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Disc jockey

Disc jockey

Overview
A disc jockey, also known as DJ, is a person who selects and plays recorded music for an audience. Originally, "disc" (sometimes spelled "disk", although this is now uncommon) referred to phonograph
Phonograph
The phonograph record player, or gramophone is a device introduced in 1877 that has had continued common use for reproducing sound recordings, although when first developed, the phonograph was used to both record and reproduce sounds...

 records, not the later Compact Disc
Compact Disc
The Compact Disc is an optical disc used to store digital data. It was originally developed to store and playback sound recordings exclusively, but later expanded to encompass data storage , write-once audio and data storage , rewritable media , Video Compact Discs , Super Video Compact Discs ,...

s. Today, the term includes all forms of music playback, no matter the medium.

There are several types of disc jockeys. Radio DJs or radio personalities
Radio personality
A radio personality is a person with an on-air position in radio broadcasting. A radio personality can be someone who introduces and discusses various genres of music, hosts a talk radio show that may take calls from listeners, or someone whose primary responsibility is to give news, weather,...

 introduce and play music that is broadcast on AM
AM broadcasting
AM broadcasting is the process of radio broadcasting using amplitude modulation. AM was the first method of impressing sound on a radio signal and is still widely used today. Commercial and public AM broadcasting is carried out in the medium wave band world wide, and on long wave and short wave...

, FM
FM broadcasting
FM broadcasting is a broadcasting technology pioneered by Edwin Howard Armstrong which uses frequency modulation to provide high-fidelity sound over broadcast radio. The term "FM band" describes the "frequency band in which FM is used for broadcasting"...

, shortwave
Shortwave
Shortwave radio refers to the upper MF and all of the HF portion of the radio spectrum, between 1,800–30,000 kHz. Shortwave radio received its name because the wavelengths in this band are shorter than 200 m which marked the original upper limit of the medium frequency band first used...

, digital
Digital radio
Digital radio has several meanings:1. Today the most common meaning is digital radio broadcasting technologies, such as the digital audio broadcasting system, also known as Eureka 147. In these systems, the analog audio signal is digitized into zeros and ones, compressed using formats such as...

, or internet radio
Internet radio
Internet radio is an audio service transmitted via the Internet...

 stations.
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Encyclopedia
A disc jockey, also known as DJ, is a person who selects and plays recorded music for an audience. Originally, "disc" (sometimes spelled "disk", although this is now uncommon) referred to phonograph
Phonograph
The phonograph record player, or gramophone is a device introduced in 1877 that has had continued common use for reproducing sound recordings, although when first developed, the phonograph was used to both record and reproduce sounds...

 records, not the later Compact Disc
Compact Disc
The Compact Disc is an optical disc used to store digital data. It was originally developed to store and playback sound recordings exclusively, but later expanded to encompass data storage , write-once audio and data storage , rewritable media , Video Compact Discs , Super Video Compact Discs ,...

s. Today, the term includes all forms of music playback, no matter the medium.

There are several types of disc jockeys. Radio DJs or radio personalities
Radio personality
A radio personality is a person with an on-air position in radio broadcasting. A radio personality can be someone who introduces and discusses various genres of music, hosts a talk radio show that may take calls from listeners, or someone whose primary responsibility is to give news, weather,...

 introduce and play music that is broadcast on AM
AM broadcasting
AM broadcasting is the process of radio broadcasting using amplitude modulation. AM was the first method of impressing sound on a radio signal and is still widely used today. Commercial and public AM broadcasting is carried out in the medium wave band world wide, and on long wave and short wave...

, FM
FM broadcasting
FM broadcasting is a broadcasting technology pioneered by Edwin Howard Armstrong which uses frequency modulation to provide high-fidelity sound over broadcast radio. The term "FM band" describes the "frequency band in which FM is used for broadcasting"...

, shortwave
Shortwave
Shortwave radio refers to the upper MF and all of the HF portion of the radio spectrum, between 1,800–30,000 kHz. Shortwave radio received its name because the wavelengths in this band are shorter than 200 m which marked the original upper limit of the medium frequency band first used...

, digital
Digital radio
Digital radio has several meanings:1. Today the most common meaning is digital radio broadcasting technologies, such as the digital audio broadcasting system, also known as Eureka 147. In these systems, the analog audio signal is digitized into zeros and ones, compressed using formats such as...

, or internet radio
Internet radio
Internet radio is an audio service transmitted via the Internet...

 stations. Club DJs select and play music in bars
Bar (establishment)
A bar is a business establishment that serves alcoholic drinks — beer, wine, liquor, and cocktails — for consumption on the premises.Bars provide stools or chairs that are placed at tables or counters for their patrons. Some bars have entertainment on a stage, such as a live band, comedians, go-go...

, nightclub
Nightclub
A nightclub is an entertainment venue which usually operates late into the night...

s, discothèques, at rave
Rave
Rave, rave dance, and rave party are parties that originated mostly from acid house parties, which featured fast-paced electronic music and light shows. At these parties people dance and socialize to dance music played by disc jockeys and occasionally live performers...

s, or even in a stadium
Stadium
A modern stadium is a place or venue for outdoor sports, concerts, or other events and consists of a field or stage either partly or completely surrounded by a structure designed to allow spectators to stand or sit and view the event.)Pausanias noted that for about half a century the only event...

. Hip hop
Hip hop
Hip hop is a form of musical expression and artistic culture that originated in African-American and Latino communities during the 1970s in New York City, specifically the Bronx. DJ Afrika Bambaataa outlined the four pillars of hip hop culture: MCing, DJing, breaking and graffiti writing...

 disc jockeys select and play music using multiple turntable
Phonograph
The phonograph record player, or gramophone is a device introduced in 1877 that has had continued common use for reproducing sound recordings, although when first developed, the phonograph was used to both record and reproduce sounds...

s, often to back up one or more MC
Master of Ceremonies
A Master of Ceremonies , or compere, is the host of a staged event or similar performance.An MC usually presents performers, speaks to the audience, and generally keeps the event moving....

s, and they may also do turntable scratching
Scratching
Scratching is a DJ or turntablist technique used to produce distinctive sounds by moving a vinyl record back and forth on a turntable while optionally manipulating the crossfader on a DJ mixer. While scratching is most commonly associated with hip hop music, since the late 1980s, it has been used...

 to create percussive sounds. In reggae
Reggae
Reggae is a music genre first developed in Jamaica in the late 1960s. While sometimes used in a broader sense to refer to most types of Jamaican music, the term reggae more properly denotes a particular music style that originated following on the development of ska and rocksteady.Reggae is based...

, the DJ is a vocalist who raps
Rapping
Rapping refers to "spoken or chanted rhyming lyrics". The art form can be broken down into different components, as in the book How to Rap where it is separated into “content”, “flow” , and “delivery”...

