Once you've found a DJ you like, how can you make sure they are top quality?
I'm Joe Carter, I've been a DJ for 15 years. I've played at a whole host of festivals including Glastonbury and Bestival, numerous bars and clubs around the country and over the years, I've provided the music at plenty of weddings. I've been asked a lot of questions in my time, here are some which I think are most important and some which I can't believe I've never been asked!
Have you performed at the venue before?
It's not essential but it can be a real bonus if your DJ knows the venue. It will just take a lot of stress out of the situation for you and your bridesmaids / groomsmen as they will have a contact for the venue already and know where everything is. If they don't know the venue, they should be prepared to check it out and make contact with them to help out.
Are you local to the venue?
Travel time can make a really big difference to how your DJ performs. If they've been sitting in traffic for 8 hours, they might not be the life and soul of the party. It's best to make sure they are local but if they aren't, and you really want them specifically then try and factor in some additional accommodation or see if your DJ can make some special arrangements.
Do you have any testimonials?
Testimonials are probably the best way to see how good your DJ will be. People in your position telling you how it was for them! Have a look at some of mine for examples.
Do you have any pictures/videos of you in action?
This is simply to see how they are with a crowd, how they react and how the audience is reacting to their choice of music.
Do you have a Facebook page?
A Facebook page is a great way to see how up-to-date your DJ is, whether they engage well with their audience and could probably give you an insight in to what you might expect on the night. It doesn't really matter how many followers they have, more that they are engaging and posting good quality content.
Do you have a blog?
A DJ who has a blog will straight away stand out as being more serious and not just a bedroom DJ looking to make an extra buck! They will use their blog to show their expertise in music and their knowledge of bookings and venue liaison.
Do you have public Liability Insurance?
What other services can you provide apart from the music?
DJs these days offer a wide variety of extra services. These can range from basics like lighting design and wireless microphones for the speeches, to high end stuff like a photo booth, tv screens, a video service and personalised podcasts.
Is Your equipment PAT tested?
Most DJs will have PAT tested equipment as standard. Older equipment (especially) should be tested to certify its safety. The last thing you want is the DJ blowing a fuse! You can find more information on PAT testing here.
Will this be your only performance of the weekend?
It's not unusual for a DJ to have two gigs across a weekend - it is after all prime time for us! But it might be best to check that your DJ isn't playing 4-6am in Ibiza the night before your wedding.
I hope this has been helpful to you! Please feel free to leave any comments or questions :)