, you get the $20 BEFORE you get to $50 and you stay there BEFORE you get to $100. If you are better than "no name" and you know you're pulling more people in the club then, again, no worries mate.

The other factor, again, is location. No, there is not a standard, or this thread would have had just one post on it. That little place... in Bumfuk, KS; has an average pay of $8.25/hr and Lou the barber gets $10 cause his been there 30 years. And Dr. Bob, the town's only doctor pulls in $85/hr., he is the richest man in town. The watered down drinks at the only club run no more than $4-5 each (for premium) and usually there is no cover, but sometimes they charge $5 at the door after 11pm. What do you think you are really gonna get paid there, even if the party population in the town love your beats? Hint is here you aren't gonna come close to the doctor's pay, not even close. You will not see nurse money. You would be lucky to have a job DJ'ing.

Part of the problem here is some of you need a course or two in economics or at least business management, because you don't seem to know how the free market operates. You obviously know that there are some real cheap DJs out there, so you think the solution is to tell them to raise their price so that they don't get the job, but you still might. Instead of either getting better and pulling in a bigger crowd, or lowering your own price.

The other part is that some of you are speaking from behind the decks that are in your bedroom or your mom's basement, and not from playing in front of a real crowd. When your good enough to pull people in to drink and otherwise spend money, than you can then start asking for what you really want, because you can take your name with you when you leave.

If your in this for the money, do weddings. You can see how much they pull in in your area by doing a search of local wedding DJ's. Unless your Tiesto, or someone like that, then for sure get your money and your rider and play on.
Tsunamiqu 3:03 AM - 4 September, 2014
Quote:
Quote:
Just playing out somewhere is where you have make a name for yourself, when you draw people on the floor and keep them going to the bar, then you can start setting minimums.

Once you are doing the pulling and can set minimums, unless someone [who can pull as much as you] comes along a lot cheaper, you don't have to worry about your slot ladies and gents. That's just how the free market works.
The only name you will be making for yourself is "The Cheap DJ". Once you start playing for less than standard wages, regardless of your skill level, then you will be labeled as the Cheap DJ. When promoters or managers needs cheap entertainment you will be the one they call. When they know that they need to step it up and get some serious entertainment you will NOT be the one they call. If you don't feel like you have what it takes to get standard wages then you should stay home until you get what it takes.

And please believe that once you build up a crowd coming to your spot then the management and owners will try to figure a way to remove you from the equation.


I hope they get rid of me the way they did Skrillex and Tiesto so I can make bank. If what you are saying made sense, then clubs would not pay to have national headliners come in. They don't remove you, they would reward you. Because if you go, you take your name and YOUR crowd with you.
Tsunamiqu 3:11 AM - 4 September, 2014
Quote:
Soon as you start building the spot and asking for money, boom they find another DJ that will DJ for free like you were willing to before. Don't feed the cycle man, don't play for freakin drink tickets.


If you are as good as you think, it won't matter who is asking for what because "DJ Cheap" doesn't headline like you, he is going for a different spot.

This is just like getting into stand-up comedy folks, you don't start off touring the US your first time up. You start at the bottom and you get bottom pay, or sometimes drinks. If you are funny everyone will know it and the club will ask you back for the middle man slot, where you open for the headliner. Someday hopefully you get to be last up and close the show, until then find work where you can find work. And may the force be with you.
Dj-M.Bezzle 2:59 PM - 4 September, 2014
Quote:

If you are as good as you think, it won't matter who is asking for what because "DJ Cheap" doesn't headline like you, he is going for a different spot.

False, A) if we're still talking about middle of nowhere Kansas, odds are spots are limited and they are all going for the same spots. Even un larger areas there are a ton of great venues manned by play for drink djs due to cheap owners
Dj-M.Bezzle 3:00 PM - 4 September, 2014
Quote:

I hope they get rid of me the way they did Skrillex and Tiesto so I can make bank. If what you are saying made sense, then clubs would not pay to have national headliners come in. They don't remove you, they would reward you. Because if you go, you take your name and YOUR crowd with you.

Skrillex was never a club Dj and they both got famous on production, your argument is invalid.
Dj-M.Bezzle 3:03 PM - 4 September, 2014
Quote:
what you are saying made sense, then clubs would not pay to have national headliners come in. They don't remove you, they would reward you. Because if you go, you take your name and YOUR crowd with you.



Clubs that are hiring play for drink djs are not typically the same clubs booking Skrillex
Dj-M.Bezzle 3:05 PM - 4 September, 2014
Quote:


Your chances of becoming famous on Soundcloud is literally just a touch better than winning a multistate lottery. There are hundreds of thousands of DJ trying on one site. Ergo, you get the $20 BEFORE you get to $50 and you stay there BEFORE you get to $100. If you are better than "no name" and you know you're pulling more people in the club then, again, no worries mate.


Your putting the horse before the carriage. Tje goal of putting mixs on soundcloud is not to get you famous. Its to show off your skills locally so that you build a local following that will warrant you getting paid the right amount for working without hurting yourself and those around you in the process.
Logisticalstyles 3:07 PM - 4 September, 2014
Quote:
Quote:
what you are saying made sense, then clubs would not pay to have national headliners come in. They don't remove you, they would reward you. Because if you go, you take your name and YOUR crowd with you.



Clubs that are hiring play for drink djs are not typically the same clubs booking Skrillex


Exactly.
Dj-M.Bezzle 3:13 PM - 4 September, 2014
Quote:


The other factor, again, is location. No, there is not a standard, or this thread would have had just one post on it. That little place... in Bumfuk, KS; has an average pay of $8.25/hr and Lou the barber gets $10 cause his been there 30 years. And Dr. Bob, the town's only doctor pulls in $85/hr., he is the richest man in town. The watered down drinks at the only club run no more than $4-5 each (for premium) and usually there is no cover, but sometimes they charge $5 at the door after 11pm. What do you think you are really gonna get paid there, even if the party population in the town love your beats? Hint is here you aren't gonna come close to the doctor's pay, not even close. You will not see nurse money. You would be lucky to have a job DJ'ing.


Depends, what is the population of the town, how many people does the venue hold, how much compition does the venue have?

A) if the towns that small, odds are there is no "club" if there is one it prob has little to no compitition, if so lets say the building holds 500 people. The fact that the drinks are watered down means the bar is in fact making more money per pour per drink so add that to the till, so lets say you reach capacity and half of them come after 11, $1200, and all if them have 3 drinks, $7500, $7500 + $1200 = 8700. So almost 10 grand a night and you think they cant afford to pay you $200?
Dj-M.Bezzle 3:16 PM - 4 September, 2014
Quote:

Part of the problem here is some of you need a course or two in economics or at least business management, because you don't seem to know how the free market operates. You obviously know that there are some real cheap DJs out there, so you think the solution is to tell them to raise their price so that they don't get the job, but you still might. Instead of either getting better and pulling in a bigger crowd, or lowering your own price.


