House is a classic dance music genre that has evolved symbiotically with the culture of DJing.
There's no surprise that house music is a popular genre to DJ - and the defining features of this genre lend themself well to being mixed.
This article is your ultimate guide to DJ mixing house music. I'll cover the basic principles of house DJing, more advanced digital DJ tips, and a secret strategy to use DJ.Studio to revolutionize your DJ mix creation process!
Read on to start your journey to become a master house DJ!
TL;DR - How To Mix House Using DJ.Studio#
House is a popular and easy genre of music to DJ.
First, learn the basics, then investigate advanced methods.
Techniques you learn mixing house are transferable to other genres.
Using DJ.Studio for house mixing will improve your creativity and productivity.
Demo: House Music Mix Made in DJ.Studio#
Before getting into the tutorial, have a look at this demo house mix made in DJ.Studio. Why not listen to this as you read through the guide?
If you click the Remix button, you will be able to edit this mix in your own DJ.Studio project!
Pretty cool? - Create an Account!
Keep reading to learn how you can create house DJ sets easily in DJ.Studio!
How To Mix House using DJ.Studio: Step by Step#
Making a house mix in DJ.Studio is quick and easy. All the tools you need (and many more) are intuitively laid out in the software.
DJ.Studio is the lowest-cost method to start making mixes. You don't need any DJ gear or a home DJ setup, all you need is a computer with internet! Because it works with YouTube, you don't even need to buy any music to make full, sharable mixes.
Let's get into the main tutorial: follow these steps to make a mix in DJ.Studio!
These instructions are for the YouTube mode, which means you don't even need to download and import any files. You can make a complete mix using music hosted on YouTube!
Open the DJ.Studio app (in your browser, or the installed app which you can download from https://dj.studio/downloads).
Create a new project. (In this guide, we'll use the YouTube mode).
Click Add Tracks to open the import window. From here, you can find house songs by:
Browsing YouTube videos and playlists to add songs to your mix.
Importing Spotify playlists to convert to mixable tracks.
Using 1001Tracklists to find songs used by your favorite DJs in their recent performances. There are a bunch of cool house music playlists for inspiration!
DJ mixes with YouTube videos cannot be combined with music files which you bought because of different music licensing rules
After you've added enough tracks to your mix, you'll be sent over to the editing interface.
Here, I suggest you use the automix tool. This analyses the key and tempo of all the added tracks and uses this information to harmonically mix and beat-match your tracks. This means your mix will sound incredible and professional, even if it's your first time mixing. You can edit this in more detail later.
Now it's time to fine-tune your mix. DJ.Studio's editor gives you a bunch of powerful tools for making unique and expressive mixes - in more detail than you could create when mixing live using hardware. I recommend that you:
First, adjust the arrangement of your mix so tracks start and end where you want them to. Make sure all the beats are aligned correctly, and that there are no clashing phrases. A good tip is to check that all the kick drums and snares are in time.
Use transition presets to get a rough flow going, then use the detailed transition editor to create more precise blends.
Add effects automation throughout the mix, using EQs, filters, loops, and other effects to sculpt the flow and excitement.
Listen through your mix from start to finish and make sure you are happy with it - making any changes and refinements you think it needs.
When you're happy with your house mix, it's time to share it. When using the YouTube Mode, you can click the Share button to create an online, sharable version of your mix:
Enter the relevant information into the form, including Mix Name, your DJ Name, the Genre of this specific mix, and Description.
You will now be given a URL link, which can be shared with your audience. All they need to do to enjoy your mix is paste the link into their web browser (even on mobile). They don't even need to create a DJ.Studio account to listen to your mix in full.
If using Local File Mode, you can export your mix to a range of locations, including as MP3/WAV files, YouTube videos, MixCloud uploads, DJ set files for other DJ apps, or even as an Ableton Live multitrack project for further editing.
As you can see, DJ.Studio is a quick and powerful tool for making house mixes. You don't need to mess around setting up DJ controllers and recording gear. You don't need to worry about rehearsing the mix to make sure you don't make mistakes, and you don't need to worry about the complicated technical aspects of DJing like beat matching and harmonic mixing.
DJ.Studio is ideal for mixing house, but it also works well with most other genres. Check out our guide on Mixing Different Genres to see other tips!
Register a DJ.Studio account and start making your own house mixes today!
