Hopefully by now you’re recovering from all of your holiday parties and taking some time to get ready for the year ahead. Or maybe you’re preparing to play a great New Year’s Eve set in a few days. Whatever the case, taking some downtime over the holidays is a good way to reflect on what’s changed over the past year and to prepare for what will change in the year to come. It’s safe to say that the world of electronic music has changed a lot in 2016, and will probably change even more in 2017, so if you’re looking for some 2017 DJ tips, here are a few predictions for what the next year will bring.

Prepare for More Diversity in EDM

While EDM hasn’t quite gone the way of disco yet, the charts are telling us that audiences are ready for more diversity in dance music in 2017. With blockbuster movies about EDM starring the likes of Zac Efron, and celebrity DJs charging $1,500 for ultra-VIP tickets in Vegas, it’s safe to say that EDM has not only broken into the mainstream, but become a culture of excess. And while there are plenty of underground scenes still running strong, most mainstream audiences are beginning to experience overexposure symptoms when it comes to EDM. That’s not to say that EDM won’t be around in 2017, but look for new genres to emerge into the mainstream that bring more diversity to the pop-EDM sound that top 40 radio listeners have been oversaturated with in 2016.

Look for a Move Towards More Hardware and Vintage Technology

With so many advances in digital and wireless technology, it would seem logical that DJs would be moving towards these types of un-tethered tech tools in 2017, but the trends appear to be pointing in the opposite direction. Just look at vinyl sales in the past year: while digital download sales were on the decline in 2016, vinyl sales actually grew. Now, the same trend is emerging on the music production end as well: sales of MIDI controllers have been on the decline recently, while sales of standalone hardware like CDJs and mixers are starting to climb. Look for this trend to grow in 2017, but watch as well for new innovations to occur as DJs combine the best that both hardware and software have to offer in their DJ setups.

Get Ready for AI Music Creation

With self-driving cars set to take over our streets and tech companies in Silicon Valley investing in all sorts of new artificial intelligence (AI) technology, programs that harness the power of big data and machine learning are becoming the way of the future. This appears to be the case for the music world as well – there’s already technology like Landr that (sort of) does the job of a human mastering engineer, and Alex Da Kid even released a single last month co-written by IBM’s Watson BEAT computer program. While AI in the music world seems to still be in the novelty stage, with the possibilities opened up by this kind of technology, one of the best 2017 DJ tips for anyone who wants to stay ahead of the curve is to harness the power of AI for their own music creation.

To stay on top of all of these trends, your best defence is the power of education. Technology and musical trends will come and go, but a solid foundation of technique and knowledge will never go out of style. To stay on top of your game in 2017, consider joining Spin Academy’s online DJ school for only $19.95/month to get access to all of the best tutorials and 2017 DJ tips.