Scratch DJ Technique Reference Guide

by Kwote

 

For video, click the name of each technique. 

Baby - A forward movement followed by a reverse movement of the record.

Forwards - A release of the record causing it to move forward, starting and ending with the fader closed.

Reverses - A reverse movement of the record, starting and ending with the fader closed.

Stabs - Similar to forwards, but the record isn't released and is done at a higher pitch.

Military - A combination of babies and stabs, typically done in succession.

Transformer - Opening and closing the fader in a rhythmic fashion while moving the record forward and/or backward. In order to achieve an authentic transform, one must start and end with the fader closed.

Chirps - Babies where the fader closes and opens between the end of the forward movement and beginning of the reverse movement.

Slice - Opposite of the chirp, where the fader opens and closes between the beginning of the forward movement and end of the reverse movement of a baby.

1F 2B Tears - A forward movement followed by 2 reverse movements, with a slight pause between each movement, creating 3 notes.

2F 1B Tears - Two forward movements followed by 1 reverse movement, with a slight pause between each movement, creating 3 notes.

Drags - A single movement in either direction at a super slow pace, causing a very low pitched sound.

Fades - Any scratch where the volume fader gradually decreases or increases, typically used to create an echo effect.

Dicing - Tears while simultaneously transforming to accent the silence between record movements.

Joe Cooley - Chirps followed by 1f 2b tears in alternation, typically performed at a fast pace.

Uzi - A very fast and harsh sounding scratch, done by keeping your hand still and creating extreme tension in your forearm.

Drumming - Drum samples manipulated in a rhythmic fashion, that tend to mimic drummers and drum beats. Typically done with, but not limited to, forwards and stabs.

Clover Tears - Two forward movements followed by two reverse movements, with a slight pause between each movement, creating 4 notes.

OG Flare - A forward and reverse movement of the record where the fader starts open, closes and opens in the middle of the forward, closes and opens at the end of the forward and remains open thereafter. Note that, unlike transforms, all flares begin and end with the fader open.

Reverse OG Flare - Similar to an og flare, the fader closes and opens at the end of the forward movement and closes and opens in the middle of the reverse movement.

1 Click Flare - Similar to an og flare, but the fader only closes and opens once in the middle of a forward or reverse movement, creating 2 notes per movement. When done on both the forward and reverse movement in succession, it is known as a 1 click orbit, creating 4 notes. Keep in mind that any flare where the same amount of clicks is repeated in succession is known as an orbit.

2 Click Flare - Closing and opening the fader twice in a row in the middle of a forward or reverse movement, creating 3 notes per movement. The traditional definition is 2 clicks on the forward and one on the reverse, but is not something to follow strictly.

3 Click Flare - Closing and opening the fader three times in a row in the middle of a forward or reverse movement, creating 4 notes per movement. The traditional definition is 3 clicks on the forward and 2 on the reverse, but is not something to follow strictly.

Crab - A four click flare created by tapping all your fingers against the fader in a row, starting with your pinky, creating 5 notes on a forward or reverse movement of the record.

Chirp Flare - A chirp followed by any kind of flare in alternation, typically done with 1 click orbits.

Crescent Flare - A combination of an og flare and reverse og flare where the fader closes and opens in the middle of the forward movement, closes and opens between the forward and reverse movement and closes and opens in the middle of the reverse movement, creating 4 notes.

Triple Tear - Three forward or reverse movements in succession, with a slight pause between each movement, creating 3 notes. Also known to be done with an additional movement in the opposite direction of the previous three movements, creating 4 notes.

Prizm - A 2f 1b tear with an og flare done simultaneously, followed by a 1f 2b tear with a reverse og flare done simultaneously.

Lazer - A quick flinging release motion of the record in either forward or reverse, typically causing a high pitch sound.

Tazer - A forward and reverse lazer done in succession with an og flare done simultaneously.

Boomerang - A slice, followed by a stab, followed by a reverse slice, followed by a reverse, typically done multiple times in a row.

Autobahn - An extension of the boomerang, where the end of the first stab continues with an additional two slices and finishes with a reverse. In other words, slice, stab, slice, slice, reverse.

3 Click Swing - A chirp followed by a slice in alternation.

Autoswing - An extension of the 3 click swing, where two 3 click swings are done in succession, all the while moving further into the sample and finished with a reverse 3 click, where the first click lands between the final forward and reverse movement.

For a wide range of ways to creatively apply the above listed techniques go to scratch dj theory