Over the past few months, I have been increasingly interested in finding common lifestyle issues amongst my peers in the DJ industry. We’re talking about poor nutrition, dealing stress, and, of course, physical injuries due to the nature of our lifestyle. I’m also a DJ, so I experience a ton of shoulder, neck, and wrist issues. I’m working also with creative people in the industry and every one of them have told me they’re feeling the pain; almost identical symptoms to what I experience. The worst part is that it really limits the enjoyment we all get out of what we do for a living. I figured it’d be worthwhile to get to the root of these problems and present some solutions, so here you go! Here are 3 of my favourite exercises to battle the common problems we face in our industry. But first, I suggest speaking with your doctor before starting up any new fitness routine. Cool? Cool. Here we go…
1 – BODY WEIGHT SQUAT
♦ With a hip-width stance, ensure your back is upright and chest is tall.
♦ Keep the weight on your heels, keep your knees from wobbling in or out, and push your butt back as if you were sitting in a chair and slowly bend at the knees.
♦ Keep your arms out in front of you for balance.
Well, the squat is, in my opinion, the most complex primal movement a human can do, meaning almost all of your body needs to be engaged to pull it off properly. That’s great for a few reasons. One, you’re using more energy, which helps with weight loss. You’re also breaking down tissue, which will come back stronger after rest. Primal movements are also functional. That means when you need to lift something – say a big bass cabinet – you can do it with ease and efficiency. The squat will help the whole body move more effectively, and that’s important for all DJs.
The squat is a relatively safe exercise for anyone unless they have back or knee problems. In that case, talk to your trusted health professional before you start rattling off squats to avoid aggravating your back or knees and possibly injuring yourself further. A couple of safer exercises would be to just stand with your back against a wall and bend at the knees or sit down in a chair and stand up without using your hands.
Start small. I generally recommend two or three sets of 10-20 squats for beginners. Do that a couple of times per week and you’ll be on your way to building up some strength to help you fit into those skinny jeans again, DJ star!
Ensure that you keep your back straight, head up, and that you keep your heels on the ground If you notice your knees starting to cave in towards one another, that could be an issue. If anything hurts – like, sharp pain hurts – stop squatting and contact a doctor.
2 – WALL ANGEL
♦ Standing with your back to a wall, ensure that the crown of your head to your hips are pressed “shirt tight” to the wall by bracing your abs (as if someone was about to punch you in the stomach).
♦ Slowly begin to raise your arms from your side and slide them up the wall above your head, keeping them tight to the wall with the rest of your body.
DJs are notorious for poor posture. Forward head tilt, rolled shoulders — you name it. The nature of our job puts stress on mantaining a proper posture with heavy instruments slung around our necks and shoulders many hours at a time. Physically, that will wear anyone down. The wall angel is a movement that combats this. It helps engages muscles in between your shoulder blades and in your core so that, over time, you are better able to stand up straight. All of this will help you avoid looking like DJ Hunchback of Notre Dame, lol.
If you’re experiencing soreness in the upper back, neck or shoulders, you need to be doing this drill. As long as you don’t have any serious shoulder or neck issues, you’re set.
Again, start small I general,/ recommend two or three sets of 1.20 wall angels for beginners.. that’s a couple of times per week for best results.
If you’re having problems keeping tight to the wall, brace your abs and bend your knees so you slide down the wall a bit until you’re there. If you’re still having problems with the movement, you can always try laying on the floor and doing ‘snow angels; slowly working your way up to the wall. In this case, it’s likely a mobility issue in your shoulders and that’ll just take some time and patience.
♦ Gently look towards the sky while breathing in through your nose.
♦ Upon your exhale, slowly roll your head down and around so that you’re looking at the ground.
♦ Slowly inhale while rolling back to the top.
As long as you’re not prone to dizziness, this is a super effective way to help promote some mobility in an area that is generally very tight amongst DJs. It’ll help to alleviate stress and a majority of the people I work with list tension in their neck and shoulders as a limiting factor to them playing their controllers for as long as they want.
