By ALEXANDRA MATZKO
Did you know that music is one of the most overlooked parts of a wedding?
I know it’s easy to get caught up in the dress and the decorations, but think about what really sets the atmosphere for the whole affair?
The band or the DJ.
Thankfully, I came into planning knowing that a great DJ was one of my top-three priorities. Because I don’t like to dance, I love to dance. And we invited a party-minded crowd to the wedding.
Wedding 101 helped point us in the direction of a few great DJs and DJ companies. Just like with the photographer and videographer, my mom and I sat down and met with three. My only prior knowledge of DJs stemmed from nights out in college and in my 20s. I don’t mind remixes of popular songs, but I really don’t like when a great song comes on and the remix totally ruins it, the DJ only lets it play for a second, or the DJ lets it drag on and on and on. I appreciate the creativity that comes with the DJ job, but my wedding is not the place to experiment.
Also, I didn’t want a DJ with a larger-than- life personality. Typically, that type of person loves the mic and uses it. So, my mom and I were looking for someone not too young, not too old, open to suggestions, and professional. After those few interviews, we found just that in Josh from Premier Entertainment Company. He knows his music and gives off a hip-yet-grounded vibe.
We booked him along with a Premier package that includes a photo booth and 12 uplights. I highly recommend uplights. You can customize any color you can imagine, and they can be programmed to change colors throughout the night. Ours changed from champagne to purple. It was awesome. The purple really brought the party feeling.
Here are some handy questions to ask your prospective musician before you sign on the dotted line:
1. What do you do when there’s a technical difficulty? Technology is not foolproof. And, there’s nothing that will kill a party mood like an electrical problem. Does your DJ have a Plan B? What will he do if the worst should occur? You’re looking for him to bring along an extra computer or to have a plan. Also, ask what he will do if he unexpectedly gets sick. Even DJs can have a sick day!
2. What will he wear? This is where the professional vibe comes in. I wasn’t going to require him to wear a suit jacket, but you want to make sure he won’t look like a slob or stand out in something outrageous. He should blend into the background and allow the music to speak for itself.
3. Does he know how to set up in your venue? A huge plus is when your DJ has already worked in your venue space. Thankfully for us, the Premier company had worked at the Richland Country Club before. Perfect.
4. How many hours does the package include? How much is each additional hour? We booked Josh for five hours, and he graciously stayed an extra half hour without any additional charge. He is a great guy. The premier package included five hours of DJ, four hours of photo booth (with attendant), and 12 uplights for $1,795. Not too shabby!
5. How does he read a crowd? Can he get shy people to dance? Can he choose the right music volume? A good idea could be to watch him do his thing before the wedding. Ask if there’s any party you could crash and watch him work!
Now that I’m on the “other side” of the wedding, I can give Josh and Premier a truly validated review. We had an amazing time at the reception, and Josh was a huge part of that. He accommodated my song selections, special requests, and announcements. He was a great announcer! His voice is strong and clear, and he didn’t make any surprise monologues or weird jokes. He helped work with me to surprise my parents and in-laws with a special dance. We invited them to join my new husband and me on the dance floor to dance to their first dance songs. He totally fit and got the vibe of our wedding.
His booth also comes with awesome, multi-colored lights that transform a venue. He kept people up and grooving the entire night. Truthfully, I did not step off the dance floor once the party got started except to go to the bathroom. It was seriously incredible.
So, don’t skimp out on music! It creates the atmosphere and will get you some awesome footage for your videographer and photographer. My wedding day wouldn’t have been the same without it. Thanks, Josh!