How Choose Good DJ ?

Read 13311 times 14 Jan 2019

Choose appropriate and good dj for your event is one of most important thing. Dont worry anymore – we tell you how…


The choosing of a good DJ is an essential and a very difficult task – especially if the event is something like a wedding, corporate event, celebration or a V.I.P party. The problem is in the fact that the production of a DJ is very subjective and the quality can vary.

Someone that can be a great DJ for someone, can be terrible for someone else. It is important to acknowledge the fact that weddings, corporate events or celebrations call for an entirely different kinds of DJs than the classic club or disco ones. On these events, the age of the participants varies drastically, it’s the same with their nationality, taste in music and the event is sometimes divided into smaller sections, each in need of a different music type ( for instance a dinner). Because of these reasons it is not wise to hire DJs who play classical disco music in clubs or discos. A good DJ for these events should be familiar with different styles of music and have a large music library because everything can be expected on these events. DJs that can play almost anything and are excellent in almost every music type are a rarity. Even those who say that they can do it sometimes download different “best of” albums because they don’t simply have the right feeling and simply dont like that kind of music. So finding the right DJ, if the event should be great, is a very difficult task. If the organizer of the event is an experienced event organizer or a wedding company organizer, you can partially rely on their recommendation. It is logical to think that the organizers will have a pro that will be suitable for the event. But in these days you should be careful. Because of the competition, the companies often get their equipment from a very cheap supplier even without looking at the quality and thus they can still compete with other companies and their offers. So they will often offer you a common average DJ, but they will present him as a top class one. However, it is not common in all companies – the best and most stable companies on the market will hopefully not lower themselves for these techniques, however, these tactics are more common in the newly formed companies.


If you are choosing a DJ, you need to estimate many factors. The presentation of the DJ on the web (the overall appearance of the website – if the DJ has a professionally run website, you can see that he takes his job seriously and he cares about his presentation), his references – how many similar events was he at, how specific his references/clients may be, how is their knowledge in the field and their developed technical knowledge (very important), and if and what kind of equipment DJ has plus his level of English language at foreign events. A nice bonus is if the DJ himself is a musician — because musicians have a right feel for music and because of this feel for it DJ is able to mix music way better. If you insist, a personal meeting with the DJ would not harm any side and if you don’t have any references regarding the DJ from your agency or your acquaintances – I always recommend to meet the DJ before you hire him, because if you won’t like each other, he will not feel comfortable on the event and thus his performance and production would be worse.


If the DJ lives far away, it is needed to get him a good transportation – you can lower the risk of him being trapped in traffic that way. If the event is taking place in a mountain area, we advise to check if the DJ has a 4×4 car and if he has some experience in driving in snow. Even though you may find my thoughts unduly, I’ve worked with a lot of my co-workers who simply didn’t make it to the venue because they didn’t own a 4×4 car or had a malfunction that prevented them from reaching the mountain area.


A lot of people ask me if it’s wise to let the DJ drink alcohol. It is a difficult question. DJ shouldn’t get drunk on the event, but in a small amount, alcohol can bring in a better production quality. DJ will be more unbound and he will get on the “wave” of the participants more easily. Professional DJ knows his limits and will drink alcohol in amount that will not prohibit him from DJing as best as he can. He shouldn’t drink shots of course. But I would generally recommend you that you let your DJ drink alcohol in a reasonable amount within limits.


Because the DJ is a human being as anybody else at the event and he is often present there from the afternoon hours, it is a standard that he will receive some refreshments and drinks. Most of the DJs don’t have this stated in their terms of production but it’s seen as a standard by them. A DJ that is both hungry and thirsty won’t perform as great as he would with a full stomach. To prevent the embarrassing situations when the DJ doesn’t know if he can take something for free or if he has to order a drink, I advise you that you tell your DJ when he arrives what he can take from the table and what he can’t. The DJ won’t jump on the food instantly of course, but will politely wait after most of the guests finish.


Gramophones versus CD players versus Laptop with a controller. DJs use different equipment for their production. The usage of equipment differs for every DJ and the type of event that he is needed on. For events like a wedding or a corporate event I strongly recommend choosing a DJ that uses a laptop with a controller (A special hardware mixer connected to the PC that allows the DJ to mix and to play with the sound). This DJ can bring himself a lot more musical material than a DJ that uses a gramophone or a CD player. It is also good to say that vinyl can get scratched, the same goes with CDs and DJ also waste time finding the right CD or a vinyl. CD players can have a defect on their lasers, they can get dirty inside or simply stop working entirely. DJ with a primary and a secondary laptop and a controller is a much safer and overall better choice on these events. DJs that play from gramophones are suitable mainly for club events, where he plays one or two different styles – for instance House, Deep House, Drum n Bass, Techno, Tech House etc. These types of electronic music are however not suitable as a mainstream for weddings or corporate evenings. Even if the task calls for electronic music, which happens sometimes, it is just a single block in a series of other blocks of other styles – that however can’t be played by an “old school” vinyl DJ. That is why even if the task includes blocks of House, Tech house etc. hiring a laptop controller DJ is a much better choice.


The fact that some music styles played on weddings and corporate events can’t even be mixed (for instance rock, country, pop, metal, ska etc.) should be also noted. The use of a gramophone would therefore be illogical. If you want a DJ with gramophones because of the effect and the improvement of the event’s feel, that is a different question altogether. In that case, it would be good if you hired an excellent gramophone DJ that can make you a 10 min. show full of scratches and can revive your event a little bit. In that case I can recommend the use of a gramophone DJ, but just for a short show, do not use him as a main DJ.


What makes DJ an actual DJ on weddings or corporate events? Alpha and Omega of a good DJ is a good psychological feeling of the guests and participants, the feel for music, musical ear, wide range of music that DJ can play, good musical material and a technical know-how about how to operate equipment. Also, we can’t forget sympathy, empathy and reliability – without these aspects the DJ is simply not a good one.


So how much does a DJ cost? A bad or a beginning DJ that will play on a smaller event with basic equipment will cost you $125-$200. Average DJ that has some experience and works in this field for a longer period of time that is not bad, but not a “top notch” that swims just between the tides of radio hits and commerce will cost you $300-$350 for 5-6 hours of production. Top DJ with an exceptional equipment will cost about 425$-$500 or more. It depends on the length of the production, the equipment that the DJ has, the transport to the venue etc. If we were talking about a big event with a big venue, just the equipment and illumination can climb up to $2500 or more. The prices that I write here are more or less just a guidance and what matters are the parameters of the event. The organizer of an event that invited their DJ from afar should rent him some kind of apartment in the proximity of the event with his own funds – DJ drives home the night after his production very exhausted and thus the drive can be very dangerous for him.


It is better to choose an experienced DJ who is a good technician at the same time (so he can plug and set everything right), has a general know-how about sound systems, has his own professional equipment and his own transport or he is himself a musician (has an ear for music). You don’t need to worry about a lot of things while preparing the event that way and you won’t need to be nervous during the event – you can concentrate on other aspects of the event and you can be relaxed because you are hiring an experienced professional that can deliver an extraordinary atmosphere and will satisfy all your guests.I’m often asked by clients if you tip the DJs. It is entirely on you. Professional won’t require any tips from you and won’t even mention it. If you are very satisfied with the work of your DJ, the tip symbolizes your gratitude.


Last advice in the end: A bad DJ and equipment can destroy the feel of your event, so I’m obliged to recommend you to NOT save funds when you are looking for a DJ, but focus on the ones that are experienced professionals and those with a good equipment. If you have limited budget, try to come to an agreement with the DJ on an acceptable terms beneficial for both sides.