Electro Wow’s Definitive List Of The Best Songs Of 2020
This list is essential for those who want to celebrate New Year’s Eve accompanied by good music. The best songs of 2020 according to Electro Wow include independent and mainstream artists. Within the selection parameters, the combination of melody and lyrics were considered. Furthermore, all of these tracks have one thing in common, their instant catchiness quality! Obviously, it wasn’t an easy task as there are many great tunes that deserved to be on this list.
It’s time to forget the horrible Coronavirus year. Find out the best songs of 2020 right here.
✦ BEST ELECTRO-POP (SYNTH-POP) SONGS
The Weeknd – In Your Eyes
If Michael Jackson ruled in the 80s, Abel Tesfaye aka The Weeknd seems to take the lead in the 2020s. “In Your Eyes” has irresistible synthesizers and a delicious saxophone solo that makes it easily an unforgettable radio-friendly hit. He explores feelings of regret and pain in his personal lyrics.
Sam Sparro – Eye 2 Eye
I’m really obsessed with this beautiful Electro-Pop ballad! The Australian singer reaches the high notes with his splendid soulful vocals like nobody else. “Eye 2 Eye” gives you goosebumps as he puts intense emotions and so much passion into it. It’s a song about coming together and getting more intimate with the one you love despite being separated by a screen.
Jessy Lanza – Lick In Heaven
Enjoy gorgeous synths from start to end. Incredibly, Jessy’s singing voice feels as sweet as candy. For some reason, this is the type of music that makes you feel happy in no time. In actual fact, this amazing jam was born with a simple 101 bass line.
Kiesza – Love Me With Your Lie
Probably, inspired by Madonna’s “Erotica,” Kiesza rises like a phoenix from the ashes after a brain injury. This absolute banger from the Canadian singer is as catchy as hell. If you start dancing on your own once you hit the play button, then, that means you have a good musical ear.
ORION – Higher
Synth duo Orion Dommisse and John-Paul Sullivan will make you realize that the 80s never died. Their infectious music features a touch of drama and unfolds a nostalgic atmosphere. In other words, they sound like ABBA of the twentieth-first century. “Higher” is so dope!
Munatix – You Just Keep Hanging On
Hailing from Belgium, these emerging artists showcase their great expertise in vintage and analog synthesizers. Certainly, thanks to its singalong chorus, “You Just Keep Hanging On” can become a karaoke classic. Overall, a fun tune with strong hooks.
✦ BEST DANCE-POP (EDM) SONGS
Dejhare – Don’t Let Us Lose (Dance Deluxe)
Dejhare is a singer and songwriter best known for her romantic ballads. Nevertheless, this year she tried something different with a dance makeover of her ‘Unbreakable’ album. Well, the epic results speak for themselves. Listeners from around the world were left open-mouthed, especially with the dance deluxe version of “Don’t Let Us Lose.”
Baby Girl Oksana – Messed Up
Produced by Mr Mav and reaching the #3 position on Reverbnation, “Messed Up” by Baby Girl Oksana will surely get stuck in your head. Oddly enough, the sad lyrics of a broken friendship combine so well with the dancey beats. It’s like a hidden gem that deserves way more recognition.
COY Swede, Matthew Titmouse – You Are
The anthemic nature of “You Are” surpasses all expectations. COY Swede joins forces with Matthew Titmouse whose stable vocals give so much life to a special song that is dedicated to everyone that has experienced a great loss. Inspired by the one and only Avicii, you’re about to hear an underrated masterpiece.
Danny Spade, Tara Louise – Hooked
Needless to say, the feel-good vibes are part of the signature style of the rising American producer. On the other hand, Tara Louise has a beautiful tone that goes hand-in-hand with the uplifting melodies while taking this song to the next level. Evidently, Danny Spade is a name to watch within the Dance-Pop category.