Yet your the one with the idea of running a business (because djing is a busniess) with a high operating cost (equipment, music, resources, travel) that operates on a net income of...vodka?
Dj-M.Bezzle 3:19 PM - 4 September, 2014
Quote:

The other part is that some of you are speaking from behind the decks that are in your bedroom or your mom's basement, and not from playing in front of a real crowd. When your good enough to pull people in to drink and otherwise spend money, than you can then start asking for what you really want, because you can take your name with you when you leave.


Im curious to know how many residences you have and at how much per night.

Yes you can take your name when you leave, and that name now has a value of 0 due to you giving it away for free.
Dj-M.Bezzle 3:21 PM - 4 September, 2014
Quote:

If your in this for the money, do weddings. You can see how much they pull in in your area by doing a search of local wedding DJ's. Unless your Tiesto, or someone like that, then for sure get your money and your rider and play on.

If your NOT in this for the money stay the fuck at home and play in your room and at your friends houses.
Dj-M.Bezzle 3:25 PM - 4 September, 2014
Quote:


Part of the problem here is some of you need a course or two in economics or at least business management, because you don't seem to know how the free market operates. You obviously know that there are some real cheap DJs out there, so you think the solution is to tell them to raise their price so that they don't get the job, but you still might. Instead of either getting better and pulling in a bigger crowd, or lowering your own price.


Heres another econ 101 lesson. Perceived value, people will pay more and desire something more if the perceived value is higher. Do jordans make you run faster or jump higher? No. Do they even look better than other shoes? Not always. Yet people pay hundreds of dollars for them when they can get an equivalent shoe from shoe dept for $30. But people think Js are better because they are priced higher.
dj_double_s 6:56 PM - 4 September, 2014
I'm going to pick on bar owners rather than DJs for a bit ...

I've found two types in my residencies over the years ...

One (which was the first residency I held) was a bar owner that knew what they were doing. The DJ (me), was a part of their brand that they projected to the outside world. They were willing to pay for my expertise, and increased the pay as we grew together. Ended at $400/night when they sold the business.

The other (which was a residency that I had before I moved) was an owner that inherited their bar. They wanted something slightly more alive than a jukebox. They were angling for a free or low cost DJ, but eventually talked them into a lucrative split of bar receipts. I do not think they expected a crowd or receipts (or DJ percentage of bar being so large) like they got. They still never saw the DJ as helping their brand, but rather as a commodity.

I believe scenario 1 is rare, and 2 is much more common across the country. Sad but true.
 6 7:00 PM - 4 September, 2014
Quote:
I'm going to pick on bar owners rather than DJs for a bit ...

I've found two types in my residencies over the years ...

One (which was the first residency I held) was a bar owner that knew what they were doing. The DJ (me), was a part of their brand that they projected to the outside world. They were willing to pay for my expertise, and increased the pay as we grew together. Ended at $400/night when they sold the business.

The other (which was a residency that I had before I moved) was an owner that inherited their bar. They wanted something slightly more alive than a jukebox. They were angling for a free or low cost DJ, but eventually talked them into a lucrative split of bar receipts. I do not think they expected a crowd or receipts (or DJ percentage of bar being so large) like they got. They still never saw the DJ as helping their brand, but rather as a commodity.

I believe scenario 1 is rare, and 2 is much more common across the country. Sad but true.


I would agree.

nm
Dj-M.Bezzle 7:54 PM - 4 September, 2014
Quote:
Quote:
I'm going to pick on bar owners rather than DJs for a bit ...

I've found two types in my residencies over the years ...

One (which was the first residency I held) was a bar owner that knew what they were doing. The DJ (me), was a part of their brand that they projected to the outside world. They were willing to pay for my expertise, and increased the pay as we grew together. Ended at $400/night when they sold the business.

The other (which was a residency that I had before I moved) was an owner that inherited their bar. They wanted something slightly more alive than a jukebox. They were angling for a free or low cost DJ, but eventually talked them into a lucrative split of bar receipts. I do not think they expected a crowd or receipts (or DJ percentage of bar being so large) like they got. They still never saw the DJ as helping their brand, but rather as a commodity.

I believe scenario 1 is rare, and 2 is much more common across the country. Sad but true.


I would agree.

nm
Same
Tsunamiqu 8:00 PM - 4 September, 2014
Quote:
Quote:
Part of the problem here is some of you need a course or two in economics or at least business management, because you don't seem to know how the free market operates. You obviously know that there are some real cheap DJs out there, so you think the solution is to tell them to raise their price so that they don't get the job, but you still might. Instead of either getting better and pulling in a bigger crowd, or lowering your own price.



Heres another econ 101 lesson. Perceived value, people will pay more and desire something more if the perceived value is higher. Do jordans make you run faster or jump higher? No. Do they even look better than other shoes? Not always. Yet people pay hundreds of dollars for them when they can get an equivalent shoe from shoe dept for $30. But people think Js are better because they are priced higher.

If your NOT in this for the money stay the fuck at home and play in your room and at your friends houses.


You sound like a well trained consumer of goods, and maybe services too. All you have to do to sell you something is raise the price right? Makes sense, actually perceived value works like this: one buys (at their higher price) a BMW or a pair of Jordans, because of the NAME recognition, not simply because it costs more. If you are still "DJ No Name" than you are also "DJ Cheap." As I have said many times before, make a name for yourself, doing things other, presumably cheaper, people can not or will not do, or take the entry pay like everyone else, or you can go home and play/cry to your walls.

This is just like getting into stand-up comedy folks, you don't start off touring the US your first time up. You start at the bottom and you get bottom pay, or sometimes drinks. If you are funny everyone will know it and the club will ask you back for the middle man slot, where you open for the headliner. Someday hopefully you get to be last up and close the show, until then find work where you can find work.

I'm only talking about Bumfuk in the Bumfuk paragraph, which is a town of only 200-300. A single dancefloor club that hold 500 is pretty fukn big already. Really the club is in a bigger town 12 miles away, where the Dr. lives. And you have to go there for the ONLY club for another 35 miles of state roads, because of fire codes it will hold about a 100 max, it really only sees maybe 70 on a good night.

All you have to do is. at most, come in with a laptop and your controller, or at least a thumb drive (or gig stick). The club does everything else, promotion, lighting, managing the door, serving the drinks, maintaining security, cleaning up after, speakers, liquor, beer, mixers, licenses, inspections, TV's, loads of people behind the scenes, taxes, eclectic, water...etc. You think there gonna have you in 6-8 times a month a $200 a night so they can pay off your equipment for you in a month and a half to two months? Grow up and quit dreaming!

200 a night is at least 50/hr unless you just play only 2 hrs. My 11 y/o niece can DJ with the best of the 15 boys, who can DJ almost as good as most you, judging from the infantile arguments, and counter arguments, being put forward, plus the total lack of logistical considerations, about who hires whom and how much money is reserved for entertainment. I'm not gonna pay you $50/hr to do what an 11 y/o girl can do, just because you think you are special. In fact I bet she would actually draw a bigger crowd.

A lot of you are acting like you are doing the club some kind of favor by gracing them with your showing up, for most of you there really doing you the favor, bc there are 100 other squirts out there that want in, ergo cheap labor.

