The concept of a VJ or ‘Video Jockey’ was popularized by the Music Television Network or the MTV in the 1980s. As opposed to a DJ or a Disc Jockey who plays and manipulates his collection of music to suit the moods of the audience, a VJ on the other hand is an announcer or a presenter who introduces videos on commercial music television stations; a VJ has to perform a job suited more to the theme of the show rather than a customized set of audience. While a DJ can at times afford to be a behind – the – scene person and go unnoticed, a VJ is a person who is right in front of you, hosting the show and hence, cannot escape the attention of the viewers. Besides, a DJ has to handle only music, whereas VJing can be done on a television channel, at a concert, nightclub, music festivals or at any other performance including a combination of music, actors and dancers. Hence, you actually don’t need to be a DJ to be a VJ.
In this age of globalization, where the world can view any show, any channel, any time and the entertainment industry getting more and more visual and tech savvy, there is a lot in store for an aspiring VJ – creativity, fun, glamour, recognition and at the same time a host of challenges to deal with.
Let us take a look at some of the traits that this profession requires or brings with it :
Visual entertainment :
VJing is all about being visual – on television screen, on the stage or in the online world. There is a live person who hosts the show for you and takes you through a journey during the entire show. Hence, grooming and personality development become essential ingredients for an aspiring VJ. Unlike a DJ, who does his talking through his music, a VJ has to appeal to 3 human senses – sight, hear and feel. A VJ, thus, has to be good looking and well groomed, has to have a good command over language and appropriate diction and has his or her style and script has to sound interesting to the audience. Therefore, while a VJ may not have the requisite knowledge to choose the right music for the right occasion like a DJ, he or she has to have the other qualities required for the job.
Don’t need to go through all the technical DJ training :
While a VJ performs the role of a link between different acts at an event, he or she does not have to personally deal with music mixing or selecting a particular or the right track to be played. Hence, a VJ does not necessarily require the technical knowledge or has to undergo the technical training that a DJ has to go through.
Sky is the limit when it comes to creative output :
VJing is like taking your audience on a journey. Hence, creativity is one of the most essential components of VJing. Creativity can take different forms – the script, the style, the diction, the presentation, the looks, the combination of light, sound and special effects, the props, the costume and various other things. One needs to keep inventing and reinventing new concepts and old ideas. With creativity, indeed, sky is the limit, as the audiences constantly look for something new, something exciting. The more creative you get, the more your popularity chart rises.
Tech savvy job :
Technology has come to stay with us and become a part of our existence in whatever we do; especially so, in the music and entertainment industry. While a VJ may not know how to create a particular effect, he or she definitely needs to be aware of what is to be created in order to get the desired result. For this, there are two key things required – (i) The VJ has to be tech savvy, i.e., should be comfortable working and exploring different technology platforms with the technical experts with some basic knowledge, and (ii) A VJ should constantly update himself or herself with emerging technology to be able to experiment and create the possible different effects to make the show interesting and unique.
Upcoming trend set :
While there are many who come and go as a VJ, the one who has a unique style and is able to hold the attention of his or her audience through creativity every time he or she takes the stage becomes the trendsetter. This is more often than not visible in the ratings of a show. The more popular the VJ, the higher is the rating of the show.
Glamour and fun :
Finally, coming to that part of the profession that most professionals in the music and entertainment industry yearn for. Yes, you got it right – glamour and fun. These are the two key factors that attract most people to be a part of this industry. With the music and entertainment industry growing exponentially and especially with the power of the virtual (online) world today, glamour, fame, recognition are fast to come. With the availability of a number of avenues to showcase your talent, it is easier today than ever to become of a part of this glittering world.
VJing as a profession has grown over time and is here to stay. With the increasing number of talent shows, award nites, concerts, Internet connectivity and 24×7 television music and entertainment channels, there will always be a need for fresh and good talent in this field. Besides, with the number of avenues to showcase one’s talent only increasing everyday, with it has also increased the competition. Therefore, creativity and confidence are two most essential qualities that one must possess in order to become a part of this industry.
While VJing is an expanded form of DJing, both are very different in their very nature. Thus, the skillsets required for both are also very distinct. And hence, one does not need to be a DJ to become a VJ!