N2BLÜ – Unicorn Tribe
The duo composed of Jonathan Arceneaux and Konstantin Smorodnikov wants you to embrace your authentic self via “Unicorn Tribe.” In this new decade, we need more artists like them whose music outstands due to excellent lyrics charged with positivity. Not to mention, there’s so much euphoria in the breakdown and at the drop.
John Lynx, Sergi Yaro – Dreams
“Dreams” is probably, the most satisfying composition produced by John Lynx. If you close your eyes, you can imagine big crowds jumping and dancing at a big festival to its massive drops. The Tiesto and Armin van Buuren’s influence is also notable on this cut. Sergi Yaro’s emotion-laden vocals confirm you this is one of the best songs of the year.
✦ BEST TRANCE SONGS
Dennis Sheperd, Katty Heath – Losing My Mind
Dennis Sheperd masterfully builds tension throughout the entire track, sparking off a fresh Trance classic. The chorus captures the emotions of someone who is dealing with a challenging situation. Add to this, the powerful vocals from Katty Heath who makes the beats roar.
RAM & Susana – You Are Enough
Here you have a good example of an emotionally-driven hymn. RAM & Susana will put shivers down your spine due to the uplifting melody and the message of this great tune. When they work together, this pair never disappoint.
Somna, Noire Lee – Beside You
“Beside You” perfectly displays the magic Somna is capable of doing at the studio. A highly emotive tune featuring the talent of singer and songwriter Noire Lee. The effects on it are brilliantly designed as well as the chord progressions.
Headstrong, Alexandra Badoi – Fear
Alexandra Badoi offers the heavenly quality needed in Trance music while Headstrong provides the proper sonic treatment with delicate beats and piano solos that will elevate listeners to a cosmic level.
Aly & Fila, Plumb – Somebody Loves You
Designed to send a wonderful message that revolves around self-esteem and confidence, Aly & Fila literally make a brand new hit. Indeed, it’s a response to depression and best of all, with the lovely vocals of Plumb.
Marcus Santoro, Lauren L’aimant – Blackout
“Blackout” evokes the feeling of flying or floating, much like the Trance tunes from the early 2000s. The undulating melodies hook listeners and the ethereal atmosphere derived from the singing voice of Lauren L’aimant is exactly what you can expect from their outstanding collaboration.
✦ BEST HOUSE SONGS
Muzik Box, Rinaldo Montezz – Karma
If clubs and bars weren’t closed due to the pandemic, “Karma” would be a hit within the underground scene. I think Muzik Box know what it takes to sweep listeners off their feet. This fantastic radio-edit version is a joint effort with Rinaldo Montezz who maximized the euphoria of this monster track.
Carnage, The Martinez Brothers, Elderbrook – Together
American producers Carnage and The Martinez Brothers deliver a totally different vibe on this song. It sounds like the future of the genre. Simple and infectious, “Together” is chilled-out House music at its finest!
Colt The House DJ – Summer
Duck Sauce – Mesmerize
A-Trak and Armand Van Helden aka Duck Sauce return with “Mesmerize,” their first single in six years. An uptempo offering charged with a particular 90s retro style. Needless to say, it’s a true gem of House music.
Electric Polar Bears – Break The Ice
Everyone will love the perfect blend of Future and Tech House on “Break The Ice.” The delightful summer-ready jam slithers through captivating clubbin’ rhythms. It’s impossible to listen to this groovy hit and not to move your body.
C-ntroversy, Michael M – Block, Report, Unfriend, Unfollow
I’m sure this funny track will spark a laugh, and its title says it all. With minimal beats, the message here is clear, “Block, Report, Unfriend, Unfollow” in order to protect your peace of mind is a great idea!
