New DJs often ask how to start and end a mix. There is no right or wrong way. Here are 5 ways to start and end a DJ mix:
If you are playing after another DJ, mix out of the previous DJs last track. Likewise, if another DJ is playing after you, let them mix out of your last track. This will allow the flow of the music to continue. It is important to note that if the next DJ plays a different style of music or wants to start at a different BPM, this may not be the best option.
A less common start to a mix is to be introduced. Festivals or special events often introduce each DJ. Sometimes it is done by an MC or by playing a produced introduction. Sensation White, an event now held around the world, is well-known for the show that it creates around the DJs who are playing. This video of Armin Van Buuren at Sensation White 2005 shows part of the introduction at the beginning of the video.
Okay, so not all of us are well known superstar DJs. With some basic production skills one can create their own custom intro. Custom intros can be found in most DJ podcasts and draw the listener into the mix. Grab a few free samples off the net, load them into your favorite DAW, and create an intro.
One of my favorite ways to end a mix is to use an effect. A spinback or slow-braking stop can quickly signal the end of a mix. Add a delay or some looping and you’ve got a crazy effect that is unique to each track.
Finally, if you really want to stand out, do something completely different. The video below is a great example of A DJ thinking outside of the box and doing something unique.