I started pursuing an interest in DJ'ing in early 2016.
The interest had been there since I first heard and saw scratching from breakdancing videos back in the 80's...when I could still do a mean devil-dive and worm across the cardboard. I took up the hobby at the tail end of the 90's/early 2000's with CD'S and a mixer. I DJ'd a couple house parties and had previously helped friend DJ a few gigs at his resident club and a few other gigs. Although I had a few experiences I never had the proper equipment to get to deep, and after several years and moves I found myself in Montreal in 2015 with only a drum machine in stock, no mixer, no turntables, no cdj's or controllers, not even a laptop. Then the bug bit me. I had a little extra cash and an idea that wouldn't shut up.
It was time to get the equipment.
I started by going to a pawn shop downtown I had frequently seen turntables and other equipment in. I nearly got into into a fight with some jackass who thought I was walking too close to him and his girl (In reality I was so excited to potentially get a turntable and mixer I was almost running to the store, I barely noticed them till the idiot turns on me and gets in my face). I cocked my fist and focused all my attention on the goofs chin...he backed down and let me continue on my way.
I opened the door to the pawn shop *cla-cling*. It's a small store with goods from floor to ceiling. You could miss items if you glance through quickly, I wanted to take my time and get the right piece. To my disappointment there was not a single turntable to be found in the joint. They had 2 shitty mixers one I can't remember, and another one that the guy in front of me was buying for a gig that night, shit. I went home empty handed and decided to try a different shop close by the next day.
When I got to the second shop I was in for a bit better luck, there was a beat-up 30 year old Vestax PMC 05 Pro with some missing knobs and no power adapter, but it worked so I took it. They Also had Stanton T.55 belt driven turntable, and it came with a needle sweet! I had asked the guy at the store if I would be able to scratch with that, and because he worked at the store, and becuase he is not a turntablist he told me yes I could. Now, this guy wasnt lying to me, you can use belt-driven turntables to scratch and other turntablist tricks, but don't. When you start doing the research you learn very quickly to stay away from belt driven and go direct drive. The next day I picked up another Stanton, this time a T.52 from Steve's Music. I'll say this in hindsight, if you are considering stepping into DJ'ing, if you want to do it right, invest in the proper equipment and do your research first. I'm still building my set-up and I would be a lot further ahead if I had skipped that entry set-up.