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AW: DJ techniques in live looping (Re: video on loop turntablism) - also for Jeff Larson!

> No, I'm hinting at the technique. A typical DJ mixer has a 
> cross over fader between the two turntables and if you watch 
> a DJ's hands at work you can see how he jumps between the two 
> turntables with this cross fader while changing the "source 
> sound" (moving the disc or replacing
> it) on the turntable that is not on-line at the moment. 

There are actually two styles of crossfaders for two different concepts of
using them:

1. The scratch/mix battle approach:
This would actually come first in history (and is the concept also linked 
Joseph Saddler a.k.a Grandmaster Flash, who is often cited as the inventor
of the crossfader).
The attenuation of the crosfader over its way is highly non-linear, meaning
that it stays close to zero over most of the fader's path, then sharply 
continously differentably) rising at the end of the path. The crossfader is
used behaviourally as a click-free three way switch with the positions
A:"source 1", B:"source 1 + source 2" and C:"source 2" respectively.

There are two things done with that click-free three-way-switch:
a) suddenly but click-free switching between two sources, when cutting from
one vinyl track to another or back and forth between both. This uses
positions A and C.
b) When scratching, you usually have your beat running on one set (let's 
source 1 in our terminology) and scratch on the second one (source 2). To
create rhythmic effects or to mute unwanted sonic effects (such as when
reversing, thus allowing the very low frequencies), you quickly mute the
scratch deck. In that application, the crossfader becomes a click-free
killswitch, without at all affecting source 1; you use position B and C.

One example:

In the beginning, you see a lot of application of method a). Skwint always
slams the crossfader from full left to full right and back.
Then, starting at 1:30 in the scratch action, method b) is applied (source 
here is the turntable on viewers' left). Here, he moves the fader from full
(viewers') right into the center area and back.

Method b) is also used when you're only using one source (which makes 
as here the crossfader only affects one of the two):
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=IQcyLMa716k (e.g. at 2:00)

(Thanks to all of you for starting this thread. I really enjoy that video 
DJ Skwint!)

2. The blending over approach:
In most styles of electronic dance (of the 90s), the muting effect is not
that important (as there's no scratching). What becomes important is the
possibility to fade between two sources relatively slowly using a constant
power contour. 

(couldn't find videos to document this properly).

The crossfader here is used a lot in conjunction with frequency kill and
punch switches. Great examples are mixes from that genre like the DJ Kicks
series, making proper use of the fact that those production maxis always
start of with only a drum beat (contrary to a lot of the sources used in
oldskool hiphop, which are mostly old funk, soul and jazz records).

> Ableton is one by many that have borrowed this concept. With 
> loopers we may use more than two sources for cross fading though.

Some DJs may do that too:
And some even use a looper:

> Sorry that I left out some information, but I'm intending to 
> keep my posts short and adequate, so people can click a link 

I, on the other hand, tend to write shitloads everytime...