Choosing a Wedding DJ
Choosing a wedding DJ is a tricky task… there are so many on the market, and the prices really do vary from as little as £50 (for perhaps a local guy who does it for fun), to £800 – £1000+.
A lot of couples choose to book a DJ rather than a live band because of cost implications, and it’s true, it generally is cheaper! However, if you’re booking a DJ (especially if they are the only entertainment and there’s no band) it’s well worth keeping aside a substantial amount of money for this. If you consider just how much you are spending on the rest of the day (the venue, the food, the drinks, the photography, flowers etc), you don’t want to cut back on this and have the reception ruined by entertainment that just isn’t good enough. This is the part of your wedding that will absolutely make or break the day, not only for you and your partner but for your guests as well. You have gathered together all your friends and family from various walks of life, and when the evening reception comes, they all want nothing more than to celebrate this wonderful day with you! So, it’s worth spending some time and money on making sure you have something fantastic for the party.
So… money is definitely a factor, but a few other things to also consider…
It’s About You
When it comes to the music choice, it’s really important to make sure your DJ will be playing music that you like. When you consider that the DJ has access to a huge range of styles, it would be a real shame if your DJ decided he wanted to hear an hour of drum and bass, when you and your guests just want some good old Wham and Dire Straits! (Or for many people, it would be the other way round!). It’s important to find a DJ that is considerate of what you want to hear.
It’s nice to get a mix between someone who is considerate of your tastes, but also has a lot of wisdom and experience as to what works, how to structure the dynamics of an evening, and how to work in styles/genres that will suit all the guests. If you can imagine a dinner party of say 8 guests, and a discussion of their music tastes, imagine the diversity in artistes that would be brought to the table. Now imagine this, but with all 200 or so of your wedding guests! Everyone has different tastes, so it’s important for DJ’s to try to respect that as much as possible and play something for everyone, but structuring that diversity is quite a tough task, and it takes a lot of experience to be able to take your guests on a journey through these different styles in a seamless and smooth manner!
Lighting & Equipment – The Geeky Stuff!
The general idea is, the more you pay for a DJ, the more gear they should have… this isn’t always true, but it’s a good idea to find out how much lighting they will bring, and how large their PA system is. If you want to get even geekier, find out what make their PA system is, and do a little online research to see if it’s a good brand. Sounds silly, but there’s nothing worse than a DJ blasting out music through a cheap and overdriven speaker system… painful stuff!
Personality – Are They Your Kind of Person?
I’ve said this many times in my articles, but to me, it’s all about the people. In fact, think the majority of people really prioritise the people-factor when buying any product. If you can find a DJ that you get on well with, chances are they’ll get on great with all your guests, and give them a great night.
A certain amount of confidence is always necessary for DJing; someone who will get your guests worked up into a frenzy, encourage dance-offs and always be happy and smiling, is a great enhancer to the party vibe.
Professionalism – The Boring but Essential Bits
Its 100% important to ensure that your DJ will provide you with a contract for your booking. Imagine how awful it would be if they let you down at the last minute, when you’ve paid a big deposit or even paid the whole amount in advance. This should really detail a rough idea of timings (so you know if there are extra charges past a certain time), their requirements for the day, and of course cancellation fees.
It’s something that works both ways – once you’ve signed their contract, you are committed to using them, so any DJ (or any wedding supplier for that matter) that doesn’t offer you a contract should set alarm bells ringing.
A great DJ can really make a party, whether it’s working alone or alongside a band, and hopefully this will inspire a few thoughts as to how to find the best one you can!