Taking every category of public performer into consideration, I believe the stand-up comedian to be the bravest. The idea of humor is not easily conveyed and even the talentless could bumble a knock-knock joke.
Anyone that has been to a sub-par comedic performance might recall the tension in the room that results from the absence of laughter and the tangible awkwardness that accumulates. There is a reason people use phrases of mortality when describing such failures, like "he's dying out there" -- funny is serious stuff.
The category of DJ, I hold slightly secondary to comedian. While the comedian is bravely armed with little more than a microphone and their posture, a DJ is able to at least hide behind their record collection and a pair of headphones. But just as jokes can fall flat, so too can music sets.
There are few things more damaging to a Friday night than going out to dance, and finding the dance floor abandoned and a room full of people standing about talking over the DJ who is using every inch of their music knowledge to get people moving. The drinks flow as the DJ flurries around looking for that one song bright enough to ignite a rhythmic catalyst in the club-goer.
This is their battle every night. A good DJ must be one part snake charmer, one part record geek, two parts fortuneteller.
Aside from things like a club's lighting, bartenders and the condition of its bathrooms, the DJ is largely responsible for how one's evening transpires. Those behind the decks are responsible for the atmosphere and tempo, the highs and the lows, the beats and the breaks. They are in charge of creating the synapses between the desire to dance in one's head and the physical manifestation in one's hips using only their records and the biggest speakers they can find.
Nightlife would be rather boring without being able to walk into a room at midnight and have your ears blown out by a larger than life new track whether its dance, house, electro or hip-hop. For that, we at UTW salute Tulsa's DJs and ask you to choose the best of the best.
DJ Kylie has been spinning for more than 10 years and is currently a member of the Oklahoma City-based Dance Robots Dance!, a DJ collective that performs monthly in Tulsa. She is also a member of the all-female Iconoclast Crew, which includes regional DJ members in Kansas and Arizona in addition to Stillwater and Oklahoma City. Until recently, DJ Kylie held a weekly '80s night at the Rehab Lounge before it closed this past spring, which did much to spread her notoriety around town.
DJ Moody was the recipient of ABoT 2008 Best DJ and is in the running for 2010. He weekly deejays Monday nights at the Eclipse but is no stranger to performing at the Grey Snail among others. Moody has also been in the scene for more than a decade now and seamlessly meshes the sounds of hip-hop, funk, rock and electronica in his sets.
DJ Oreo is also a regular performer at the various Fishbonz locations where he spins hip-hop and urban music. He is probably the only nominee that can say that music is his day job as well as night job due to his position with K-Hits 106.9 FM.
DJ Robbo is probably the most diversified of all the nominees. In addition to spinning electro, new wave, dance, industrial and '80s music he performs in local electro band Recorder and organizes the annual '80s Prom. His heavy involvement with the scene can be traced back as far as 1996 when he began deejaying and later owned and operated his own club. He can be found performing regularly during Mixtape Wednesday at Crystal Pistol.
DJ Spin was the recipient of the ABoT 2009 Best DJ, so the competition is a bit thick. Spin has performed all over town including Pink and Fishbonz as well as regionally playing a mix of hip-hop, electro and mashups.
Voting ends July 16, which is creeping up quicker than you think. Be sure to support disc jockeys that you plan your weekends around and inevitably draw you to the dance floor.
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