DJing is now so financially lucrative that American business magazine Forbes saw fit to publish a list of the world's highest paid DJs this year. Many of the guys on the list (and they are all guys sadly) including Tiesto, David Guetta, Deadmau5, Skrillex and Diplo make millions of dollars playing more than 120 shows a year and produce tracks for the pop hit market and themselves.
Calvin Harris topped the list, earning a staggering $46 million last year. Las Vegas superclub Hakkasan booked Harris to play 70 shows over two years, purportedly paying $200,000 per show.
Pfft, I hear you say. Joel Zimmerman, aka Deadmau5, has a new deal with the same venue that sees him earn $425,000 per show. In one of the more bizarre displays of recent nightclub affluence, a high-flying punter at a Deadmau5 show offered him $200,000 to play Bon Jovi's Living On A Prayer, but refused to pay up once Zimmerman played the '80s hit.
Those DJs at the top tier are rolling in the cash but there's a glut of mid-level international DJs who jet from city to city, week in, week out. Like most touring bands, they take the economy seat on the plane but with less overheads and a more lucrative paycheck, a DJ of that calibre can make a very decent living.
Which is all the more reason to love the @Djscomplaining Twitter account which, like @humblebrag, details, through retweets, the spoilt life these DJs have. "To be alone in a stretch limo? Very sad," cried Swedish DJ John Dahlback. "This will be the last time I will sleep on a yacht...it's shaking too much," moaned DJ Chuckie. "My flight got cancelled, I book a private jet, private jet breaks down taxing," blubbed German DJ Zedd.
Boohoo you big babies. For contrast, DJs Complaining regularly retweets veteran British DJ Tony Blackburn, whose chirpy pronouncements are a ringing endorsement for a positive outcome on life. "I hope you all have a very happy day today which is meant to be the happiest day of the year," he said recently.
Blackburn put in his dues and has been "disc jockeying" for more than 40 years. He's a reminder to these instant-fame brats at the top of the DJ pile who use Twitter to bitch about airports and shout at hotel staff how to be a consummate professional. Respect your DJing elders.