August 1, 2014

Technics 1200 "Coffin Report": Scratch This

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dj etronk behind the decks, profile shot, with crowd to side.
Etronik flashed back

As part of our ongoing series about the demise of the Technics SL-1200, we talked to DJ Etronik, 2010 DMC USA champ, and DJ Reflex, from KPWR Power 106 in Los Angeles, and N9NE Group Las Vegas.

DJ Etronik (2010 DMC USA Champ from Pico Rivera CA)

Do you have a memory of the first time you were impressed by another DJ playing on the Technics 1200s? It was my first gig, I was using trashy belt-drive turntables, and I remember DJing at a house party and the DJ had 2 Technics! It felt like heaven compared to my belt-driven turntables.

Any memories of getting your first set of 1200s? My brother saw my passion for DJing, and he bought me my first pair of 1200′s as a gift. From that moment, I knew DJing was what I wanted to do and big goals were what I wanted to accomplish.

Anything you miss about that approach to DJing? I think there has never been a more perfect electronic device ever in the history of mankind. For the abuse that a DJ can do to his set-up at and before/after each gig, transporting, handling. A DJ can always rely on his Technics to work. If it was a crappy DJ mixer, speakers blown, records skip, bad needles, Laptop crashes, WHATEVER! MY TECHNICS STILL WORKED!! I HAVE 4 TECHNICS! THANK GOD! I WILL NOT LET THEM GO! It just makes me sad, because, I would have liked to buy my “future” child a set of 1200′s, just as the kind gift was given to me. If it weren’t for Technics, I do not know where I would be today, and I don’t think EtRoNiK would mean a thing …. scary thought.

black and white shot of DJ reflex, in pea coat and shades
Reflex kicked it 90s style

DJ Reflex, KPWR Power 106 Los Angeles, N9NE Group Las Vegas

Do you have a memory of the first time you were impressed by another DJ playing on the Technics 1200s? My first memories of the Technics were 90′s battle DJs such as DJ Aladdin, DJ Rectangle, and all of The World Famous Beat Junkies Crew. It was like watching your favorite NASCAR driver drive your favorite car. The way they manipulated the turntables was amazing, but it was as if the turntables could keep up with whatever trick they were performing with complete accuracy.

Any memories of getting your first set of 1200s? I was 16. I told my parents I was driving to the movies with a few friends blocks away when I was actually driving an hour away to the closest  DJ retail store to buy some Technics 1200′s for $399 each. When I got home the retailer had called my dad, who he had already met, to tell him I had forgotten my free slip mats. So I guess the surprise was on me when I walked in the door to have my parents awaiting me quite mad.

Anything you miss about that approach to DJing? In the 90′s DJing on 1200′s was the equivalent of playing a musical instrument. The art of DJing has now been replaced by the science of DJing. The ability to DJ really was a sign of talent and knowing music well. Understanding the musicality of a record and what it could be mixed with as opposed to the modern day science of mixing based on beats per minute and what is already in the right key. I miss the hard work that I had to put in to get to the point I am not at. I wouldn’t trade those years of carrying record crates and bleeding hang nails from digging through records for today’s usb plug in DJs, it’s what gives a me my soul.

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