Andres Campo is a globe-trotting techno DJ whose music has been released on labels like Odd Recordings, Noir Music and Intec. He also heads up his own label EI8HT which is run in collaboration with Eats Everything.
It’s a fact of nature that prolonged exposure to loud music can eventually cause permanent hearing damage. Loud music is, of course, a vital part of club culture, so we asked Andres Campo to share his personal tips for looking after your ears?
Andres Campo: “As a full-time DJ, I know that I need to look after my ears as they are my best work tool. It’s easier said than done and often when we are young it’s something we may have neglected until we were made aware of the complications. Not enough sleep, long trips and travelling all day, drinking and partying – all can take a heavy toll on your general health and well-being.
When I play at shows I use my ACS Pro custom earplugs with a filter set to -15db. I always recommend having good ear plugs, and these are the best. At first, I found it difficult to play with them because the best way I can describe it is like painting with sunglasses on. I always try and use them while DJ’ing but sometimes I can’t, and when this happens I have a set of rules. Always put them in before entering the club so your ears get used to the sound of the club with the db reduced. I wear them until I feel I have control of the monitors and then I turn down the booth volume, remove my earplugs and I start to raise it again until I feel comfortable. By doing this, it means your ears are protected and you do not expose them, as some booth monitors are so loud, and you don’t know until your right there in the thick of it.
The mute button for monitors is your friend. If you can mute the monitors whilst you are not mixing tracks that is, but nowadays you have all your mates in the booth and other people who want to hear the sound, so really this never happens. After the gig I always have a ‘silent day’ where I let me ears relax with no music, no phone calls – nothing. This is important for me.
When flying I always use pressure earplugs, and it’s a good idea to have chewing gum for take-off and landing to release the pressure on your ears. I have also never been a fan of in-ear headphones but if you use them make sure you buy some with noise cancellation. This way you will not enter on a ‘war volume’ with ambient sounds.
Whilst producing, I do not really use high volume and I always take a lot of breaks from the studio. Ears are a muscle, they need to be stretched and looked after. Long studio sessions produce ear fatigue and you might not even realise. Believe me, when this happens everything sounds like crap!
FINALLY, a very important one here. Is earbuds or Q tips as they call them in America. These are dangerous little things for everyone and you do not need them! Its healthy to have some ear wax, which is to protect your ears. Keep a healthy lifestyle and diet, and your body will respond. And if you have any problems go to an ENT specialist – they look after your ears, nose and throat. All things which are linked to one another and I think are heavily affected by working in a club environment from the drinking, smoke inhalation and loud music.”
You can find Andres Campo’s tracks on Beatport from HERE