However, if you play a wedding with 500 guests, you would be looking at $2,500-5,000 on the low end for most cities with over 100k population, just starting out. With only a gig or two under your belt. So again, if you in it for the money go where the monies are. It also happens to be a good way to make a name for your self before asking for a nice first club gig.

Don't get me wrong, if you can hustle your way to the top right of the gates by convincing the promoter that you really a pair of Jordans, and not a pair of Jordash, then by all means do what you do playa.
Tsunamiqu 8:04 PM - 4 September, 2014
Quote:
Quote:
what you are saying made sense, then clubs would not pay to have national headliners come in. They don't remove you, they would reward you. Because if you go, you take your name and YOUR crowd with you.



Clubs that are hiring play for drink djs are not typically the same clubs booking Skrillex


The quote of mine you selected does not contain Skrillex chum.
Tsunamiqu 8:07 PM - 4 September, 2014
Quote:
Quote:
I'm going to pick on bar owners rather than DJs for a bit ...

I've found two types in my residencies over the years ...

One (which was the first residency I held) was a bar owner that knew what they were doing. The DJ (me), was a part of their brand that they projected to the outside world. They were willing to pay for my expertise, and increased the pay as we grew together. Ended at $400/night when they sold the business.

The other (which was a residency that I had before I moved) was an owner that inherited their bar. They wanted something slightly more alive than a jukebox. They were angling for a free or low cost DJ, but eventually talked them into a lucrative split of bar receipts. I do not think they expected a crowd or receipts (or DJ percentage of bar being so large) like they got. They still never saw the DJ as helping their brand, but rather as a commodity.

I believe scenario 1 is rare, and 2 is much more common across the country. Sad but true.


I would agree.

nm


I'm confused about the first scenario, you were part of their brand but you were not sold as a package deal? I do love a good mystery.
 6 8:09 PM - 4 September, 2014
It's not a mystery that a new owner would want to save money wherever he could.

Just a guess though.

nm
Tsunamiqu 8:13 PM - 4 September, 2014
Quote:
It's not a mystery that a new owner would want to save money wherever he could.

Just a guess though.

nm


But the old owner would just throw the money at the DJ (that was part of the brand)?
 6 8:15 PM - 4 September, 2014
Quote:
Quote:
It's not a mystery that a new owner would want to save money wherever he could.

Just a guess though.

nm


But the old owner would just throw the money at the DJ (that was part of the brand)?


What I understand from what he wrote is that they grew the brand together and he got paid more as the business expanded.

But I have seen new owners come and start cutting costs.

nm
dj_double_s 8:25 PM - 4 September, 2014
My scenario was a little different. New owner had another bar that used lowest bidder DJs. Changed name of bar, brought his DJ and bartender friends who he was comfortable with.

He didn't really care about old brand, felt he had his own branding. Had this conversation with him, said "whatever dude".

I had an 11 year run before it was sold. Felt fortunate at any rate!
dj_double_s 8:29 PM - 4 September, 2014
Quote:
What I understand from what he wrote is that they grew the brand together and he got paid more as the business expanded.


^^^this
Dj-M.Bezzle 8:42 PM - 4 September, 2014
Quote:
Quote:
Quote:
what you are saying made sense, then clubs would not pay to have national headliners come in. They don't remove you, they would reward you. Because if you go, you take your name and YOUR crowd with you.



Clubs that are hiring play for drink djs are not typically the same clubs booking Skrillex


The quote of mine you selected does not contain Skrillex chum.


Fine, Ill fix it

Clubs that are hiring play for drink djs are not typically the same clubs booking national headliners

Did that change anything?
Dj-M.Bezzle 8:48 PM - 4 September, 2014
Quote:

You sound like a well trained consumer of goods, and maybe services too. All you have to do to sell you something is raise the price right? Makes sense, actually perceived value works like this: one buys (at their higher price) a BMW or a pair of Jordans, because of the NAME recognition, not simply because it costs more. If you are still "DJ No Name" than you are also "DJ Cheap." As I have said many times before, make a name for yourself, doing things other, presumably cheaper, people can not or will not do, or take the entry pay like everyone else, or you can go home and play/cry to your walls.
.


Do you still think people would be lining up to buy Jordans if they cost $10 or would yuppy busniess guys still be driving BMWs if they cost less than a Kia?

And yes, name recognition is important, which is why you should never brand yourself as DJ Cheap because Dj Cheap will never get paid well in the future.
Dj-M.Bezzle 8:50 PM - 4 September, 2014
Quote:


I'm only talking about Bumfuk in the Bumfuk paragraph, which is a town of only 200-300. A single dancefloor club that hold 500 is pretty fukn big already. Really the club is in a bigger town 12 miles away, where the Dr. lives. And you have to go there for the ONLY club for another 35 miles of state roads, because of fire codes it will hold about a 100 max, it really only sees maybe 70 on a good night.


You literally just described the area I live in and im making $400 a night....your argument is invalid.
Dj-M.Bezzle 8:53 PM - 4 September, 2014
Quote:

You think there gonna have you in 6-8 times a month a $200 a night so they can pay off your equipment for you in a month and a half to two months? Grow up and quit dreaming!

Yes, you are providing them a service, services are meant to be paid for....do you think the door person, security guards, alchohol companys, venue owner (most venues are rented or leased), the bank who issued the loan ect ect are getting paid? Their equipment is being funded through service, why shouldnt yours.
Dj-M.Bezzle 8:55 PM - 4 September, 2014
Quote:

I'm not gonna pay you $50/hr to do what an 11 y/o girl can do, just because you think you are special. In fact I bet she would actually draw a bigger crowd.


Mabye thats a reason your not in the position to do such anyway.
Dj-M.Bezzle 8:57 PM - 4 September, 2014
Quote:

200 a night is at least 50/hr unless you just play only 2 hrs.


Until you factor in the time it takes to setup equipment, time to and from the gig, time spent searching for and organising music, making edits, practicing, ect ect ect
Dj-M.Bezzle 8:59 PM - 4 September, 2014
Quote:
Quote:
Quote:
I'm going to pick on bar owners rather than DJs for a bit ...

I've found two types in my residencies over the years ...

One (which was the first residency I held) was a bar owner that knew what they were doing. The DJ (me), was a part of their brand that they projected to the outside world. They were willing to pay for my expertise, and increased the pay as we grew together. Ended at $400/night when they sold the business.

The other (which was a residency that I had before I moved) was an owner that inherited their bar. They wanted something slightly more alive than a jukebox. They were angling for a free or low cost DJ, but eventually talked them into a lucrative split of bar receipts. I do not think they expected a crowd or receipts (or DJ percentage of bar being so large) like they got. They still never saw the DJ as helping their brand, but rather as a commodity.

I believe scenario 1 is rare, and 2 is much more common across the country. Sad but true.


I would agree.

nm


I'm confused about the first scenario, you were part of their brand but you were not sold as a package deal? I do love a good mystery.

