(Closed) What do you expect from your DJ?

posted 7 years ago in Reception
Post # 3
Member
10288 posts
Sugar Beekeeper
  • Wedding: October 2011

  • Make sure that all of our specialty songs are played correctly. It amazes me that some DJ’s mess this up even after being given a detailed list. My Future Brother-In-Law & FSIL’s wedding DJ didn’t play the right Bridal Party entrance song and they were pissed. As a bride, I’m putting alot of work into selecting these songs so I expect them to be played. 
  • Play the music on my “must play” list.
  • Do NOT play the music on my “do not play list”. I dont care if Aunt Agnes keeps requesting the Macarena. I’m paying for this music and if I don’t want to hear a song, it shouldn’t be played.
  • Don’t be obnoxious. 
  • Pronounce the BP’s name correctly. I’m a little worried about this for our wedding. Our DJ is great but I doubt he’ll pronounce one of our GM’s name right. It took me like 3 years to learn the proper pronunciation so I really won’t be able to fault the guy. I’m just interested to see how butchered it is. 

Post # 4
Member
9056 posts
Buzzing Beekeeper
  • Wedding: June 2010

I expected very little and pretty much just used him for his equipment.  I gave him a long must play list, and a do not play list.

We had a friend MC everything except announcing our first dance.  The only request I made of him was that he not introduce us as Mr. and Mrs. John Smith.  Sure enough, he did.  The ONLY words he had to speak all night.

Post # 5
Member
5118 posts
Bee Keeper
  • Wedding: November 1999

-Follow the Do Not Play list and make sure to hit the specialty songs and the most requested songs by the couple.

-Do NOT make inappropriate comments or have the bride/groom do something they’ve expressly vetoed beforehand (garter toss, for example)

-Gauge the crowd reaction, placing slow dances in where people need a break and throwing in a solid selection that gets people up an moving when they’re more energetic again. 

-Respect the fact that you’re working at our wedding, we did not come to your club. I respect your talents and your work, but this is one of the biggest nights of my life, not ‘the DJ show.’ (for example, one poor bee’s DJ with his 10 minute break dance)

Post # 7
Member
566 posts
Busy bee
  • Wedding: May 2011

I think B&Gs ask for price quotes as a first step.  If you’re asking $4K for the whole night and I was looking to spend $500, then I don’t care what you have to offer. I already know you’re out of my price range.

I only want my DJ to provide music for the reception, not the ceremony or rehearsal.  If your clients are getting married at a church, most churches provide music free of charge. 

Hope that helps!

Post # 8
Member
4771 posts
Honey bee
  • Wedding: November 1999

Yes that’s precisly true I expect it to be a human ipod with a bit of a brain.

I don’t know why you couldn’t give a quote.  I mean you must have some sort of starting out fee for a night, and then + added services.

I am terrifyed of having a DJ.  I never really seen a one, that didn’t want to make the wedding reception into HIS show instead of making sure everyones having a good time, especially the couple.  I would rather have an ipod, but Fiance wants a DJ 🙁

Post # 9
Member
10288 posts
Sugar Beekeeper
  • Wedding: October 2011

Will/did you do a face-to-face interview?: Absolutely, I wouldn’t hire any vendor without an in person interview. 
Will/did you ask for video of his/her past performances or simply have them audition from a pre written script like one would audition for a play or a movie? I didn’t have our DJ audition but thats because he is one of the most well known in the area and I am 100% confident in his abilities. He also provided a 10 page booklet with dozens of references that I could check if I wanted to. 
Will/did you ask them provide the ceremony music as well and, if so, provide music for the rehearsal too? Our DJ is providing the music for our ceremony. He is not providing music for our rehearsal.

Post # 12
Member
5118 posts
Bee Keeper
  • Wedding: November 1999

I have high expectations of my DJ. I want them to be somewhat like the MC of the event, but in an appropriate way and not overpowering the whole night. I definitely checked reviews, but I did not need to audition them because I’d been to other dances they’d worked. I met with them in person before signing our contract. It’s hard to find the balance in a DJ between a ‘human ipod’, ‘the DJ show (with a side of your wedding)’, and those awkward DJs that just don’t have any presence with the crowd. When I first called around for quotes, I want to hear what they offer in that quote (x hours of music, this type of lighting, optional add-on hours cost, etc) without getting bombarded by how fabulous they are. As a bride, I compare by price (and the local reputation), then I start really focusing in on the top two or three to see how I like their style/setup/personality, etc.

