The Merry-go-Round Technique

Today in class we learned about the first DJ, DJ Kool Herc. Through learning about him we watched a video describing a DJing technique which he called the Merry go Round technique. This technique took all of the instrumental breaks out of popular songs and ran them together because he noticed people only danced on the instrumental breaks in songs. After listening to a sample of him doing this it got me thinking about a genre of music that exists today that seems to be one big instrumental break, electronic music.

When you listen to artists such as The Glitch Mob, or Bassnectar it is rare to hear a person singing, if there are words at all they are usually a few spoken words and no more than a few seconds. I thought maybe DJ Kool Herc’s technique used on the tables could have possibly been what created one of the most popular club and party genres that exists today. I mean most of it is upbeat, danceable, and contains little to no words, which is exactly what Kool Herc was trying to do when developing his Merry Go Round technique.

Below is an example of one of these electronic songs, and one of my personal favorites, Blastaa by Griz. If you listen to this song you’ll hear parts where the song slows down a little like if there was going to be a singer that’s where they would sing but there are no singers, just a word spoken here and there and its the same word every time “blastaa”. I really think Kool Herc’s concept is seen in this music and still used in clubs and at parties across the country. His impact on the entertainment industry is endless, i can’t even begin to think about how much his realization has affected the music industry.


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