Last Friday Night I had the opportunity to be the creative dance DJ at Dance Friday in Cambridge, MA. After four years as creative dance DJ at Barefoot Boogie in NYC, I miss providing great and eclectic music for movement and dance at a venue like Dance Friday.
Creative Dance DJ at Dance Friday in Cambridge
Dance Friday is an event where people of all ages, backgrounds, and abilities can express themselves through movement to music. We offer an atmosphere of acceptance, friendship, and trust. We guide our freedom of Expression by a committed respect for the physical and psychological safety of others. Dance Friday is a community drawn together by a shared delight in dance and the recognition and respect for the value of life. We are the only Boston-area dance to welcome children. Dance Friday is a member dance of Dance New England.
Creative Dance DJ Musical Styles at Dance Friday in Cambridge
All kinds of musical are played by our creative dance DJs! Contemporary, World music, Pop, Hip Hop, Reggae and Reggaeton, Classic Rock, Disco, Funk, Ska, Latin, Swing, R&B, Blues…. Our Creative Dance DJs’ goals are to please everyone and keep the dance floor jumping. our DJ’s scour playlists to provide an evening full of wonderful beats, tempos and melodies to move your body with. If there’s something you’d like to hear, please suggest it; there is a Comments Book for sharing helpful suggestions regarding the evening’s music and atmosphere. All the music is provided by volunteer Creative Dance DJ’s.
Dance New England brings together a community of member dances and dancers. We are united by our love of dance as an empowering community activity.
We believe that everyone can dance and that dance provides us with the opportunity to enrich ourselves and the greater community. We use dance as a medium to communicate and to demonstrate our unity. At Dance Camp and Weekends we come together to dance, express our caring, exchange ideas; and organize ways to communicate and understand each other.
We seek to explore ways to show our commitment to the acceptance of and respect for all people and cultures, the empowerment of children, and the acknowledgement that our bodies and our environment are sacred. We recognize the need for each of us to be able to safely express who we are and be acknowledged for the value of the contributions that each of us brings to this community. These include a cooperative spirit, interdependence, and sustainable volunteerism.
We recognize that how we accomplish our aim is important. Consensus decision-making, non-violent conflict resolution, collective work, personal responsibility, educational inreach and outreach, and flexibility in the face of the need to change are tenets of our organizational democracy. We believe that the conservation of our planet’s resources and the fair distribution of the fruits of our labor and play create a positive example for the worl
DJ Mystical Michael Rhode Island DJ & Boston DJ
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Like most professional Wedding and Event DJs, I tend to look forward to DJ opportuntities that I can give back to the community and offer our DJ services as a volunteer. I work a lot of fundraisers as DJ but not always able to do them completely volunteered, often there is a small fee to cover expenses. Tonight at the Barefoot Boogie is a freebie!
The Barefoot Boogie is a freestyle dance which happens twice a month in New York City. We offer a relaxed, smoke-free and alcohol-free environment where folks can freely express themselves in movement. From our pool of talented DJs, two spin each dance. Each of our DJs has his or her own distinctive style, but one thing you can rely on is that atevery Boogie you’ll hear a wide variety of music: R&B, World, Funk, Tribal, Hip Hop, Ambient, Reggae, House, African, Electronica, Disco, Rock, Techno, Drum & Bass, etc.
One of the best parts is that I get to have fun and dance as a bonus. As the wedding and event seasons start to pick up, my availability lessens. This may be my last chance for me to DJ at the Barefoot Boogie for a while, unless I have a last minute cancellation or something.
Tonight I will play an eclectic mix of R&B, Pop, Dance, Hip Hop, Rock, Arabic, African and Latin rhythms with who knows what else mixed in. The Barefoot Boogie attracts a very diverse an creative bunch of movers and dancers that appreciate music that is not heard elsewhere or often. I can do that and cherish the opportinty when presented. As a special bonus, I get to meet with one of my friends, also another Barefoot Boogie Coordinator for dinner beforehand. Should be a fun night!