Typically when people buy a bar, its not to continue the same brand as the bar before it. Usually theres a name change, cosmetic changed, rebranding ect
Dj-M.Bezzle 9:03 PM - 4 September, 2014
Quote:

This is just like getting into stand-up comedy folks, you don't start off touring the US your first time up. You start at the bottom and you get bottom pay, or sometimes drinks. If you are funny everyone will know it and the club will ask you back for the middle man slot, where you open for the headliner. Someday hopefully you get to be last up and close the show, until then find work where you can find work.


When you get into standup you start off on open mics, you dont go talk to the owner and say youll headline for free for a spot. Also theres a difference between stand up and djing because people understand comedy, they know if someones funny yet a bad dj can still play music people like. Also with standup the entire night is NOT centered around just you AND by doing an open mic your not taking the spot from someone who should be getting paid.
Dj-M.Bezzle 9:05 PM - 4 September, 2014
Quote:
Quote:
Quote:
Part of the problem here is some of you need a course or two in economics or at least business management, because you don't seem to know how the free market operates. You obviously know that there are some real cheap DJs out there, so you think the solution is to tell them to raise their price so that they don't get the job, but you still might. Instead of either getting better and pulling in a bigger crowd, or lowering your own price.



Heres another econ 101 lesson. Perceived value, people will pay more and desire something more if the perceived value is higher. Do jordans make you run faster or jump higher? No. Do they even look better than other shoes? Not always. Yet people pay hundreds of dollars for them when they can get an equivalent shoe from shoe dept for $30. But people think Js are better because they are priced higher.

If your NOT in this for the money stay the fuck at home and play in your room and at your friends houses.


You sound like a well trained consumer of goods, and maybe services too. All you have to do to sell you something is raise the price right? Makes sense, actually perceived value works like this: one buys (at their higher price) a BMW or a pair of Jordans, because of the NAME recognition, not simply because it costs more. If you are still "DJ No Name" than you are also "DJ Cheap." As I have said many times before, make a name for yourself, doing things other, presumably cheaper, people can not or will not do, or take the entry pay like everyone else, or you can go home and play/cry to your walls.

This is just like getting into stand-up comedy folks, you don't start off touring the US your first time up. You start at the bottom and you get bottom pay, or sometimes drinks. If you are funny everyone will know it and the club will ask you back for the middle man slot, where you open for the headliner. Someday hopefully you get to be last up and close the show, until then find work where you can find work.

I'm only talking about Bumfuk in the Bumfuk paragraph, which is a town of only 200-300. A single dancefloor club that hold 500 is pretty fukn big already. Really the club is in a bigger town 12 miles away, where the Dr. lives. And you have to go there for the ONLY club for another 35 miles of state roads, because of fire codes it will hold about a 100 max, it really only sees maybe 70 on a good night.

All you have to do is. at most, come in with a laptop and your controller, or at least a thumb drive (or gig stick). The club does everything else, promotion, lighting, managing the door, serving the drinks, maintaining security, cleaning up after, speakers, liquor, beer, mixers, licenses, inspections, TV's, loads of people behind the scenes, taxes, eclectic, water...etc. You think there gonna have you in 6-8 times a month a $200 a night so they can pay off your equipment for you in a month and a half to two months? Grow up and quit dreaming!

200 a night is at least 50/hr unless you just play only 2 hrs. My 11 y/o niece can DJ with the best of the 15 boys, who can DJ almost as good as most you, judging from the infantile arguments, and counter arguments, being put forward, plus the total lack of logistical considerations, about who hires whom and how much money is reserved for entertainment. I'm not gonna pay you $50/hr to do what an 11 y/o girl can do, just because you think you are special. In fact I bet she would actually draw a bigger crowd.

A lot of you are acting like you are doing the club some kind of favor by gracing them with your showing up, for most of you there really doing you the favor, bc there are 100 other squirts out there that want in, ergo cheap labor.

However, if you play a wedding with 500 guests, you would be looking at $2,500-5,000 on the low end for most cities with over 100k population, just starting out. With only a gig or two under your belt. So again, if you in it for the money go where the monies are. It also happens to be a good way to make a name for your self before asking for a nice first club gig.

Don't get me wrong, if you can hustle your way to the top right of the gates by convincing the promoter that you really a pair of Jordans, and not a pair of Jordash, then by all means do what you do playa.



Im still waiting to hear how long your longest residency was, how much you were making, how long youve been at this ect ect
Tsunamiqu 5:24 AM - 5 September, 2014
Been at it since 2000ish, starting playing raves in the woods in the summer of 2001 for free as was the way it was done. Plus a few house parties here and there. Its about the music and culture, but I digress. Had a British DJ, tutor me, till the end of 2002. Won my first competition in 2003, which got me a regular gig twice a month for about a year @ $100 for 3 hours sets. All I had to bring was my records and needles (and their cartridges). Then got my first weekly gig the fall or winter of 2004 starting at around $150 for 2 hours and ending @ $225 for 2 hours. Lasted till I moved in 2006. Family issues. Spun, back then, under the names DJ Cumba, and DJ Blackfoot, respectively.

What is your story? I can not find it so please just cut n paste it.
Tsunamiqu 7:37 AM - 5 September, 2014
Quote:
Quote:
It's realy nice to read, that somewhere is a place wher Dj's are well paid . I'm from Poland. It's normal to get 200-500 for night, but in zł (+/- 50-125 $). In capital 300 $ and only the best dj's in the best's club's.

I had to borrow money for my first equipment and play 3 night/week (2 months), to pay off. But that was worth of it. I always loved this feeling when I see full dancefloor.

Sorry for mistakes ;)
$500 is pretty good money.



