• A-Trak: Must-Have Items in My DJ Bag

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    A-Trak's must-have items
    Photo source: A-Trak

    A-Trak is one of the busiest DJs on the planet. From performing live and producing music to running his Fool’s Gold label, Days Off festival, and Goldie Awards, the Montreal native puts in a lot of miles. Given all of his experience, which includes serving as Kanye West‘s DJ in the mid-2000s, A-Trak has become an authority in the DJ community. People from around the world pay heed to his advice and opinions on the art of DJing, DJ technology, etc.

    Check out his must-have travel items below, and download his new single “Ride For Me” with Young Thug, Falcons, and 24hrs.

    Cocoon Grid-It! Organizer

    “This is my greatest discovery in recent years. I always want to have every imaginable cord or adaptor with me on the road. I’ve had so many emergencies. You’re overseas, and you suddenly need to boot one laptop in Target Mode from your other laptop. Or you forgot that your backup drive uses a different kind of port than what your new laptop has. Or you somehow need to use an ethernet jack. You need all these emergency cords, but how do you actually pack them? This Grid-It thing is the most zen-like order that I’ve ever had with my cords and adaptors.”

    Comme Des Garçons Travel Wallet

    “This Comme Des Garçons wallet has been my travel companion for a long time. It’s where I keep my frequent flier cards and any random reward program cards, and I can stick my passport in it when I don’t need it. I can even keep a few foreign currencies in it too. None of this needs to be in your regular wallet.”

    Kiehl’s Cactus Flower & Tibetan Ginseng Hydrating Face Mist

    “Airplanes are your skin’s worst enemy. Keeping up a few little habits can make a world of difference. No one wants to be told ‘you look tired,’ or feel their own skin turn into leather. I like this mist because hey, who doesn’t like Tibetan ginseng?”

    Fool’s Gold x Stokyo Needle Case

    “I used to carry the classic blue Shure needle case, but it’s kind of big. Then we made this smaller Fool’s Gold case with Stokyo. It’s way more portable. I also love how it has a little compartment where you can keep spare styli.”

    The Bag Within the Bag

    “I always carry-on, I’d say 98% percent of the time. It’s extremely rare that I check something in. So the bag I travel with is bigger, but that doesn’t mean I’ll bring that to my gigs. That’s where you need a bag within your bag. Going to gigs with only a tote bag has changed my life.”

    Follow A-Trak on Facebook, Instagram, SoundCloud, and Twitter.

    Related: The Chainsmokers: Must-Have Items in Our DJ Bag

  • The Chainsmokers: Must-Have Items in Our DJ Bag

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    The Chainsmokers
    The Chainsmokers at XS Nightclub in Las Vegas on Feb. 3, 2017. (Source: Facebook)

    The Chainsmokers have been on fire since their 2014 breakout hit, “#Selfie.” Along with releasing follow-up hits like “Don’t Let Me Down,” “Closer,” and “Something Just Like This,” the duo has been touring the world and holding down a residency at Las Vegas’ XS Nightclub. With all their globetrotting, it’s safe to say the ‘smokers know a thing or two about traveling.

    Check out their must-have travel items below.

    Teenage Engineering OP-1 Portable Synthesizer

    “It’s the amazing sampling gadget we have been using in a lot of our songs. It’s super small and convenient to travel with.”

    Mophie Battery Packs

    “Do we even really need to explain? You got the new iPhone update your sh#t is dying instantly.”

    Neck Pillows

    “This is sort of self-explanatory, but man we got like 10,000 of these. The trick is to go for the memory foam.”

    Power Converters

    “Nothing is worse than getting to another country and not having the right power adapter.”

    Illesteva Sunglasses

    Click to enlarge

    Follow The Chainsmokers on Facebook, Instagram, SoundCloud, and Twitter.

    Related: Kittens: Must-Have Items in My DJ Bag

  • Kittens: Must-Have Items in My DJ Bag

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    Kittens
    Kittens / Instagram

    As a member of A-Trak‘s influential Fool’s Gold family, Los Angeles DJ/producer Kittens stays busy rocking parties around the world. She is also a member of Athletixx, an LA collective that includes Hoodboi, Falcons, and Promnite.

    When she’s not DJing or working on music, Kittens hosts a series of non-profit DJ workshops for women (all proceeds donated to local women’s shelters). Her in-depth musical knowledge enables her to engage all kinds of crowds, from exclusive Hollywood hip-hop parties to cutting-edge dance and electronic events. She is currently on tour with RL Grime.

