Regular readers of Ears To The House might recall a story that we originally published in May about Pete Tong’s latest money spinner – a school for DJs. For the princely sum of £418 plus local taxes, Tong will teach you how to become a DJ – which reminds us of The Simpsons episode from 1995 where Krusty The Klown decides to launch a clown college to make some extra money.
Modules include “learning to count”, listed under Learn To Mix Part 1 on the Beginner course. Elsewhere, the truly earth shattering lesson of “how to save a mix” is included, and the school even finishes with a Pete Tong endorsed DJ exam when you’re finished listening to various anecdotes from the likes of Carl Cox, Jamie Jones and Nicole Moudaber.
It’s quite a turnaround for a man whose mixing abilities was occasionally the butt of jokes in dance music magazines in the 90s – and it now appears Tong has come up with another way to encourage people to part with their hard earned cash. How? By introducing the Future Talent Awards!
People who sign up and do his course will now be given the opportunity to win this award – and Tong has truly used his extensive contacts in the industry to make it a pretty prestigious one. Ten DJs will be selected every year, and they’ll be put on a list – which might mean little to the average clubber, but means everything to clubs which will now have to stump up more money to pay their fees.
What else? Well, they’ll be given the chance to play alongside those DJs who mentored them on Tong’s DJ academy. Having the likes of Beatport and house music behemoth Defected behind this won’t hurt either – even if it does lead to questions about whether you now have to effectively pay Pete Tong to get a leg up in the industry.
To enter, all students need to do is submit a mix for judging by Tong and the course teachers – although quite how much of the assessments will be done by Tong personally remains to be seen. It’s a route that’s been used before to gain a foothold in the industry – Yousef’s career started after he won the Muzik Magazine DJ mix contest back in 1997.
Reviews posted online for the DJ academy are a little bit mixed, shall we say – with one person on Reddit claiming it’s a “waste of money. You can find the same ideas on YouTube if you must. Or you can figure things out for yourself and create your own sound (that’s what we did before the internet codified things in the late 90s early 2000s).”. Ouch…