Are you a beginner DJ just starting out? If so, it’s important to know there are all types of ways you can mix music. You can mix in key, use special effects, scratch, use instrumentals over vocals, etc. One of the most used mixing techniques is beat matching. It’s also one of the most often questions I receive from beginner DJs, “How do you beat match?” In this video, I use the Hercules DJ Control JogVision DJ controller, Serato DJ Software, and my own body movement to teach you how to match BPMs (Beats Per Minute).
1) First, you want to select two songs similar in BPMs. Please note, you can match songs that aren’t similar in BPMs. However, in order to keep this tutorial easy to understand, I’m using songs that are close to each other in beats per minute.
How do you find the BPMs? In most DJ software programs, you’ll find a menu bar on top of your playlist. In this menu bar most programs will tell you the name, artist, album, and BPM. More advance software programs, or editions, will also tell you the key.
2) Once you have two songs loaded (deck one (A) and deck two (B)) you can adjust the BPMs of the song in deck 2 to match the song in deck one. On almost every controller, you’ll have a pitch fader for each deck. It’s normally located on the right hand side of your platters, or jog wheels. In the example, the deck B pitch fader on the Hercules JogVision is located on the upper right hand side of the jog wheel. The one for deck A is located on the upper left hand side of the jog wheel.
3) After you match the BPMs. Play track one (or your master track —meaning the one that is playing versus the one you’re mixing in) and start to count the beats in each measure. Not all, but most songs play to a four count. You want to count the beats so that you can bring song B in on a single beat of song A to line them up perfectly.
4) One of the best things about this Hercules controller, especially for beginner DJs, is it has a beat display. The beat display, actually shows you how the beat is moving. This way, you can see when to bring in your second track.
5)Another quick tip I learned years ago from DJ Joey is to tap your foot to the beat of the song. Joey and I have been DJing since we were very young! We both learned to mix beats by ear. I was so thankful for this tip he gave me! It made it so much easier for me to match BPMs and I still even use this technique today!
I hope my video helped you! If it did, please don’t forget to subscribe and sign up for notifications. This way, you’ll be notified each time I post a new video. Coming soon! I’ve been pleasantly surprised with my two new Hercules DJ controllers! The company sent me two of their latest controllers to review. Look forward to my thoughts about these controllers in a few of my upcoming videos.
As always – thank you for watching! – Michelle Lee (aka DeeJay Shelly)