    Check out her must-have travel items below.

    Backup Bits

    “If I’ve learned anything from DJing over the years, it’s that equipment can and will break, no matter how prepared or fancy the venue is. So having simple things to swap out in case of an emergency is helpful. I always have the following: a couple of USBs (some with music and rekordbox loaded, others with the Serato timecode); an RCA to RCA cord (I can’t tell you how many times there’s been some odd sound issue that ended up being a faulty RCA cord); a USB-A male to -B male a.k.a. printer cable a.k.a. the cable that connects the Serato box to your computer (this is one of those cords that you won’t easily find laying around at a club and a very important one to have in perfect working condition. Always carry a backup).”

    Handfan

    “It gets hot on stages and in booths nine out of 10 times. I like having a little fan for emergency cooldown use and also because it makes me feel like a sassy bitch.”

    Mini Deodorant

    “Like I said before, it gets hot up there. Stay fresh, everyone.”

    Gum and Listerine Strips

    “No fan wants to meet you after you play and smell whiskey while you speak.”

    Beauty Essentials

    “I have a tiny bag within my DJ bag that has hair ties, hair pins, concealer, chapstick, a small hairbrush, face powder, and eyeliner. Sometimes your perfectly made-up face and hair can get messed up during a sweaty, jumping around performance. If you want to make sure you look halfway cute in photos with fans or while you’re hanging out after your set, you gotta be prepared to do a little touch-up.”

    Kittens

    Follow Kittens on Facebook, Instagram, SoundCloud, and Twitter.

    Related: A-Trak Tells His Story in Comprehensive Interview

  • KidCutUp: Must-Have Items in My DJ Bag

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    KidCutUp

    If you’re a subscriber to DJcity’s record pool, chances are you’ve seen KidCutUp‘s bootlegs, edits, and remixes. The Wisconsin native’s tracks regularly make it on DJcity’s Top 50 chart and have been supported by everyone from Diplo and DJ Khaled to Vice and Z-Trip. Now based in Los Angeles, CutUp currently holds it down at The Dime and Harlowe Bar on Mondays and Thursdays, respectively. He also gigs a lot in the Midwest. Last weekend, he opened up for Pink at Milwaukee’s Summerfest in front of a 25,000-strong crowd.

    Check out his must-have travel items below.

    1/8″ to RCA Cable

    “You never know when you’ll have to plug in your phone for a laptop switchover or because of a sound issue. And if a venue has all the wrong gear, I can DJ a set off my phone if necessary. I never want to be unable to rock!”

    Backstage Pass Lanyard

    “Sometimes you get a laminated pass that’s just loose. Other times you need to look official without explaining to every security guy that you are official. Having a stack of passes around your neck can help.”

    Small LED Light

    “I carry a small light with a hook and magnet on it to attach to it things or position it in the booth. Being able to see the knobs and faders on the mixer is essential especially if the lights in the booth are moving around as much as they are on the dance floor.”

    Backup Hard Drive or Flash Drive

    “If my laptop goes down, I can plug in my backup drive into any available computer and make the show happen. If you don’t play the show, you don’t get the money. Don’t let that happen to you!”

    Trident Spearmint Gum

    “Stay fresh.”

    Items

    Follow KidCutUp on Facebook, Instagram, SoundCloud, and Twitter.

    Related: DJ Zo Scratches With KidCutUp’s ‘Podcast Battle Breaks’

  • Kid Conrad: Must-Have Items in My DJ Bag

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    Kid Conrad

    Kid Conrad is a veteran open-format DJ based in Las Vegas. When he’s not holding it down in spots like 1 OAK and Rehab, Conrad can be rocking clubs in San Diego and San Francisco like Parq and Infusion. Below are five must-have items that he always carries in his DJ bag.

    The Lyrics of Kele Okereke

    “This is a book of lyrics from the lead singer of the English indie rock band, Bloc Party. I was, and still am, a die-hard Bloc Party fan and like to read their lyrics when I’m on the road.”

    Nature Made Milk Thistle Extract

    “Milk thistle has been a close companion of mine for some time now. It’s a must-have for drinkers.”

    Promo CDs and Stickers

    “I have these in case someone asks! I always like to have something to give out at my gigs.”

    Hair Ties

    “Hair ties are crucial when your hair is as long as mine.”

    My Aunt’s Obituary

    “My aunt always pushed me and had faith in me. I’m not the most religious guy, but I have to keep her with me at all times especially when I travel. I feel like she keeps me safe.”

