DJ Mineh Ishida

Will the real West Coast Swing DJ please stand up?

West coast swing DJ building music playlist

When I’m Djing at a west coast swing dance, I prefer to DJ standing up. I never really noticed that I had this preference until one day, Victor Loveira casually mentioned “Oh, you’re like me, you prefer to stand when you DJ.” Its true. I actually take it one step farther. I stand up and make a fool of myself dancing and singing along while I DJ.

Here’s my take on this. When you sit down, your energy is different. You’re Djing a dance. You need to feel the energy the crowd is. You need to be riding the same waves of musical highs and lows that your dancers are. If you’re laying in bed watching TV, isn’t your energy level much different than when you’re out dancing? Your energy level will directly affect the west coast swing songs that you choose for your playlist.

So, if you’re at a west coast swing event where you cannot get out from behind the booth and dance, do the next best thing. Dance in the booth. If thats not appropriate, try standing. Tap your feet. Shift your weight in time with the music in the booth. You’ll find that your body as a dancer remembers the feelings and energy of the songs, leading you to be better connected with your audience. Victor, Cher, Ruby, Tim.. all of the west coast swing DJ’s I know say that the key to being a good DJ is reading your crowd. I propose that you can better read your crowd by being a part of your crowd.

Of course there are times where you’ll need or want to sit down, but whenever I’m trying to get a feel for my crowd, You’ll probably find me standing in the DJ booth trying to get into the shoes of my audience.

So get in the groove. Feel your music. Stand up and DJ!

About the Author:

DJ Mineh Ishida is a west coast swing DJ living in Tampa, FL.  He founded in 2012 and is passionate about contributing to the West Coast Swing community through DJing and his work with this website.  You can Find more information about DJ Mineh on the About Page.  For booking Inquiries, please use this Contact Form.

  • Stan Graves

    I prefer to stand while I am actually DJing.  It is something I do at weddings, and this carries over to events.  I prefer to sit while I am running the sound board and someone else is DJing.  

    One thing I do not like, is that it is hard on my back to lean over and get to the keyboard of the laptop.  Having a good laptop stand makes a HUGE difference.  I like the Crane Stand Pro….it is expensive, but rock solid and well worth the $$$. 

    • djmineh

      Hi Stan!  Thanks for the tip.  I’ve been meaning to get a laptop stand for a while now, but I think I’ll have to save up a bit for this model!  Looks very solid.