, "toasts", or chats over pre-recorded rhythm tracks while the individual choosing wwe

Equipment and techniques



Club DJ equipment may consist of:
  • Sound recordings in a DJ's preferred medium (for example, vinyl records, Compact Discs, computer media files, etc.);
  • A combination of two devices (or only one, if playback is digital) to play sound recordings, for alternating back and forth to create a continuous playback of music (for example, record players, Compact Disc players, computer media players such as an MP3
    MP3
    MPEG-1 or MPEG-2 Audio Layer III, more commonly referred to as MP3, is a patented digital audio encoding format using a form of lossy data compression...

     player, etc.);
  • A multiple Sequencer
    Music sequencer
    The music sequencer is a device or computer software to record, edit, play back the music, by handling note and performance information in several forms, typically :...

     which can mix MIDI tracks with Digital Audio;
  • A sound system
    Sound reinforcement system
    A sound reinforcement system is the combination of microphones, signal processors, amplifiers, and loudspeakers that makes live or pre-recorded sounds louder and may also distribute those sounds to a larger or more distant audience...

     for amplification or broadcasting of the recordings (for example, portable audio system, PA system) or a radio broadcasting system;
  • A DJ mixer
    DJ mixer
    A DJ mixer is a type of audio mixing console used by disc jockeys.The key features that differentiate a DJ mixer from other types of audio mixers are the ability to redirect a non-playing source to headphones and the presence of a crossfader, which allows for an easier transition between two sources...

    , which is an electronic (usually 2- or 4-channel) audio mixer
    Mixing console
    In professional audio, a mixing console, or audio mixer, also called a sound board, mixing desk, or mixer is an electronic device for combining , routing, and changing the level, timbre and/or dynamics of audio signals. A mixer can mix analog or digital signals, depending on the type of mixer...

     usually equipped with a crossfader
    Fade (audio engineering)
    In audio engineering, a fade is a gradual increase or decrease in the level of an audio signal. The term can also be used for film cinematography or theater lighting, in much the same way ....

     used to smoothly go from one song to another, using two or more playback devices;
  • Headphones
    Headphones
    Headphones are a pair of small loudspeakers, or less commonly a single speaker, held close to a user's ears and connected to a signal source such as an audio amplifier, radio, CD player or portable Media Player. They are also known as stereophones, headsets or, colloquially, cans. The in-ear...

    , used to listen to one recording while the other recording is being played to the audience, or to listen to both recordings simultaneously; and
  • Optionally, a microphone
    Microphone
    A microphone is an acoustic-to-electric transducer or sensor that converts sound into an electrical signal. In 1877, Emile Berliner invented the first microphone used as a telephone voice transmitter...

    , so that the DJ can introduce songs and speak to the audiences.

Other equipment could or can be added to the basic DJ setup (above), providing unique sound manipulations. Such devices include, but are not limited to:
  • Electronic effects unit
    Effects unit
    Effects units are electronic devices that alter how a musical instrument or other audio source sounds. Some effects subtly "color" a sound, while others transform it dramatically. Effects are used during live performances or in the studio, typically with electric guitar, keyboard and bass...

    s (delay
    Delay (audio effect)
    Delay is an audio effect which records an input signal to an audio storage medium, and then plays it back after a period of time. The delayed signal may either be played back multiple times, or played back into the recording again, to create the sound of a repeating, decaying echo.-Early delay...

    , reverb, octave
    Octave
    In music, an octave is the interval between one musical pitch and another with half or double its frequency. The octave relationship is a natural phenomenon that has been referred to as the "basic miracle of music", the use of which is "common in most musical systems"...

    , equalizer
    Equalization (audio)
    Equalization is the process commonly used in sound recording and reproduction to alter the frequency response of an audio system using linear filters. Most hi-fi equipment uses relatively simple filters to make bass and treble adjustments. Graphic and parametric equalizers have much more...

    , chorus
    Chorus effect
    In music, a chorus effect occurs when individual sounds with roughly the same timbre and nearly the same pitch converge and are perceived as one...

    , etc.). Some club DJs use a subharmonic synthesizer effect which either doubles low frequencies with energy added an octave lower or synthesizes harmonics such that the impression of a very low bass sound is added to the mix.
  • A computerised performance system, which can be used with vinyl emulation software
    Vinyl Emulation Software
    Vinyl emulation software allows the user to physically manipulate the playback of digital audio files on a computer using the turntables as an interface, thus preserving the hands-on feel of deejaying with vinyl while allowing playback of audio recordings not available in phonograph form...

     to manipulate digital files on the computer in real time.
  • Multi-stylus headshells, which allow a DJ to play different grooves of the same record at the same time.
  • Special DJ digital controller
    DJ digital controller
    DJ digital controllers are MIDI controllers or USB-to-analog devices used for controlling computer based DJ software, installed on a PC or laptop.-Operation:The DJ digital controllers aim to emulate the traditional mixer/turntable/CD turntable set up...

     hardware can manipulate digital files on a PC or laptop;
  • Sampler
    Sampler (musical instrument)
    A sampler is an electronic musical instrument similar in some respects to a synthesizer but, instead of generating sounds, it uses recordings of sounds that are loaded or recorded into it by the user and then played back by means of a keyboard, sequencer or other triggering device to perform or...

    s, sequencers, electronic musical keyboards (synthesizers), or drum machine
    Drum machine
    A drum machine is an electronic musical instrument designed to imitate the sound of drums or other percussion instruments. They are used in a variety of musical genres, not just purely electronic music...

    s.


Several techniques are used by DJs as a means to better mix and blend recorded music. These techniques primarily include the cueing, equalization
Equalization (audio)
Equalization is the process commonly used in sound recording and reproduction to alter the frequency response of an audio system using linear filters. Most hi-fi equipment uses relatively simple filters to make bass and treble adjustments. Graphic and parametric equalizers have much more...

, and audio mixing
Audio mixing (recorded music)
In audio recording, audio mixing is the process by which multiple recorded sounds are combined into one or more channels, most commonly two-channel stereo. In the process, the source signals' level, frequency content, dynamics, and panoramic position are manipulated and effects such as reverb may...

 of two or more sound sources. The complexity and frequency of special techniques depends largely on the setting in which a DJ is working. Radio DJs are less likely to focus on music-mixing procedures than club DJs, who rely on a smooth transition between songs using a range of techniques.

Club DJ turntable techniques include beatmatching
Beatmatching
Beatmatching is a disc jockey technique of pitch shifting or timestretching a track to match its tempo to that of the currently playing track e.g. the kicks and snares in two house records hit at the same time when both records are played simultaneously...

, phrasing
Phrasing (DJ)
In DJing, phrasing, also called stage matching, refers to alignment of phrases of two tracks in a mix. This allows the transition between the tracks to be done without breaking the musical structure....

, and slip-cueing
Slip-cueing
Slip-cueing is a turntable-based DJ technique that consists of holding a record still while the platter rotates underneath the slipmat and releasing it at the right moment. This way the record accelerates to the right speed almost immediately, without waiting for the heavy platter to start up...

 to preserve energy on a dancefloor. Turntablism
Turntablism
Turntablism is the art of manipulating sounds and creating music using phonograph turntables and a DJ mixer.The word 'turntablist' was coined in 1995 by DJ Babu to describe the difference between a DJ who just plays records, and one who performs by touching and moving the records, stylus and mixer...

 embodies the art of cutting, beat juggling
Beat juggling
Beat juggling is the act of manipulating two or more samples , in order to create a unique composition, using multiple turntables and one or more mixers. This can involve pauses, scratching, backspins and delays...

