(Closed) Would you hire a non-AA DJ?

posted 8 years ago in African-American
Post # 18
Member
898 posts
Busy bee
  • Wedding: November 2011

I respectfully disagree with most of the other posters here.  I don’t think that a “good DJ” will always have every single type of music to fit every ethnicity/cuture that now resides in the U.S.

I grew up in Texas and I’m also into latin music–but only some latin pop, salsa, bachata, merengue, and reggaetone.  I do NOT like tejano music or ranchero music.  At all.  When we were looking for wedding DJs, we had to find someone that could play top 40’s style dance hits, sri lankan Tamil songs and sri lankan Baila music, and play the type of latin music I like to dance to.  When I mentioned this to one perspective DJ, he said it was no problem to do “mexican music” at our wedding, that he does lots of “mexican” weddings in Texas and could accomodate us. 

He was white. (Again, I myself am white, so this isn’t a racism thing, this is a music-knowledge thing). When I explained that I was not looking for tejano, ranchero, mariachi-stye music, he was sooo confused.  I asked if he had certain well-known salsa and bachata singers (Celia Cruz, Luis Enrique, aventura, Prince Royce), he’s only heard of even one of them. He said he would happily take a either a list of all of the songs/artists we wanted or mp3 files or burned CDs….but how long would it take us to compile this list?  And then we have to pay him $1000 for us to do all of this work?  Meh.

So i get it.

In the end, we got a hispanic DJ that has all the salsa/merengue/bachata/top-40’s dance songs we want and then we only had to do the legwork on getting him the Sri lankan music, which cut our work in half.  Could we have found a white american DJ that also knows latin music?  I’m sure there are plenty….but how many calls would we have had to make to find one?  I just googled something like “latin DJs Dallas” and found our guy. 

So I get it.  =)

 

Post # 19
Member
1278 posts
Bumble bee

I thought our society moved past juding others on their skin color.  

If your wedding has a lot of a specific culture to it, I think that hiring someone of that culture to DJ is a good idea (like if you want Spanish or Indian music played or need a DJ who can speak multiple languages).  But if it is a regular wedding, and you are wanting regular, popular songs, it shouldn’t matter if he was born black or white.

Post # 20
Member
5427 posts
Bee Keeper

I did find that offensive too BUT – let’s think of it this way… Culture differences are just that “differences”. If I was at a Maori wedding let’s say, and I had the job of doing DJ, would I as a white Canadian know just what the Maori people like? Hell no. But I would know what Canadians like. I think the OP wants to make sure that the DJ knows the CULTURE of the people so the music matches.

Post # 21
Member
3680 posts
Sugar bee
  • Wedding: August 2013

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@jpalm13:  +1

Post # 23
Member
2022 posts
Buzzing bee
  • Wedding: May 2013
Post # 24
Member
3580 posts
Sugar bee
  • Wedding: August 2012

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@BookGirrl:  I can kinda see your point, but then the conversation with the company should go ‘hello, I would like someone who specializes in ______ music and I would specifically like to not ever hear _____ on the dance floor.  Like, I will not pay if I hear this play.’, not ‘I need a hispanic person because only they know what they’re doing.’ One is borderline racist, the other is totally professional.

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@jpalm13:  And most things related to AA, or Chinese, Filipino, etc could go under ‘traditions’.  I just don’t get it.  Seems so backwards to me.

Post # 25
Member
6738 posts
Bee Keeper
  • Wedding: June 2014

I don’t think this is about skin color as much as it is about culture.  I dont think the OP is being racist.  I’m sure there are white DJs who can play the songs she’s looking to play, but I’m also sure that if it’s a cultural thing among DC AAs, then it’s more likely that a DC AA would know and understand that music better.  I’m white.  I’m from NY.  I have no idea what go go music is (unless you’re talking about hippie music from the 60s – aren’t those go go girls??? lol whoops, I’m probably so wrong here).

Anyway, I get you.  If I wanted certain music played from a certain culture (Greek, Italian, Israeli, Moroccan, French, Russian, etc.), I wouldn’t expect just any DJ worth his salt to (a) have those songs and (b) know how and when to play them.

I don’t think you can do anything except for request a DJ who knows or is known for playing the type of music you’re looking for if you’re going to use that company that you’re using.  It doesn’t even sound like you can request certain DJs because it seems like it’s just whomever is available that day.

In your case, I would suggest going with a DJ outside of the company, one that you meet with and assures you that – no matter what color his/her skin is – s/he knows what kind of music you’re talking about and has DJed at events where that type of music has been played.

Now, someone tell me what go go music is, please?  Help the white girl out.. 🙂

Post # 26
Member
1021 posts
Bumble bee
  • Wedding: June 2013

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@peachacid:  She’s not saying she only wants black vendors for her wedding. She’s saying she wants a black dj. That’s a specific service and has a lot to do with a person’s culture. 

We don’t have to say we want white vendors because most vendors are white. The wedding industry is predominately made up of white people for white people. I live in Atlanta and still every single person I’ve met with has been white. Not because I requested it, but because that’s just how it is. 

It’s kind of like how I prefer having a woman gynecologist. It’s not that I think a man is less competent, but he can’t relate to me like a woman can. That’s 100% sexist but it makes sense, right?

Post # 27
Member
1281 posts
Bumble bee
  • Wedding: May 2013

What’s the problem with saying “I need a DJ who specializes in Hip-Hop” (or Sri Lankan, or Bachata, or whatever you will). 

I don’t get what skin color has to do with it.

Post # 28
Member
3580 posts
Sugar bee
  • Wedding: August 2012

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@MrsBot:  And you would be okay if you read a title that said ‘WHITE BEES  – can I get your opinions??’.  Please. 

Post # 29
Member
9816 posts
Buzzing Beekeeper

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@WillyNilly:  Exactly. This entertainment company could hire DJs who are Hispanic, Indian, Portuguese, Chinese, whatever. Who knows, maybe they planned to send over a Korean DJ who is practically a musical prodigy. But when you say you specifically don’t want a white guy DJing your event, sorry but that’s racist.

Post # 30
Member
790 posts
Busy bee
  • Wedding: November 2012

I’m reluctant to step into the fray but I didn’t take offense to the OP although I understand people being uncomfortable with the way the question was framed. All the weddings I’ve been to have had a majority of white guests and the music has been very similar at these weddings…the types of receptions where you hear a lot of Van Morrison, Elvis, the Beatles, Bob Seger, the B-52s, Bon Jovi, Journey, 80s pop hits like Take on Me, Come on Eileen… 

If I knew my crowd wanted something different than that, I would be very careful about my DJ selection based on my experience of what the average DJ plays. It may not be a matter of the race of the DJ, but I would definitely want to have a conversation with the DJ and find out about their familiarity with the specific type of music that my crowd likes.  

Post # 31
Member
3580 posts
Sugar bee
  • Wedding: August 2012

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@futuremrsk18:  LOL….you got me.

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