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Musicians can sing about love. They can sing about war. They can sing about the environment or politics or race. The entire field of human endeavor is a fair subject for the musician's talent.

Even, it seems, music.

People like going out to clubs and bars, and when there, they like to listen to music and dance. Sometimes, however, the DJ just won't play the music loud enough. And sometimes, he won't play any music at all. Fortunately, songwriters don't deal with this frustration by complaining to the club manager and asking for the DJ's head on a platter. No, musicians know the best way to handle the situation is to write a song demanding the DJ play some music. At their most presumptuous, the musician might even demand the DJ play his or her music.

Examples of this trope include:


  • Rihanna's first big hit was the song "Pon de Replay," which featured one of the politest versions of the trope with the line, "Hey Mr. DJ, won't you turn the music up?"
    • She also has the song "Please Don't Stop the Music."
  • The Jennifer Lopez song "Play," which includes the lyrics, "Play/come on DJ/Play that song."
  • "Music", by Madonna - "Hey, Mr DJ, put a record on, I wanna dance with my baby."
  • "Re-Rewind (The Crowd Say Bo Selecta)", by the Artful Dodger feat. Craig David. By way of explanation, a "selecter" is a Jamaican term for a DJ and "bo!" was at the time (1999) an expression of approval for (mostly black) youth. The lyrics "Re-rewind, when the crowd say "Bo, selecta!" therefore mean roughly "Mr DJ, play the record again if everyone says they like it." The comedian Avid Merrion later adopted "Bo Selecta!" as the title for a TV series in which he parodied, amongst others, Craig David.
  • The genre is parodied in the theme tune to British sitcom Two Pints of Lager and a Packet of Crisps which begins "Hey, Mr Bartender, give me a drink..."
  • "Play That Funky Music" by Wild Cherry.
  • "Evacuate the Dance Floor" by Cascada.
  • Inverted in "Don't play that song again" by Nicki French.
  • Selectively inverted by "Weird Al" Yankovic's "Achy Breaky Song". "But Mr. DJ, please, I'm begging on my knees, I just can't take no more of Billy Ray."
  • Heavily subverted by The Smiths in the song "Panic", the chorus of which is the catchy refrain "Hang the DJ, hang the DJ, hang the DJ, hang the DJ..." etc.
  • John Reuben, "Trying Too Hard":

 Gettin' rowdy rowdy, man I ain't gonna front

If the DJ plays my record, that's exactly what I want

  • Skindred's "Selector" alternates between praising the DJ's skills and exhorting him to "play the tune again".
  • The Dingees' "Who Stole the Soul in Rock N Roll?" encourages listeners to "Hang the DJ, have no fear," and asserts that "It's quitting time for modern rock radio."
  • Lee "Scratch" Perry's "Yu Squeeze My Panhandle".
  • Macy Grey (with the Black Eyed Peas) has "Request Line."
  • "Having a Party" by Sam Cooke may be the Trope Maker.
  • "Roll Over DJ" by Jet.
  • While Limp Bizkit's song "Rollin'" doesn't really fall under this, the "Urban Assault Vehicle" mix with DMX, Method Man and Redman does.
  • "Send My Love to the Dancefloor, I'll See You In Hell (Hey Mr. DJ)" by Cobra Starship.
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