, scratching
Scratching
Scratching is a DJ or turntablist technique used to produce distinctive sounds by moving a vinyl record back and forth on a turntable while optionally manipulating the crossfader on a DJ mixer. While scratching is most commonly associated with hip hop music, since the late 1980s, it has been used...

, needle drops, phase shifting, back spinning
Back spinning
Back spinning describes the act of manually manipulating a vinyl record , using enough force to cause the record to spin backward . It is often used in DJing; many DJs use specialty slipmats so that friction will be reduced between the record and the platter...

, and more to perform the transitions and overdubs of samples
Sampling (music)
In music, sampling is the act of taking a portion, or sample, of one sound recording and reusing it as an instrument or a different sound recording of a song or piece. Sampling was originally developed by experimental musicians working with musique concrète and electroacoustic music, who physically...

 in a more creative manner (although turntablism is often considered a use of the turntable as a musical instrument
Musical instrument
A musical instrument is a device created or adapted for the purpose of making musical sounds. In principle, any object that produces sound can serve as a musical instrument—it is through purpose that the object becomes a musical instrument. The history of musical instruments dates back to the...

 rather than a tool for blending recorded music). Professional DJs may use harmonic mixing
Harmonic mixing
Harmonic mixing or key mixing is a DJ's continuous mix between two pre-recorded tracks that are most often either in the same key, or their keys are relative or in a subdominant or dominant relationship with one another....

 to choose songs that are in compatible musical keys.

History



19th century to 1920s


In 1857, Leon Scott invented the phonoautograph in France
France
The French Republic , The French Republic , The French Republic , (commonly known as France , is a unitary semi-presidential republic in Western Europe with several overseas territories and islands located on other continents and in the Indian, Pacific, and Atlantic oceans. Metropolitan France...

, the first device to record sound but with no method of playback. In 1877, Charles Cros
Charles Cros
Charles Cros was a French poet and inventor. He was born in Fabrezan, Aude, France, 35 km to the East of Carcassonne....

 invented a phonograph in France that was patented before Thomas Alva Edison's invention but never built. Edison invented the phonograph cylinder
Phonograph cylinder
Phonograph cylinders were the earliest commercial medium for recording and reproducing sound. Commonly known simply as "records" in their era of greatest popularity , these cylinder shaped objects had an audio recording engraved on the outside surface which could be reproduced when the cylinder was...

, the first device to play back recorded sound, in the United States
United States
The United States of America is a federal constitutional republic comprising fifty states and a federal district...

. In 1892, Emile Berliner
Emile Berliner
Emile Berliner or Emil Berliner was a German-born American inventor. He is best known for developing the disc record gramophone...

 began commercial production of his gramophone records, the first disc records to be offered to the public. In 1906, Reginald Fessenden
Reginald Fessenden
Reginald Aubrey Fessenden , a naturalized American citizen born in Canada, was an inventor who performed pioneering experiments in radio, including early—and possibly the first—radio transmissions of voice and music...

 transmitted the first audio radio broadcast
Broadcasting
Broadcasting is the distribution of audio and video content to a dispersed audience via any audio visual medium. Receiving parties may include the general public or a relatively large subset of thereof...

 in history also playing the first record, that of a contralto
Contralto
Contralto is the deepest female classical singing voice, with the lowest tessitura, falling between tenor and mezzo-soprano. It typically ranges between the F below middle C to the second G above middle C , although at the extremes some voices can reach the E below middle C or the second B above...

 singing Handel's Largo from Xerxes.

The world's first radio disc jockey was Ray Newby, of Stockton, California. In 1909, at 16 years of age, Newby began regularly playing records on a small spark transmitter while a student at Herrold College of Engineering and Wireless, located in San Jose, California, under the authority of radio pioneer Charles "Doc" Herrold
Charles Herrold
Charles David 'Doc' Herrold, was an American radio broadcasting pioneer who in 1909 created the world's second radio station....

.
By 1910, regular radio broadcasting had started to use "live" as well as prerecorded sound. In the early radio age, content typically included comedy, drama, news, music, and sports reporting. The on-air announcers and programmers would later be known as disc jockeys. In the 1920s, juke joint
Juke joint
Juke joint is the vernacular term for an informal establishment featuring music, dancing, gambling, and drinking, primarily operated by African American people in the southeastern United States. The term "juke" is believed to derive from the Gullah word joog, meaning rowdy or disorderly...

s became popular as places for dancing and drinking to recorded jukebox music. In 1927, Christopher Stone became the first radio announcer and programmer in the United Kingdom
United Kingdom
The United Kingdom of Great Britain and Northern IrelandIn the United Kingdom and Dependencies, other languages have been officially recognised as legitimate autochthonous languages under the European Charter for Regional or Minority Languages...

, on the BBC
BBC
The British Broadcasting Corporation is a British public service broadcaster. Its headquarters is at Broadcasting House in the City of Westminster, London. It is the largest broadcaster in the world, with about 23,000 staff...

 radio station. In 1929, Thomas Edison ceased phonograph cylinder manufacture, ending the disc and cylinder rivalry.

1930s–1950s


In 1935, American radio commentator Walter Winchell
Walter Winchell
Walter Winchell was an American newspaper and radio gossip commentator.-Professional career:Born Walter Weinschel in New York City, he left school in the sixth grade and started performing in a vaudeville troupe known as Gus Edwards' "Newsboys Sextet."His career in journalism was begun by posting...

 coined the term "disc jockey" (the combination of disc, referring to the disc records, and jockey, which is an operator of a machine) as a description of radio announcer Martin Block
Martin Block
Martin Block born in Los Angeles, California, was an American disc jockey. Walter Winchell is said to have invented the term "disk jockey" as a means of describing Block's radio work.-Early years:...

, the first announcer to become a star. While his audience was awaiting developments in the Lindbergh kidnapping
Lindbergh kidnapping
The kidnapping of Charles Augustus Lindbergh, Jr., was the abduction of the son of aviator Charles Lindbergh and Anne Morrow Lindbergh. The toddler, 18 months old at the time, was abducted from his family home in East Amwell, New Jersey, near the town of Hopewell, New Jersey, on the evening of...

