Harmonic Mixing

There are crucial techniques a DJ needs to know to mix well: beatmatching, phrasing, cueing, looping, sampling, etc. However, I notice very little talk about harmonic mixing.

This is the kind of revolutionizing technique that has to be heard to be appreciated. Tools like Mixed in Key and Mixmeister can help up to a point in understanding how to mix with proper chord progression and therefore wowing the crowd without them seeing it coming.

Maybe this is what separates the jockeys from the musicians as it takes a finely tuned ear to identify the key signature of a song. This is a relatively new concept for me, since I played the piano but never really had proper music theory lessons as a child.

Most DJs I have heard seem to hit-or-miss during transitions because they are not very aware (or care) about their selections' melodies clashing. There is an over-emphasis on beatmatching, and while this allows for passing mixes, once exposed to how powerful harmonic mixing can be, you begin to realize how faulty your mixes sound without it.

I am not the exception here, and am learning to identify these keys with Mixed in Key as crutches. I know when they clash, or fit, but not too much further beyond that. I can see quite the difference since I began using the Camelot Sound Easymix System, and I unashamedly use this as my ears learn to do it on their own.

No comments:

Cloud Nine