Tour Guide: Packing Records For The Extended Trip

As mainly a vinyl DJ, I often times get asked how do I pack for tours especially when there are multiple nights and stops included and multiple genres being played. The answer is always the same, I pack and prepare for every situation with minimal repeats of playing records. When doing my Butta 45’s Germany / Switzerland tour which usually lasts for approximately two week, it’s pretty simple to grab a full bag of 250 and go. But when setting out on my annual Magma Taishi Returns Japan tour, packing isn’t as simple especially when I’m playing a variety of parties music wise and the one that I never do is repeat sets. One night I can be playing all Funk & Soul while the next is Disco with the following a combination of Funk, Jazz and Rare Groove then following that night up with Hip Hop. On this present trip, I made a stop over in Korea for 3 nights of gigs, one which required me to play a heavy breaks set which required even more planning. That sounds like a lot of records right? Well it is and it’s well worth taking the time to sort out what to carry, packing accordingly and taking the show on the road.

So what’s the number in total? That all depends on the mix of records that I’ll be carrying. In addition to all those genres, I like to carry a few classics and familiar tunes, deeper cuts, unreleased test presses that that I can break while on the road with the selection being spread across both 45’s and 12″ with the occasional LP. So in total, 350-400 records are carried with a small percentage never being played yet better to have them in tow just in case something fits into the mix. I’ve been told plenty of times when visiting here in Japan that I am one of the very few traveling DJ’s who come to the country packing that many records but even in the even fewer if not the only one who comes packing that many records and playing multiple styles and genres.

The easy part of touring is going, the hard part is being there buying records and other things that you see and want to bring home which is definitely another topic for another day.

I applaud my fellow DJ’s who go the extra mile when packing, it’s one thing to carry a bag of 45’s to play dates but another world entirely when packing both 45’s and 12″. Two names that come to mind are definitely Ge-Ology and Sadar Bahar, with Ge-Ology even going further with packing his mixer which is another task in itself.