DJ Badger:  The News and the Journal


Entry Two Hundred Forty-Six.
Monday, 2022.11.08, 7:36 AM central time.

No, I probably won't DJ at your wedding.
Current Mood:  A bit exhausted but looking forward to the future.
Current Scent:  The lingering remnants of Higher by Christian Dior.

I almost called this one "getting older," but I feel like too many of my posts these days are going to be about getting older.

My life, over the past couple of years, has changed a great deal.  Of course, my wife moved out and divorced me last year - a positive thing for both of us.  She's still a great mom to our shared sons, and she and I are still getting along fairly well, but it was a major change.

Medically, I'm not the young, strapping lad I used to be.  (Okay; I fully admit that I was never really "strapping," whatever "strapping" is supposed to mean.)  Despite my lukewarm efforts this year, I now find myself once again heavier than ever - about thirty pounds heavier than Kevin "Silent Bob" Smith, which is extra-dismaying.  A few mornings ago, I woke up with an all-new sort of pain in my middle back, and fortunately, I'm already scheduled to go see a physical therapist tomorrow.  I feel like I'm gradually falling apart inside.

And yet, somehow... I still find myself looking young.  A blood technician whom I see regularly recently told me that she thought I was around 36.  Nope... I'll be 51 next month.

After Lanna left, I started taking out the young lady who would become my current girlfriend, Leah.  Leah and I were both weirdos with similar tastes in entertainment, and we got along well.  About a month and a half ago, she moved into my house, along with her seven-year-old daughter, and that whole arrangement has been going rather swimmingly.  Leah and I don't go out to social gatherings often, but hopefully we'll start doing so more and more.  We've done a bit of traveling for concerts and even visited Arkansas to go to a couple of spookhouses last month (big shoutout to Carpenter's Mortuary for providing such a well-crafted, badass experience).

I'm doing Radio SRO again... and even though the tip amounts have been inconsistent (I think I made $22 from last weekend), I've changed my priorities about it, for the better.  If I get anywhere close to "doing it for the money," I'm screwed.  I can't rely on the money, but I can rely on the fact that I enjoy doing it, it generally gets me "out of my head" as far as work responsibilities and other concerns go, it keeps a passion of mine going without having to haul a bunch of gear around, and it keeps the memories alive for me and many others.  (That last one is a really, really big deal.)

I love the "SROcialites" who have continued to return to the broadcasts, and I appreciate the fact that they've adopted me into their ranks.  I'm also still deeply grateful to Tim Barraza for allowing me to use the SRO branding and for giving me his guidance and blessing for doing this.

 

So, this leads us to the main topic of this post.

No, I probably won't DJ at your wedding.

I'm not saying it's impossible.  I'm saying it's highly improbable.

Over the last couple of months, I've been approached by an unusually large handful people I knew, asking if I still did mobile DJ work, specifically for a few potential weddings and a church cookout.  It's honeslty been very flattering, but in some cases, it's been people who didn't know (or didn't remember) the type of DJing that I did.

 

Yes, I used to DJ at weddings all the time.  However, my first mobile DJ company, EKG Mobile Music (eventually EKG Professional Mobile Music, Light, and Laser Show), died a quiet death at the end of 2022, and my recent attempts to restart my mobile DJ business - Bravo Pro DJ and Awesome! Retro DJ Service - never really got off the ground.

 

Honestly, you probably don't WANT me to DJ at your event - and here's why.

  • I'm EXPENSIVE, mainly because I put a lot more work into my DJ setup and performance than any other Tulsa DJ that I know of, but also because I come with over thirty years of DJ experience.
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  • I don't like, nor will I purchase, most modern music.
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  • I play vinyl and CDs using an analog mixer, and thus I WILL NOT play your MP3s, nor can you connect your iPhone or iPod or iWhatever.
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  • Because I'm not just "some guy with a laptop" and I actually take pride in using BIG, professional gear, I can't easily set up at a tiny table in the corner of the room, and I can't get all of my gear set up and torn down within a matter of a few minutes.
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  • A lot of people have gotten more and more terrible over the last few years (after all, we had a raging shithead acting like a spoiled toddler in the White House for four years, so why not?), and I'm not putting up with it.  As I've actually grown a spine and some self-esteem over the last few decades, I no longer tolerate drunken assholes who come up and give me shit about their requests or what I'm currently playing, and I will take great pleasure in telling them to fuck off if necessary.  I'm not sorry for this; if certain people can't hold their liquor without turning into raging dickbombs, perhaps they should stay the fuck home.

