If you have ever DJ'd or watched a DJ, I have no doubt you will have some idea where I'm coming from.

The complexity of what to open with is no more apparent than with jump up music - big bassline breaks and house, or drum and bass. When you're playing to an immensely impatient audience, you have a matter of minutes to catch their attention.

Personally I've always been a fan of the epic opener, something that really makes an impact (you know, one of those tunes you have to open with because the opening of the vinyl is so hectic you couldnt possibly beat match it? see below for examples!)

Andy C is known drum-n-bass-wide for destroying the crowd in the first couple of minutes. Revellers have grown to expect it.

As a DJ, you may have no idea of what the DJ before you is like - maybe they're shit? in which case you need to win the crowd back to the dance floor and acheive associated legendary status. Maybe they're amazing? (nightmare) in which case you have to claw with all your might and stand up to their outweighing you in ability through sheer bullet-proof tune selection; all of which, will be summed up, in one track. Your opener.

How do you tell an audience what to expect in one song? Open with a drawn out, steadily building up number if your set is going to progress slowly but surely, layer upon layer, to the sort of techno/house style smooth crescendo. Contraversely, if you're playing drum and bass, figure out two tunes that mix easily, and well, and quickly (no easy feat), and you practice that mix, again, and again, and again. If you smash it, that's it, the crowds round your lil finger for at least 20 minutes.

I feel like other genres, dubstep, breaks, that kind of thing, that encompass so many different styles of music, and not so immediately crescendo based neccessarily, you can afford to mix it up a bit, show the crowd some variety from the off. Suprise them, but remember you cant get away with a bootleg for too long... you dont want to wind up the crowd for too long with out delivering the suspected satisfaction, you might find people have left before the tune even starts!

Anyway ive got a few options for you for a coupla genres - opinions greatly appreciated! feel free to drop your ideas in a comment - always fascinated to see how our thoughts compare to others....

drum and bass

sub focus - special place

sparfunk - dimension x

dj fresh - x project


plump djs - system addict

dopamine - hold you

bassbin twins - woppa

cut and run - reggaeton


Kid Sister - Pro Nails (Rusko remix)

Bass Nectar - Heads Up (California Style)

Distance - Night Vision (Skream remix)


Crookers - Big Money Comin

La Mode - Buy Now For Sale

Eurythmics - Sweet Dreams (Angello remix)

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