“I’m an engineer first, producer second, performer third”: Deadmau5 follows up on his comments about pre-recorded DJ sets

Deadmau5 commented in a 2021 livestream that most DJ sets at major festivals are pre-recorded.

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Deadmau5 Mouse Head

Image: Jason Koerner / Getty Images

Producer Deadmau5 has followed up on comments he made regarding pre-recorded DJ sets during a live stream.

Deadmau5, whose real name is Joel Zimmerman, has reiterated that he’s not a DJ himself, and has stated that “everyone does shit their own way”.

Discussion online arose from a 2021 livestream from the artist which has recently resurfaced on YouTube. Responding to a comment that asked if he had “ever faked a DJ set”, he confirmed that he had played pre-recorded ones before due to time restraints.

“[At] most major festivals you have to play a pre-recorded set. Like EDC [Electric Daisy Carnival in Las Vegas], I would be surprised if somebody actually played a set that wasn’t pre-recorded to be honest,” he said.

“Because there’s such a big deal to the fucking artist in the production schedule and the timeline and all that stuff that they wouldn’t wanna fuck up.”

A commenter then declared that those who play pre-recorded sets are not real DJs, “Okay. Says who? The fucking DJ police?” Deadmau5 scoffed in reply.

A clip from the livestream was shared to the MusicTech Instagram page, where Deadmau5 responded to backlash: “The fuck do I care. I’m an engineer first, producer second, performer third. Pre-recorded, on the fly, DJs, live PAs… who cares, everyone does shit their own way. So maybe just try to have a good time?”

He also shared his own post to his page on the platform declaring he’s not a DJ himself, “18 years later I am still being asked to prove I am a DJ,”  he wrote. “Why? I am not a DJ. I do zero jockeying with discs. I don’t know how to use a CDJ. This is not news.”

DJ Diesel, who many may know as Shaquille O’Neal, also commented under his response joking, “That’s exactly what a DJ would say.”

For the latest information on Deadmau5’s releases and live shows, visit his website.


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