DJ.Studio: Other Powerful Features#
The above guide only scratches the surface of the power DJ.Studio gives you. Here are some other unique and attractive tools offered by the software:
Unique Timeline Editor and Automixing#
DJ.Studio moves away from the traditional DJ software concept of simulating decks and a mixer and instead uses an audio editing timeline. This has several advantages, as it means you don't need to mix in real-time, and can lay your mix out on a timeline. Using this approach gives you more flexibility and freedom in your mixing, letting you create more detailed and expressive mixes.
The powerful automix system gives you the skills of a professional DJ, even if you've never mixed before. DJ.Studio will automatically beat match and harmonically mix your tracks, so your mixes sound coherent, professional, and in time. No need to worry about playing a clashing key ever again! It can also suggest tracks to bridge the gap if you don't have enough compatible keys in your mix.
Versatile Export System
DJ.Studio lets you export your mixes to a range of locations when using Local File Mode. This means that it's equipped to send your finished mixes wherever you need them to go. Online platforms, digital files, or even DAW projects, DJ.Studio can do it all.
Video Creation Engine
A unique feature of DJ.Studio is the ability to create music visualizer videos from your Local File mixes. This means you can instantly create the perfect accompanying visuals for your DJ sets - promoting engagement and audience retention when shared online! These are also an ideal backdrop for a party!
3rd Party Integration
DJ.Studio's Local File Mode is integrated with other software like rekordbox, Native Instruments Traktor, and Mixed In Key. This also transfers cue points to DJ.Studio so you can get a better sense of phrasing and arrangements in your mix.
These integrations mean that DJ.Studio is an awesome additional tool for professional DJs to use. You can use DJ.Studio to plan out your DJ mixes using its automix analysis, then import your sets into your live mixing software to play to an audience.
General Practices and Tips for Mixing House Music#
The information above gives you some practical steps for mixing house music using DJ.Studio. Here are some more general concepts and practices that are used by house DJs.
You should study these concepts in depth to maximize your house DJing skills!
Introduction to House Music#
House music originated in the early 1980s in Chicago, influenced by disco, funk, and soul. DJs and producers like Frankie Knuckles and Larry Heard played a significant role in its development.
Over the years, it has evolved, giving rise to various sub-genres such as deep house, tech house, and progressive house.
House music is not just a genre; it’s a cultural movement. It played a pivotal role in shaping electronic dance music (EDM) globally. Its infectious beats and grooves have influenced countless artists and genres, making it a fundamental component of the modern music scene.
The Characteristics of House Music#
House music is defined by some specific characteristics:
Four-On-The-Floor Beat: House music is built on a steady 4/4 rhythm, where each bar is emphasized by a kick drum on every beat. This consistent beat is the backbone of house tracks, making it easy for DJs to mix and blend seamlessly.
Groovy Basslines: House music is known for its deep, groovy basslines. These basslines provide a solid foundation and energy to the track, creating a danceable vibe that keeps the crowd moving.
Soulful Vocals and Samples: House music often incorporates soulful vocals and samples, adding a human touch to the electronic beats. DJs can use these vocals to create emotional connections with the audience, enhancing the overall experience.
Syncopated Hi-Hats: House music frequently features syncopated hi-hat patterns, creating intricate and lively rhythms. DJs can use these patterns to add complexity to their mixes, enhancing the dance floor vibe.
Buildups and Drops: House tracks typically include buildups and drops, where the intensity of the music gradually increases before reaching a climactic moment (the drop). Skilled DJs use these elements to create tension and excitement, ensuring the audience stays engaged.
Use of Effects: House DJs often use effects like filters, echoes, and reverbs to manipulate the sound in real time. These effects can be applied to individual tracks or the overall mix, adding depth and creativity to the performance.
Variety in Subgenres: House music encompasses various subgenres, such as deep house, tech house, and progressive house, each with its unique characteristics. DJs should be aware of these subgenres and their specific traits to cater to diverse audience preferences.
Continuous Evolution: House music is constantly evolving, incorporating new sounds and styles. DJs should stay updated with the latest trends and experiment with innovative tracks and remixes to keep their sets fresh and exciting.
By understanding these characteristics, DJs can craft dynamic and engaging sets, ensuring a memorable experience for their audience.
Understanding the Basics#
BPM and Phrasing - BPM, or Beats Per Minute, indicates the tempo of a track. Phrasing refers to the musical structure, typically organized in 8, 16, or 32-bar patterns. DJs need to understand BPM to match beats and phrasing to create smooth transitions between tracks.
