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In the interest of full disclosure let it be known that this is a biased report of the Mobile Beat Show in Las Vegas from last month. Here’s the conflict of interest: I am predisposed to like things.
I go into any new experience wanting to enjoy it. I presume something will be good and worthwhile until proven otherwise. You can call me an optimist or naïve or say I wear rose-colored glasses and that’s fine. I’ll take my outlook over someone who is jaded and negative any day of the week. Plus I like Ryan Burger and Mike Buonaccorso and respect all that they have done and continue to do for our industry. I root for them to succeed.
With all that upfront and on the table, there is no denying that MB2009 was a smashing success. Here are some on my observations from the week:
First of all, when does this show actually start? For as long as I can remember, it’s been Tuesday. But increasingly there are more and more events for the attendee on Monday. If you don’t get into town on Sunday, trust me, you’ll feel like you missed the first hour of a wedding or something. Personally I was busy all day and evening on Monday so I missed the seminars and entertainment that Mobile Beat organized but from the reports I heard it was well worth getting into town a day early. The Dueling Pianos kickoff party Monday night was well attended and from what I hear a lot of fun.
Tuesday is the official kickoff and Mobile Beat always front loads their seminars on Day One. This year was no exception. Andy Ebon and Jim Cerone kicked off the day with amazing seminars. Both would speak each day and if you think three seminars from the same speaker is too much then you didn’t get a chance to hear either one of these guys. Andy’s knowledge of the internet is limitless but he “dummies it down” just enough to make it all make sense. His closing on Tuesday was incredibly motivational and his content all week long was in-depth and timely. I saw Andy speak on this subject six months ago but with the speed of light that the internet changes at, Andy completely updated his information. He is as “in the moment” as any speaker on the circuit today and based on his subject matter he needs to be.
Jim’s Perfect Host seminars are great. He seems poised to break out as the next big speaker on the DJ circuit (he’s obviously shoved Randy Bartlett to the unemployment line) so if you missed him in Las Vegas I suspect you’ll have the opportunity to catch him sometime soon. I’ve always known Jim to be the consummate gentlemen and professional and in his seminar he took the steps to explain how we, too, could become “The Perfect Host.” Jim has produced a DVD with this material and is offering it at his website, www.JimCerone.com.
After lunch on Tuesday Jorge Lopez presented a seminar on Selling to Different Generations. Jorge is simply one of the smartest men in our industry and whenever and where ever he speaks, I’ll be there to listen.
I was very honored to be included in this Day One lineup and I gave a 60 minute seminar on maintaining your staff called: “Keeping All of Your Great DJs.” I received some good feedback afterwards so I can only assume I didn’t embarrass myself after those heavy hitters (either that or the attendees were just really nice to me)
Tuesday night Mobile Beat threw a party that was amazing. Sean “Big Daddy” McKee kicked things off by getting everyone on the dance floor. After winning every award known to the DJ Industry last year, Big Daddy recently added another notch to his lapel, “Cancer Survivor.” There is no one in our industry who can match Big Daddy’s passion when he is on the mic and on the dance floor and even though he only had 10 minutes to demonstrate it, he proved once again that this is true. Ron Dante (lead singer of the Archies) had the unenviable task of following Big Daddy. The nicest thing I can say about that is, someone had to do it. But then Otis Day cranked out an hour long set of classic rock and blues that shocked most everyone. We were just expecting “Shout.” That’s like expecting a cheeseburger and getting Fillet Mignon. And as if that wasn’t enough Vanilla Ice closed the night with a quick, yet impressive set. Vanilla Ice clearly has a water fetish which manifests itself in him spraying, dumping and throwing water on everyone anywhere near the stage. Since I was out of reach, I found this very amusing. All in all, Ice was impressive, and with less than half the cursing of Freedom Williams from last year, he was that much less offensive.
On Wednesday and Thursday, I have to admit I missed the 8am seminars. But not because I was sleeping in. It’s become tradition that Marcello Pedalino and I try to round up some Mobile DJs for some early morning runs while we are attending any DJ Convention. This year however I am sidelined from running with Achilles Tendonitis so the run became a walk. And wouldn’t you know, while we usually get one or maybe two people to join us, we never had less than a dozen walkers each morning. There is nothing like starting a day with a brisk walk, some exercises and some unique networking. I hope next year we get even more attendees to join us. I think one of the things our industry could use the most is an increased focus on health and fitness.
Jeffrey Craig presented his seminar entitled Strictly Business on Wednesday. Jeff had some solid content and based on the mad rush to meet him after his seminar, it seems the Mobile DJ Industry is finally learning who “dis guy from Brooklyn” is.
I’d like to report on the rest of the seminars but this year I took a booth to help promote my Training DVD so I was tied up most of Wednesday and Thursday. This gave me a unique perspective of the show, getting to meet and chat with so many attendees as they made their way around the floor. I have to say a public THANK YOU to Big Daddy who helped me out tremendously. Having a “superstar” in my booth certainly didn’t hurt sales.
I find it curious that some people will use the economy as an excuse to not attend a convention like this. In my opinion it should be the exact opposite. When times are tough and sales are down, that’s when you need your industry connections the most. But if attendance was down this year in numbers, it was up in enthusiasm and optimism. The overall attitude of the DJs that I spoke to was, “Yes the economy is tough but we refuse to allow that to affect our businesses. That’s why we are here.”
Based on what I witnessed in Las Vegas at the Mobile Beat show, our industry has a great future.
Mike Walter is the owner of Elite Entertainment of New Jersey and a nationally recognized expert in the area of multisystem company development and staff training. You can contact Mike at mikewalter@discjockeynews.com.


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