Let's Talk About: Turntable

The other day I remembered that for a week and a few days last summer, I was addicted to a little website called Turntable. Elliott messaged one evening and said that I should join him on the site, so I did (you had to sign in with your Facebook account) and I was taken into this online world where you join rooms and jump onto DJ decks and take turns to play your favourite tunes. Other people could join the room and chat with you, while voting up and down your track that you play. If your track gets too many dislikes, the next DJ gets their turn. It even showed everyone what type of computer you were using (not really a big deal, but a cool feature nonetheless)!

It was a pyjama wearing experience (yeah I wear pyjamas, so what?) for me, meaning that I'd wake up and go straight online, not even bothering to shower or get dressed. They were weird times, as usually I am pretty on the ball in the mornings. I spent a few days straight trying to earn 100 points (you got these from getting lots of positive votes on the songs that you play) and when I did it was like I'd won the lottery. There were also avatars available for earning 300, 600 and 1000 points, and while I was addicted, I'm pretty sure that I'm not sad enough to attempt to reach those high levels.

Turntable helped me learn about some really cool artists and learn to love some a little more than I already did. I usually hung out in an electronic music room, so I managed to find out about some of the best ambient electronica and house music I've ever heard. I remember specifically that some guy played a song called 'ID' by a certain guy who goes by the name of Avicii. This was way before the song was known as 'Levels' and was being played everywhere you turned. Hooray for being there before the crowds come! I'm only joking, as I still love this song today and will probably not get sick of it for a long time yet. Anyway, my instant love for this 'ID' track led me on the path to discover more by Avicii, and I then went on to play many more of his songs and remixes on Turntable. I also learnt about another favourite artist of mine, Gold Panda, so thank you Turntable!!! I'll post some YouTube videos below to show you some of the great songs I found while using this great website.

Marsbeing - In Street Of Berlin

Fake Blood - Mars (Player's 95 Jump Remix)

Nadia Ali - Rapture (Avicii New Generation Mix)

Lil Wayne - Pussy, Money, Weed

Turntable was a real hoot sometimes as well, because like most online communities, there are always over-sensitive people and assholes. There was nothing more pleasing than joining a room full of dubsteppers (with a friend to watch you) who take themselves too seriously and telling them that you are going to play a really incredible 'filthy' track, then dropping a bomb on them in the form of Rick Astley's 'Never Gonna Give You Up' to displeased cries of 'fuck you' and immediate vote downs. Then you just quit the room immediately, it is like hit and run DJing. I also did the same thing in a room filled with hipsters (who all seemed to lack a sense of humour) by playing Darude's track 'Sandstorm'. I got booted from the room before I could even make my escape, but damn, I was laughing so hard.

But Turntable wasn't without its flaws. With the website being a beta at the time that I was using it, there was tonnes of bugs, such as not being able to search for a song for hours upon end, not being able to upload anything for hours upon end, and the worst of all, sometimes you couldn't access the website full stop and for some people it wasn't even just sometimes, I had friends who were never able to access the site at all.

Wondering why I am writing this whole article in the past tense? Because it wasn't long until the fun ended. Those hours spent with friends playing each other grime or rock tracks could no longer be repeated, as copyright problems arose, meaning that the website could only be accessed in the USA, and that's bullshit. Bloody music industry fascists.

Since these changes, Turntable has become huge, and this means that I am missing out on cool stuff like new features, and getting to join rooms hosted by some really kick-ass musicians, such as Owl City or Diplo. Some of my friends found out how to install a program to make the website think that they were logging on from an American computer, but I am not really up for messing around with that kind of stuff. The CEO of the site said "we are trying out best to get the site to you as soon as possible" but that was back in 2011, so I am pretty sure that they have since given up.

So there you have it, my short-lived memories of a simple yet simply brilliant website, that took the concept of social networking around music (like last.fm) to a whole new level by giving it the human connection that it needed. I have nothing but respect for the website's creators, though at the same time I feel a little bit of pissed off at them for not making enough effort to let non-Americans access the site too. Oh well, c'est la vie.

In a perfect world, there would be no war, no poverty, and worldwide access to Turntable. Let's make it happen.

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