    Items

    Follow Kid Conrad on Facebook, Instagram, Mixcloud, and Twitter.

    Related: Kutcorners: Must-Have Items in My DJ Bag

  • Kutcorners: Must-Have Items in My DJ Bag

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    Kutcorners

    As part of Serato’s artist relations team, Matt Perry, a.k.a. Kutcorners, is constantly on the road. From festivals and competitions to conferences and workshops, the Vancouver, Canada native does it all. Kutcorners is also a resident at Good Life Sundays at Republic and is in two groups: The Freshest and Live Evil. Check out his must-have travel items below.

    Items

    Serato 10″ Control Vinyl

    “I’ve got a few different versions of these, but I’d say my favorite is the first Red Bull Thre3style edition.”

    Microsonic ER-15 Custom Earplugs

    “These are so essential; I even DJ with them. I can hear clearer and better and wake up feeling good. Hearing is a major cause of fatigue, and when you’re going to an event every night for a week, these babies enable you to stay focused, make music, and enjoy it the next day.”

    Supreme Kleen Kanteen Water Bottle

    “Drinking water is very good for you, but plastic bottles are bad for the environment. I don’t bust this out in the club, but I use it everywhere else to stay hydrated.”

    Powered USB Hub and USB Cables

    “I don’t usually use CDJs, but when I do, I use HID mode. It’s the easiest and most fun way to perform on CDJs for me. I sometimes find myself in a club with the typical CDJ and DJM900NXS setup, and the hub enables me to take full advantage of that rig. Plus, you can use it to charge your phone, etc.”

    Apple iPad Mini 2

    “I use this with the Serato Remote quite a bit. I really enjoy having access to cues, loops, samples, and FX regardless of the setup. Also, since the iPad is small and flat, it fits in my bag nicely and doubles as a movie player on flights where there isn’t a TV. I’ve yet to read a book on it, though. [laughs]”

    ###

    Follow Kutcorners on Facebook, Instagram, SoundCloud, and Twitter.

    Related: Satoru: Must-Have Items in My DJ Bag

  • Satoru: Must-Have Items in My DJ Bag

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    Satoru

    As Music Director, Satoru is a key part of DJcity UK‘s team. The Newcastle native is also an active club DJ and can be found rocking clubs from England to Japan on a regular basis. Below are five essential items that he always carries in his DJ bag.

    Items

    D-Link 4-Port USB Hub

    “I prefer HID mode over control CDs, so this is essential for connecting CDJs to my laptop. It’s quite compact, and I can charge my phone at the same time, too.”

    Wrigley’s Extra Peppermint Gum

    “Clubs are loud, and you probably sip on liquor when you’re there. When it comes to exchanging words with another human being, proximities get close and so does your breath. Keep it fresh!”

    Fader Caps

    “We’ve all been there: you walk into the club only to find that all of the fader caps on the mixer are missing. It’s a nightmare. It doesn’t happen to me very much anymore, but I bring caps just in case.”

    Mpow Clip-On Wide Angle Lens

    “Who needs a GoPro? Clip this baby onto your iPhone and get some dope wide-angle shots of the club and crowd.”

    Nurofen

    “If I’m in another city or have a loose schedule, I usually stick around the club and have a jolly good ‘ole time after my set. Hotel checkout times aren’t hangover-friendly, so it’s handy to have some painkillers around for the morning. Be prepared!”

    ***

    Follow Satoru on Facebook, Instagram, Mixcloud, and Twitter.

    Related: DJ Ferno: Must-Have Items in My DJ Bag

  • DJ Ferno: Must-Have Items in My DJ Bag

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    DJ Ferno
    DJ Ferno performs at Foxtail Nightclub in Las Vegas during CES 2017. (photo: Cristopher Schafer)

    If you’ve ever seen an episode of DJ Jazzy Jeff’s Vinyl Destination show, then you know who DJ Ferno is. A native of Philadelphia, the DJ/producer started off as a local party rocker and media personality and was recruited by Jeff in 2013 to join him on tour. Ferno has since spent hundreds of days on the road with “The Magnificent,” performing everywhere from Las Vegas and London to Thailand and Dubai. Below are his must-have travel items.

    Items

    UAD Apollo Twin Interface

    “We tour almost 200 days a year, so it’s important to be able to record while out. UAD nailed it with this interface. I love the converters and being able to record with ultra-low latency. Their incredible plugins are a bonus.”