, Block played records and created the illusion that he was broadcasting from a ballroom, with the nation’s top dance bands performing live. The show, which he called Make Believe Ballroom, was an instant hit. The term "disc jockey" appeared in print in Variety
Variety (magazine)
Variety is an American weekly entertainment-trade magazine founded in New York City, New York, in 1905 by Sime Silverman. With the rise of the importance of the motion-picture industry, Daily Variety, a daily edition based in Los Angeles, California, was founded by Silverman in 1933. In 1998, the...

in 1941.
Prior to this, most music heard on radio was live; most radio stations had an orchestra or band on the payroll. The Federal Communications Commission
Federal Communications Commission
The Federal Communications Commission is an independent agency of the United States government, created, Congressional statute , and with the majority of its commissioners appointed by the current President. The FCC works towards six goals in the areas of broadband, competition, the spectrum, the...

 also clearly favored live music, providing accelerated license approval to stations promising not to use any recordings for their first three years on the air. Many noted recording artists tried to keep their recorded works off the air by having their records labeled as not being legal for airplay. It took a Federal court ruling in 1940 to establish that a recording artist had no legal right to control the use of a record after it was sold.

In 1943, Jimmy Savile
Jimmy Savile
Sir James Wilson Vincent Savile, OBE, KCSG was an English disc jockey, television presenter and media personality, best known for his BBC television show Jim'll Fix It, and for being the first and last presenter of the long-running BBC music chart show Top of the Pops...

 launched the world's first DJ dance party by playing jazz
Jazz
Jazz is a musical style that originated at the beginning of the 20th century in African American communities in the Southern United States. It was born out of a mix of African and European music traditions. From its early development until the present, jazz has incorporated music from 19th and 20th...

 records in the upstairs function room of the Loyal Order of Ancient Shepherds in Otley
Otley
-Transport:The main roads through the town are the A660 to the south east, which connects Otley to Bramhope, Adel and Leeds city centre, and the A65 to the west, which goes to Ilkley and Skipton. The A6038 heads to Guiseley, Shipley and Bradford, connecting with the A65...

, England
England
England is a country that is part of the United Kingdom. It shares land borders with Scotland to the north and Wales to the west; the Irish Sea is to the north west, the Celtic Sea to the south west, with the North Sea to the east and the English Channel to the south separating it from continental...

. In 1947, he claims to have become the first DJ to use twin turntables for continuous play, and in 1958 became a radio DJ at Radio Luxembourg
Radio Luxembourg
Radio Luxembourg may refer to:*Radio Luxembourg , a Long Wave commercial radio station that began broadcasting from the Grand Duchy of Luxembourg in 1933...

. Also in 1947, the Whiskey à Go-Go nightclub opened in Paris, France, considered to be the world's first commercial discothèque, or disco (deriving its name from the French word meaning a nightclub where the featured entertainment is recorded music rather than an on-stage band). Regine
Regine
Regine or Régine is a feminine given name. Regine is a German form of Regina, and Régine is a French form of Regina. It may refer to any of the following persons:-Regine:*Regine Heitzer, Austrian figure skater...

 began playing on twin turntables there in 1953. Discos began appearing across Europe and the United States.

The postwar period coincided with the rise of the radio disc jockey as a celebrity separate from the radio station, also known as a "radio personality
Radio personality
A radio personality is a person with an on-air position in radio broadcasting. A radio personality can be someone who introduces and discusses various genres of music, hosts a talk radio show that may take calls from listeners, or someone whose primary responsibility is to give news, weather,...

". In the days before station-controlled playlists, the DJ often followed their personal tastes in music selection. DJs also played a role in exposing rock and roll artists to large, national audiences. While at WERE
WERE
WERE — branded News/Talk 1490 WERE-AM — is a commercial radio station licensed to Cleveland Heights, Ohio broadcasting a news/talk format. The station is owned by Radio One, and has studios at 2510 St. Clair Avenue, while the transmitter is along Euclid Avenue near East 118th Street, adjacent to...

 in Cleveland, Ohio
Cleveland, Ohio
Cleveland is a city in the U.S. state of Ohio and is the county seat of Cuyahoga County, the most populous county in the state. The city is located in northeastern Ohio on the southern shore of Lake Erie, approximately west of the Pennsylvania border...

, DJ Bill Randle
Bill Randle
Bill Randle was an American disc jockey, lawyer and university professor.He was born William McKinley Randle Jr. in Detroit, Michigan. In Detroit, he hosted a popular show on WJLB-AM radio called The Interracial Goodwill Hour, featuring rhythm and blues music and hot jazz...

 was one of the first to introduce Elvis Presley
Elvis Presley
Elvis Aaron Presley was one of the most popular American singers of the 20th century. A cultural icon, he is widely known by the single name Elvis. He is often referred to as the "King of Rock and Roll" or simply "the King"....

 to radio audiences in the northeastern US.

Notable US
United States
The United States of America is a federal constitutional republic comprising fifty states and a federal district...

 radio disc jockeys of the period include Alan Freed
Alan Freed
Albert James "Alan" Freed , also known as Moondog, was an American disc-jockey. He became internationally known for promoting the mix of blues, country and rhythm and blues music on the radio in the United States and Europe under the name of rock and roll...

, Wolfman Jack
Wolfman Jack
Robert Weston Smith, known commonly as Wolfman Jack was a gravelly voiced US disc jockey who became famous in the 1960s and 1970s.-Early career:...

, Kasey Kasem, and their British
England
England is a country that is part of the United Kingdom. It shares land borders with Scotland to the north and Wales to the west; the Irish Sea is to the north west, the Celtic Sea to the south west, with the North Sea to the east and the English Channel to the south separating it from continental...

 counterparts such as the BBC
BBC
The British Broadcasting Corporation is a British public service broadcaster. Its headquarters is at Broadcasting House in the City of Westminster, London. It is the largest broadcaster in the world, with about 23,000 staff...

's Brian Matthew and Radio Caroline
Radio Caroline
Radio Caroline is an English radio station founded in 1964 by Ronan O'Rahilly to circumvent the record companies' control of popular music broadcasting in the United Kingdom and the BBC's radio broadcasting monopoly...

's Tony Blackburn
Tony Blackburn
Tony Blackburn is an English disc jockey, who broadcast on the "pirate" stations Radio Caroline and Radio London in the 1960s and was the first disc jockey to broadcast on BBC Radio 1 in 1967. In 2002 he was the winner of the ITV reality TV programme I'm a Celebrity.....

 and John Peel
John Peel
John Robert Parker Ravenscroft, OBE , known professionally as John Peel, was an English disc jockey, radio presenter, record producer and journalist. He was the longest-serving of the original BBC Radio 1 DJs, broadcasting regularly from 1967 until his death in 2004...

.

Freed is commonly referred to as the "father of rock and roll" due to his promotion of the music and his introduction of the phrase "rock and roll" on radio in the early 1950s. Freed also made a practice of presenting music by African-American artists rather than cover versions by white artists on his radio program. Freed's career ended when it was shown that he had accepted payola
Payola
Payola, in the American music industry, is the illegal practice of payment or other inducement by record companies for the broadcast of recordings on music radio, in which the song is presented as being part of the normal day's broadcast. Under U.S...

, a practice that was highly controversial at the time, resulting in his being fired from his job at WABC
WABC
WABC may refer to:* WABC , a radio station licensed to New York, New York, United States* WABC-TV, a television station licensed to New York, New York, United States* Classic Gold WABC, a defunct British radio station...

