Booking a DJ
Booking a DJ is the exactly the same as booking any of the suppliers for your reception. You need to find the right person and build a rapport with them. The biggest issue you may find is that you have never booked a DJ before so you're unsure what questions to ask or where to find them.
The best place to start is with your venue, they will have a list of recommended suppliers. I would start with them first, then speak to your friends and family and ask if they know a DJ they trust. I would then look around the wedding fairs and speak to the DJs there. Once you have a good list I would start to whittle the list down by looking at their websites, social media accounts, recommendations, reviews and the services they offer. Once you have a short-list of maybe five these are the questions I feel you should ask.
Will you be the DJ on the night?
A lot of DJ companies have more than one DJ who work for them. You just want to ensure the service you are being offered is the same service for the evening itself. Ask for the contact name and number of the DJ so you can have a quick chat with them. Are the images of the set up you have seen on their website and social media accounts the same as being provided on the evening. So often this isn’t the case, so be wary.
Do you have photos of your set up?
More than likely you will have seen their DJ setup on their website and social media accounts. It’s worth checking to see if these pictures are still current, they might have new equipment but not had a chance to amend their website.
How long have you been a DJ?
Truth be known I am uncomfortable with this question. A good DJ isn’t defined by how long they have been doing it. I understand you want to book someone with experience, I think the most important thing is to build a rapport and trust with the DJ you are speaking to. My first wedding was at Leeds Castle having never DJ’d a wedding before. Because Laura and Mark trusted me we all knew where we stood and I am pleased to say it was a great evening.
Can we meet up to discuss our plans in more detail?
I often meet clients before being booked or a month before the big day. I find this useful to get to know the couple a little better and for the couple feel more at ease. It’s about building trust on both sides. These meetings are good to discuss all the points I have mentioned here and building that rapport. Ask your DJ if they are happy to meet you, I am more than confident they would welcome the opportunity.
I have heard of DJs charging mileage for bookings outside their county, say Essex if they are based in Kent. They may also request a meal or charge you for purchasing songs if they don’t have them in their library. It’s worth checking with them and then reading their contract for piece in mind.
Can I choose the music to be played on the night?
I have spoken about this in great detail, below is a link to that video.
Most DJs want you to have an input into the music being played on the night, it makes life so much easier. Worth asking the question and also when you would need to have your list prepared and sent to your DJ. More than likely a month before your reception.
Do you talk on the night?
I get asked this question a lot. Truth be know I don’t, the DJ you choose may speak more than me. Let me explain. I will do all the announcements, first dance, father of the daughter dance, buffet, special song mentions, the announcing of the last song of the night and giving a cheer to the happy couple. Much more than that, what needs to be said? If your guests aren’t dancing, having a DJ asking them to dance isn’t going to help your guests lose their inhibitions about dancing. If you have to announce what a song is, then the song isn’t well known enough and shouldn’t be played. In my opinion. A DJ should be booked to play music.
Do you take requests on the night?
One again I would be very surprised if your DJ wouldn’t take requests. As I said before knowing what you guests want to hear and hopefully dance to makes a DJs life much easier and you know what you are playing is what people want to hear.