Weekend Playlist: Top 10 Classic Songs to DJ at Your Next Party

Janice

DJing is a dangerous and high pressure business. Imagine the entire tone of a party resting on your shoulders. You’re exposing yourself to potential ridicule by endorsing certain songs that were best left unheard on your iPod. If you play lame music, your party guests are going to slam all your booze and leave promptly thereafter.

Luckily, DJ and filmmaker Todd Smolar has a DJ contingency plan for when you panic at the stereo system. Hosting weekly Thursday parties at Avenue in New York with Paul Sevigny and Angelo Bianchi and Sunday parties at Darkroom with Jason Baron, Todd knows how to keep a party moving. Here, Todd shares with us his Top 10 Classic Songs to DJ at Your Next Party

1. “Cold Blooded Old Times” by Smog
(Knock Knock, above)
One night at Beatrice Inn, I had to take over for a DJ that was too drunk to continue, and I played “Cold Blooded Old Times” by mistake. I was about to pop on another tune when Heath Ledger approached the DJ booth and professed his love for this ditty, saying it was his favorite song. Now this song is a sentimental favorite of mine.

2. “Love Will Tear Us Apart” by Joy Division (Let the Movie Begin)
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Why is this song so badass? Because it never gets old.

3. “What Makes Him Act So Bad” by Adam Green (Minor Love)
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This is a great song by a quintessential New York songwriter. Also, I directed this song’s music video so watch out for it!

4. “How Do You Want It” by 2Pac (All Eyez On Me)

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2Pac was a poet and this is a hip-hop classic.

5. “Death or Glory” by The Clash (Clash on Broadway)
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When it’s really late in the night, you’ve gotta play this song. “Death or Glory” with a beer in hand and everything’s alright…

6. “NYC Gone Gone” by Conor Oberst (Conor Oberst)
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With a good banging beat and guitar riff, this minute-long song is ideal for getting a party started.

7. “Allure (featuring Jay-Z and Notorious B.I.G.)” by Ratatat (Ratatat Remixes, Volume II)
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This remix is great — it’s got a really cool guitar loop.

8. “Short Fuse” by The Black Lips (200 Million Thousand)
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“Short Fuse” sounds like a lost classic from the late 60s, and it’s sure to get people on their feet, shakin’ their hips, and “blowing up like an atom bomb!”

9. “Surfing in the USA” by The Beach Boys (Greatest Surfing Songs)
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When DJing, any song by The Beach Boys is a surefire choice.

10. “Long Tall Sally” by Little Richard (The Georgia Peach)
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Can you believe that this song was written in 1956?!

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