ALL THE THINGS YOUR WEDDING DJ CAN DO (BESIDES PLAY MUSIC)
Your 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.
Source: Wedding Wire
How Many Weddings Have You Worked?
It’s probably safe to say that you don’t want a band or DJ that has never worked a wedding before.
How Broad is Your Repertoire?
Your guests will be made up of all different age groups, so you can’t just have one type of music playing throughout the event. Be sure to pick an entertainer that has a broad range of music selections that they can play.
Can We See The Contract?
You want to have time to look over the contract, so ask for a copy of it right away. And, have a trusted friend or family member look it over as well. It never hurts to have an extra set of eyes review it to make sure you don’t miss anything.
What Are The Total Costs & Fees?
“It’s important to ask about all the costs and fees beyond their initial proposal,” says personal finance expert Andrea Woroch. “Some will charge extra for playing music during cocktail hour and dinner hour and may charge per hour after your pre-negotiated time is up. You may have to pay extra for the band to learn certain songs, to set up a stage and lighting, or for even having to go up and down stairs.”
Have You Played Our Venue Before?
While not necessary, if your band or DJ is familiar with the venue then that’s a definite bonus.
Do You Include Lighting?
Don’t assume that your DJ will include lighting with their package, so be sure to ask about this beforehand.
Does the Package Include Extras?
Some entertainment companies will throw in extras, such as a photo booth, to wow your guests. Be sure to ask if this is a possibility for your wedding.
Is There An Extra Charge for Steps?
Some entertainers might charge more if they have to lug their equipment up flights of stairs. If your venue lacks an elevator, mention this to any band or DJ you speak to right off the bat.
Will You Play During the Cocktail Hour?
Find out if the band or DJ will supply music during the cocktail hour. Guests won’t be dancing, but it would be nice to have some background music while they mingle.
What Happens When Guests Eat?
What do the entertainers do while the guests eat? Is there soft music, a photo slideshow, any additional entertainment to occupy them while they sit at their tables? These are details that you definitely need to sort out!
What Will You Do To Surprise Our Guests?
Creative Emcee announcements and encouraging guests involvement. Surprises are memorable, will make the wedding couple feel like their wedding was the party of the year.
Can We See You Live Beforehand?
Best case scenario, you will be able to see the DJ perform live before you commit to them. By having a meeting at our studio, we ensure you a fun “mini reception” demonstration where you can view the services that we offer live.
Are Your Performances Online?
MY DJs have video profiles and an online video conference platform as a great alternative to meet and interview the DJ in person. This will give you a good idea of how experienced and personable our DJ is!
Will You Also Emcee the Reception?
And if yes, how do you work with our wedding coordinator to make sure that everything runs on time? “All family members and friends want to do during a wedding is celebrate,” says Lack. “Giving them ‘jobs’ is not a fun thing to do. So let us handle MC’ing and we’ll buddy up with your wedding coordinator to make sure that you feel special and that the event us running on schedule.”
Can I See A Sample Timeline?
If they’ve worked several weddings before, a DJ should be able to send you a sample timeline to show how they keep such an important event flowing and on track. Our online system offers great organization!
Will You Introduce Special Dances?
A great entertainer should be able to find the right time to introduce special moments, such as father/bride and mother/groom dances, the bouquet toss and other events you want throughout the night without losing momentum. Let them tell you how they take control of the room during these events.
How Do You Keep The Party Going?
This is all about how bands and DJ interact with their guests, says Lack. “If we’re hired to perform the cocktail hour, then being in the background is important. If we’re hired to play a reception then we want tell our couples how we keep people on the dance floor (get people to sing with us, give our percussion, play great music by sharing song list).”
Do You Have Backup Equipment?
What will a DJ do if his equipment malfunctions or something doesn’t make it to the venue? Just like you need to have a backup plan for weather, your entertainment should be prepared for any situation. You don’t want to risk not having any music at the reception.
What If Someone Gets Sick?
If the DJ–gets sick and can’t make it to the event, what happens? The answer should be that we have someone (in-house) just as talented and capable waiting in the wings so that the event won’t be affected in the least.
How Will You Handle Guest Requests?
Music invokes memories and you want to be sure that whoever you choose as your musical partner for your wedding is comfortable telling a guest that they aren’t able to play something. Ask your DJ or Band how they handle song requests from guests, especially ones that are on your “Do Not Play” list.
How Do You Dress?
You want to make sure that vendors who will be visible to your guests look like they belong at a wedding and not at a bar.
How Many Breaks Will You Take?
A DJ should get a break to eat during the night–and don’t forget that you also need to feed them!) Talk beforehand about how many breaks they’ll get and how long those breaks will be.
Do You Play Vinyl or can you mix music on beat?
For some couples, this is an important feature when hiring a DJ.
How Is The Final Payment Collected?
Find out when the final payment is due and how they expect to be paid. Whether it’s cash, check or card, you definitely want to get this taken care of in advanced.
Clients Cassie + Daniel
Bakery: European Cake Gallery
Photo Booth: My DJ’s
The bride & groom’s happiness was contagious. All ages dancing on the dance-floor all evening long. Great song selection of new country music classics added element of FUN to their wedding. We wish this amazing couple a long marriage and wonderful memories.
We provide wireless mics for the officiant and bride + groom at no additional charge.
MY DJS set ups add a unique element to the reception room!