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The Summer Shows



DJ Times Expo


BJ Willis & Sid Vanderpool


KC Kokoruz

Games, Games, Games

Seminars were packed!

Paul Beardmores Seminar


More Packed Seminars

Deja Vu

Promo Only & Pioneer All Star Party

Party People in da house!

More Games!

Karl Detkin



For years, thousands of mobile and club disc jockeys have looked towards the DJ Times International DJ Expo as the leader in conventions geared to our niche entertainment industry. This year they definitely were not disappointed. Like wildfire, word came down that the entire attendance was up way over 30 percent...and it showed. There was not a dead moment in the exhibit hall and all but a few of the seminars practically filled the rooms they were held in.

The seminars at this year's Expo seemed to have "grownup". They were extremely well developed and filled with valuable information. Except for a few new seminar speakers, the talent educating those in attendance were concise, mature, and focused.

Brian Doyle, owner of Bay Area-based Denon & Doyle, teamed up with KC Kokoruz from Spinnin' Disc Entertainment in Chicago to come across as a driving force in the marketing seminars with their two seminars Marketing 101 and Marketing 401. Brian kicked things off on the opening day with the basics -- flyers to printed coffee mugs. Doing more than just scratching the surface, he drove the point home that if you want to make money, you need to spend money. The following day, KC took a packed crowd on a journey through major marketing. He came across as very well focused and confident. The marketing strategies he brought to the spotlight included specialized custom paper materials in packages including brochures, folders, cards, etc. All are themed and a package was created for each separate target market. After explaining his concepts in detail, KC revealed the big one. He stunned the audience with his announcement of his recent marketing deal with a new local radio station for an amount that comes close to half a million dollars.

It's popular every year and this year it was no different the Games, Games, Games Workshop. Unlike the games workshops during other conventions, the presentation was an outpouring of information without the infomercial of "and you can buy this at this booth". Some of the games were as easy as popping down to Radio Shack and buying a pedometer. Paul Binder and his crew may have started out in Coach a few years ago, but on that day they were riding in First Class.

Looking to have your web site critiqued? You should have been at the seminar with DJzone's very own award winning editor Sid Vanderpool and Love2DJ's Kerry McColough. Things started out a little slow because of a few problems with the projector, but once it was running correctly, the Mobile Web Sites- A Critique, was up and cooking. Before hand, Sid split the 100 people in the audience up into sections. Choosing web sites from members of the audience, Sid and Kerry went live online and visited each site. Sid had each section give their thoughts and feelings about the site then followed it up with a professional overview giving tips on how to improve what was online while Kerry broke open the code to find any Gremlins that might give the search engines a heart attack. The unique style of this seminar was the brainchild of Sid Vanderpool and no doubt will be copied at many DJ conventions to come.

Some of the seminars did not happen without a few glitches. Laurie from Visiosonic was chuckling when she told us about going to their room to do the scheduled seminar and finding no tables, chairs, or sound system; it was stripped bare. Visiosonic was happy that Matt from DJ Times quickly showed up and jumped on the hotel staff to get things taken care of. Then on Tuesday, it seemed as though Paul Beardmore should have had dancing girls or something to liven things up and attract people to his seminar. Only 30 or so people showed up for his very researched and complete Multi-System Management 101. After reviewing his literature and speaking with the people that attended his seminar, the only complaint they had was he was too businesslike and too serious. Next to the "Is It Legal Seminar", it was one of the most, if not the most, valuable seminar at the Expo for the multi-operator.

"This is the largest group of vendors ever put together for a DJ convention." a DJ Times employee told DJzone. He was not exaggerating either. The Grand BallRoom was packed to the hilt with over eighty companies participating in the DJ feeding frenzy. There were so many vendors that the "flea market" vendor mentality seemed to kick in earlier than usual, which gave the attendees some great deals on gear.

The Monday opening night party, produced by Kevin Howard was host to a full house of DJs. At the musical helm was Professor Jam Rader spinning on the CD system that was provided by Pioneer, Tim Allen on the vinyl system, and Jogen mixing the computer MP3s with software provided by Visiosonic. A massive setup worthy of a concert sound stage was put together by Acoustic with four bassbins, eight mid-highs stacks and eight amplifiers that rocked the 80 ft.x 160 ft ballroom. The show made up for the few minor problems with the sound system.

Tuesday Night we all partied at Déjà vu with the night getting kicked off with techno music spun by DJ Jorgen from Visiosonic and the 1200SL program. This was great until the resident DJs that seemed intimidated by his ":skilz" on the computer, and asked him to cut his timeslot short. The highlight for the night was that the drinks were half price for the better part of the evening.

Promo Only and Pioneer kicked off the parties Tuesday with a small All-Star Café get together for 1000 close friends. The VIP badges were in big demand, but the only advantage of the VIP was that you did not have to wade through the hords of people wanting to get in. Spinning that night, we were treated to the sounds of recording artists System3, Rockell, and Jesika. Tony Modicia cooked up the Pizza Dance for everyone and Billie belted out her new tune, Honey To The Bee.

We went from the All-Star Party on Tuesday, to the All-Star DJs at the DJ of the Year Competition on Wednesday. Originally conceived by Mike Alexander from Paradise Entertainment of California, the DJ of the Year competition has been a DJ Times Expo mainstay for the past four years. When Kevin Howard, of Howard Entertainment Group, took over control of this event after the first year, he managed to nurture it into a respectable event worthy of the industries support. On this night, Professor Jam Rader once again was spinning on the CD system that was provided by Denon, Tim Alan on the wheels of steel, and Jogen mixing up the MP3s with software provided by Visiosonic. Their keen performances were slightly compromised by some slight audio difficulties Acoustic was experiencing, but like true professionals, they rose to the occasion.

The groups that competed came through like troopers. The performances were some of the best, if not the best, we have seen at the Expo in a long time. All of the performers should have been given a prize. They were all excellent.

Other than the sound being a little loud, the only other thing that anyone had a problem with was the existence of a what seemed to be a double standard when it came to videotaping these events. This of course frustrated many in the audience. To many it seemed you had to be "part of the clique" to be able to videotape since there was people with home video cameras that went unchecked by the video police throughout the night. "Kevin Howard told me to leave and that I could not be in the room with my camera." Sid Vanderpool editor of DJzone is quoted saying. They claimed full video rights to the show and were peddling videos in the back of the room.

"The original purpose of the DJ of the Year show was for fun, and over the years it has turned into a money machine for Howard." Roxanna Greene, one of the past winners explains. "I am still waiting for my cut of the video sales."

The evening ended with the giveaway wars. Enticed by Professor Jam, Pioneer and Denon fought to give away thousands of dollars worth of product.

What ever happened to the DJ of the Year being just that, a DJ of the year, not a DJ/MC with a troop of dancers of the year. Are the dancers supposed to be party props? This unfairly excludes any DJ out there that does not have dancers, acrobats, or clowns, does it not?

All in all, it was like a class reunion with a whole bunch of old friends rekindling the fire that told us, "You are never too old to party, have a good time, and entertain."!




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