House Song Structure - House tracks generally follow a pattern of intro, buildup, breakdown, drop, and outro. Knowing these elements helps DJs anticipate when to mix and create a seamless flow, ensuring the dance floor stays engaged throughout the set.
Equipment and Software#
While you don't need a controller or any hardware these days, they are useful if you want to perform to a crowd live. DJ controllers, like the Pioneer DDJ series, and mixers, such as the Allen & Heath Xone series, are good brands to look at.
Popular software includes Serato DJ and Traktor. Each DJ setup has unique features, catering to various styles and preferences. Although these days you can mix with software alone (no hardware required) using DJ.Studio.
Beginners might start with entry-level controllers. Advanced DJs might prefer high-end setups like CDJs, vinyl, and DVS setups. Software-wise, rekordbox is one of the most recommended options due to its prevalence in clubs and radio stations. Choosing equipment depends on budget, skill level, and desired features.
Mastering Beat matching#
Manual beat matching involves adjusting the pitch and speed of one track to match another. DJs use headphones to listen to the beats, syncing them manually by nudging the platter or adjusting the pitch fader. Practice hones this skill, ensuring seamless transitions. See our full guide on How To Beat Match to learn this skill in detail.
(Although with DJ.Studio, all the hard work is done for you so you can focus on being creative!)
Use sync responsibly - Sync features in modern DJ software automate beat matching. While convenient, DJs should learn manual techniques first. Sync is a tool, not a replacement for fundamental skills. Knowing how to manually beat match enhances creativity and adaptability during performances.
Harmonic Mixing in House Music#
Harmonic mixing involves harmonically compatible mixing tracks, creating pleasing combinations. DJs match tracks based on musical keys, ensuring they complement each other, and enhancing the overall listening experience.
Software, like Mixed In Key, analyzes track keys and provides harmonic compatibility information. DJs can use this data to plan sets, ensuring harmonically smooth transitions between tracks. Mixed In Key is fully integrated into DJ.Studio!
Understanding musical keys elevates the emotional impact of mixes, creating a more immersive atmosphere.
Creative Mixing Techniques#
Blending and EQ techniques for seamless transitions - Blending involves gradually mixing two tracks, ensuring smooth transitions by adjusting the volume and EQ. DJs use high-pass and low-pass filters creatively, removing or introducing specific frequencies. Precise EQ adjustments blend sounds, creating a cohesive mix.
Advanced mixing methods like looping and effects usage - Looping allows DJs to repeat specific sections, creating tension and anticipation. Effects like reverb, delay, and filters add depth and texture. Skilled usage enhances tracks, adding unique elements and surprising the audience, elevating the DJ's performance. Experimentation and practice are key to mastering these techniques.
Know Your Tracks and Explore House#
Familiarize yourself with your music library. Know the key, BPM, and structure of your tracks. Categorize your tracks based on energy level, mood, and style to make it easier to create cohesive sets.
House is a very diverse genre and contains a broad range of styles from electronic music to acoustic performances. Some say the house is a feeling more than a genre - which is true in part. You should explore house music as much as possible and find interesting and unique tracks.
Discover your own sound as a house DJ, and learn how you can stand out from the crowd by having a unique and distinct take on this classic genre.
As you can see, there are a lot of important points to consider when DJing house music. The more you practice and explore house DJing the better you will become.
In terms of creating mixes, DJ.Studio is arguably the quickest and most powerful tool for the job. It lets you transcend the physical limitations of live DJing, and use digital techniques to create pristine and professional-sounding mixes in record-breaking times.
DJ.Studio is packed full of features that make it a uniquely powerful piece of DJ software on the market and can help you achieve better results than ever before.
Whether you are a total beginner or a pro at the top of your game, DJ.Studio will work for you. It has the speed and intuition that beginners need, but also the depth and advanced customization that professionals will love.
Reading about it will only do so much justice! Make sure to try DJ.Studio yourself with the free 14-day trial!
After you've tested it, you'll probably want to Buy It Now!
FAQs About How To Mix House Music in DJ.Studio
- How do you learn to mix house music?
- Is house music easy to mix?
- How do you mix two house tracks?
Need to level up your DJ skills? This guide gives you advice for mixing specific genres, and how to blend any genres together!
Wondering about the bpm of house music? How many beats per minute do house music tracks generally range? Learn all about BPM and the House music genre.
EDM is a punchy and exciting genre for DJs - but how exactly do you mix it? In this guide you'll learn all the key EDM DJ techniques!