THE WEDDING DJ
When it comes to planning your wedding reception, there are few vendors more crucial to creating an incredible atmosphere than the DJ. If you’ve decided that you want a DJ (rather than a live band), it’s time to start looking for a professional who knows how to entertain.
Providing the soundtrack to a wedding reception is much more than just playing song after song (otherwise you could just create an iTunes playlist). It’s also about being an expert in mixing, blending and (most importantly) reading the crowd. So to help you find a DJ who will have all your wedding guests on the dance floor, here are eight questions to ask before hiring them.
1. ARE YOU A FULL TIME WEDDING DJ?
There’s a big difference between a friend who dabbles in DJ-ing and a full-time professional who’s an expert in their craft. They’ll understand what it takes to perform in front of large groups of people and have the technical know-how to execute a reception flawlessly. Ask the DJ how many weddings they’ve worked and whether they have experience in other types of events, such as birthday parties and corporate functions.
2. HOW DO YOU CUSTOMISE MUSIC FOR EACH COUPLE?
Everybody’s musical tastes are different and chances are what you love won’t be exactly the same as what your DJ loves. It’s important they tailor their playlist to suit your preferences and vision for the day while still being able to get a crowd energised. Check that the DJ is willing to accept a list of tracks you really want to be played….as well as those you don’t!
3. HOW DO YOU GET THE PARTY STARTED?
For most couples, the ceremonial proceedings of their wedding day are followed by a great big party where everyone lets loose on the dance floor. Perhaps you have a few songs in mind that you know you want to dance to. But it’s also worth tapping into the expertise of a wedding DJ regarding songs that always get the party started. Ask if they have any recordings of their wedding performances so you can see how they read the crowd and build up the energy throughout the night.
4. WILL YOU PLAY SONG REQUESTS OF WEDDING GUESTS?
There’s always someone in the crowd who approaches the DJ and asks for their favourite party track. But whether that song corresponds with what you’ve envisioned for your wedding day is another thing altogether. Ask the DJ how they handle these situations, which is something an experienced professional will be able to navigate while keeping both parties happy.
5. WHAT SOUND EQUIPMENT DO YOU USE?
High-quality sound equipment will make a big impact on the dance floor experience at your wedding and can be the difference between muffled or overly-loud music and perfectly crisp sound. Don’t be afraid to ask what equipment your DJ uses and whether they bring backup equipment in case of any technical issues.
6. HAVE YOU DJ’D AT OUR VENUE BEFORE?
Every room has its own acoustics, which means DJ-ing at one venue can be a completely different experience from playing at another. Some DJs are skilled enough to get the sound perfect in any space but finding someone who’s already worked at your venue is always a plus.
Alternatively, you can ask if they’re willing to visit the venue before your wedding day to become acquainted with the room’s acoustics. It’s also worth checking what time they will arrive before the reception and how long the setup usually takes.
7. DO YOU OFFER ANY OTHER SERVICES?
Aside from providing a soundtrack to your reception and perhaps an MC service, some DJs will also offer lighting and video screens to enhance the occasion. Screens can be used to play photos from your blossoming relationship while lighting will add an extra special touch to the dance floor. Some venues will already come equipped with these features, so don’t be pressured to sign up (and pay) for something you don’t really need.
8. CAN I HEAR SOME EXAMPLES OF YOUR WORK?
DJ-ing is far more than just playing song after song but requires the skillful mixing and blending of different tracks. The last thing you want is awkward silences between songs or an overly long track that guests aren’t responding to…just because the DJ doesn’t know how to seamlessly transition to a new one.
Listening to examples of their previous work is a good way of determining whether your money will be well spent on a professional who’s an expert of their craft.
An amazing experience – thank you Kraig, Chris and the team!
You definitely created the experience we wanted and made everything so easy from set up, picking the layout to tunes. Nothing was too difficult. On the day the dance floor was always packed – we (and all of the wedding party) had an amazing time – I think the pictures prove!
Thank you for being part of our special day!”