Can whipping out your iPhone and using Shazam while another DJ’s spinning be considered cheating?
Is the music ID app a coward’s way of trainspotting?
“Today’s DJs are cheaters,” said DJ D-Nice on Twitter. “Most dudes Shazam songs from other DJs and then add it to their set that night.”
D-Nice admits to being tempted by the music ID app, which can identify 10 million tracks by simply putting your iPhone in the air, like you just don’t care.
“I did that a couple of times and I didn’t like the feeling of not discovering new music on my own,” he wrote. “That was the fun part of DJing.”
He concluded: “We should add a new commandment… Thou shalt not shazam another DJ while he’s working.”
Not all DJs agree with the hip hop legend.
“I don’t think it’s cheating,” DJ Big D told us. “I think if you’re in a club and a DJ is playing a song you might not know, it’s part of your job to help promote that new song. As most of us know, the hot songs come from the clubs before they hit the airwaves…”
Spoken like a savvy DJ, who know that all the songs they play in their set share the burdens of filling or rotating the floor and promoting new music.
“It’s all promotion and sales,” says DJ Danny Salgado. “If you’re playing to a crowd anyone can have Shazam. Not only other DJs. I remember as a kid recording songs from the radio, bringing the tape to the nearest record shop, and playing the tape because I did not know the names of the tracks. Shazam is the same idea…I say use it and abuse it to keep your collection fresh!”
Adam J. Main quoted the Apple Oracle himself.
“In the words of Steve Jobs, ‘Good artists copy, Great artists steal shamelessly.’”
Roger Sanchez, when asked by a Shazam blogger to reveal a “secret weapon” track that fans might not know about, offered a reply that straddled the line between evasive and self-promotional—two traits endemic to the success of any 30-year veteran of the console trade—that will frustrate eager Shazam Nation.
“Man there’s so many of them,” he said. “I’d have to look in my record box in my computer to tell you. The thing is a lot of things I have are not released. My upcoming track with Sidney Samson called ‘Flashing Lights’ would be a good discovery. That’s a really cool instrumental track from my new album: that’s definitely one of my secret weapons.”