I think he said 200-500 Polish dollars only $125 USD, but hey, who's counting?
DJ VEE 1:38 PM - 6 September, 2014
Just my 0.02 cents on the matter of your equipment getting paid off...
Here's my point of view. DJ ing at a club where some of the stuff is provided or doing mobile work where you bring everything is still a buisness. You have a certain skill, invest time and money and provide a service. Said bar owner requires the service you can provide. He hires you for the agreed amount. The equipment required for that service is an expense on your part required to operate the buisness and provide the service. They are tools of the trade. The cost of purchase, maintenance and upgrade is always factored in to your price. That equipment not only has to be paid off, but it must also make you a profit and eventually contribute to te upgrading portion once it is no longer dependable. You can't run a successful buisness with shity equipment that is band aided together. So, I would say that it is not unreasonable to expect a wage for a service that I can provide and the customer requires which would pay off the equipment in approximately 2-3 months with a steady residency at a local bar, obviously this will depend on what equipment you are providing .
If we say for example $300 a night, one night a week. That's $1200 a month , $14,400 a year. You might not be there every weekend due to whatever, so let's say $12,000 a year.
Say you show up with a Rane 64, two 1200's, a MacBook Pro, carts and needles, miscellaneous items like hard drives and your subscription to record pools and other music purchases etc. those are all expenses on your end required to operate the buisness. About half of your income will go toward spying that off.
Those may be the tools you choose to use, or you may choose other ones such as a controler, or CDJ or whatever. As long as you are on point and providing a good service that you are contracted to provide. Not really the bar owners problem, but yours. You know what your profit is going to be. The time it takes you to prepare, practice, organize music and get to the gig is not his concern. You will do the job promised for said cost. If you are doing all of that to break even, you're doing it wrong. Any buisness that plans to be around for a while operates with just enough income to keel the doors open, including the bar owner, ( that may be the case, but that's because he does not know what he is doing). I have never heard of someone opening a bar and saying "let's run this place at just enough to cover the cost and not worry about a profit."
So, I guess I'm reffering to the statement that the bar is going to "pay off your equipment". No, he is hiring a service. How that service divides and allocates that money is none of his concern. His concern is to decide whether he is getting the desired results from spending the money for that service. If he feels he can get better service for a cheaper price, then go for it. I don't think it's right for him to like the service but hold a grudge and low ball the price because "he's not going to pay off your equipment". Dealing with people like that will not end up good, they feel that they are the only ones entitled to make money. They think everyone is out to rip them off and no one worked as hard as them to get where they are. What do you think his response would be if you told him the drink prices are too high?
If we say an average of $5 a drink which contains 1-1 1/2 oz. How many drinks sold until he pays off the bottle? Not many. Factor in the expenses such as staff, licensing and operating costs and he feels justified in whatever he is charging because he is providing you with a venue, an atmosphere and entertainment for the evening where you can go and socialize, drown your sorrows or whatever.
On top of that, he may charge a cover, to pay for the entertainment. So, that's not being deducted out of the $5 drink, it washes out. So it's not coming out of his pocket. A $10 cover charge with 50 people showing up more than covers the DJ and probably door man.
It just seems to me that lately, opinions seem to be that the bar owner is expected to make profits, but the DJ (or entertainment), which should draw the people in and keep them there should be happy to be there at cost.
When you order a drink at the bar, would it be acceptable for you to say, "it only costs you $3 out of this drink to operate this place (just a number), I'm not paying for that BMW that you have parked outside!"
Just my opinion, kinda based on 20 yrs in the contracting buisness. Was meant to be a short and sweet post. Sorry for rambling on.
DJ VEE 1:41 PM - 6 September, 2014
^oooops
Dj-M.Bezzle 4:39 PM - 6 September, 2014
Quote:
Just my 0.02 cents on the matter of your equipment getting paid off...
Here's my point of view. DJ ing at a club where some of the stuff is provided or doing mobile work where you bring everything is still a buisness. You have a certain skill, invest time and money and provide a service. Said bar owner requires the service you can provide. He hires you for the agreed amount. The equipment required for that service is an expense on your part required to operate the buisness and provide the service. They are tools of the trade. The cost of purchase, maintenance and upgrade is always factored in to your price. That equipment not only has to be paid off, but it must also make you a profit and eventually contribute to te upgrading portion once it is no longer dependable. You can't run a successful buisness with shity equipment that is band aided together. So, I would say that it is not unreasonable to expect a wage for a service that I can provide and the customer requires which would pay off the equipment in approximately 2-3 months with a steady residency at a local bar, obviously this will depend on what equipment you are providing .
If we say for example $300 a night, one night a week. That's $1200 a month , $14,400 a year. You might not be there every weekend due to whatever, so let's say $12,000 a year.
Say you show up with a Rane 64, two 1200's, a MacBook Pro, carts and needles, miscellaneous items like hard drives and your subscription to record pools and other music purchases etc. those are all expenses on your end required to operate the buisness. About half of your income will go toward spying that off.
Those may be the tools you choose to use, or you may choose other ones such as a controler, or CDJ or whatever. As long as you are on point and providing a good service that you are contracted to provide. Not really the bar owners problem, but yours. You know what your profit is going to be. The time it takes you to prepare, practice, organize music and get to the gig is not his concern. You will do the job promised for said cost. If you are doing all of that to break even, you're doing it wrong. Any buisness that plans to be around for a while operates with just enough income to keel the doors open, including the bar owner, ( that may be the case, but that's because he does not know what he is doing). I have never heard of someone opening a bar and saying "let's run this place at just enough to cover the cost and not worry about a profit."
So, I guess I'm reffering to the statement that the bar is going to "pay off your equipment". No, he is hiring a service. How that service divides and allocates that money is none of his concern. His concern is to decide whether he is getting the desired results from spending the money for that service. If he feels he can get better service for a cheaper price, then go for it. I don't think it's right for him to like the service but hold a grudge and low ball the price because "he's not going to pay off your equipment". Dealing with people like that will not end up good, they feel that they are the only ones entitled to make money. They think everyone is out to rip them off and no one worked as hard as them to get where they are. What do you think his response would be if you told him the drink prices are too high?
If we say an average of $5 a drink which contains 1-1 1/2 oz. How many drinks sold until he pays off the bottle? Not many. Factor in the expenses such as staff, licensing and operating costs and he feels justified in whatever he is charging because he is providing you with a venue, an atmosphere and entertainment for the evening where you can go and socialize, drown your sorrows or whatever.
On top of that, he may charge a cover, to pay for the entertainment. So, that's not being deducted out of the $5 drink, it washes out. So it's not coming out of his pocket. A $10 cover charge with 50 people showing up more than covers the DJ and probably door man.
It just seems to me that lately, opinions seem to be that the bar owner is expected to make profits, but the DJ (or entertainment), which should draw the people in and keep them there should be happy to be there at cost.
When you order a drink at the bar, would it be acceptable for you to say, "it only costs you $3 out of this drink to operate this place (just a number), I'm not paying for that BMW that you have parked outside!"
Just my opinion, kinda based on 20 yrs in the contracting buisness. Was meant to be a short and sweet post. Sorry for rambling on.

