Salsa DJing (or VJing) 101 : Focus on atmosphere and music…

Salsa DJing 101So, this is more about a really-big pet-peeve of mine than anything else. I used to dance in Des Moines, IA for the longest time and watch some DJs there (they will stay unnamed) – but what they used to do was show these really crappy music videos on their projectors. Now, showing some cool salsa videos is one thing – but showing videos of women in bikinis (or body-paint) only shaking their asses and tits for 3 hours straight is not inducive of a elegant atmosphere. Now, I thought it was that DJ that only did that. So, when I went to the La Jolla Marriot, here in San Diego CA on a Friday, I saw the same thing – videos of basically naked women shaking their asses on the screen for hours! I'm like, the video being played, is not even the song that we are dancing to — so why do it?

I'm a big fan of a club that keeps its elegance in design – specifically in atmosphere. So, here is my concern, which I could be wrong. I don't think this helps the atmosphere for the dancers who are actually dancing. Maybe it helps the guys who never dance, have something to do, but otherwise, I do not think it adds any beneficial components to the salsa dance scene for the night. If I were a girl, I would feel uncomfortable being at the club if those videos were being played for hours straight. I feel that if girls do not feel comfortable at the club, then hence, fewer girls might show up, which will make the night less interesting for the guys who are there wanting to dance with the ladies – which hence, might mean less attendance to your event for that particular DJ.

So, it is interesting to note that I did go to the same club on two different nights, with two different DJs. The friday DJ played these sleazy videos on the screen as well as not playing good dance music. The DJ on saturday didn't play any of those videos, on the other hand, he played salsa congress videos – and I think that was MUCH better. I can tell you (and ask anyone else) that Saturdays at the Marriott are much better than Fridays – and I think in part is because of these videos. Not only because the videos are not good for the atmosphere, but because instead of wasting time on these vidoes, that DJ should be spending more time in picking and choosing the RIGHT music to play next – which is what we are actually there for! 

Just the same way, salseros can be differentiated by their styling flavor, bad and great DJs can be differentiated by their choice of songs during the night – not by the videos on the screen. If we wanted to watch videos on the screen, we could have stayed home!


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