.

In the 1950s, American radio DJs would appear live at "sock hops" and "platter parties" and assume the role of a human jukebox. They would usually play 45-rpm records, featuring hit singles on one turntable while talking between songs. In some cases, a live drummer was hired to play beats between songs to maintain the dance floor. In 1955, Bob Casey, a well-known "sock hop" DJ, brought the two-turntable system to the U.S. Throughout the 1950s, payola continued to be a problem and one result of the payola scandal was tighter control of the music by station management. The Top 40 format emerged, where popular songs are played repeatedly.

In the late 1950s, sound systems, a new form of public entertainment, were developed in the ghetto
Ghetto
A ghetto is a section of a city predominantly occupied by a group who live there, especially because of social, economic, or legal issues.The term was originally used in Venice to describe the area where Jews were compelled to live. The term now refers to an overcrowded urban area often associated...

s of Kingston, Jamaica
Kingston, Jamaica
Kingston is the capital and largest city of Jamaica, located on the southeastern coast of the island. It faces a natural harbour protected by the Palisadoes, a long sand spit which connects the town of Port Royal and the Norman Manley International Airport to the rest of the island...

. Promoters, who called themselves DJs, would throw large parties in the streets that centered on the disc jockey, called the "selector," who played dance music from large, loud PA systems and bantered over the music with a boastful, rhythmic chanting style called "toasting". These parties quickly became profitable for the promoters, who would sell admission, food, and alcohol, leading to fierce competition between DJs for the biggest sound systems and newest records.

1960s and 1970s


In the mid-1960s, nightclubs and discothèques continued to grow in Europe and the United States. Specialized DJ equipment, such as Rudy Bozak
Rudy Bozak
Rudolph Thomas Bozak was an audio electronics and acoustics designer and engineer in the field of sound reproduction. His parents were Bohemian Czech immigrants; Rudy was born in Uniontown, Pennsylvania. Bozak studied at Milwaukee School of Engineering; in 1981, the school awarded him an honorary...

's classic CMA-10-2DL mixer, began to appear on the market. In 1969, American club DJ Francis Grasso
Francis Grasso
Francis Grasso ) was an American disc jockey from New York City, best known for inventing the technique of slip-cueing and later beatmatching which is the foundation of the modern club DJ's technique.Grasso started his DJ career in 1967 at a New York nightclub called Salvation II...

 popularized beatmatching at New York
New York
New York is a state in the Northeastern region of the United States. It is the nation's third most populous state. New York is bordered by New Jersey and Pennsylvania to the south, and by Connecticut, Massachusetts and Vermont to the east...

's Sanctuary nightclub. Beatmatching is the technique of creating seamless transitions between records with matching beats, or tempos. Grasso also developed slip-cuing
Slip-cueing
Slip-cueing is a turntable-based DJ technique that consists of holding a record still while the platter rotates underneath the slipmat and releasing it at the right moment. This way the record accelerates to the right speed almost immediately, without waiting for the heavy platter to start up...

, the technique of holding a record still while the turntable is revolving underneath, releasing it at the desired moment to create a sudden transition from the previous record.

By 1968, the number of dance clubs started to decline; most American clubs either closed or were transformed into clubs featuring live bands. Neighborhood block parties that were modelled after Jamaican sound systems gained popularity in Europe and in the borough
Borough
A borough is an administrative division in various countries. In principle, the term borough designates a self-governing township although, in practice, official use of the term varies widely....

s of New York City
New York City
New York is the most populous city in the United States and the center of the New York Metropolitan Area, one of the most populous metropolitan areas in the world. New York exerts a significant impact upon global commerce, finance, media, art, fashion, research, technology, education, and...

.

In 1973, Jamaican-born
Jamaica
Jamaica is an island nation of the Greater Antilles, in length, up to in width and 10,990 square kilometres in area. It is situated in the Caribbean Sea, about south of Cuba, and west of Hispaniola, the island harbouring the nation-states Haiti and the Dominican Republic...

 DJ Kool Herc
DJ Kool Herc
Clive Campbell , also known as Kool Herc, DJ Kool Herc and Kool DJ Herc, is a Jamaican-born DJ who is credited with originating hip hop music, in The Bronx, New York City...

, widely regarded as the "father of hip-hop culture," performed at block parties in his Bronx
The Bronx
The Bronx is the northernmost of the five boroughs of New York City. It is also known as Bronx County, the last of the 62 counties of New York State to be incorporated...

 neighborhood and developed a technique of mixing back and forth between two identical records to extend the rhythmic instrumental segment, or break
Break (music)
In popular music, a break is an instrumental or percussion section or interlude during a song derived from or related to stop-time – being a "break" from the main parts of the song or piece....

. Turntablism, the art of using turntables not only to play music but to manipulate sound and create original music, began to develop.

In 1974, Technics
Technics (brand)
1960s:*SX-601 Electronic Organ — an origin of Technics SX keyboard series, the result of cooperative works of National Electronic Organ Company and Ace Tone...

 released the first SL-1200
Technics SL-1200
The Technics SL-1200 MK2 MK3 MK4 MK5 MK5G M5G MK6 LTD & GLD are a series of turntables manufactured since October 1972 by Matsushita under the brand name of Technics. S means "Stereo", L means "Player". Originally released as a high fidelity consumer record player, it quickly became adopted among...

 turntable, which evolved into the SL-1200 MK2 in 1979—which, as of the early-2010s, remains the industry standard for DJing. In 1974, German electronic music
Electronic music
Electronic music is music that employs electronic musical instruments and electronic music technology in its production. In general a distinction can be made between sound produced using electromechanical means and that produced using electronic technology. Examples of electromechanical sound...

 band Kraftwerk
Kraftwerk
Kraftwerk is an influential electronic music band from Düsseldorf, Germany. The group was formed by Ralf Hütter and Florian Schneider in 1970, and was fronted by them until Schneider's departure in 2008...

 released the 22-minute song "Autobahn," which takes up the entire first side of that LP. Years later, Kraftwerk would become a significant influence on hip-hop
Hip hop music
Hip hop music, also called hip-hop, rap music or hip-hop music, is a musical genre consisting of a stylized rhythmic music that commonly accompanies rapping, a rhythmic and rhyming speech that is chanted...

 artists such as Afrika Bambaataa
Afrika Bambaataa
Afrika Bambaataa is an American DJ from the South Bronx, New York who was instrumental in the early development of hip hop throughout the 1980s. Afrika Bambaataa is one of the three originators of break-beat deejaying, and is respectfully known as the "Grandfather" and the Amen Ra of Universal...

 and house music
House music
House music is a genre of electronic dance music that originated in Chicago, Illinois, United States in the early 1980s. It was initially popularized in mid-1980s discothèques catering to the African-American, Latino American, and gay communities; first in Chicago circa 1984, then in other...

 pioneer Frankie Knuckles
Frankie Knuckles
Frankie Knuckles is an American DJ, record producer and remix artist. He played an important role in developing house music as a Chicago DJ in the 1980s and he helped to popularize house music in the 1990s, with his work as a producer and remixer...

