Anthrocon 2012 DJ Auditions are NOW OPEN!
It's that time of year again, the time when my inbox starts getting flooded with files and I have lots of new music to listen to. And for DJs in the fandom, it's time to get in your auditions for the Anthrocon 2012 dances! I am going to be doing things differently this year, so I request that you read this CAREFULLY as I need you to follow instructions to make my life easier. Also please understand that I am not trying to be harsh by being so specific - I am trying to be as transparent as I can with how I look at these demos and give you as much information as I can so that you can blow me away.
The first new thing about auditioning this year is ALL AUDITIONS MUST BE UPLOADED TO SOUNDCLOUD. I would also like to ask that you do not delete the mix from the soundcloud account until I've made my selections. If you're a working DJ who is experienced enough to be playing Anthrocon, there's no reason you shouldn't have one. Auditions should be at least 45 minutes long, no longer than an hour and fifteen minutes, and show your skill level and what kind of music you play. When your mix is uploaded, please send a link along with any other information you think is important that I know to firstname.lastname@example.org. Please do not send me boilerplate bios about how much you like music and it is your life; I do not read them. Concrete information about events you've played, skills you have, or things that may be of concern (strange equipment requirements, etcetera) are more what I am looking for.
I am expecting DJs who are operating on a professional level - this does not mean that you must have professional experience playing in clubs (although it helps) - it means that I am expecting your audition to have good sound quality, be mixed well, show an ability to play an entertaining and non-generic set (if everyone plays ghosts 'n' stuff the dances will be VERY boring) and all tracks must be LEGALLY PURCHASED. I am going to throw out mixes that are using anything less than 320kbps MP3s as the source material (edit: to clarify, this is a little bit of hyperbole. I'm not going to pick on you for a track or two dipping below the threshhold but I will be demoing these on big speakers and if the bass is muddy or I hear compression artifacts, that's going to affect my perception of the mix negatively.), or contain tracks clearly ripped from youtube videos or otherwise pirated. This is because getting up on stage and playing a set of low-quality audio will sound like pure noise in a big room and will make the dance attendees (and by extension yourself and I) very unhappy. I would also like to stress that professionalism in communication is important as well; I like to book people that I know I can count on. If you give me the impression that you're reliable, self-motivated and capable of getting on stage and playing with confidence, I will feel much better about giving you a time slot.
Some Other Notes
I have had problems in the past with scheduling, so I would like to make something clear: part of what I do when I am selecting DJs is choose DJs specifically based on what kind of sound I need for a time slot on a given night. That means that when I book you, I am not just booking you to play, I am booking you because you are the right fit for a certain time slot. For this reason, do not bother auditioning if you do not think you want to play or will be available on Thursday night. Last year I had to shuffle Thursday extensively because folks I booked it could not make it/did not want to play on Thursday. Thursday night is the longest dance by far (it's 5 hours - Friday's is 4, Saturday's is 3) and so statstically, you have the greatest chance of being booked for Thursday. PLEASE, please take this to heart. It will do neither of us any good if I post the DJ selections and you need moved off of Thursday and I don't have a place to put you.
Now that the business is out of the way, I am SUPER excited to get to listening to this year's demos! Anthrocon's dances are among the best (if I do say so myself) because every year we pull together a great team of volunteer talent who are focused on nothing other than giving the con's attendees a good time. Every year I'm blown away by the talent, creativity and skill that is displayed on our stage and I'm looking forward to this year being even better than last. Please don't be discouraged by anything you've read here. If your music collection is mostly illegal; you have plenty of time to go legit. If you think you need to broaden your musical horizons, you have plenty of time to crate dig. If you just don't think you're QUITE there yet, you have LOTS of time to practice. Even if you think your skill level is not quite up to par, there's no reason not to demo! The worst that will happen is you won't be chosen and can demo again next year - and maybe you'll be pleasantly surprised!
I will be leaving auditions open as long as I possibly can, so there is plenty of time to work on and refine your skills between now and whatever the deadline is - I promise I'll try and give at least one month of notice before closing auditions.