    Ableton Push

    “I’m an Ableton user, and since its release, the Push controller has been my main instrument.”

    Alcohol Wipes

    “We’ve all been in the position when the connection in the [turntable’s] tonearm gives us issues. Alcohol wipes solve the problem seven out of 10 times.”

    Passport

    “It’s a must that I always have my passport. A while back we were in Los Angeles and got a call that we needed fly to London the following morning. That was actually the day Will [Smith] and Jeff did The Graham Norton Show. I always gotta be ready.”

    Shinola Notebook

    “I use this to quickly take down ideas and outline projects I’m working on. I prefer writing as opposed to typing.”

    ***

    Watch the latest episode of Vinyl Destination below:

    Follow DJ Ferno on Facebook, Instagram, SoundCloud, and Twitter.

    Related: Big Syphe: Must-Have Items in My DJ Bag

  • Big Syphe: Must-Have Items in My DJ Bag

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    Big Syphe
    Big Syphe at Wall Lounge in Miami Beach, Florida on Aug. 7, 2015. (credit: World Red Eye)

    When you’re the tour DJ for an artist known as “Mr. Worldwide,” you learn a thing or two about traveling. A native of Los Angeles, Big Syphe first made a name for himself as a host on Power 106 FM. Years later, he was recruited by Pitbull to serve as his DJ on a world tour. During this time, the Angeleno had also made his mark as a producer, having remixed for superstars like Lady Gaga, Enrique Iglesias, and of course, Mr. Worldwide. Now focused on his solo career, Syphe can be found rocking clubs from coast to coast and beyond. Check out his must-have travel items below.

    Items

    Pillows

    “I always travel with two pillows. I put one on the back of my neck and the other on my lower back. They make my travels very comfy! If you get stuck sitting in the middle seat on a plane, then you definitely want two pillows. Trust me!”

    iPad

    “I can’t forget my iPad. It’s always a must for me because I never watch TV or go to the movies while I’m home, so I download my shows and watch them on my flights. But I always end up falling asleep! There goes the $50 I spent on iTunes! [laughs]”

    Advil or Tylenol

    “If you’re a DJ who loves to drink and wild out at your gigs, then you should always carry two of either of these pills. I always take two before I go to bed. That way, when I wake up, I just have a minor headache and my travel day is better than it should be.”

    Portable Battery Packs

    “Another item I can’t forget! My phone and iPad can usually last on five-hour flights, but I always bring two chargers with me for longer trips.”

    Chewing Gum

    “I don’t think I have to explain this one: You don’t want to have some stank-ass breath when you travel. I always buy two packs of gum at the airport.”

    ***

    Follow Big Syphe on Facebook, Instagram, SoundCloud, and Twitter.

    Related: J. Espinosa: Must-Have Items in My Bag

  • J. Espinosa: Must-Have Items in My Bag

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    J. Espinosa
    J. Espinosa at Fluxx Nightclub in San Diego on Sept. 24, 2016 (via Facebook)

    From holding down the airwaves at Los Angeles’ Power 106 and San Francisco’s 99.7 NOW! to rocking clubs and Oakland Raiders games, J. Espinosa is one California’s busiest DJs. The Bay Area native is also an accomplished battle DJ, having won the Red Bull Thre3style US Championship in 2015. Check out his five must-have travel items below.

    Items

    Serato Control Vinyl, Red Bull Thre3style Edition

    “I got a pair of really dope white control vinyl when I was in Japan last year for the Red Bull Thre3style World Finals. I barely ever use them, but just having them in my bag reminds me of my accomplishment.”

    Clean & Clear Oil Absorbing Sheets

    “What can I say? Sometimes I be greasy. I can’t be in pictures looking like I just jumped out a french fry basket!”

    iPhone Charger

    “I have a phone charger that never leaves my bag.”

    Fingernail Clippers

    “I can’t focus if my fingernails get too long. I get self-conscious about them, so I always keep some nail trimmers with me!”

    Jason Markk Quick Wipes

    “I gotta keep my kicks fresh when I’m on the road, and we all know that your shoes are gonna to get stepped on at least 89 times when you run to the restroom during your set. These wipes work great for on-the-go touch-ups if you’re a neat freak like me.”

    ***

    Follow J. Espinosa on Facebook, Instagram, Mixcloud, SoundCloud, and Twitter.

    Related: DJ Zo: Must-Have Items in My DJ Bag