. During the mid-1970s, Hip-hop music
Hip hop music
Hip hop music, also called hip-hop, rap music or hip-hop music, is a musical genre consisting of a stylized rhythmic music that commonly accompanies rapping, a rhythmic and rhyming speech that is chanted...

 and culture began to emerge, originating among urban African American
African American
African Americans are citizens or residents of the United States who have at least partial ancestry from any of the native populations of Sub-Saharan Africa and are the direct descendants of enslaved Africans within the boundaries of the present United States...

s and Latino
Latino
The demonyms Latino and Latina , are defined in English language dictionaries as:* "a person of Latin-American descent."* "A Latin American."* "A person of Hispanic, especially Latin-American, descent, often one living in the United States."...

s in New York City. The four main elements of Hip Hop culture
Hip hop
Hip hop is a form of musical expression and artistic culture that originated in African-American and Latino communities during the 1970s in New York City, specifically the Bronx. DJ Afrika Bambaataa outlined the four pillars of hip hop culture: MCing, DJing, breaking and graffiti writing...

 are graffiti
Graffiti
Graffiti is the name for images or lettering scratched, scrawled, painted or marked in any manner on property....

, DJing, breakdancing, and MCing (rapping)
Rapping
Rapping refers to "spoken or chanted rhyming lyrics". The art form can be broken down into different components, as in the book How to Rap where it is separated into “content”, “flow” , and “delivery”...

.

In the mid-1970s, the soul-funk blend of dance pop known as disco took off in the mainstream pop charts in the United States
United States
The United States of America is a federal constitutional republic comprising fifty states and a federal district...

 and Europe
Europe
Europe is, by convention, one of the world's seven continents. Comprising the westernmost peninsula of Eurasia, Europe is generally 'divided' from Asia to its east by the watershed divides of the Ural and Caucasus Mountains, the Ural River, the Caspian and Black Seas, and the waterways connecting...

, causing discothèques to experience a rebirth. Unlike many late-1960s clubs, which featured live bands, discothèques used the DJ's selection and mixing of records as the entertainment. In 1975, record pools began, providing disc jockeys access to newer music from the industry in an efficient method.

In 1975, hip-hop DJ Grand Wizard Theodore
Grand Wizard Theodore
Grand Wizzard Theodore , is an American hip hop DJ. He is widely credited as the inventor of scratching.Born Theodore Livingston in Bronx, New York, his brother, Mean Gene, was Theodore's mentor, and began teaching him DJing before Theodore was even a teen...

 invented the scratching technique by accident. In 1976, American DJ, editor, and producer Walter Gibbons
Walter Gibbons
Walter Gibbons was an American record producer, early disco DJ and remixer.-Influence:He was an important part of the early 1970s New York disco underground scene, influencing garage and House music DJs like Frankie Knuckles and Larry Levan. He also laid the foundations for early 1980s...

 remixed "Ten Percent" by Double Exposure
Double Exposure (band)
Double Exposure is an American Disco era band hailing from Philadelphia, USA'Double Exposure’ are James Williams, Joseph Harris, Charles Whittington and Leonard ‘Butch’ Davis who were originally called ‘United Image’ back in the 1960’s...

, one of the earliest commercially released 12″ singles (aka "maxi-single"). In 1979, the Sugar Hill Gang released "Rapper's Delight
Rapper's Delight
"Rapper's Delight" is a 1979 single by American hip hop trio The Sugarhill Gang. While it was not the first single to feature rapping, it is generally considered to be the song that first popularized hip hop in the United States and around the world. The song's opening lyric "I said a hip hop, a...

", the first hip-hop record to become a hit. It was also the first real breakthrough for sampling
Sampling (music)
In music, sampling is the act of taking a portion, or sample, of one sound recording and reusing it as an instrument or a different sound recording of a song or piece. Sampling was originally developed by experimental musicians working with musique concrète and electroacoustic music, who physically...

, as the bassline of Chic
Chic (band)
Chic was an African American disco and R&B band that was organized during 1976 by guitarist Nile Rodgers and bassist Bernard Edwards. It is known best for its commercially successful disco songs, including "Dance, Dance, Dance " , "Everybody Dance" , "Le Freak" , "I Want Your Love" , "Good Times"...

's "Good Times" laid the foundation for the song.

In 1977, Saratoga Springs, NY disc jockey Tom L. Lewis introduced the Disco Bible (later renamed Disco Beats), which published hit disco songs listed by beats per minute (tempo), as well as by either artist or song title. Billboard ran an article on the new publication, and it went national relatively quickly. The list made it easier for beginning DJs to learn how to create seamless transitions between songs without dancers having to change their rhythm on the dance floor. Today, DJs can find the beats per minute of songs in the BPM List.

1980s


In 1981, the cable television network MTV
MTV
MTV, formerly an initialism of Music Television, is an American network based in New York City that launched on August 1, 1981. The original purpose of the channel was to play music videos guided by on-air hosts known as VJs....

 was launched, originally devoted to music videos, especially popular rock music. The term "video jockey", or VJ, was used to describe the fresh-faced youth who introduced the music videos. In 1982, the demise of disco in the mainstream by the summer of 1982 forced many nightclubs to either close or change entertainment styles, such as by providing MTV-style video dancing or live bands. Released in 1982, the song "Planet Rock" by DJ Afrika Bambaataa
Afrika Bambaataa
Afrika Bambaataa is an American DJ from the South Bronx, New York who was instrumental in the early development of hip hop throughout the 1980s. Afrika Bambaataa is one of the three originators of break-beat deejaying, and is respectfully known as the "Grandfather" and the Amen Ra of Universal...

 was the first hip-hop song to feature synthesizer
Synthesizer
A synthesizer is an electronic instrument capable of producing sounds by generating electrical signals of different frequencies. These electrical signals are played through a loudspeaker or set of headphones...

s. The song melded electro hip-hop beats influenced by Yellow Magic Orchestra
Yellow Magic Orchestra
Sakamoto first worked with Hosono as a member of his live band in 1976, while Takahashi recruited Sakamoto to produce his debut solo recording in 1977 following the split of the Sadistic Mika Band...

 with the melody from Kraftwerk's "Trans-Europe Express." In 1982, the Compact Disc
Compact Disc
The Compact Disc is an optical disc used to store digital data. It was originally developed to store and playback sound recordings exclusively, but later expanded to encompass data storage , write-once audio and data storage , rewritable media , Video Compact Discs , Super Video Compact Discs ,...

 reached the public market in Asia, and early the following year in other markets. This event is often seen as the "Big Bang" of the digital audio
Digital audio
Digital audio is sound reproduction using pulse-code modulation and digital signals. Digital audio systems include analog-to-digital conversion , digital-to-analog conversion , digital storage, processing and transmission components...

 revolution.

