set list

I thought you might be interested to see the latest set I’ve played. I’ve done a few truly crap sets recently, in part because I’m too tired and too busy to put much thought into my music or DJing since I’ve started teaching. But I did a ‘practice’ set at a local venue recently which has a mindblowingly good set-up: don’t matter how old or how scratchy it is, it sounds GREAT there. So I took the opportunity to play only stuff I love, no matter how old or scratchy. There was a tiny crowd there, who really didn’t care what I was playing, so it was all very useful for me.
The following Thursday I played this set, which I was very proud of. Admittedly, it was kind of an easy crowd – the Thursday before a big performance ball (wtf? yes, you read right) – so there was a room packed with dancers ready to party. There were dancers with a wide range of tastes, and with different abilities, so I could really mix it up. I also used quicker transitions between tempos, though kept within my preferred genre. The first few songs were actually time-fillers because Dave and I were trying to figure out why the sound was screwed. Note to self: check all laptop settings before DJing. Again, another side-effect of being so busy and thinking so little about DJing. Viper’s Moan was where I started paying attention to the floor and working it a bit more.
The set went really really well, and I enjoyed myself DJing more than I have in ages. I also played a lot of stuff I don’t usually play. I don’t play it so much because I’ve played for a lot of intolerant groover crowds lately (blurgh), which has made for some seriously dull DJing on my part. And recent fits of pique – nay, sulkiness.
So here’s the set list (title – artist – bpm – year (NB dates are often album release date rather than song release date; bands like M’s M R, Charleston Chasers and Vince Giordano are contemporary artists) – album)
Atomic Cocktail (Original) – Slim Gaillard – 129 – 2006 – Slim Gaillard Selected Hits Vol. 1
Chicken Shack Boogie – Lionel Hampton and His Sextet – 122 – 1949 – Lionel Hampton Story 4: Midnight Sun
Hamp’s Got A Duke – Lionel Hampton and His Orchestra – 142 – 1947 – Lionel Hampton Story 4: Midnight Sun
It’s Only A Paper Moon – Ella Fitzgerald – 125 – 1996 – Ella and Her Fellas
Splanky – Count Basie – 125 – 1957 – Complete Atomic Basie, the
Stop, Pretty Baby, Stop – Count Basie and Joe Williams – 134 – 1956 – One O’Clock Jump
You’re Driving Me Crazy – Big Joe Turner with Pete Johnson and Freddie Green – 161 – 1956 – The Boss Of The Blues
A Viper’s Moan – Mora’s Modern Rhythmists – 143 – 2000 – Call Of The Freaks
For Dancers Only – Jimmie Lunceford and His Orchestra – 154 – 1937 – Swingsation – Jimmie Lunceford
Four Or Five Times – Lionel Hampton and His Orchestra – 18 – 1939 – Tempo And Swing
Good Queen Bess – Duke Ellington – 160 – 1940 – The Duke Ellington Centennial Edition: Complete RCA Victor Recordings (disc 10)
Shoutin’ Blues – Count Basie and His Orchestra – 148 – 1949 – Kansas City Powerhouse
Till Tom Special – Lionel Hampton and His Orchestra – 158 – 1940 – Tempo And Swing
Stomp It Off – Jimmie Lunceford and His Orchestra – 190 – 193 – Swingsation – Jimmie Lunceford
Foo A Little Bally-Hoo – Cab Calloway – 175 – 1994 – Are You Hep To The Jive?
Back Room Romp – Duke Ellington and his Orchestra – 155 – 2000 – Ken Burns Jazz: Duke Ellington
Savoy Blues – Kid Ory – 134 – 2002 – Golden Greats: Greatest Dixieland Jazz Disc 3
Tuxedo Junction – Erskine Hawkins and His Orchestra – 153 – 1939 – Tuxedo Junction
The Minor Goes Muggin’ – Duke Ellington – 176 – 1946 – The Duke Ellington Centennial Edition: Complete RCA Victor Recordings (disc 15)
We Cats Will Swing For You – The Cats and The Fiddle – 184 – 1939 – We Cats Will Swing For You 1939-1940
Potato Chips – Slim Gaillard – 143 – 2004 – Jazz For Kids – Sing, Clap, Wiggle, and Shake
Well Alright Then – Jimmie Lunceford and his Orchestra – 137 – 1939 – Lunceford Special 1939-40
Joshua Fit De Battle Of Jericho – Kid Ory And His Creole Jazz Band – 160 – 1946 – Kid Ory and his Creole Jazz Band 1944-46
Jungle Nights In Harlem – Charlestown Chasers – 213 1995 – Pleasure Mad
Yellow Dog Blues – Vince Giordano – 195 – 2004 – The Aviator
Blues My Naughty Sweetie Gave To Me – Sidney Bechet – 140 – 1951 – The Blue Note Years
Bei Mir Bist Du Schoen, Part 1 [alt take] – Martha Tilton with Benny Goodman Quartet – 195 – 1937 – RCA Victor Small Group Recordings (Disc 2)
A Chicken Ain’t Nothin’ But A Bird – Cab Calloway – 162 – 1994 – Are You Hep To The Jive?

2 Replies to “set list”

  1. No, I think _you_ rock.
    This was the first set I’ve actually been proud of in a while. It was a great crowd to work with, I was on first (which I prefer – means I set the vibe for the night, rather than trying to work with whoever was on before me), I was feeling comfortable with my DJing after a set at Bwick the Monday before, I rode my bike in so I was feeling energised after a hard day/week at work…. it was all good. I think it’s important for me to get unstressed before I DJ. I get nervous every now and then (which is weird – I never get nervous when I teach or lecture or talk in front of a crowd or do dance performances), and when I’m nervous I DJ like shit.
    I think it’s like dancing – you do your best when you’re in the groove and really feeling good with the music.
    I just did 3 sets at SLX. The first one was mediocre (it was a tricky crowd – I’m used to hardcore dancers who want to be kicked into a frenzy, and this was a bunch of mellow doods who wanted to drink and half of whom were rock n rollers, AND it was using a very ordinary sound system), the second was okish, moving towards good, but the third was great. Partly because they’d had to take the sound system apart and put it back together, and Dave managed to squeeze in and help set it up a little more efficiently (hoorah! I was literally jumping with delight at the new – and awesome sound). But mostly because it was a relaxed post-ball crowd who really wanted to lindy hop like it was 1939.
    So I was happy with that set.
    It was my first real exchange-set-away-from-home gig, so I really had to learn on my feet. Thank god it wasn’t a hardcore dancing exchange like Hullabaloo, or rather, maybe it would have been easier if it was?
    It was also a bit of a challenge to get off the plane, into a cab, into the venue then straight onto the DJ console. I needed a bit of time to collect myself, which I didn’t have. Plus I wanted to mingle!
    But it was all good. I’m hoping to get another set soonish to work on some stuff I figured out that last CBD set. Word has gone out for sets at speigeltent, which is a bit exciting – imagine DJing at the Spiegeltent!!
    But we’ll see how it goes…

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