San Diego DJ News

Wedding DJs in San Diego Do More than DJ

Your San Diego Wedding DJ will play a vital role on your big day—and it’s actually more than just playing music to fill the dance floor. In fact, a wedding DJ has many jobs to do, some of which you’ll see, others that are more under-the-radar. That’s why hiring a well-reviewed professional is totally worth it (meaning, creating a Spotify playlist, plugging your iPhone into some speakers, and calling it a day really won’t cut it).

Here are the things you probably didn’t know your rockstar wedding DJ can do—aside from playing major tuneage, that is.

Helps enforce the day-of timeline

While your wedding planner and/or venue will likely take the lead on creating your wedding-day timeline, an experienced DJ will certainly contribute, since he/she knows how long certain parts of the reception will take. What’s more, your wedding DJ is responsible for executing and enforcing the timeline during your reception, making announcements to ensure that events occur on time and if there are any hold-ups, adjusting accordingly.

Provides sound equipment

Having high-quality, working sound equipment is an absolute must—and your wedding DJ will have that all covered. Without microphones, speakers, and the like, your guests won’t be able to hear your first introduction as a married couple, the lyrics to your first-dance song, your best man’s toast, the announcement that dinner is being served, or that the last dance is being played.

(May) supply lighting

While we do recommend hiring a company that specializes in lighting for more extensive needs, many wedding DJs offer uplighting as part of their services. Uplighting consists of smaller lighting systems that can be placed on the floor and aim light upwards to highlight your tables and dance floor. Talk to your wedding DJ to see if this is something that can be included in your package, or if you’re better suited to hire a professional lighting company.

Makes sure all equipment is working

There are few things more annoying during a wedding reception than music that’s too loud, too soft, or muffled, or worst-case scenario, dead air due to malfunctioning equipment. Not only do experienced wedding DJs utilize top-of-the-line, state-of-the-art equipment, they also do sound checks at your venue well before the reception begins to ensure that everything is working properly so there won’t be any awkward silences.

Sets the mood

Sure, you could simplify a wedding DJ’s role by saying he/she “plays the music.” But it’s really about more than just selecting and playing songs. A wedding DJ sets the tone for your reception by playing the right songs at the right times, and reading the crowd accordingly. If you want your party to be a total rager, they’ll know the right tunes to put guests in a dancing mood. Alternatively, if your goal is a reception with an old-school romantic feel, your DJ will know how to create that vintage vibe. And, a skilled wedding DJ knows exactly how to pack the dance floor if your guests are getting a little too comfortable in their chairs.

Helps you choose songs

Your wedding DJ can be a great source of advice if you’re struggling to pick songs for any of your special dances. An experienced DJ has seen first-hand which songs work and which don’t, and is up-to-date on the newest tunes. That’s why it’s important to meet with your wedding DJ (in person, if possible!) a few weeks before your wedding to make your song selects and do-not-play list. Of course, your DJ will have an extensive library of songs you (or your guests!) can request, but the key is knowing if they’re appropriate and when to play ‘em.

Serves as emcee

Emcee may be the most important role your wedding DJ will play. Think of your DJ as the host, cruise director, and point person for the evening, making announcements and ensuring that your guests are aware of what’s going on and what’s next. Having your wedding DJ serve as emcee is far more authoritative and professional than you trying to shout “Time for dinner!” over the blasting music. Your guests are more likely to follow directions from an experienced wedding DJ and will look to your DJ (instead of you or your new spouse) for information, so your big day will proceed smoothly and you can focus on enjoying every minute!

Can create mashups and song cuts

Worried your first dance song might be a bit too long? Your wedding DJ has got you covered! Want to start your father-daughter dance with a slow song and then surprise your guests by cutting into a Michael Jackson favorite? A DJ can create a custom remix just for you. Many wedding DJs are skilled at creating mashups, remixes, and adjusting song lengths to fit your needs—just ask!

Covers up any hiccups

Things may go wrong on your wedding day, but fortunately, wedding DJs are pros at getting things back on track. Let’s say dinner is running slightly behind schedule. Your DJ can play an extra few songs so that guests are too busy dancing to care that the food’s not ready. Or maybe your dad is in the restroom when he’s supposed to be giving his toast. Your DJ can cover until he’s available. Your guests won’t notice any potentially-awkward mishaps when you’ve got a pro wedding DJ at the helm.

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San Diego Wedding DJ Tips

Whether you consider yourselves music people or not, the music at your wedding is super important, and a great band or DJ can be the difference between a pretty fun wedding and an unforgettable one. Avoid these mistakes and you’re guaranteed to have truly amazing wedding music.

1. Dismissing the idea of a band or DJ before doing some research.

This is your first music decision to make and it’ll narrow down your options by half. Love live music and have a bigger budget? A band might be your preferred pick. Have a tighter budget or dozens of songs you’d like played perfectly (in other words, exactly how they sound on Spotify)? A DJ could be your perfect choice. But don’t dismiss either because you think a band will automatically be out of your budget or a DJ will be cheesy.
Music Must: Do your research (check out amazing DJs)

2. Starting the ceremony in silence.

Most guests will arrive 20 to 30 minutes before the ceremony starts, but the wait will seem a lot longer if they have to wait around in silence. Book your ceremony musician to start no later than 20 minutes before you begin.
Music Must: Having music before and during the ceremony will also help signal to guests that it’s time to be seated or get quiet by upping the volume or tempo.