In the early 1980s, NYC disco DJ Larry Levan
Larry Levan
Larry Levan was a DJ best known for his decade-long residency at the New York City night club Paradise Garage, which has been described as the prototype of the modern dance club. He developed a cult following who referred to his sets as "Saturday Mass"...

, known for his eclectic mixes, gained a cult following, and the Paradise Garage
Paradise Garage
The Paradise Garage was a discotheque notable in the history of modern gay and nightclub cultures and in dance and pop music. It was founded by Michael Brody, its sole proprietor, and was located at 84 King Street, in the Hudson Square neighborhood of New York City. It operated from 1976 to 1987...

, the nightclub at which he spun, became the prototype for the modern dance club where the music and the DJ were showcased. Around the same time, the disco-influenced electronic style of dance music called house music
House music
House music is a genre of electronic dance music that originated in Chicago, Illinois, United States in the early 1980s. It was initially popularized in mid-1980s discothèques catering to the African-American, Latino American, and gay communities; first in Chicago circa 1984, then in other...

 emerged in Chicago. The name was derived from the Warehouse Club
Warehouse club
A warehouse club is a retail store, usually selling a wide variety of merchandise, in which customers are required to buy large, wholesale quantities of the store's products, which makes these clubs attractive to both bargain hunters and small business owners. The clubs are able to keep prices low...

 in Chicago
Chicago
Chicago is the largest city in the US state of Illinois. With nearly 2.7 million residents, it is the most populous city in the Midwestern United States and the third most populous in the US, after New York City and Los Angeles...

, where resident DJ Frankie Knuckles
Frankie Knuckles
Frankie Knuckles is an American DJ, record producer and remix artist. He played an important role in developing house music as a Chicago DJ in the 1980s and he helped to popularize house music in the 1990s, with his work as a producer and remixer...

 mixed old disco classics and Eurosynth pop. House music is essentially disco music with electronic drum machine beats. The common element of most house music is a 4/4 beat generated by a drum machine
Drum machine
A drum machine is an electronic musical instrument designed to imitate the sound of drums or other percussion instruments. They are used in a variety of musical genres, not just purely electronic music...

 or other electronic means (such as a sampler), together with a solid (usually also electronically generated) synth bassline
Bassline
A bassline is the term used in many styles of popular music, such as jazz, blues, funk, dub and electronic music for the low-pitched instrumental part or line played by a rhythm section instrument such as the electric bass, double bass, tuba or keyboard...

. In 1983, Jesse Saunders
Jesse Saunders
Jesse Saunders is a DJ, music and film producer, remix artist, promoter and entrepreneur. He is one of the pioneers of House music, often cited as "the originator of House music". His 1984 single, "On & On", co-written with Vince Lawrence, was first record with a house DJ as the artist that was...

 released what some consider the first house music track, "On & On." The mid-1980s also saw the emergence of New York Garage
New York house
Garage house is a subgenre of electronic dance music developed in the Paradise Garage nightclub in New York City and club Zanzibar in New Jersey, USA.DJs playing this genre include Junior Vasquez, Tony Humphries and Larry Levan....

, a house music hybrid that was inspired by Levan's style and sometimes eschewed the accentuated high-hats of the Chicago house
Chicago house
Chicago house is a style of house music, a genre of electronic dance music which emerged in Chicago in the mid-1980s. Stylistically, Chicago house has no widely accepted definition, but generally includes the first house music productions by Chicago-based artists throughout the 1980s, and any later...

 sound.

During the mid-1980s, techno music emerged from the Detroit club scene. Being geographically located between Chicago and New York, Detroit techno artists combined elements of Chicago house and New York garage along with European imports. Techno distanced itself from disco's roots by becoming almost purely electronic with synthesized beats. In 1985, the Winter Music Conference started in Fort Lauderdale
Fort Lauderdale, Florida
Fort Lauderdale is a city in the U.S. state of Florida, on the Atlantic coast. It is the county seat of Broward County. As of the 2010 census, the city had a population of 165,521. It is a principal city of the South Florida metropolitan area, which was home to 5,564,635 people at the 2010...

 Florida and became the premier electronic music conference for dance music disc jockeys.

In 1985, TRAX Dance Music Guide was launched by American Record Pool in Beverly Hills. It was the first national DJ-published music magazine, created on the Macintosh
Macintosh
The Macintosh , or Mac, is a series of several lines of personal computers designed, developed, and marketed by Apple Inc. The first Macintosh was introduced by Apple's then-chairman Steve Jobs on January 24, 1984; it was the first commercially successful personal computer to feature a mouse and a...

 computer using extensive music market research and early desktop publishing tools. In 1986, "Walk This Way
Walk This Way
"Walk This Way" is a song by American hard rock group Aerosmith. Written by Steven Tyler and Joe Perry, the song was originally released as the second single from the 1975 album Toys in the Attic. It peaked at Number 10 on the Billboard Hot 100 in early 1977, part of a string of successful hit...

", a rap/rock collaboration by Run DMC and Aerosmith
Aerosmith
Aerosmith is an American rock band, sometimes referred to as "The Bad Boys from Boston" and "America's Greatest Rock and Roll Band". Their style, which is rooted in blues-based hard rock, has come to also incorporate elements of pop, heavy metal, and rhythm and blues, and has inspired many...

, became the first hip-hop song to reach the Top 10 on the Billboard Hot 100
Billboard Hot 100
The Billboard Hot 100 is the United States music industry standard singles popularity chart issued weekly by Billboard magazine. Chart rankings are based on radio play and sales; the tracking-week for sales begins on Monday and ends on Sunday, while the radio play tracking-week runs from Wednesday...

. This song was the first exposure of hip-hop music, as well as the concept of the disc jockey as band member and artist, to many mainstream audiences. In 1988, DJ Times magazine was first published. It was the first US-based magazine specifically geared toward the professional mobile and club DJ.

Starting in the mid-1980s, the wedding and banquet business changed dramatically with the introduction of DJ music, replacing the bands that had been the norm. Bandleaders, like Jerry Perell and others, started DJ companies, such as NY Rhythm DJ Entertainers. Using their knowledge of audience participation, MC charisma, and "crowd-pleasing" repertory selection, the wedding music industry became almost all DJ while combining the class and elegance of the traditional band presentation. New DJs as well as bandleaders with years of experience and professionalism transformed the entire industry.

1990s


During the early 1990s, the rave scene built on the acid house
Acid house
Acid house is a sub-genre of house music that emphasizes a repetitive, hypnotic and trance-like style, often with samples or spoken lines rather than sung lyrics. Acid house's core electronic squelch sounds were developed around the mid-1980s, particularly by DJs from Chicago who experimented with...

 scene. The rave scene changed dance music, the image of DJs, and the nature of promoting. The innovative marketing surrounding the rave scene created the first superstar
Superstar
A superstar is a widely acclaimed celebrity.Superstar or superstars may also refer to:-People:* Warhol Superstar, associates of Andy Warhol* WWE Superstar, the term used to refer to entertainers from the WWE...