BEST DISCO SONGS
Kylie Minogue – Magic
In these dark times, Kylie goes disco for the first time, consequently, the song is pure “Magic.” A sweaty dancefloor filler inspired by the late 70s. With ethereal piano keys melting into brass, what else could you ask for?…
Purple Disco Machine, Sophie And The Giants – Hypnotized
Well, who hasn’t heard this funky track yet? “Hypnotized” became a massive hit across Europe, plus, it got the Platinum certification in Italy. Fans are already eager to hear his forthcoming Disco album in 2021.
The Shapeshifters, Billy Porter – Finally Ready
“Finally Ready” by The Shapeshifters and Billy Porter forms part of a new golden era of the Disco renaissance. With a fresh sound for the dancefloors, this is absolutely uplifting. I’m loving the cinematic strings and horns, but especially the magnificent vocals.
Sophie Ellis Bextor – Crying At The Discotheque
The “Murder On The Dancefloor” singer makes an impressive comeback with this flawlessly executed cover. This is pretty much an essential Disco jam for any DJ out there. With the modern arrangements and her sexy singing voice, she’s giving it a new life.
Doja Cat – Say So
As you probably know, TikTok makes songs go viral nowadays, and that’s the case of Doja Cat’s “Say So.” Probably, it’s the most popular Disco track of the year. The way she sings and raps at the same time proves her versatility, and that’s admirable.
Dimitri From Paris, Aeroplane, Leela D – Can’t Get Enough
This 6-minute slice of DISCO warms the soul. Dimitri From Paris and Aeroplane along with singer Leela D deserve praise from the clubbing world. Trust me, you’ll want to listen to “Can’t Get Enough” on repeat.
✦ BEST REGGAETON SONGS
Bad Bunny – Yo Perreo Sola
Puerto Rican superstar Bad Bunny is currently the king of Reggaeton. The purpose of this song is to support women wanting to dance alone and feel safe doing it. Giving that sense of freedom back to them.
Black Eyed Peas, Ozuna, J. Rey Soul – MAMACITA
Positively, this year Black Eyed Peas innovate and explore Reggaeton rhythms by collaborating with different Latin singers. “MAMACITA” is a bilingual heater that incorporates all the catchy elements to make you wanna dance.
DJ Blass, Japanese – Larry Caboa
Fill your tank with adrenaline when listening to “Larry Caboa.” This is a highly danceable track that will help you get the party pumping. Don’t get surprised if it triggers Perreo pandemonium at your own house. The ambiguity of the lyrics is pretty hilarious!
El Alfa – Guaremate De Por Vida
Few artists can captivate all your senses like El Alfa and his strangely enjoyable song titled “Guaremate De Por Vida.” Clearly, the tropical-esque beats and its Dembow influence welcome party animals to go wild at clubs.
Gigolo Y La Exce – Cuidao
There is no question “Cuidao” is one of those eargasmic slowed-down tracks with emotive lyrics to sing out loud. Gigolo Y La Exce showcase all their skills, plus verses with good flow and wordplay put the icing on the cake.
Babylizz, Tomasa Del Real – Down
Romantic Reggaeton at its finest! Babylizz and Neoperreo Queen Tomasa Del Real join forces to rework this classic urban hit originally written by R.K.M & Ken-Y. Powered by nostalgia, the song melds the dynamism of the two singers who do their best in rapping with passion.
✦ BEST TECHNO SONGS
Ramon Tapia, Kai Tracid – 303 State
What do you get of play this acid monster from Ramon Tapia and Kai Tracid? Probably, your healthy dose of energetic music. This type of Techno sound is making a huge comeback in recent years, and I think it’s here to stay for a long time.
Will Clarke – Let’s Rave
Lose yourself in the music, “Let’s Rave” is an invitation to throw up your arms in the air. Sonically, its heavy direction can be interpreted as a fresh makeover of the acidic Techno from the 90s. Massive synths and stabs all around.