With Spring bringing sun, warmth, green and flowers, it also delivers the end of the down season for a professional DJ. I have had the opportunity to offer my DJ services at several volunteer situations in New Jersey & New York during this period. This Saturday night may be the last of the season. Tomorrow night I will DJ again at The Barefoot Boogie in NYC. For the last one and a half years I have been the Coordinator of Teachers and DJs at Barefoot Boogie. I enjoy being involved with such a positive and fun organization that is celebrating its 30th anniversary this year!
I have been reflecting all week on what music I may play tomorrow night as DJ. So far I am feeling some Hip Hop, Reggae, Reggaeton, Rock, New Wave, Oldies, R&B, Pop, Arabic, Salsa and some mood music like Buddha Bar and Ambient rhythms. I seem to always add an African jam or two as well. There will be an Alexander Technique class from 8:30-9:30 with freestyle dancing and DJ music the rest of the night at Barefoot Boogie. Should be a great night!
I have been very busy meeting with Brides, Grooms and other event planners hiring me to be their professional Wedding DJ and Event DJ all over New Jersey, New York & Pennsylvania. It is fun and inspiring hearing about the fun Weddings and Events I will DJ in the near future. My schedule for 2012 and 2013 are starting to fill up quickly. Life is good as a professional Wedding DJ and Party DJ in New Jersey & New York. Looking forward to a night of fun and great DJ Music at Barefoot Boogie.
There are few aspects of the winter that are beneficial to a Wedding and Event DJ and Entertainer in New Jersey or New York. After the Holidays, we hit a bit of a slow season till the spring with weddings, graduations and parties starting to fill our schedules again. I do get the opportunity to volunteer my services as DJ at many local events. My favorite is The Barefoot Boogie in NYC. I have several friends there and enjoy the chance to play music that I could not play at an event I was hired to perform.
As a professional DJ, I am trained to play to what the planner hired me to play musically. I am very conscious of their needs and wishes throughout the gig. For the most part, I keep my personal tastes out of the mix, literally. I will slip in a song from the genre or playlist we have created together that I enjoy more than others but mostly it is your music, not mine. The Barefoot Boogie is the exception to this general guideline. There are many creative and talented dancers who thrive and appreciate moving to music they do not know or would not typically dance to. In fact, they look forward to hearing new music and challenging tempos, rhythms and beats. Any good DJ thrives with the opportunity to create new and refreshing mixes and beats for dancers to move and experiment. I am not as good a dancer as most of them but do enjoy a beat and rhythm that is somewhat unique or out of the norm. Of course, being in the New Jersey and New York area allows even more creativity due to our diversity and openminded attitude towards music, art and movement.
What kinds of creative or unique music do you like to move to when given the opportunity?
I always look forward to the nights I am able to provide DJ music for dancers at The Barefoot Boogie. As a dancer, this is one of my favorite places to perform. There are so many appreciative dancers that I have such a great time.
If you have never been there, The Barefoot Boogie is a bi-monthly dance event held at Insight Meditation Center 28 W. 27th St, NYC. Our community has been providing dance events since 1982 and is still going strong today! It is an honor for me to DJ at events. I am also Teacher and DJ Coordinator for the community.
Sometime before the dances, I find myself up late one night creating new mixes and possibilities for the upcoming event. Last night was one of those nights. I am excited to share these with our community. It is one of the rare opportunities for me as a DJ to really get to play with diverse genres, tempos, textures and rhythms. If you would like to read more about the larger dance community, Barefoot Boogie is a member of the Dance New England community of dances and dancers.
There is something really fun about having a night without a playlist. As a professional full-time DJ, I rarely get to choose the music I play. I am extremely committed to making sure the folks that hire me as a professional DJ get what they want and not pick music for myself at a gig. Last Saturday night at the Barefoot Boogie I had the music all to myself! We usually try to schedule more than one DJ at each event to add diversity in style and musical choices. This particular night I was the only DJ on the schedule and took full advantage of the opportunity.
I can’t say it was my most fluid segues but we had fun and there was plenty of great tunes for moving and dancing. We started the night with some mellow, lush music for letting the dancers get loose and grounded to the music and environment. It was not long till we had it cranked-up to full volume and the energy was very high. I was mindful of bringing the energy and tempo down to provide space for catching breath and get even deeper into their process.