yup, exactlly
dj_double_s 5:06 PM - 6 September, 2014
Quote:
Quote:
Just my 0.02 cents on the matter of your equipment getting paid off...
Here's my point of view. DJ ing at a club where some of the stuff is provided or doing mobile work where you bring everything is still a buisness. You have a certain skill, invest time and money and provide a service. Said bar owner requires the service you can provide. He hires you for the agreed amount. The equipment required for that service is an expense on your part required to operate the buisness and provide the service. They are tools of the trade. The cost of purchase, maintenance and upgrade is always factored in to your price. That equipment not only has to be paid off, but it must also make you a profit and eventually contribute to te upgrading portion once it is no longer dependable. You can't run a successful buisness with shity equipment that is band aided together. So, I would say that it is not unreasonable to expect a wage for a service that I can provide and the customer requires which would pay off the equipment in approximately 2-3 months with a steady residency at a local bar, obviously this will depend on what equipment you are providing .
If we say for example $300 a night, one night a week. That's $1200 a month , $14,400 a year. You might not be there every weekend due to whatever, so let's say $12,000 a year.
Say you show up with a Rane 64, two 1200's, a MacBook Pro, carts and needles, miscellaneous items like hard drives and your subscription to record pools and other music purchases etc. those are all expenses on your end required to operate the buisness. About half of your income will go toward spying that off.
Those may be the tools you choose to use, or you may choose other ones such as a controler, or CDJ or whatever. As long as you are on point and providing a good service that you are contracted to provide. Not really the bar owners problem, but yours. You know what your profit is going to be. The time it takes you to prepare, practice, organize music and get to the gig is not his concern. You will do the job promised for said cost. If you are doing all of that to break even, you're doing it wrong. Any buisness that plans to be around for a while operates with just enough income to keel the doors open, including the bar owner, ( that may be the case, but that's because he does not know what he is doing). I have never heard of someone opening a bar and saying "let's run this place at just enough to cover the cost and not worry about a profit."
So, I guess I'm reffering to the statement that the bar is going to "pay off your equipment". No, he is hiring a service. How that service divides and allocates that money is none of his concern. His concern is to decide whether he is getting the desired results from spending the money for that service. If he feels he can get better service for a cheaper price, then go for it. I don't think it's right for him to like the service but hold a grudge and low ball the price because "he's not going to pay off your equipment". Dealing with people like that will not end up good, they feel that they are the only ones entitled to make money. They think everyone is out to rip them off and no one worked as hard as them to get where they are. What do you think his response would be if you told him the drink prices are too high?
If we say an average of $5 a drink which contains 1-1 1/2 oz. How many drinks sold until he pays off the bottle? Not many. Factor in the expenses such as staff, licensing and operating costs and he feels justified in whatever he is charging because he is providing you with a venue, an atmosphere and entertainment for the evening where you can go and socialize, drown your sorrows or whatever.
On top of that, he may charge a cover, to pay for the entertainment. So, that's not being deducted out of the $5 drink, it washes out. So it's not coming out of his pocket. A $10 cover charge with 50 people showing up more than covers the DJ and probably door man.
It just seems to me that lately, opinions seem to be that the bar owner is expected to make profits, but the DJ (or entertainment), which should draw the people in and keep them there should be happy to be there at cost.
When you order a drink at the bar, would it be acceptable for you to say, "it only costs you $3 out of this drink to operate this place (just a number), I'm not paying for that BMW that you have parked outside!"
Just my opinion, kinda based on 20 yrs in the contracting buisness. Was meant to be a short and sweet post. Sorry for rambling on.

yup, exactlly


Yep, right on point. What I don't understand is DJs that are willing to essentially eat the cost of this expensive equipment (and their time) and play for free/drink tickets/$20 hour. Just doesn't make sense as a business.

Costco pays 15-20/hour, but you don't have to bring your own forklift (or own one to practice on at home).
DJ VEE 5:44 PM - 6 September, 2014
Yep, right on point. What I don't understand is DJs that are willing to essentially eat the cost of this expensive equipment (and their time) and play for free/drink tickets/$20 hour. Just doesn't make sense as a business

The reasons are many, I'm sure. I think the biggest one is that there is no confidence in themselves and the abilities that they are able to bring to the table. They are convinced that they are Lucy to get that and the more expensive DJ is even luckier.
They don't have a clue as to the basics of how to operate a buisness. Not even the basics. They are convinced that nobody makes money any more, they just do it to get by and that's just the way it is.
 6 5:58 PM - 6 September, 2014
Quote:
Yep, right on point. What I don't understand is DJs that are willing to essentially eat the cost of this expensive equipment (and their time) and play for free/drink tickets/$20 hour. Just doesn't make sense as a business

The reasons are many, I'm sure. I think the biggest one is that there is no confidence in themselves and the abilities that they are able to bring to the table. They are convinced that they are Lucy to get that and the more expensive DJ is even luckier.
They don't have a clue as to the basics of how to operate a buisness. Not even the basics. They are convinced that nobody makes money any more, they just do it to get by and that's just the way it is.


It's simple. It's not a business to them. It's social hour. They're probably using it to get pussy. Sad but true.

nm
dj_double_s 6:10 PM - 6 September, 2014
Quote:
Quote:
Yep, right on point. What I don't understand is DJs that are willing to essentially eat the cost of this expensive equipment (and their time) and play for free/drink tickets/$20 hour. Just doesn't make sense as a business

The reasons are many, I'm sure. I think the biggest one is that there is no confidence in themselves and the abilities that they are able to bring to the table. They are convinced that they are Lucy to get that and the more expensive DJ is even luckier.
They don't have a clue as to the basics of how to operate a buisness. Not even the basics. They are convinced that nobody makes money any more, they just do it to get by and that's just the way it is.


It's simple. It's not a business to them. It's social hour. They're probably using it to get pussy. Sad but true.

nm


So 5 grand (minimum) on equipment to get pussy? Smh!
Tsunamiqu 7:32 PM - 6 September, 2014
They probably have at least $10k-20k in just lighting equipment per dance floor (if the club has multiple rooms). Their risk is exponentially higher than yours so.... so is the potential profit. If you want club owner money open a club, they are a business complete with city and state licensing fees and taxes, which your pool subscription fees can not even touch.

It seems to me, to get the kinda pay we all want, even though all may not deserve, is to start a national/international DJ union. I know of associations, but never heard of a union. Then we can start talking about min standard pay. But until then, it is the free market all the way.

Sad, but true, when it works like it is supposed to (with little influence from 3rd parties) then it is by far the best kind of market in the world.
dj_double_s 7:52 PM - 6 September, 2014
I'm all for free market, but if it worked perfectly for DJs, the bars that get volunteer or cut rate DJs would go under.

Unfortunately, music is just one part of a bar.
 6 8:13 PM - 6 September, 2014
Quote:
Quote:
Quote:
Yep, right on point. What I don't understand is DJs that are willing to essentially eat the cost of this expensive equipment (and their time) and play for free/drink tickets/$20 hour. Just doesn't make sense as a business

The reasons are many, I'm sure. I think the biggest one is that there is no confidence in themselves and the abilities that they are able to bring to the table. They are convinced that they are Lucy to get that and the more expensive DJ is even luckier.
They don't have a clue as to the basics of how to operate a buisness. Not even the basics. They are convinced that nobody makes money any more, they just do it to get by and that's just the way it is.


It's simple. It's not a business to them. It's social hour. They're probably using it to get pussy. Sad but true.

nm


So 5 grand (minimum) on equipment to get pussy? Smh!


Nah. You can play at a club with less than 500 bucks.

nm
dj_double_s 8:48 PM - 6 September, 2014
Quote:
Quote:
Quote:
Quote:
Yep, right on point. What I don't understand is DJs that are willing to essentially eat the cost of this expensive equipment (and their time) and play for free/drink tickets/$20 hour. Just doesn't make sense as a business

The reasons are many, I'm sure. I think the biggest one is that there is no confidence in themselves and the abilities that they are able to bring to the table. They are convinced that they are Lucy to get that and the more expensive DJ is even luckier.
They don't have a clue as to the basics of how to operate a buisness. Not even the basics. They are convinced that nobody makes money any more, they just do it to get by and that's just the way it is.


It's simple. It's not a business to them. It's social hour. They're probably using it to get pussy. Sad but true.

nm


So 5 grand (minimum) on equipment to get pussy? Smh!


Nah. You can play at a club with less than 500 bucks.

nm


Think I phrased that last one badly.

I meant becoming a DJ usually entails dropping 5 grand on equipment. So these cats do that, play for drink tickets and the promise of pussy?

