My Top 10 List of things a great DJ just doesn't do.
Being a good DJ doesn’t just happen. It takes preparation. Each of your events will go smoothly when you come ready to focus on the delivering an awesome set, with minimal disruptions. Take the time to ask questions, review your crates, and to exceed your clients’ expectations. Along with providing great music, it's your job to provide great service. Here are my Top 10 "don'ts" to make your clients, and ultimately yourself, happy:
1. Don't under-dress
Be sure your outfit makes the right statement. As a professional, showing up in jeans and a faded t-shirt should never be okay. Packing and unpacking your equipment can be dirty work. Show up in something decent and change into your party gear after set up. Packing an extra shirt isn’t a bad idea either; which leads me to my second point…
2. Don't show up unprepared
Anything can happen on the day of an event, and frequently, disasters of epic proportions do. But not to you---nothing is unexpected. You’ve been hired for enough events to anticipate those awkward moments when there is a glitch in the program. And you’ve that into account in your prep. You have more than enough songs to use a fillers and you’re connected to the internet the whole night to accommodate special requests. And just in case the party needs a jump start, you’ve got some engaging tricks up your sleeve.
3. Don't play the wrong version of a special request
This is a major no-no! With millions of songs and their covers, you make sure that when clients have special requests, you ask who’s the artist and what’s the full title. You don’t assume anything cause’ there’s nothing worse than seeing a client grimace through the wrong rendition of their special song.
4. Don't play without mixing
You know better- and that’s why your client came looking for a professional. As a DJ, there are four major requirements: read the crowd, make great song selections, bring the energy and mix songs together seamlessly. You’re a DJ, not an IPOD.
5. Don't bring wired mics
You remember the gasp of the crowd when that client’s grandmother tripped over the mic cord after delivering her speech? Of course you don’t. You’d never show up with a bunch of cords that guests have to maneuver? All your equipment cords are covered and you have a cordless mic for guests to use. Right?
6. Don't show up late
Walking into an event late is awkward enough. Having to set up your equipment and test your sound quality is downright embarrassing. After sitting in silence, the last thing guests want to hear is “Check! 1! 2! Mic Check!” Always show up an hour to an hour and a half early to be completely set up before the event starts. Someone booked you in advance. Be there in advance.
7. Don't talk too much
A great DJ knows that music is what really gets the crowd going. Their voice should only enhance the experience. Go ahead, hype up the crowd, encourage them to leave their seats and to bring their best moves to the dance floor. Then, shut up. Let the music take over.
8. Don't take a seat
Are you bored? You shouldn’t be. You’re a musical genius. Stand up while you work and do your best to keep everyone else on their feet.
9. Don't blame the alcohol
If you have to be drunk in order to have a good time as the DJ, you’re on the wrong career track. Don’t have too many drinks, its okay to refuse the offers. You’re still at work. You have a reputation to build and relationships to maintain. Your client will appreciate your dedication to them having a good time.
10. Don't assume anything
Don’t assume anything. Ask a million questions- before the event. The day of is not the time to get clarity.