DJ Badger:  The News and the Journal

Entry One Hundred Six.
Tuesday, 2009.09.29, 3:57 AM CST.

I first DJed 20 years ago.
Current Mood:  Tired.  Current Scent:  None.

Well, I am going to have to make this shorter than I had expected.  I had wanted to write a decent new Journal Entry for this occasion, but I kept procrastinating, and last night, when I really hoped to sit down and write something substantial, I fell asleep while putting my son to bed.

I then woke up at about 3:45 AM recalling that I had crucial laundry (necessary for work at 8:00 PM) lying, wet, in the washer from a few hours before.

Good times.

Anyway, between February (13th?) of last year and today, I could only tell people that "I've been in the DJ industry for over 20 years."  That was because I started helping my mentor, DJ Dave, with his gigs in February 1988.

As of tonight, I've actually been DJing for 20 years.

That's right...  My first actual DJ performance, my senior year homecoming dance, was on September 29th, 1989.  It's also counted as the "start" date of the 13-year lifespan of my first DJ company, EKG Pro Mobile Music.

I had been planning for it for most of the summer, with the monetary backing of my parents and the technical and moral support of my mentor DJ Dave.

My friends Kevin ("Wink") and Janet had been practicing with my equipment for most of the summer as well, and we wanted to make sure everything went great.

The first song I ever played at a gig was Skid Row's "Youth Gone Wild."  I did so because another friend of mine (also named Kevin) had shown up early and really wanted to hear the song.  The only reason I started with that song was to get it out of the way.  (If you're reading this, Kevin, then I'm sorry if that's hurtful.)

I was playing "Youth Gone Wild" on my flimsy, plastic Vector Research turntables.  They were very bottom-of-the-line, but they were all I had as far as "professional" turntables were concerned, and they were what I used for over three years until I got a proper pair of Technics SL-1200s (the same pair I still use).  Even though I'd listened to it before, for some reason, "Youth Gone Wild" skipped on my turntable.

That's right.  The first song I ever played at a gig, anywhere, had a skip in it.  It's amusing in retrospect.


Back in Journal Entry 81, I mentioned a lot of people who deserved my thanks.  Well, those still stand, but I read through them again recently, and I have a few additional important notes:

  • In that Entry, I mentioned "Thanks to Kevin (Wink) and Billy (Mix) for being such excellent help early on, and to Brian (um, Brian) for being the longest-running assistant.  All three of you are incredible."  While all that was correct, I failed to mention that all Wink, Mix and Brian were more than just assistants.  They were three of my best friends.  They still are.
  • I also need to thank Tom "Gilligan" Holbrook, David "Archie" Hedrick, Gene Carroll, Chris Rankin, and Darrell Hopper for their friendship and/or assistance during the EKG years.
  • Finally, I want to throw in a big "thanks" to everyone who ever worked at the 161st East Avenue Quiktrip in Tulsa.  During the EKG years, my crew and I stopped at an awful lot of convenience stores, but that Quiktrip was the single store, by far, at which we spent the most time and money picking up after-gig snacks on the way home.  Every time I have occasion to drive by that particular Quiktrip, I remember that.  Every single time.

I am still working on my big "20 Years" party.  I have been in negotiations to arrange the right venue for it, and I hope to have more news for you soon.

Well, the laundry is done - not too wrinkled, thankfully - and I'm heading back to bed.  Hopefully I'll be able to get back to sleep, as I have a throbbing toothache.

In related news, I have a dentist appointment on Thursday.  Yay.

Good night... or, more appropriately, good morning.