Perfecting Beat-Matching

Discussion in 'DJ's, MC's & Turntablism' started by dizzledee, Feb 18, 2014.

  1. dizzledee

    dizzledee equinox

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    I'll start by recognising that even Andy clangs once in a while.

    I've been mixing for around 2-3 years now and have obviously noticed my beatmatching skills progress as time has gone by. I accept that practice is really the only way forward, but unfortunately my life is becoming increasingly more hectic and my chances to get on the decks are slimming.

    Over the past year I've noticed myself actually starting to tune out when beat matching, and funnily enough this seems to be when I am at my most precise. I go through stages of having it nailed and then become frustrated by it for a small period.

    I was wondering if anyone has any advice which is not 'Practice'. I tend to bump up the treble for some tunes which I find works well for precise matching. I've only played out a handful of times, and maybe this is something I should be trying to do more in order to improve?

    Thanks in advance.
     
  2. Afek_One

    Afek_One Well-Known Member

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    It really has to become a secondary thing. Play tunes with beatless intros. Listen for chord changes and only match the downbeat. The harder you listen and try, the harder it gets. Listen to the tune as a whole, not just the parts. It's like dancing, it's not a science, it's a feeling. I know that's abstract, but that's the best way to get better at matching IMO.

    It really helps to figure out the bpm of a tune before you play it. Count the beats for 15 seconds and multiply. Knowing the general area to pitch will help you separate the science from the vibe.

    I sound like a hippie.
     
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  3. Forau

    Forau CONCUSSION RECS

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    Out of curiosity, what format do you play? vinyl, cdj's?
     
  4. hyperd4eva

    hyperd4eva H&M SCARVES

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    hip thrust ftw..
     
  5. sam the dnb man

    sam the dnb man Variation

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    Always have a shit before you mix
     
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  6. hazdaman100

    hazdaman100 Bum 'n Face

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    its like anything, keep at it, it will seem you are getting shitter, then bang, you bounce back stronger and better than you were before nailing mixes you previously thought were impossible, and syncing beats quicker than before.

    Been mixing now for 5+ years, and still think that I'm getting tighter and tighter, its just simply a case of putting the hours in mate.
     
  7. dizzledee

    dizzledee equinox

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    Some interesting ideas here, will definitely take into account cheers. Actually I tend to find my matching improves after a smoke, less about the thinking, more about the feeling!

    I mix vinyl using Tracktor. Have found CDJ's to provide an easier mix, but it mores about spinning the jog wheel I feel and I tend to just ride the pitch on my technics rather than playing with vinyl itself.

    - - - Updated - - -

    I guess at least it's one area where practice is never a chore eh!
     
  8. geekcroft

    geekcroft New Member

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    +1 for smoke pre-game. Especially when 3/4 deck mixing, if I overthink I fsck it up - if I just go with whats happening then it works well.

    As has been mentioned, beatmatching (along with anything like this) has to become second nature and not about working it out and over-thinking it. Time will make this easier, and sometimes you will have bad days as well as good days, but keep at it and always try to lose yourself in the music. Dance like a dick as they say and it will just feel right :)
     
  9. Teddy

    Teddy 60% Staff Member

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    Ok here's some tips that have helped me and other people I've taught over the years.

    Hi hats.. Perfect for beat matching, when listening in headphones turn the treble up a lot so you can easily hear the hats and be able to separate them from the track your beat matching them to.

    Headphones.. Adjust your levels to a nice balance so you hear both tunes but you can easily tell the two apart. For example master at 40% volume and cue at 60%.
    Personally I hate using headphones but listening back my mixes are better when using them. Switch between cue and master regularly to ensure things are on track.

    Pitch riding.. You know when the record needs a little push? Don't. Try not to touch the platter, we all do it and it's a great way to a train wreck. Practice moving the pitch quickly then back again to get the same result.

    Have a little faith in yourself... Don't adjust the pitch or give it a nudge if it's not needed. The amount of times I've pissed about and fucked it up when there was nothing that needed adjusted in the first place.
     
  10. WhoSayReload?

    WhoSayReload? Well-Known Member

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    Is it cheating to use the visual display on the cdj, like looking obsessively at the pitch % number? Shit seems a lot easier and exact doing this,
     
  11. sam the dnb man

    sam the dnb man Variation

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    If you work out the bpm's and move the pitch to the right number, then yeah... That's a bit gay. It takes the feeling away. I find the pitch display distracting. I don't look at it, I move the pitch whilst looking at the mixer or straight infront of me if I'm using cdjs.
     
  12. WhoSayReload?

    WhoSayReload? Well-Known Member

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    Alright man, it's more a case of shifting the pitch slider along more accurately, than being a proper fanny, working out the bpm beforehand etc. Gives me more time to wave my hands in the air ;)
     
  13. RUSSLA

    RUSSLA DNBF Monarch

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    It is pretty gay that some new DJs literally can only mix using numbers on CDJs, imo you're not a real dj unless you can mix vinyl. So if you can mix proper, then using numbers doesn't really matter, its just as you say to keep things tight.
     
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  14. Fluff

    Fluff Active Member

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    I understand where the original poster is coming from. I just don't get enough time to practise because of work, social life, other hobbies and not upsetting the neighbours. When I do get a chance to practise if the first couple of mixes aren't good then it goes downhill from there to a point where I wonder why I bother. Once my confidence is knocked by a dodgy mix then I find I start overthinking it and as mentioned above it becomes more difficult. I think Luna-C said that he normally chooses a couple of safe mixes to kick off a set rather than risking a difficult one.