As usual, we had a great time and nobody wanted to leave at the end of the night. I still am smiling that I got to play Acoustic Jazz, New Age, Pop, Top 40, R&B, New Wave, Punk, Rock, Old Soul and Hip Hop all in the same night while visiting Cuba, Africa, India, Turkey, Mexico, Japan and Spain along the way. A fun ride for all!
I am even more excited than I was last night!
Along with being a professional full-time DJ & MC, I am also the volunteer Coordinator of Teachers & DJs at The Barefoot Boogie NYC. It is my responsibility to recruit, schedule and sometimes train our teachers and DJs for our semi-monthly events. The venue we create these evens is Insight Meditation Center, originally had a special event scheduled for this Saturday Night, 10/8. We shifted our schedule to accommodate. It turns out they had to cancel the event and we had some conversation and decided we would scramble together and put a dance event together for tomorrow night. I offered to DJ since I have not had the opportunity to DJ there since before the wedding season was in full swing. I miss it.
I now get to DJ at an outdoor wedding in the afternoon and Barefoot Boogie at night. Besides seeing friends and being in an environment I enjoy, DJing at The Barefoot Boogie allows me to get extremely creative in musical selections. I will start the night with some slow, lush music to support dancers in getting warmed-up and stretched. After I see folks are ready, I will slowly raise the energy, tempo and volume till we are at full force. The Boogie is an environment that diversity and creativity are considered gifts for dancers and movers. Throughout the night I will try to mix in some music from many decades, genres and cultures from around the globe.
Should be a great day between the wedding and the boogie!
I was recently approached with an offer to professional DJ at a club that is under new management. It is really a sports bar with a club upstairs; a great place to eat and party. They already have a Resident DJ but he is not willing to play music for theme nights they are planning over the next few months. He does not want to do Country, Latin or a Ladies Night. He will only do what he does and nothing else. Why are so many professional DJs like this?
I look forward to accepting new challenges and expanding my repertoire as a professional DJ. How can this be a bad thing?
Even when I was new at this way back when many years ago, I wanted to try new things, learn and gain experience and confidence in as many genres and styles as possible. As a professional DJ, it increases my value and marketability. As a performer, I add to my pallet of music in my library that I can provide to clients. Country and Latin Music are two of the hottest dance trends these days and why would a professional DJ not want to be a part of the fun and excitement?
I wonder if this is just a matter of ego and maturity? If you have any ideas on why so many professional DJs are afraid to venture beyond one or two genre, I would be most grateful for your thoughts.
It does not happen often, but every now and then I have to really dig into my experience as a professional DJ to figure out how to make things work at an event. Most recently, it was due to some cultural differences that I did not take into account and fortunately was helped by some of the guests to understand and find an effective solution.
Even though I have lived and traveled through a large section of Eastern and Central Asia, I still view how an event is supposed to go in the USA from an American perspective. This is not necessarily a bad thing but can be a blind-spot when not taking into account cultural differences. If I was in South Korea or Uzbekistan, I would not think twice about ASSUMING the way we do it here is the way it is done there. But being here in the USA, my vision is not as wide and expansive at times since it is my home. I ASSUMED that the order of events that are typical for an American social event were the same everywhere, big mistake. I know better. I ASSUMED that there is some time before dinner for people to mingle and settle, dinner, cake/coffee/tea and then everybody is ready to let go and dance till they are cleaning the tables and folding chairs. This is not the case everywhere.
The event I was providing professional DJ services for was a high school graduation party for an American Punjabi family. The event was at an Indian Restaurant and they followed Indian traditional order of social events. The dancing for events is between the appetizers and the main meal, not after the main meal. I did not know this, I do now!
Again, if not for the willing guests who showed me the way, I am afraid the party would not have been the success it was. I am grateful they took the time to explain to me how this works and what to do. They even shared with me what music to play when!
The lesson learned for me is an old lesson relived: Don’t make ASSUMPTIONS, especially with cultural differences.