an open letter

To – the final tune thief

Some people really do take their jobs too seriously.

We’ve all been there; your knees are aching after a jaw dropping set by your favourite DJ. It’s nearly closing time and the tunes are due to finish shortly, but no way is he winding this one down, and that’s just the way we like it.

The final record spins and the lights come up, only to be followed by the ‘one more tune’ chant. After some careful negotiation, the DJ gets the all clear to go ahead and spin that one cut we all know he’s been saving ‘til the end, the crowd gets to lose their mind one last time, and everyone leaves with a satisfied grin on their face.

Embedded into clubbing culture, it is almost ritual to play this game of cat and mouse between revelers and management, one that we love so much, as we know we’re always going to wriggle past and win.


But not this time. This time we get caught…

caught 2 copy

On the night I am speaking of, the story unfolded as usual, and the crowd is hyped up on the promise of some belting closing dance tackle. It is the final set of the final day of a festival, and I’m sure you can see that no one wants it to reach its inevitable end. As a steady countdown of how long is left to party is regularly announced over a microphone, it’s obvious that the DJ isn’t the only one watching the clocks. ‘I’m going to squeeze one last track out of this, let’s have it’ or something equally as morale boosting is finally muttered, leaving the crowd thirsty for a showering of beats – but,as the DJ sets up his closing record, giving us a taster of what’s in store, you slowly fade the sound to an uninspiring silence.

Unaware of your intentions the dancers wait, in a feverish anticipation, fuel being constantly added to their fire as the crowd builds with a nervous energy… only to be ground to a halt at the sobering realization that there really is no more.


As a DJ coming to an end of a set, I can only imagine it fills you with as much anxiety as starting one off – what you are about to do is going to leave a freshly imprinted impression in your clubbers minds, and fuel the conversation at the after parties to follow. The responsibility of the success of this leaving impression does not lie solely in the hands of the tune selector however, but is a two way operation between the DJ and you, the guy in charge of sound.

So I ask you this – why let someone go out with a fizzle when they could have an almighty explosion?

Maybe next time, just don’t check your watch.

When a tune lasts only a matter of minutes, how are you to know if it goes over ever so slightly?


Ignorance is bliss…


At the end of the day, of course you’re only doing your job. And I understand the need to abide by careful licensing laws – noise is an easy complaint that can lead to club closure, which is the last thing anyone wants…


But sometimes, it’s ok for the rules to be broken,



By Eileen Pegg