Josh Wink – Higher State Of Consciousness (Adana Twins Remix)
HURTR – Nu Acid
It’s particularly interesting to hear a Techno track with vocals. Hurtr has been working their way up in the underground scene since 2010. The seductive vocals from Heidi Hull merge with acid synths and pulsating beats in a hypnotic way.
Toma Hawk, Dr.Acid – Velvet
The world needs to hear this futuristic release from the one and only Toma Hawk. “Velvet” is a punch of straight Techno, a great mixture of Acid sounds, and a blast of kicks and basslines!
Paolo Virdis – Survive
Dark synths, excellent synths, and sequences. The mysterious sounding and its driving energy is compelling from start to finish. The Italian producer is one to watch out for in 2021.
✦ BEST NEW INDIE ARTISTS
Mark Henes – Arm Full Of Roses
Mark Henes is truly unique in the world of independent singer/songwriters. The amazing ballad “Arm Full Of Roses” sounds like a timeless classic track you’d probably hear in a movie. Today he’s making a name for himself in the industry by reimagining the Americana style.
Matilde Girasole – Cup Of Tea
From the very start, Matilde proves to be a talented singer. “Cup of Tea” is an energetic Pop tune fueled by her vibrant/vigorous voice. She’s one of the best new indie artists I discovered this year, and I can assure you she will go far with her music career.
Nathan Daniels – I Choose
Jace Heyman – Drunk Text
Jace Heyman blends Caribean music with radio-friendly Pop melodies on “Drunk Text.” It contains relatable lyrics, and they create a common scenario some of you will feel identified with. On a side note, the up-and-coming artist finds inspiration in mainstream entertainers like Chris Brown and Daddy Yankee.
The Migraine Aura – Your House
The Migraine Aura is a collective of artists and vocalists. As a matter of fact, the tune that amassed thousands of streams in Spotify is titled “Your House.” Buzzing with dreamy vintage vibes and nice acoustics, they create pleasing music that guarantees to brighten your days.
RYNO – Powerlines
Recorded during lockdown at his home studio, you can tell the indie artist pours all his emotions into it. As a result, lyrics are similar to a heartfelt letter. An interesting piece of songwriting and vocal performance as well.
✦ BEST ALBUMS
Bad Bunny – YHLQMDLG
Black Eyed Peas – Translation
Kylie Minogue – Disco
Sam Sparro – Boombox Eternal
The Weeknd – After Hours
Here’s How To Transform Your Shed Into A Vibrant Sound Studio
It can be a struggle to get the pro sound you’re looking for when recording inside your home. Your surrounding space is noisy and full of distractions. Somehow your roommates shouting in the living room about losing a video game breaks through the honeycomb insulation lining your bedroom. Someone keeps busting in, unable to get the hint that you’re trying to craft something nasty.
It sucks, but there’s a way to make things easier for you and your music. It’s time to renovate that dilapidated shed behind your home into your sound palace. Here are some tips to transform your backyard shed into a vibrant studio.
1 – Seal Up The Walls
You’ll want to seal any existing cracks in the shed walls. Caulk, insulation spray, or even sealing gum can get this job done easily. This won’t just help with keeping the sound in but also keeps the elements and bugs out.
When you’re done sealing, then you can get to putting up soundproofing material. If you want to go all out, you can’t go wrong with full-wall insulation paneling, but fiberglass foam squares also get the job done.
There are insulation types specifically designed for sound studios, so be on the look-out for those specifically. There’s some serious science behind this stuff.
2 – Check Out The Roof
Both the material and overall condition of your roof will matter. If it’s metallic, the roof will generate less-than-ideal vibrations that can interfere with your sound. Even if the roof is decent for sound, it might still have breaks or damage that can leave your studio (and all your expensive equipment) vulnerable.
Having new, professional roofing installed will keep the sound in. Don’t be shy with adding sound-deadening substances on the interior like absorption blankets or insulated foam to complete the soundproofing.
3 – To The Windows, To The…Doors?
