I recently got a chance to interview Phil Morse, founder of the blog Digital DJ Tips and contributor to DJTechtools. Morse is a music and technology blogger, web marketer, long time DJ and journalist. Over a 13 year club DJ career he played sets at some of the most widely known and respected venues such as Privilege in Ibiza, the largest club in the world, and Tangled, Manchester’s longest running club night. Today he is a full time blogger and weekend DJ in southern Spain with a wealth of knowledge about the DJ industry for beginners and professionals alike.
Q: How did you go about promoting Digital DJ Tips? What worked and what didn’t?
Morse: Great content is the key, and treating everyone who turns up on the blog as a valued reader, by emailing them back, engaging with them in the comments, following them on Twitter, commenting on THEIR blogs etc. Building a community is the number one thing.
Q: What would you recommend to novice DJs to get their names out there? (tips/tricks online, around town and at clubs)
Morse: Understand your local bar/club scene – who plays where, where the crowds go, and why. Then get a gig at the place that most suits your style by talking business, not music, with the manager. He wants bums on seat, and if you can talk his language by promising to fill a quiet night (and then delivering) you’ll stand out from the crowd of DJs with stars in their eyes clutching just another average mixtape.
Q: Are you still DJing these days and what is your setup?
Morse: Yes, I DJ 100% digital nowadays with a Vestax VCI-300, VFX-1 and MacBook Pro. That’s because I play beach bars and private parties where I need to bring everything but the PA.
Q: Describe the best set you’ve ever played or the favorite show you’ve ever done. Why was it special/different?
Morse: Playing 6-hour sets at Tangled, the night I used to run in Manchester, England. Warming up the main room at 10pm, then getting to peak at 1am, and still playing at 4am when you whip the last record off – absolutely amazing. I did plenty of those, but they were the peak of DJing for me. Although playing Privilege in Ibiza – the biggest club in the world! – ought to be up there, nothing came close to the long sets as a resident in my own club.
Q: What is your favorite new dance track that you would always use in sets?
Morse: I love too much to pick a favourite right now – my all time favourite is probably Right On, Right On by Silicone Soul.
Q: Briefly describe your DJ story, where did you start and how did you get to where you are today?
I DJed at weddings etc as a teenager, then started a band and got into the indie scene, then became a music journalist, before starting my own club night (Tangled) in Manchester, that ran for 13 years and got me gigs all over the UK and as far as Ibiza. Now I blog full-time and DJ Balearic sets in beach venues here in southern Spain.