There has to be easier/cheaper ways to get laid!
DJ VEE 12:04 AM - 7 September, 2014
Quote:
Quote:
Quote:
Yep, right on point. What I don't understand is DJs that are willing to essentially eat the cost of this expensive equipment (and their time) and play for free/drink tickets/$20 hour. Just doesn't make sense as a business

The reasons are many, I'm sure. I think the biggest one is that there is no confidence in themselves and the abilities that they are able to bring to the table. They are convinced that they are Lucy to get that and the more expensive DJ is even luckier.
They don't have a clue as to the basics of how to operate a buisness. Not even the basics. They are convinced that nobody makes money any more, they just do it to get by and that's just the way it is.


It's simple. It's not a business to them. It's social hour. They're probably using it to get pussy. Sad but true.

nm


So 5 grand (minimum) on equipment to get pussy? Smh!



It will cost even more to marry it, lol.
Quote:
Quote:
Quote:
Quote:
Quote:
Yep, right on point. What I don't understand is DJs that are willing to essentially eat the cost of this expensive equipment (and their time) and play for free/drink tickets/$20 hour. Just doesn't make sense as a business

The reasons are many, I'm sure. I think the biggest one is that there is no confidence in themselves and the abilities that they are able to bring to the table. They are convinced that they are Lucy to get that and the more expensive DJ is even luckier.
They don't have a clue as to the basics of how to operate a buisness. Not even the basics. They are convinced that nobody makes money any more, they just do it to get by and that's just the way it is.


It's simple. It's not a business to them. It's social hour. They're probably using it to get pussy. Sad but true.

nm


So 5 grand (minimum) on equipment to get pussy? Smh!


Nah. You can play at a club with less than 500 bucks.

nm


Think I phrased that last one badly.

I meant becoming a DJ usually entails dropping 5 grand on equipment. So these cats do that, play for drink tickets and the promise of pussy?

There has to be easier/cheaper ways to get laid!


Yup. There is. Go downtown and rent it.
Tsunamiqu 1:11 AM - 7 September, 2014
I think $5000 is a little on the high side, these days, unless you also mean music purchase costs. Or unless your doing top of the line CDJs and a good Mixer. $5-6k ought to get you two Pioneer CDJ Nexus 2000's and a pretty great mixer. But, if you having to haul and hook up all that, then you should get a fatter check. But, even the crappier clubs that I have been in have at least the Nexus 900's now and at least a DJM 850 or 900's. In which case, you only need a couple of thumb drives, or gig sticks.

If your going the, more popular, controller way, than you are looking at max of $800-1100 for the controller and at least $700-800 on a decent laptop (unless you have to have an Apple). The software will usually come packaged with the controller so your looking at around $1,500-2,000 for equipment that you have to bring to the club. That should get a few months worth of strange. If your just starting out you should expect to have it paid off in 2-4 months of semi regular gig'n, most will take longer, some will take less.

Or you could get that back doing a wedding or two.

And if you make enough DJ'ing to pay all of your bills than my hat goes off to you, that means you're a real pro, and you are living the dream lol. Unless you are living with parents still, cause that just don't count.
Tsunamiqu 1:24 AM - 7 September, 2014
Quote:
I'm all for free market, but if it worked perfectly for DJs, the bars that get volunteer or cut rate DJs would go under.

Unfortunately, music is just one part of a bar.


If their is no union to set market minimums than its just between you and whom ever represents the venue. In this case the best DJ's will headline and close the night and get the best, while the lesser know artists will get opening slots and get lesser pay. This economic method should give the better known, and supposedly better DJ the best slots.

Unfortunately, I'm dealing with a club were the promoter thinks he is a headliner too, but he kills the dance floor every time he plays. I don't mean 'kills' in the good way either. He gives himself the headliner slot to make a name for himself, but since he is, shall we say, lacking the necessary skills/experience he is only bringing the club and himself down.

It's where I really wanna spin but word got back to him that I don't think he should be there, before I knew he was the manager/promoter. So I may be stuck going somewhere else, until someone catches this hack.
Tsunamiqu 1:35 AM - 7 September, 2014
FYI I don't advocate playing for drinks for weeks on end, you should be able to make the right impression in a set or two and work it up from there, usually jumping up to at least $20-30/hr for a few more weeks should be a good place to start, but this all depends on the factors I previously addressed: skill, name recognition, location, and sophistication level and size of the venue. And if you are looking to switch clubs, ask the new promoter to drop in on your current set so you can skip past the lower pay levels of negotiations.

Peace
Dj-M.Bezzle 5:57 PM - 7 September, 2014
Quote:
They probably have at least $10k-20k in just lighting equipment per dance floor (if the club has multiple rooms). Their risk is exponentially higher than yours so.... so is the potential profit. If you want club owner money open a club.



I dont think $200 a night is exactly club owner money. Sure their investment and risk is higher but so is their pay.
dj_double_s 6:53 PM - 7 September, 2014
Quote:
I think $5000 is a little on the high side, these days, unless you also mean music purchase costs. Or unless your doing top of the line CDJs and a good Mixer. $5-6k ought to get you two Pioneer CDJ Nexus 2000's and a pretty great mixer. But, if you having to haul and hook up all that, then you should get a fatter check. But, even the crappier clubs that I have been in have at least the Nexus 900's now and at least a DJM 850 or 900's. In which case, you only need a couple of thumb drives, or gig sticks.

If your going the, more popular, controller way, than you are looking at max of $800-1100 for the controller and at least $700-800 on a decent laptop (unless you have to have an Apple). The software will usually come packaged with the controller so your looking at around $1,500-2,000 for equipment that you have to bring to the club. .


I was looking at things this way:
Decent MacBook Pro - $1,299
****
Decent Rane Mixer - $1,299
2 decks - $699 (pio plx-1000) or $899 x 2 CDJ 850 = min $1,300
or minimally decent controller maybe ddj-sx $1,000
***
decent headphones $200
***
music investment, minimally $100/month

So even controller route, by far the cheaper is > $3,500.
dj_double_s 6:56 PM - 7 September, 2014
Quote:
FYI I don't advocate playing for drinks for weeks on end, you should be able to make the right impression in a set or two and work it up from there ...
Peace


My comments were more geared towards cats that are doing residencies at these rates (and there's a ton of them in LA).

Even if they drove all of us out of business by undercutting and giving away their time, good luck to them when they eventually want to get paid what they're worth.
Tsunamiqu 11:07 PM - 7 September, 2014
Quote:
Quote:
They probably have at least $10k-20k in just lighting equipment per dance floor (if the club has multiple rooms). Their risk is exponentially higher than yours so.... so is the potential profit. If you want club owner money open a club.



I dont think $200 a night is exactly club owner money. Sure their investment and risk is higher but so is their pay.


That is what I said.
Tsunamiqu 11:18 PM - 7 September, 2014
Quote:
Quote:
FYI I don't advocate playing for drinks for weeks on end, you should be able to make the right impression in a set or two and work it up from there ...
Peace


My comments were more geared towards cats that are doing residencies at these rates (and there's a ton of them in LA).

Even if they drove all of us out of business by undercutting and giving away their time, good luck to them when they eventually want to get paid what they're worth.



