By now, everyone has heard about or been apart of a debate regarding the accusation that DJs just get up on stage to press “play”. In 2012, the outspoken social media enthusiast Deadmau5 posted a statement to fuel the fire on his personal Tumblr, in which he bashes live DJing and claims all of the talent lies in the studio.
Recently, Pedestrian.tv interviewed Emoh Instead, Flume’s other half in the Australian group What So Not, following their voyage on the Mothership Tour with Skrillex and preceding their performance at Stereosonic. During the interview, Emoh was confronted with the question “what would you say to Haters who contend that DJs and producers like yourself only get up on stage at those kinds of festivals to press play?”, to which he responded beautifully.
“So much of what you’re doing, even when you’re up there, is playing something you’ve composed: you’ve written the baseline, you’ve written the drums, you’ve written the leads, you’ve worked with the vocalist to write the song lyrically, you’ve worked on the sonics and engineering of everything. You’ve done all that and there’s so much more that goes into it. Some people, yeah, they might just be the face of a brand and just play CDs but that’s, you know, there are so many other thousands of people who aren’t doing that as well. And the difference you see in a DJ set of someone who knows what they’re doing and is doing some really complicated stuff as opposed to someone who is just playing a pre-recorded or pre-meditated set is a large variant. If you can’t see that, then you’re pretty narrow minded.”
Although the argument will probably prevail for as long as DJing exists, Emoh’s sincere statement hopefully encourages readers to take a second look and remember the true skill involved in music production and DJing. Read the entire interview here.