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Berklee Press has published a line of books and records to offer instruction in the art and techniques of the fastest growing segment of the musical instrument industry, the DJ or "turntablist" phenomenon. Included in the Tools for DJs product line are Turntable Technique: The Art of the DJ (book/two-record set), Turntable Basics, and the five-volume Vital Vinyl record collection.

"One of the most popular forms of creative expression today is the DJ re-mixing field," said David Kusek, Director of Berklee Press, the publishing division of the renowned Berklee College of Music. "In consultation with top DJs, and drawing on Berklee College's 50-plus years in music education, we've formalized a method of musical notation to explain the art, so DJs can better communicate with and learn from each other."

According to author Stephen Webber, professor of music production and engineering at Berklee College of Music, "Mainstream jazz, rock and alternative artists are increasingly incorporating the techniques and styles of turntablists into their records and live performances. I believe the time has come to recognize the turntable as a legitimate musical instrument." In Turntable Technique: The Art of the DJ, Webber includes a brief history of turntablism along with easy-to-follow instructions for both basic and intermediate turntablist techniques, including scratching, beat matching, mixing, cutting, stabs and more.

The limited-edition, five-volume Vital Vinyl 12" record collection contains originally created loops, grooves, break beats, vocals and sound effects for use by aspiring or experienced DJs, rappers, re-mixers and producers.

Here's the Tools for DJs product lineup:

Turntable Technique: The Art of the DJ - Step-by-step instructions on scratching, beat matching, mixing, cutting, stabs and more. The book also includes photographs and musical exercises, a history of DJing and hip-hop culture as well as interviews with top DJs including DJ Swamp (Beck), DJ QBert (Invisibl Skratch Picklz) and DJ Craze (DMC three-time world champion) among others.

Turntable Basics - This 40-page quick-start handbook details the ten essentials of playing the turntable. Turntable Basics is being bundled with three of Numark's DJ system packages - DJ Starter Kit, Battle Pak II and Phat Pak.

Vital Vinyl - The five-volume, limited edition set of 12" records features ready-to-use mix material created especially for this collection with consultation by top DJs. All Vital Vinyl material may be legally sampled and used for creating new music, royalty-free. Included are:

Volume 1: Needle Juice: live hip-hop, R&B and funk breaks & grooves, vocals and skratch substance

Volume 2: Turntablist's Toolkit: sound FX & tones; jazzy-funky solo instruments, shouts and speechifyin'

Volume 3: Rockin' The House: hard-core grooves, huge guitars, vocals and skratch material

Volume 4: Beat Bomb: the ultimate collection of live drum beats & loops

More information about the Tools for DJs books and records is available at www.toolsfordjs.com.

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