Let’s say you lost your job. Would any of the thoughts cycling through your brain on first blush involve a decision to finally pursue your long-held dream of spinning records for drunken people who won’t stop yelling that they want to hear “Don’t Stop Believin’”? If The New York Times is to be believed, there are indeed people who are plowing their severance packages into learning about the finer points of fading and scratching; enrollment at the New York DJ academy dubspot has doubled in the past year. (It should be noted that touting enrollment “doubling” sounds a lot more impressive than saying “300 people are laying out $1,700 so they can learn how to twist knobs.” Trend story-slingers of the future, take note!)
Dan Giove, the president and founder of dubspot, where a five-month course costs $1,695.00, said that a D.J., depending on experience and venue, can make anywhere from $50 to $1,000 an event.
“You can absolutely make a living as a D.J.,” he said. “In fact, we are seeing some of our students going out there and finding themselves decent-paying gigs.”
Mr. Giove pointed to April White, a 30-year-old account supervisor at a public relations firm in Manhattan who is so worried about losing her job that she has already put Plan B in motion.
“I’ve been gigging like mad,” said Ms. White, who has been working at bars and other event spaces around the city, including at a bar called Mr. West, where she was spinning her vinyl one evening.
“My company has laid off 10 percent of its staff, and all the worrying about losing my job has put me at a weird crossroads in my life,” she said. “I love music, and I was always the first one on the dance floor, and so I knew when D.J.’s were really killing it, or when they were totally bombing – and I always thought I’d be pretty good at it.”
I guess it’s good news that there are still people out there who are relatively solvent and can hire DJs, instead of just putting together an iTunes playlist. Of course, that may not last long.