 DJs who established marketable "brands" around their names and sound. Some of these celebrity DJs toured around the world and were able to branch out into other music-related activities. During the early 1990s, the Compact Disc surpassed the gramophone record in popularity, but gramophone records continued to be made (although in very limited quantities) into the 21st century—particularly for club DJs and for local acts recording on small regional labels. During the mid-1990s, trance music
Trance music
Trance is a genre of electronic dance music that developed in the 1990s.:251 It is generally characterized by a tempo of between 125 and 150 bpm,:252 repeating melodic synthesizer phrases, and a musical form that builds up and breaks down throughout a track...

, having run rampant in the German underground for several years, emerged as a major force in dance music throughout Europe and the UK. It became one of the world's most dominant forms of dance music by the end of the 1990s, thanks to a trend away from its repetitive, hypnotic roots, and towards commercialized song structure.

In 1991, Mobile Beat magazine, geared specifically toward mobile DJs, began publishing. In 1992, MPEG which stands for the Moving Picture Experts Group
Moving Picture Experts Group
The Moving Picture Experts Group is a working group of experts that was formed by ISO and IEC to set standards for audio and video compression and transmission. It was established in 1988 by the initiative of Hiroshi Yasuda and Leonardo Chiariglione, who has been from the beginning the Chairman...

, released The MPEG-1 standard, designed to produce reasonable sound at low bit rates. The lossy compression scheme MPEG-1 Layer-3, popularly known as MP3
MP3
MPEG-1 or MPEG-2 Audio Layer III, more commonly referred to as MP3, is a patented digital audio encoding format using a form of lossy data compression...

, later revolutionized the digital music domain. In 1993, the first internet
Internet
The Internet is a global system of interconnected computer networks that use the standard Internet protocol suite to serve billions of users worldwide...

 "radio station", Internet Talk Radio, was developed by Carl Malamud
Carl Malamud
Carl Malamud is a technologist, author, and public domain advocate, currently known for his foundation public.resource.org. He was the founder of the Internet Multicasting Service. During his time with this group, he was responsible for creating the first Internet radio station, for putting the...

. Because the audio was relayed over the internet, it was possible to access internet radio stations from anywhere in the world. This made it a popular service for both amateur and professional disc jockeys operating from a personal computer.

In 1995, the first full-time, internet-only radio station, Radio HK, began broadcasting the music of independent bands. In 1996, Mobile Beat had its first national mobile DJ convention in Las Vegas. During the late 1990s, nu metal
Nu metal
Nu metal is a subgenre of heavy metal. It is a fusion genre which combines elements of heavy metal with other genres, including grunge and hip hop...

 bands, such as Korn
Korn
Korn is an American nu metal band from Bakersfield, California, formed in 1993. The current band line up includes four members: Jonathan Davis, James "Munky" Shaffer, Reginald "Fieldy" Arvizu, and Ray Luzier. The band was formed as an expansion of L.A.P.D.The band released their first demo album,...

, Limp Bizkit
Limp Bizkit
Limp Bizkit is an American rock band from Jacksonville, Florida. Formed in 1995, the group's lineup consists of Fred Durst , Wes Borland , Sam Rivers , John Otto and DJ Lethal . The band achieved mainstream success with their second studio album Significant Other, released in 1999...

, and Linkin Park
Linkin Park
Linkin Park is an American rock band from Agoura Hills, California. Formed in 1996, the band rose to international fame with their debut album, Hybrid Theory, which was certified Diamond by the RIAA in 2005 and multi-platinum in several other countries...

, reached the height of their popularity. This new subgenre of alternative rock
Alternative rock
Alternative rock is a genre of rock music and a term used to describe a diverse musical movement that emerged from the independent music underground of the 1980s and became widely popular by the 1990s...

 bore some influence from hip-hop because rhythmic innovation and syncopation are primary, often featuring DJs as band members. As well, during the late 1990s, various DJ and VJ software programs were developed, allowing personal computer users to DJ or VJ using his or her personal music or video files.

In 1998, the first MP3 digital audio player was released, the Eiger Labs MPMan F10. Final Scratch
Final Scratch
Final Scratch is a DJ tool created by the Dutch company N2IT with input from Richie Hawtin and John Acquaviva that allows manipulation and playback of digital audio sources using traditional vinyl and turntables...

 debuted at the BE Developer Conference, marking the first digital DJ system to allow DJs control of MP3 files through special time-coded vinyl records or CDs. While it would take sometime for this novel concept to catch on with the "die hard Vinyl DJs", This would soon become the first step in the new Digital DJ revolution. Manufacturers joined with computer DJ
Computer DJ
A Computer DJ is defined as a DJ who uses a computer or laptop to play digital music encoded audio files, to a public crowd. Originally due to file size storage issues this was usually using lossy codec files , however as drive space increased, this improved to using original uncompressed PCM files...

ing pioneers to offer professional endorsements, the first being Professor Jam (aka William P. Rader), who went on to develop the industry's first dedicated computer DJ convention and learning program, the "CPS (Computerized Performance System) DJ Summit", to help spread the word about the advantages of this emerging technology.

In 1999, Shawn Fanning
Shawn Fanning
Shawn Fanning is an American computer programmer, serial entrepreneur, and angel investor. He developed Napster, one of the first popular peer-to-peer file sharing platforms, in 1998. The popularity of Napster was widespread and Fanning was featured on the cover of Time magazine...

 released Napster
Napster
Napster is an online music store and a Best Buy company. It was originally founded as a pioneering peer-to-peer file sharing Internet service that emphasized sharing audio files that were typically digitally encoded music as MP3 format files...

, the first of the massively popular peer-to-peer file sharing
Peer-to-peer file sharing
P2P or Peer-to-peer file sharing allows users to download files such as music, movies, and games using a P2P software client that searches for other connected computers. The "peers" are computer systems connected to each other through internet. Thus, the only requirements for a computer to join...

 systems. During this period, the AVLA (Audio Video Licensing Agency) of Canada announced an MP3 DJing license, administered by the Canadian Recording Industry Association. This meant that DJs could apply for a license giving them the right to perform publicly using music stored on a hard drive, instead of having to cart their whole CD collections around to their gigs.

See also

  • Computer DJ
    Computer DJ
    A Computer DJ is defined as a DJ who uses a computer or laptop to play digital music encoded audio files, to a public crowd. Originally due to file size storage issues this was usually using lossy codec files , however as drive space increased, this improved to using original uncompressed PCM files...

  • Digital DJ licensing
    Digital DJ licensing
    A digital DJ license is required in some countries, including the United Kingdom, Finland and Canada, to publicly play digital copies of copyrighted music...

  • Disc or disk (spelling)
  • Live PA
  • Mixset
  • Record collecting
    Record collecting
    Record collecting is the hobby of collecting music. Although the main focus is on vinyl records, all formats of recorded music are collected.-History:Record collecting has been around probably nearly as long as recorded sound...

  • Seoul World DJ Festival
    Seoul World DJ Festival
    Seoul World DJ Festival is music festival held annually since 2007 at the Nanji Campground on the Han River in Seoul, South Korea.-2007:...