THERE'S A LOT OF WEDDING DJS OUT THERE, WHAT MAKES OFFBEAT SO GOSH DARN GREAT?
I get it. I really do.
Booking the entertainment for your wedding is HARD. You only get one shot at it and there are no second chances.
Get it right and you'll have the greatest night of your lives, along with a lifetime of awesome (if slightly fuzzy) memories, and a super smug feeling every time one of your guests tells you that yours was, indeed, the “Best. Party. Ever.”
However, get it wrong and you’ll have to suffer that awful feeling when your friends and family start making their excuses and calling early taxis after thanking you such for a wonderful day. Every couples wedding nightmare is the fizzled out reception party and that empty feeling of what might have been. The FOMO is real.
These days the Cheesy Wedding Disco stereotype is finally fading into obscurity, and a new generation of bright young upstarts with slick websites are taking their place, with a fresh take on disco lighting, shiny modern sound systems and digital turntables. It's exciting times for our industry, and about time too.
However, not everything you need to be a great DJ can be ordered next day delivery.
It is literally impossible to overstate the importance of experience to forge a awesome DJ. And I'm not just talking about weddings. Performing at festivals, bars, clubs, birthday parties and corporate functions gives a DJ insights and ideas about how to not only move a dancefloor, but crucially, how to direct a dancefloor depending who is on it. It's not just about selecting songs that people already knew they would like to hear (or had already selected from their DJ's database ahead of the wedding), but playing the ones they would never have thought to put on themselves. Weddings are definitely their own speciality and require a certain skill set, but experience at reading different kinds of crowds is the key to taking the dance floor to places they weren't expecting and making the night unique and memorable.
Passion equals energy, and that energy flows directly from the DJ to the dancefloor. A deep love for music means constantly searching out fresh new tunes that can be slipped into tried and tested set lists to keep their sound and set evolving year after year . Keeping half an eye on the charts to stay up to date just doesn't cut it. A passion for DJing means preparing your tracks ahead of time with cue points, loops and edits, so that the less dancey parts of the songs can be seamlessly left out, resulting in more music in the time you have your DJ. Playing all three and a half minutes of every track will get very boring very quickly no matter how good the tunes are. Preparing your tracks in advance means getting a tighter, more creative set. A passionate DJ will also come armed with a wide range of unique bootlegs, mash-ups and remixes, for getting unexpected classics into the mix without dropping the energy levels. Your DJ has to love what they do. If they don't it will show immediately.
ALL THE SKILLS (TO PAY THE BILLS):
Let's get this straight right off the bat, some of the most amazing DJs have no clue when it comes to mixing music in their sets beyond fading the channel volumes up and down because what makes them amazing is their incredible taste in music. That's fantastic, but at a wedding, none of your guests will be interested in learning about hidden Techno gems, rare Hip-Hop B-sides, or discovering new genres from Japan. They'll want to dance to stuff they know and love and can sing their heart out to. This means that some premium mixing skills is really gonna make a difference. Being able to confidently flip in and out of different genres and tempos like it's second nature means that your DJ can focus on the crowd in front of them, selecting the right tune at the right time, and actually creatively mix the music to create fresh sounds and hype the crowd perfectly.
A DISTINCTIVE STYLE:
Perhaps the hardest thing for a DJ to achieve and unusual to see at a wedding, but it's the difference between having a stranger sitting in the corner of your wedding casually selecting tunes until they can go home and someone who will stamp their personality on to an expressive and unique performance that everyone will remember long after it's all over.