Some say streaming will take over entertainment at events. This may happen in the lower end market but in the medium and higher end I still think that a DJ with music on a hard drive, CD, or even vinyl is superior.
Broadband is not widespread
Yes, broadband seems to be everywhere. Even cell service seems to be in most places. However many communities have access to fairly slow internet services, and some still not at all. Further many venues would have to invest in broadband in order to service customers, which is not a trivial cost, especially if they invest in higher speed services to gain better performance.
Reliability can never be 100%
Imagine, it’s your first dance as a married couple. Your song starts, everyone is focused on you and a milestone in time that can never be duplicated, and all the sudden…
Even with the fastest internet speeds, you can run into bottlenecks, sometimes that service can just be down.
Streaming service catalogs can be inferior
While streaming services like Spotify boast huge libraries of music they can still be woefully incomplete especially with older music. For example a simple list of some of the top hip-hop songs that I created has almost 33% of the music unavailable in their library. Professional DJs go to extraordinary lengths to ensure that their music catalogs are very broad, covering from as early as the 1920’s to today’s hits. Many labels refuse to offer their music to streaming services, and sometimes even services like iTunes. A professional DJ will get that music on what available medium that it’s available.
As of the writing of this article, Spotify does not allow licensing for public or commercial performances in the US.
Lack of Ownership
Like it or not, when you stream you are at the complete control of those companies. So if they have an issue with a licensing deal with a label you could find yourself without many of the songs you had the day before. Or what if that company goes under, so goes your music.
This may not be a big deal for the casual listener, but for a DJ this could mean disaster.
Anti-streaming is not anti-technology
I am not a technophobe. I have a nearly multi-decade long career in IT, and am always on top of the newest trends and technologies. I embraced the change in DJ technologies like going from vinyl to CD to digital media. However one needs to be mindful of the capabilities of what a particular technology has to offer, and what it’s shortcomings are. My personal opinion is that streaming music is an awesome service for personal use. For for professional services like DJing where music is critical, it’s a service that can never compare to a DJ with a catalog of music in hand, not in the cloud.
Author Biography: Lou Paris of Paris Creative
Lou Paris has been DJing since 1988 and has a deep passion for music of all styles and genres. Coincidentally Lou is also a successful 20+ year IT professional and has merged many technology concepts to ensure a successful night of entertainment. Click here to learn more about Lou's background.