Having been home to some big names in the DJ industry, E-TracX is still well on it’s (almost!) two-decade journey in growing its family of champions in sunny Singapore. With many experienced instructors such as Koflow, Perk Pietrek, Shin and Anrev on board, students of E-TracX have often grown in their career as professional DJs, and won various awards and accolades from prestigious competitions in the industry.
As one of Asia’s most reputable DJ academies, the E-TracX family has managed to stay true to their original mission of creating champions and uniting communities, even beyond the accolades they have piled up over the years. With plenty of opportunity for exposure at major festivals inclusive of the ULTRA Music Festival and ZOUKOUT, breaking into the scene as a new graduate is hardly a concern for graduating students, especially with the support of veterans who have your back at every turn.
Although there are no overnight sensations in DJ-ing, fans around town are sure to recognise names like WUKONG, Inquisitive, Anrev, DJ Eclipse, and Stas of Rave Republic. To find out more about how the art of skratching and spinning has affected DJs such as Anrev and Eclipse respectively on their career path, we decided to dig deep and ask questions from when they started as students at E-TracX.
Nookmag (N): Tell us about how DJ-ing changed your life?
Anrev (A): Oh my, this is a tough one! There are many ways DJ-ing has changed my life, but the one thing that [it] ultimately provided me with, is the ability to appreciate true beauty and the intrinsic value of all music.
DJ Eclipse (E): Firstly, I would like to give full credit to my mentor DJ Rough for keeping me sane, till this day whom I very much respect. The experiences have taught me to better self-manage my personal life and profession, and not forgetting a different world out there, which is not your everyday kind of industry.
N: What were your first lesson modules at E-TracX?
A: The Advanced Turntablism course with Wayne “DJ Koflow”. It solidified my foundation in DJ-ing, and gave me the tools needed to excel in competitions. In addition, Wayne has been a good friend and buddy I know I can always rely on.
The other course I took was a music production course with Pietrek “Perk Pietrek”. I picked up some invaluable skills in production, which helped me integrate my prior knowledge of music theory, with the technical skills of operating a DAW (Digital Audio Workstation). Up till today, I still utilize these skills in my day-to-day music production sessions.
E: I think it was the most basic course on counting bars and beat-matching. It drills your daily routine from the moment you pick any record and scratching the vinyl to “find” the first beat. Simple, yet I have always believed that having a strong fundamental is the key to any growth till date, and that credits my mentor too.
N: What’s your most memorable experience with E-TracX?
A: E-TracX is not just my alma mater, nor a school that I just simply work for – it is a family to me; a family that is bonded tightly, a family that believes in helping those in need, a family that provides a listening ear in tough times, and a family which supports our own out of pure kindness, without expecting anything in return.
The moments with E-TracX that I enjoy the most are honestly the ones where we just get to hang out and chat for hours on end. We can be chilling in the break room and having a drink one moment, having a jam session the next, and having dinner at the nearby kopitiam a while later, before enjoying a LAN session together afterwards. These are the simple moments that are the most precious to me.
E: I think it would have to be the sunset gig in Sentosa that E-TracX had organized for the students; all of us had put in long hours for it, which felt like a National Day Parade!
N: What advice would you give people who may be undecided about learning to DJ?
A: Just do it! There are usually two primary reasons someone would be hesitant to try their hand at DJ-ing:
1. DJing is an expensive hobby…
- … not anymore! With the advent of technology and mass production, you can now buy a simple all-in-one DJ controller with software for SGD200. Throw in an extra SGD20 a month for a record pool subscription (of songs), and you are already good to go.
2. I am an introvert! How can I possibly be a DJ?
- Well believe it or not, at least half of the DJs I know (including myself) started out this way too. DJ-ing, is by far the best way to get yourself out there and start getting to know more people, especially with a friendly and supportive community to rely on (like E-TracX)! Moreover, being a DJ is one of the best conversation starters you could possibly ask for.
E: Take the leap of faith! It will be an experience and a journey that you can never buy or come across; it might even change your life.
A little background…
Anrev has been DJing for 8 years now, and counts himself blessed with opportunities to perform at multiple “dope” venues throughout the course of his career. In addition to being a finalist at the Goldie Awards DJ Battle World Finals in New York City, he also won the local leg of the Red Bull 3Style World Championships in 2019, and will go on to represent Singapore at the world finals, which has been postponed due to the current pandemic. Anrev was also chosen to lead DJcity’s Singapore team that was launched just last year.
When asked about where his favourite place to perform was, his top 3 spots included Brooklyn Steel in New York City where he had his first experience performing in front of a massive international audience, Zouk in Singapore where he could finally tick off his DJ bucket list of places to skratch at, and Kasho Club in Ho Chi Minh City where he experienced his first proper international booking as a professional DJ.
“Although just a short two-hour flight from Singapore,
this was the first time I headlined an event abroad.
Met many amazing people during my stay there,
and I’d absolutely do it again!”
DJ Eclipse first joined the E-TracX family in 2005. His DJ-ing career took off after joining the Zouk family in 2009, and he subsequently won the 2010 Top 10 DJs and Best New DJ awards, as well as the 2011 Best DJ award hosted by I-S Magazine and Juice Magazine respectively. On top of his various accolades, DJ Eclipse has also appeared alongside the Swedish House Mafia for their “One Last Tour” in Asia, and has played at venues all over the world.
“This musical journey has taken me
across the whole of Asia, to Australia,
and the biggest summer parties in Ibiza!”
— DJ Eclipse
It’s National Day!
If you’ve been wanting to try your hand at DJ-ing, here’s your chance: E-TracX is offering a special 10% off of their Elementary DJ Course for all new students only! This promotion will be valid only for payments made during the National Day weekend, from 8 to 10 August 2020, and the course will be available for SGD435 instead of the usual SGD480 for three private sessions lasting two hours each.
If you’re a more advanced student and would like to try something else, here are a couple of other courses recommended by E-TracX for a solid foundation to mastering the art.
1. Turntablism Courses
* This is an advanced course for DJs who would like to take their skills to the next level.
- If manipulating sounds and creating new music / sound effects is something you’d like to explore, this course will bring you to the next step in your DJ journey by equipping you with the knowledge and skills needed to use multiple turntables and a cross fader-equipped DJ mixer.
- Duration: Basic – 4 Sessions, 2 hours each (Total 8 hours)
Advanced – 6 Sessions, 2 hours each (Total 12 hours)
- Fee: Basic – SGD800.00 for Private (1-to-1) classes
Advanced – SGD1,440.00 for Private (1-to-1) classes
2. Mentorship Programme
* Private sessions will be launched soon. To date, only group sessions have been offered once per year.
- Our Mentorship Programme is designed to train and prepare new DJs for the industry as well as creating Live Showcases & Routines.