Skip To Content

    9 Struggles Every DJ Understands

    According to Steve Aoki.

    While prepping for a Summer show, Steve Aoki told BuzzFeed how he gets down — on and off the stage.

    1. At first, money will be tight.

    2. You'll be forced to nap in odd places.

    3. It will take people a while to respect you.

    "I started DJing post college in Santa Barbara, then I moved to L.A. to start promoting Dim Mik Records' parties and that was pretty much the only way I could get hired. Because who’s going to hire this DJ who just started? I was just playing records and I had this really big vinyl collection maybe 80 thousand records and I would just play whatever the hell I wanted to play."

    4. And keeping your life together without the structure of home is tough.

    "You have to change what you think home is. You feel comfortable whether you have a girlfriend or wife or boyfriend whatever come with you, if you need to maintain a workout find places to workout in the city [you're in]. At the end of the day that’s the only thing that's difficult to get. You have to have a regimen, a team, just to instill that kind of spirit."

    5. Playing weird shows sucks, but it will help you make friends.

    NBC

    "I've played in a bar, properly, no dance floor at all, sitting in a chair with two turntables playing screaming hardcore music. While people are trying to drink beers and have conversations they weren't happy. I didn't get paid but I played the gig because my buddy was the bartender. He told me he loved my band, record collection."

    6. You'll have to try a bunch of approaches before you find your musical trademark.

    7. But once you find your footing, it becomes your responsibility to stand for something.

    PETA

    "I first got into animal rights when I was really young, a tween essentially," Aoki said. "It's been difficult to stay vegan on the road and I eat meat now, but I still don't wear fur. I've been a PETA supporter since I was 14-15 years old, because they're out here to protect animals and animals being abused. I'm happy they're out there doing their thing, and I can be a part of it."

    8. And once you've blown up, you've got to reflect some of your shine back on the little guys.

    Cartoon Network

    "These starving bands that are doing it in and out — they get no fucking sleep and they’re getting paid shit. But they’re not complaining. They’re not crying. And you never really hear anything about that."

    9. But most importantly, keep things fresh every night, for yourself and everyone else.

    Via youtube.com

    "I made a 4,000-pound cake and brought it on stage with Travis Barker to celebrate 1 million likes on Facebook. We asked fans what they wanted to see and they said, "we want to see you get caked." So we just made a giant cake and I jumped into it. It was amazing."