You would think actors and other musicians would get paid for an audition, but they don't even get drinks, so consider that a plus. That's what an hour set would be when no one has heard of you, an audition.

LA is expensive, the cost of living there is through the roof, so like I said about location being a huge factor, you would expect cats in LA are getting lots of money. But, if you live there or near there your bills are equally higher, so its all relative. I may only get $200-250 a night but my mortgage payment is less than $350 a month so I'm doing pretty well. There is no standard in which to stick, unless we form a union, so telling cats they are wrong for taking less than you in LA, is kinda a moot point.
Tsunamiqu 11:27 PM - 7 September, 2014
Quote:
Quote:
I think $5000 is a little on the high side, these days, unless you also mean music purchase costs. Or unless your doing top of the line CDJs and a good Mixer. $5-6k ought to get you two Pioneer CDJ Nexus 2000's and a pretty great mixer. But, if you having to haul and hook up all that, then you should get a fatter check. But, even the crappier clubs that I have been in have at least the Nexus 900's now and at least a DJM 850 or 900's. In which case, you only need a couple of thumb drives, or gig sticks.

If your going the, more popular, controller way, than you are looking at max of $800-1100 for the controller and at least $700-800 on a decent laptop (unless you have to have an Apple). The software will usually come packaged with the controller so your looking at around $1,500-2,000 for equipment that you have to bring to the club. .


I was looking at things this way:
Decent MacBook Pro - $1,299
****
Decent Rane Mixer - $1,299
2 decks - $699 (pio plx-1000) or $899 x 2 CDJ 850 = min $1,300
or minimally decent controller maybe ddj-sx $1,000
***
decent headphones $200
***
music investment, minimally $100/month

So even controller route, by far the cheaper is > $3,500.



True, and I did forget to add in headphones. I wasn't counting music costs either. So when you do that with a Mac, $3,500 is a better estimation. Still not in the $5k range though.
dj_double_s 11:34 PM - 7 September, 2014
Quote:


True, and I did forget to add in headphones. I wasn't counting music costs either. So when you do that with a Mac, $3,500 is a better estimation. Still not in the $5k range though.


My original scenario was based on a high end mixer and two decks. The controller lowers the cost a lot.
dj_double_s 11:40 PM - 7 September, 2014
Oh, and now I remember why I didn't consider controllers. I was looking at set ups that had a proven 5-7 year return on investment. I'm not sure controllers have that just yet. Time will tell.
D Jay Cee 12:46 AM - 8 September, 2014
military bases are the cheapest folks when it comes to paying DJs overseas. I could DJ downtown for a little more money but why risk an asthma attack with all the cigarette smoke....military bases are smoke free.
no one here has a clue as to what the DJs get stateside and they freak when I ask for what I deserve vs. what they want to pay. I don't get over $100 a night unless it is a party or special event...then it is usually over $200
the club on base doesn't get packed till 2330hrs and then dies at 0130 hrs...some of it due to military curfews. Base clubs overseas are hurting for money. maybe I will renegotiate my pay when my contract comes up..but as far as I am concerned...as long as I can plaster my name up all over the club... it is nice free advertising for the real events.
Dj-M.Bezzle 3:22 AM - 8 September, 2014
Quote:
Quote:
Quote:
FYI I don't advocate playing for drinks for weeks on end, you should be able to make the right impression in a set or two and work it up from there ...
Peace


My comments were more geared towards cats that are doing residencies at these rates (and there's a ton of them in LA).

Even if they drove all of us out of business by undercutting and giving away their time, good luck to them when they eventually want to get paid what they're worth.



You would think actors and other musicians would get paid for an audition, but they don't even get drinks, so consider that a plus. That's what an hour set would be when no one has heard of you, an audition.

LA is expensive, the cost of living there is through the roof, so like I said about location being a huge factor, you would expect cats in LA are getting lots of money. But, if you live there or near there your bills are equally higher, so its all relative. I may only get $200-250 a night but my mortgage payment is less than $350 a month so I'm doing pretty well. There is no standard in which to stick, unless we form a union, so telling cats they are wrong for taking less than you in LA, is kinda a moot point.


I think you may be misinterpretating the senario we're talking about. Noones saying demand money for an audition. What we're saying no to are the djs who go to venues or events with NO skills and use playing for free as leverage to get a job, taking a full time position, or constantly in lineups.
Twist Chico 4:59 AM - 21 November, 2014
Wow, you guys get paid?!? I just started djing 2 months ago and have to pay my friends to come. I pay them $10/person ($5 for girls) I spend $500 on a party bus. It really makes me look good in front of the club owner... When I'm djing, I buy 2 bottles of Popov vodka so that all my bottle rats have something to drink. I only end up spending about $800/night. I do look like a pimp though! #DjLife
DJ GaFFle 9:53 PM - 25 November, 2014
Quote:
$50

Quote:
Quote:
you will never do a club gig for less than $500.


...But the DJing career path is the only one I know where pay has gone down. I blame it on the ease of becoming a DJ, and every monkey out there with a pirated software and music saturating the market doing gigs for free, bar tabs or just $50

Undercutter DJ's Starter Pack:
oi59.tinypic.com
Mr. Goodkat 9:00 PM - 26 November, 2014
Quote:
Quote:
I think $5000 is a little on the high side, these days, unless you also mean music purchase costs. Or unless your doing top of the line CDJs and a good Mixer. $5-6k ought to get you two Pioneer CDJ Nexus 2000's and a pretty great mixer. But, if you having to haul and hook up all that, then you should get a fatter check. But, even the crappier clubs that I have been in have at least the Nexus 900's now and at least a DJM 850 or 900's. In which case, you only need a couple of thumb drives, or gig sticks.

If your going the, more popular, controller way, than you are looking at max of $800-1100 for the controller and at least $700-800 on a decent laptop (unless you have to have an Apple). The software will usually come packaged with the controller so your looking at around $1,500-2,000 for equipment that you have to bring to the club. .


I was looking at things this way:
Decent MacBook Pro - $1,299
****
Decent Rane Mixer - $1,299
2 decks - $699 (pio plx-1000) or $899 x 2 CDJ 850 = min $1,300
or minimally decent controller maybe ddj-sx $1,000
***
decent headphones $200
***
music investment, minimally $100/month

So even controller route, by far the cheaper is > $3,500.


dont buy new, you are spending way too much
D Jay Cee 1:32 AM - 27 November, 2014
when I got back in the game nearly 3 years ago:
2 used VCI-300s, $500 (both with deck save and one with a case)
2 Used Dell Intel dual core 2.2GHz USFF PCs, win 64 8GB $500
(one set for home and one set I leave locked up in the club)
Promo Only account $24/Mo

I already had monitors and upgrade video cards, KBDs and Mice on hand because as a computer technician, I rarely throw things away.
so yes, way cheaper than $3500 to start
but in the past two years I have spent $5000 about to be completely mobile. Got a VCI-400 recently on the cheap cuz folks are bailing on Vestax (suckas!) Getting MBP next year with my tax refund and then selling off the other stuff. I should be making a great profit starting next year.