Some sheds are built with windows, and it should definitely have a door. These are two parts of the studio that can be left behind or forgotten when it comes to soundproofing.
Windows are tricky because having a bit of airflow and sunlight is nice, but having too much of either messes with your work. Take the time to caulk up any space between the window and wall. Rather than covering windows entirely, hang up sound resistant curtains, so you can close and open them as you please.
Doors are similar, so you’ll want to seal cracks up with caulk or weathering strips. And unless you want to live the rest of your days locked inside the studio (honestly, it’s tempting), you don’t want to seal it shut completely. There are ultra industrial soundproof doors, but a budget-friendly way involves fastening an acoustic blanket above the door already there. Or, you can use the same curtains from your windows!
4 – Down On The Floor
Your flooring needs some love too. If you’re standing on wood or concrete, neither are great at keeping sound in or out. Sound travels through wood particularly well and concrete isn’t much better. Adding thick carpeting isn’t expensive and will help insulate the space for all your recording needs.
Soundproofing an unused shed is an easy way to give yourself a professional quality sound studio. It’s entirely separate from the distractions inside your home, letting you focus completely on the project at hand.
It’s a viable option for any aspiring artist, so what are you waiting for? Get started on yours today! You’ll be amazed by the final result and ready to move in!
How Jazz Music During Study Can Affect Your Mental Health
Although music promotes quality study sessions, it does not directly influence the development of memory. This article comprises the effects of jazz music on your mental health and how you can harness them to your benefit.
For professional assistance with various concepts, Music homework help is a resource that should come in handy. Here, you get in-depth coverage of various concepts within your field while saving time to attend to other activities.
1 – Helps student to focus better
Like classical music in the Mozart effect, jazz comprises of a consistent low-tempo tune without lyrics. Unlike high-tempo music with lyrics, jazz does not divert your attention to the lyrics, thus boosts your concentration.
The background music also helps you create an ambient environment for study. By blocking out the screeching of seats, mumbling of other people in your vicinity, and other noises, it allows you to focus and interact better with the material at hand.
As shown in various studies, jazz activates both hemispheres of the brain, promoting better creativity and memorization.
2 – Creates a pattern that is easier to recall
Ever wondered why committing lyrics to memory is an easier task than storing biology concepts? While interest plays a role in the faster memorization of lyrics, music creates a pattern that promotes information processing and storage.
The low tempo of jazz allows you to study at an ideal pace, ensures maximum interaction of the studied material with the brain, and boosts memorization.
3 – Stress reduction
College lifestyle is a never-ending battle of competing needs and interests. Stress arises from assignments due in a few days, ever-increasing amounts of content, and financial scales to balance.
Owing to the effect of stress on your productivity, you can barely study and commit the material to memory. Jazz induces endorphins production, which controls anxiety, enabling you to focus on the study material.
Even more, background music blocks noise from the environment, which allows you to focus on study material. This aids in endurance over long study sessions, which is essential for mastery of various concepts.
4 – Relax after tedious study sessions
When you are threatened, the body produces adrenaline and cortisol, which increase anxiety and affect your sleep cycle. Owing to the pressure from various academic responsibilities, you may suffer from increased anxiety and low sleep cycles.
Music influences the nervous system to regulate the production of these hormones to the necessary amounts. As a result, you get better sleep quality, thus giving your brain the necessary amount of rest.
This ensures mental health and promotes better cognitive activity in the study sessions scheduled for the next day. As a result, you can gain the most from each study session and avoid long-term mood disorders.
Jazz is among the sedative music that has been proven by various MRI studies to influence mental performance. However, it is vital to note that jazz does not improve your cognitive ability; instead, it helps you focus your attention and manage stress. As a result, you can make the most of each study session and influence the studied material’s storage and retrieval.
Volume regulation is of crucial importance when studying with background music. When the volume is too high, it may distract your concentration, resulting in poor performance.
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