3. Offending your officiant with your ceremony music.

Getting married in a house of worship? When it comes to ceremony music, many churches, synagogues and other religious institutions have rules that could affect your choice of ceremony music, like prohibiting certain secular songs. It may be your wedding day, but unfortunately it’s not technically your church, so respect the regulations.
Music Must: It’s a good idea to speak to your officiant before you book musicians to play a classical version of The Beatles’s “All You Need Is Love” composed for your ceremony and can’t get your deposit back.

4. Skipping a sound check.

Depending on your venue, there may be limitations (like power supply, sound amplification or time-of-day restrictions) to the type of music you can have. Even without regulations, it’s still a good idea to ask your venue manager what type of music typically works best for the space (for example, a soloist may feel tiny in a grand ballroom, but may work well for an intimate garden party).
Music Must: Plan for your band or DJ to do a walk-through if they haven’t worked in the space before. While you might not realize that crashing waves could easily drown out a string quartet or trio of flutes, a pro can help spot and solve any tricky music situations with a sound check.

5. Waiting until the wedding to meet your musicians in person.

Want to know exactly what your music might sound like in real life (rather than a recorded sample)? Take in a live performance. Checking this task off your list can actually be a lot of fun. Go to a showcase if that’s an option. Grab your fiancé, put on your best going-out outfit and make it a date night. While you’re there, pay attention to the tunes and also how the band or DJ emcees, whether they take requests, and how well they get the audience going. If you can, talk to the DJ or bandleader at some point one-on-one or set up another time to meet face-to-face. This person will be your emcee, so you want to have an easy rapport.
Music Must: Make a note of the names of the particular musicians or DJs you like, so you’ll be sure to book the same exact people for your party.

6. Forgetting to talk through the must-play songs.

Don’t assume your band or DJ is going to play every one of your favorites. If it’s a band, talk to them about this list before you decide to book—they may have to learn a song or two. For DJs, just be certain they’re open to your suggestions.
Music Must: If they’re missing a few of your favorites from their repertoire, ask whether there are any fees associated with adding them.

7. Making it impossible for guests to hear each other.

Your reception isn’t the place for nightclub-level volume. It’ll only frustrate your older family members and make it tough for them to talk to one another and enjoy the party. And you don’t want your guests to wake up with sore throats from having to yell to each other all night.
Music Must: When going over your timeline with your DJ, you can make volume requests. Ask for low volume during cocktail hour and dinner (like instrumentals and soft ballads) and louder for dancing and the final song (yes, you can go all out for “Sweet Caroline”). On the wedding day, ask a bridesmaid or your day-of consultant to keep volume on their radar and alert the band or DJ if there are any issues.

8. Choosing a really long first-dance song.

You may do anything for love, but if you choose Meatloaf’s “I’d Do Anything for Love” as your first-dance song, you’ll be swaying with your new spouse for more than five minutes (12 if you choose the album version!). Do a run-through and you may realize four minutes can feel like forever if you’re just rocking back and forth. Yes, it’s about you two, but keep your guests in mind too.
Music Must: A little choreography goes a long way, so you might decide to take a few lessons. Or if your heart is set on a certain ballad, work with your DJ to cut your song down to a reasonable length, or talk with your band about performing a shorter version.

9. Leaving out a do-not-play list.

Sit down with your soon-to-be-spouse and go through your favorite songs together to create the must-play and do-not-play lists. If you decide to use a band instead of a DJ, give them plenty of time to review your picks, in case they have to add a song to their repertoire. Once you’ve handed over the lists, leave the rest up to the pros. And be careful not to micromanage (that’s why you hired them).
Music Must: If your must-play list gets too long (say, more than 10 songs), create a third list. This can be more of a wish list of songs you’d like to be played only if your guests respond positively to them.

10. Playing explicit songs before the after-party.

You won’t be able to please everyone, but ask that your DJ or band keep it at least PG-13 during the reception. When it’s just you, your college besties and adult cousins at the after-party, feel free to play the songs that weren’t appropriate while your grandparents and baby nieces and nephews were around earlier in the night.
Music Must: Beyond blatant profanity, really consider the song’s lyrics and meaning. There may be a very innocent inside joke behind your choice of a raunchy song, but most guests will be on the outside—including your cute little flower girl.

11. Sticking to one genre.

You both may truly love ’90s grunge, but five full hours of Nirvana might drive some guests to leave early. You’re sharing this day with family and friends, so save your more obscure favorites for the honeymoon playlist and let your band or DJ play a mix of songs that everyone can enjoy.
Music Must: Give your parents a thank-you shout-out with Frank Sinatra’s “Chicago,” or Huey Lewis & the News here and there. Seeing them enjoy the night will be well worth a little Frankie Valli (and you know deep down you love the classics too).

 

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Source:  The Knot

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