Post # 13
Member
1161 posts
Bumble bee
  • Wedding: March 2011

The only reason I hired a DJ instead of doing an IPOD reception is that he has a reputation of being REALLY good with kids, and I’ll have about 7 kids under the age of 7 at the reception.  So really, I want him to keep the kiddos happy (our families just aren’t big dancers).  As a bonus, it will be really nice to know that he’s hooked up the sound and I don’t have to worry about it.

To answer your questions (keeping in mind that I’m atypical in that we aren’t planning on much dancing and our reception is more dinner party like than dance party like)

Before you hired or hire your DJ
Will/did you do a face-to-face interview?

No, but my sister knows him and has gone to parties that he’s done at the YMCA.  She loved the way he handled the children and really had great things to say about him


Will/did you ask for video of his/her past performances or simply have them audition from a pre written script like one would audition for a play or a movie?

Not applicable since I didn’t have meeting, but I’d probably just talk with him and get a feel for his personality.


Will/did you ask them provide the ceremony music as well and, if so, provide music for the rehearsal too?

I’m actually hiring a SECOND DJ to provide ceremony sound at our offsite location.  My reception DJ didn’t have wireless microphones, and so I went with another DJ for the ceremony sound/music.  I opted NOT to have my DJ come for the rehearsal (I’m still nervous about this, but he assures me it will be okay)

 

Of  note, all the DJs I emailed actually called me when they learned I was planning from out of town.  That bit of personal service really helped solidify my decisons.

Post # 15
Member
2714 posts
Sugar bee
  • Wedding: May 2012

This is an interesting post. Honestly, for my wedding wants and needs I really do just want a human ipod who can 1) play the music we ask him to play and 2) make a few announcements when asked.

I understand that there is much more to being a DJ than this and some may find it offensive, but for my wedding that’s all that I want. Other brides feel differently — we all have different expectations of our DJs and vendors in general. I agree with PP that you should give a price quote when a B&G requests it. Just like other vendors, if you are out of our budget, then you are out of our budget. We had to cross some amazing photogs off our list because we just could not afford it — not because we thought “eh it doesn’t cost $5k to take photos all day”. I agree that there will be a huge difference in the quality of a $500 DJ vs a $3k DJ, but if I can’t afford the $3k DJ then I would like to know the cost up front so I’m not wasting your time or mine.

To answer your questions:

Will/did you do a face-to-face interview?: Actually, this is the only vendor we probably will not have a face-to-face interview with, explanation in the next question.

Will/did you ask for video of his/her past performances or simply have them audition from a pre written script like one would audition for a play or a movie? We recenty attended a wedding where the DJ performed. He was so great and we both fell in love with his performance that night so we booked him for our wedding. An interview was not necessary, as we’d already been treated to a “live performance” and really loved his work.

Will/did you ask them provide the ceremony music as well and, if so, provide music for the rehearsal too? He is providing the music for our ceremony, but not for the rehearsal. We will not have any music played at our rehearsal.

Sorry this was long and rambling, but I hope it was helpful!!

Post # 16
Member
7695 posts
Bumble Beekeeper
  • Wedding: August 2010

Before you hired or hire your DJ

Will/did you do a face-to-face interview?

No – we were not able to do a face to face interview for 2 reasons. The first is that the company I hired the DJ through (The Pros- they suck) would not let me even contact my DJ until one week before our wedding. I put up a fight about this and was able to contact him earlier, but since we were planning from 10 hours away I was unable to make a trip just to have an interview with our DJ. However, I did email with him extensively and set out our expectations to him (which he did not follow in the least bit)

Will/did you ask for video of his/her past performances or simply have them audition from a pre written script like one would audition for a play or a movie?

There was no auditioning. I gave him a list of songs that I wanted to be played and I gave him our timeline of events. It was pretty straightforward.

Will/did you ask them provide the ceremony music as well and, if so, provide music for the rehearsal too?

No, there was no ceremony or rehearsal music provided. We had a friend play acoustic guitar for pre-ceremony and ceremony music.

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