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The Reflector

The Student Newspaper of Mississippi State University

The Reflector

The Student Newspaper of Mississippi State University

The Reflector

    MSU student DJ duo gaining traction, local prominence

    Trey Burke and Joseph Short are two people you want to invite to your next party, especially if you want everyone dancing.
    The two friends are DJs who have turned their hobbies into jobs that require them to attend house parties and bars for work. From arranging the mixes used at last semester’s rave at Mitchell Memorial Library to dance parties at State Theatre, Burke and Short are quickly gaining prominence in the Starkville music scene.
    The two got their start in the field in very different ways.
    Burke, a junior political science major, tagged along with his older friends going to house parties as a freshman and started helping out with the music and lighting.
    He said initially he only considered mixing and running lights as a hobby, but before he knew it, he was doing gigs at Lucky’s Lounge above Rick’s Cafe.
    “It was just something to do for fun, and that’s where I met Joseph,” Burke said.
    Short, a senior marketing major, got into the DJ field through his older brother. He began working with DJ software in 2008 and quickly became interested in the field.
    After meeting Burke, the two teamed up and started performing weekly at small clubs such as Lucky’s and the Princess Theater in Columbus, Miss.
    “It’s funny how it started as something fun to do and now it’s a job I’m getting paid for every week,” Short said.
    The rave at Mitchell Memorial Library at first seemed like another small event where Burke and Short would be able to lend their services. What started as a grassroots movement to relieve the stress of final exams turned into roughly 3,000 people being crammed into four floors of the library and dancing the night away to the music provided by Burke and Short.
    The two started working for State Theatre in conjunction with “Friday Night Lightz,” preparing mixes and providing lights for the festivities.
    Crowds came out in force, which Short said surprised him.
    “It’s crazy that a well-known band will come in and only 400 people will show up at a venue that holds 1,200, but two guys like us can pack the place out,” Short said.
    Burke said because prices are increasing to bring in “major label artists,” clubs and bars are more likely to hire local talent.
    The two also said it was important to have fun when performing because the crowd tunes in to the energy of the DJs.
    Burke said he has moved away from what is “popular” in his lineups and now trusts himself to choose the music that will get the crowd moving.
    “I use a basic outline for the mixes, but also go off what I want to hear when I’m performing, and hopefully the crowd is feeling me that night,” Burke said.
    Short said the most important thing to do while performing is to have fun and everything else falls into place.
    Burke said he asks one thing of the people who come to their shows.
    “Requests are awful,” Burke said. “I’m gonna play what I want to hear, and rarely do requests ever please the majority of the crowd.”
    This means not to expect to hear “Sandstorm” at any of Burke and Short’s shows.
    The two said they plan to continue their hobbies-turned-jobs in the future, just not as primary sources of income.

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    MSU student DJ duo gaining traction, local prominence