Founder & Owner
where it all began...
Dancing and Performing
My love and passion for music started at the age of six whilst learning to dance. I went on to perform on stage and engaged in choreography and assisting the teacher. It was all I wanted to do and gave me a creative outlet in which I thrived. Even after breaking my leg, I was determined it would not stop me doing what I loved. Whilst the scooter did not survive, fortunately I was able to get back riding and return to work, and thankfully within a few weeks back dancing again .
Cassette mixing to Turntables
When I was not dancing, I was compiling music, from both my collection of LPs, 7" & 12" singles and rented cassettes from the local library, for the annual show productions. Having mastered the record and pause buttons on the Hi-Fi, I was inspired to create more professional-sounding mixes for other uses and had a good idea about what music would work from the aerobic classes. I was excited about how my mixes could sound and purchased two belt-driven turntables and a two channel DJ mixer. I connected everything to the Hi-Fi and got started. Excitement turned to disappointment when it did not work out as well as I had expected. But I was determined to master this. Two weeks of practice between my shifts and I was creating professionally sounding mixtapes for myself and others.
Bedroom DJ to Club and Mobile DJ
I really wanted to take my mixes to the next level and knew that the local DJ also worked in Clubs. This gave me an idea… Every Thursday after work, he and some of the staff went clubbing. Maybe if I volunteered to drive I could get some professional feedback on my mixes. Not only did my plan work and I receive positive feedback, the club actually gave me an opportunity to audition that night. This then opened the door for paid work. I went on to secure some regular work as a Mobile DJ just by reaching out to a few DJ agencies and asking around. During a night out in Sheffield City Centre, I approached the resident DJ and asked if I could mix a few tracks! He agreed! He choose the songs and I got on the turntables to do my thing. It paid off! Leaving the venue with a couple of weekly residencies. My contact list got bigger and more opportunities followed. Including one audition in Liverpool which led to more resident DJ work up to seven nights a week. These included Club Zanzibar and Aussie bar; Walkabout. Travelling as far North as Glasgow and down to Central Birmingham in the Midlands and lasted 15yrs.
Cruise Ship DJ to Published Author
14 years of working locally, I was on the look out for a new challenge and audience. Talking to my neighbours about some of the cruise lines they had sailed with, I contacted P&O Cruises and secured an audition in Feb 2008 and headed to Southampton. A few days later, I received the super exciting news that I’d got the job, although was told the vessel I would be starting on wasn’t ready. 5th June 2008 I got the call and had 10 days to digitalise my entire music collection. I discovered only after boarding that I would be expected to play every night. Only to find on day one, many of the songs I had prepared did not play in my digital SD players! Luckily come turnaround I was able to bring my entire 26Kg of CD’s onboard to start the digital process once again.
After a successful four months contract, I went on to secure a DJ only position with Princess Cruises and asked to create a demo CD. I carefully handcrafted a 4hour set in my living room and condensed it down to 1hour to send to head office in Miami, USA. A few days later I received an email saying “Michelle, we are rocking out to your CD as we speak”. This led to me working on several of their vessels between from 2009 to 2012. During life on board, I spent quite a lot of my time writing about my life at sea and speaking to other crew members and passengers about their experience. I was driven to sharing our story and found the Passengers seemed to be quite excited about reading it too! I met some amazing people and their families and friends during my time at sea and am so grateful for the opportunities I received. What started as an idea in my head led to me leaving ships as a budding author with my first book “Ship Life…” which I went on to publish in June 2013 on my return home.
Want2DJ to Mischemix Academy
My second business was born as a result of a friend asking me to help her achieve her dream of becoming a DJ. Teaching my craft was in fact my dream. To help others get into DJing and pass on my knowledge and skills. After researching in the area, It was clear there was very little tutoring on this subject so, Want2DJ was formed in 2015. I began helping more beginners, advanced and Professional DJ’s, using my equipment or their own when possible. We cover a range of topics from, getting started, to what to buy, better understand the equipment they own, giving their mixing some structure, improving their overall presentation, to building confidence behind the decks. More recently, Want2DJ has been rebranded to become: Mischemix Academy.
Live-streaming to International Subscribers and Tips
The studio is my happy place, so when it had to close during the first lockdown, I couldn’t resist running a couple of tests on a social media platform. Wow! This was an absolute game-changer to the way I could reach an audience. Things moved up a level when the US organisation called Mixcloud became the first online platform to make streaming commercial music legal. My first unplanned live-streaming test in May 2020 lasted over 5hours and hit 173 views. My mind was blown, and I was hooked, to be able to reach fans and supporters around the world and chat with them in real-time was just amazing! Then came the opportunity to earn money on Mixcloud! No sooner had I completed my Select profile, within two weeks I gained my first couple of UK subscribers, then USA! I couldn’t believe this was happening! More recently Mixcloud have introduced the option for viewers to give tips to DJ which I hadn’t expected to get, but am extremely grateful to receive!
The birth of Caravan Del Mar
Our plan to build a new house with a much bigger home studio became a reality during the first lockdown. After planning approval came through everything slowed down! As challenging as it was finding a temporary home, at the start of 2021 our static caravan arrived on site! By day it was home for Hubby and I and by night my studio was open with our 4G connection. Back up and running, I was able to continue my teaching online and streaming my live shows. Where fans actually came up with the name ‘Caravan Del Mar’ and the new show was born. With our self-build project is coming along nicely, I will soon be letting you know when the new studio is open for business. Until then CDM is performing very well….