So, you’ve decided you want to hire a DJ as the entertainment for your wedding, but how do you choose one that’s not going to turn your dream day into a nightmare? Believe it or not, a large majority of guests say that one of the things they remember most about a wedding is the entertainment. Scared that your DJ won’t do your wedding justice? Don’t worry! After reading about these tips and mistakes to avoid, your decision will become much easier.
Check Out Reviews
To begin, we’ll start with a no-brainer: reviews! You can usually get a plethora of information about a DJ or company from their reviews. Pay close attention to what people say about their work ethic, talent, and overall satisfaction of service. Some reviews may even detail their guest’s experiences as well. Compile a short list of prospects and write down the pros and or cons of each.
Schedule a Meeting
After reading the reviews and creating your list of prospects, you’ll want to schedule a meeting with each potential DJ. Understandably, with the limitations of the pandemic, not everyone can accommodate in-person meetings, but phone or online video conferencing will work just as well. Before the meeting, write down a list of questions that you’ll want to ask, along with any notes you’ve taken about their reviews.
What’s Their Experience?
A topic you’ll definitely want to ask about is experience. How long have they been a professional DJ, and are they a DJ full-time or just on the weekends? These questions are very important because this is one of the biggest days of your life, and you’re going to want a DJ with the experience and knowledge that will put your mind at ease and give you one less thing to have to worry about. Experience also comes into play when things go awry, as most experienced DJs will know how to troubleshoot the majority of problems that may arise throughout the event, usually preventing a situation that can compromise or impact your overall experience.
Consider Music Selection
Next, we have music selection. Do you want to have a more traditional reception, or are you looking for more of a party atmosphere? Maybe you want something in between? For an experienced DJ, this shouldn’t be a problem at all. Music selection, beat matching, and crowd reading are three of the most important traits of any DJ. Utilizing these three traits, the DJ has the ability to create and manipulate the energy and music to ensure a seamless flow and achieve the desired atmosphere. Ask for a recent demo or mix; most DJs or companies should have examples of their work to provide potential clients. Listening to their work will definitely help narrow down the list to DJs that fit your musical tastes and preferences. Videos of them in action are always a plus, too.
Now, if you’re going for that epic wedding party experience where you and your guests are dancing and singing at the top of your lungs all night, you’ll want to hire a DJ that doesn’t play from a pre-made playlist. Nobody—not even an experienced DJ—can predict exactly how everyone will react to a song. A DJ that’s constricted to a set playlist will only hinder and diminish you and your guest’s experience.
You might be asking, “What about our must-play songs and guest requests?” The DJ you hire should create some type of form or collect a short list of your must-play song requests, favorite artists, and preferred genres. With that information, an experienced DJ will have the ability to incorporate most of your song requests into their live set while still ensuring that they deliver the mood and atmosphere to your full expectations.
To clarify, I’m not including the cocktail or dinner segments of the reception in the above discussion; these tips only pertain when it comes time to open the dance floor to all the guests. However, I will add that the times when we have live-mixed during the dinner segment have really elevated the atmosphere and helped ease into the dancing portion smoothly.
Hopefully, these tips and information will help guide you in the process of selecting the right DJ for your big day.