Disco DJ Sophie Lloyd shares all

So you always wanted to know what it was like to be a professional girl DJ? London’s leading nu-disco spinner Sophie Lloyd, shares all.

Hey Sophie, how long ago did you start DJing, and how did you get into it?

Hi there! It was about eight years ago. I was going out with a DJ and I’d always wanted to learn how to mix since I was about 14! I used to listen to pirate radio shows constantly and was obsessed with dance music. I saved up enough cash to buy some decks when I was 21 and haven’t looked back since!

Can you describe to us the best night you have ever DJed?

There’s been so many times where I’ve looked at a crowd jumping up and down and it’s the best feeling ever. But V festival last year was a highlight, as was Bestival because all my friends were there. I love playing at after-parties the best though as they’re always totally bananas!

Did you have a defining moment when you knew this was something you wanted to do?

Oh yes – when I realised I could make money doing something I loved!

Did you find the DJ world a bit of a closed boy club when you first started?
Yes! And I do find it is still quite hard to prove yourself as a DJ as blokes tend to think of us as playing novelty records without mixing. But it’s nice when you can prove them wrong.

Do you think men make better DJs than women?
I don’t think you can say a male or a female DJ is better or worse – it’s about what you play. There are good and bad DJs, regardless of gender.

Have you ever encountered attitude from male DJs?
Yes, unfortunately. I recently played at a party where it was all male DJs – they wouldn’t let me on the decks and kept brushing me aside when I wanted to take my turn – the dancefloor was empty. When I finally managed to get on the decks, the place went mental and they all came up and apologised to me. Idiots.

Did you know that in the last DJ mag top 100, not one woman was represented. How does that make you feel?

Ouch! Really? There are so many amazing female DJs out there! Let’s hope this competition will help change that for next year.

You are currently DJing out several times a week, what is the downside to being a working DJ?
It’s hard to have a lot of late nights sometimes when you’re tired and it’s raining outside, when all you want to do is collapse on the sofa and watch telly! And sometimes it’s hard not to have the weekends as your own anymore.

And the ups?
Ah yes, the ups far outweigh the downs! The travel, amazing parties, meeting people, and not having to commute to a boring job every morning!

What makes a great DJ?
Great records and a sound that’s your own. And being able to think about who you’re playing for – you’re hired to make people dance, not to prove your musical knowledge. I like playing records that make people smile.

And finally, what advice would you give to young aspiring girl DJs whom have entered this competition?
Go for it! And most importantly, have fun!

Catch Sophie Lloyd playing at the WI Club, every last Saturday of the month at the Horse & Groom, 28 Curtain Road, London EC2A 3NZ

About this entry