 

Over the course of the last ten years, the majority of my performances have been at club events.  I think I may have done maybe a half-dozen actual "mobile DJ" gigs during that timespan.  The wedding receptions at which I performed were, by and large, enjoyable.  The last one, from the summer of 2021, was for a friend (hello, Dani!) whom I'd known for about thirty years; she just wanted an 80s/90s reception, and I LOVED that one.  It was a splendid time and I had a great time.

In fact, if that one turned out to be my final "mobile DJ" performance, it would be an excellent one to end on.

 

I really, REALLY don't like telling people "NO."  It's a skill that I've been working on for quite some time, but at the same point, it's not something I'm good at - especially when the person is someone that I have known for a while and/or for whom I have a great deal of respect.

So, I sometimes say, "I'll get back to you."  This starts a "snowball of guilt" inside me, because I don't get back with them right away... and then I keep feeling like if I reach out, they'll be angrier and angrier about the delay, so I keep holding off... and the snowball of guilt guilt grows and grows so I keep waiting longer and longer.

I recently found myself having nightmares because I didn't get back with someone who wanted me to DJ at a church cookoff.  The guilt seriously got that bad, because I didn't feel suitable for the gig, and yet I didn't want to let him down.  When I finally talked with him about it again in person, he was super-cool and totally awesome about it.

 

So, if you REALLLLY want me to DJ at your wedding or party or whatever, here's what I need you to understand.

  • If I'm being hired out on a mobile basis, I generally only want to play 80s/90s retro-themed events.  It's the music with which I'm most familiar, and it's the music with which I'll do the best job.
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    Amusing side note:  At the time of writing this sentence (7:12 AM central 2022-11-08), I just checked the top 40 entries of the Billboard Hot 100.  I only knew how ONE of those forty songs went - and that's because Michael Jackson's "Thriller" had inexplicably showed back up on the charts and was currently at #37.  THAT is how out of touch I am with modern music - and I'm perfectly fine with that.
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  • There are a few artists whose work I simply won't play.  A few examples are NWA, Marilyn Manson, and David Allen Coe.  No, it's not because I'm a conservative old prick.  In fact, when it comes to most topics, I'm pretty much the polar opposite of conservative.  But, when it comes to the artists whose work I refuse to play, I have my reasons.
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  • I will probably bring more audio gear than any "modern" DJ.  Performing at a place outside Fascination Street (my own private "club that doesn't exist," from which Radio SRO is broadcast) means disconnecting some heavy sound and light gear and hauling it out.  That's a lot of effort that I usually only reserve for when I decide to organize an event of my own (like MODENIGHT) that I will personally really enjoy.
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  • Because I have thrirty-three years of experience in professional DJ entertainment, I will charge A LOT MORE than a teenager with a laptop full of pirated MP3s who sits in the corner looking bored throughout your party.  That makes sense... right?
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  • Because I have to move a LOT of heavy gear for your event, I will charge A LOT MORE than a well-known crappy Tulsa DJ company who sends their DJs out with a laptop and some little dinky gear that they can set up in minutes.  That also makes sense... right?
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  • Because I have to set up and tear all of that heavy sound and light gear for your event, it will probably take at least a couple of hours in setup time beforehand and at least an hour and a half to get everything torn down and taken from the venue after the last song is played.  If you haven't worked this scheduling out with a venue and they want to charge you extra because I'm "taking too much time" to haul my gear out... that's between you and them.
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  • I'm generally a realllly nice person.  But, over the years, I've developed a low tolerance for willful idiocy and drunken stupidity.  If your drunken uncle Eddie decides to come over and give me a boozehound lecture because I won't play some Bad Bunny at your 80s/90s event, I'm not going to bend over to appease him, and if he's really aggressive about it, I'm liable to tell him where to park his dumb ass.

 

So, there you go.  I'm a longtime professional DJ, but I don't need to DJ, and if you think you want me to DJ at your wedding or other event... I earnestly appreciate it - really!! - but you should really give it some thought.

I'm not the young DJ that I used to be, I'm not everyone's cup of tea, and if you want a modern DJ who will play modern tunes and put up with everyone's drunken bullshit, I suggest that you go elsewhere.

Whatever, you do, though, don't go to Tulsa's DJ Connection... oh, Lord, they suck.

 

More later,

Badger


(Edited 2022.11.08 11:15 AM - changed a little bit of the wording for accuracy's sake.)

[The badgerkelley.com site is still forthcoming.  The views and opinions expressed in my posts are mine and mine alone.  No posts on this site, nor any of my posts on social media, should be considered representative of any company for which I work, nor any company for which I've ever worked, nor any company which I own or have owned.  Also, since you're already here reading this:  Don't rent cars from Dollar, Thrifty, or Hertz.  Thanks.]

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