Let the music play

Story Image

Think back to the some events you attended. Where were they? Did you enjoy yourself? What were the guests doings? Although venue and aesthetics help create overall ambience, the success of a social event is often dictated by the entertainment. Music is vital when dancing is the primary activity. As veteran party hosts know, whom you hire to keep the music flowing and the guests dancing can make or break a party.

“For the past 14 years, I have had the absolute pleasure of performing as a DJ for a many audiences for a variety of events around the country,” said Travis Matthews, owner of Oncore Productions. “I worked everything from fifth birthday parties to proms and everything in between. Throughout my experience, I have noticed that it does not matter event or what age, race, gender, size, occupation or socioeconomic status you identify with: music will be instrumental in setting the mood of an event.”

A professional disk jockey, or DJ, can be instrumental in creating a festive atmosphere by choosing the right songs to enhance certain moments.

“In the early part of my career, I became frustrated with the lack of attention given to the entertainment at events,” Matthews said. “I felt that it was more of an afterthought once everything else was in place. However, I have seen that shift over the years and now see more and more events book their DJ first before anything else.”

Why hire a DJ?

“Every event should have music as a component,” Matthews said.

One reason many party hosts choose a DJ is affordability. Disc jockeys are traditionally less expensive than bands, and a DJ will have music that spans various generations and genres.

While music is playing, a DJ may offer some entertainment, such as leading guests on dances. Some DJs work in conjunction with professionals who mingle with the crowd and help help guests overcome inhibitions.

Selecting a DJ

Get recommendations or witness how the DJ performs. Choose a DJ who has a proven track record. If guests walked away from a particular party with glowing accounts of a DJ’s work, then that should bear considerable weight. Playing music is one thing, but a DJ will need to establish a rapport with the crowd and recognize when to liven things up and get the crowd back on the floor.

If you are employing a DJ from an entertainment service, be sure to request that a particular DJ be present at your party.

The music mix

Talk to the DJ about your playlist preferences. Together you can work out a playlist that will accommodate as many guests as possible. The DJ also will help keep the party on track by alerting guests as to when food is served or when certain games or activities will be played. If ever during a consultation you feel that the DJ is not listening to your suggestions or is unwilling to play the type of music you would like, then this is not the person for you. Most DJs will listen to requests and make suggestions for certain songs that will fit in with the party theme. Remember to mention if any songs should not be played. Depending on the age group at the party, off-color songs or ones with explicit lyrics may be discouraged.

In addition to keeping in touch and working with you on the planning of the event, the DJ should confirm your reservation and arrive early to set up.

Courtesy of Metro Creative