[Tango-L] [TangoDJ] DJ'ing with an Ipod

Carol Shepherd arborlaw at comcast.net
Fri Feb 1 11:49:03 EST 2008

I would also say it's very hard and you need lots of practice before you 
actually do it.  But then I mostly DJ at non-tanda type dances (ie, not 
tango, I have only DJ'ed tango for parties).  Tom must be a whiz at 
this!  You can't really change things up on the fly very easily with an 
iPod.  You certainly can't look at your playlists in full through the 
tiny screen, or rearrange them on the fly very easily, and it's easy to 
make mistakes.  In non-tango DJing I always change my playlists on the 
fly, based on what the crowd likes dancing to, to keep the maximum 
number of people fired up and on the floor at all times.  Obviously, 
this is not the objective in a milonga, with the orchestras and possibly 
even the crowded space with a traveling dance and couples waiting to dance.

To me the huge drawback is what Tom alluded to -- changing volume on the 
fly.  No matter what I do I have volume issues with different 
recordings.  It's easy (but a lot of work) to preset equalizer settings 
in iTunes and I have invested a lot of time in that for DJing.  iPods do 
not recognize the equalizer data so volume is all over the place.

Tom has a great idea, if you do one playlist for each tanda and one for 
cortinas, you can just select the next tanda while the cortina is 
playing, and it plays out and then you select the next tanda etc.  So 
have lots and lots of playlists and do the work up front.  Two iPods 
would also help a lot.  But you will still need to practice to get 
comfortable and have a seamless flow of music.


Tom Stermitz wrote:
> Sort of, but you have to become familiar enough that you don't make  
> mistakes.
> You can set it up with multiple playlists, one for each orchestra/ 
> style, like "1940s Di Sarli Tangos", or "D'Arienzo Waltzes".
> Then, you can choose the playlist you want for the upcoming tanda.  
> Start playing on the song you want, and at the end click to choose the  
> next song if you dislike the preset order. As you come to the end of  
> the tanda, you can move to another playlist to trigger the curtain.
> I would suggest a mini-mixer so you can handle volume adjustments with  
> a real knob. Possibly use two iPods so you can play one while fiddling  
> with the other.

Carol Ruth Shepherd
Arborlaw PLC
Ann Arbor MI USA
734 668 4646 v  734 786 1241 f

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