Wedding Timeline Tips

Have you started to imagine your wedding day yet? How all of the moments are going to play out? Certain things about your wedding timeline are going to be obvious. You’ll get your hair and makeup done before you put on the dress. Then the ceremony will usually be followed by a cocktail hour while you take photos. Once that’s finished it’s time for dinner and dancing. There are quite a few little details and pro-tips I’ve learned over the years that I’d love to share with you as you plan your wedding timeline.

One key element some people tend to look over is the timing of sunset in relation to the wedding. If you’ve looked at any photographers so far you’ve probably noticed that some of the most stunning images are taken right around sunset, or the golden hour as it’s often referred. 

What does that mean for your wedding timeline? 

Ideally, you would want the ceremony to end so that you can capture as many photos as possible during that magical time, and then have dinner begin as the sunsets. As the dj, I provide the perfect playlist for that time for many of my weddings, with your taste taken into account. I often help line up many of the details with the venue and other vendors to help bridge the ceremony and reception. The time for sunset changes depending on the time of year, so it might not be reasonable in the middle of summer, but you should still account for a time to sneak away and get some photos either before the dance party starts, or after it’s underway for at least 15-20 minutes. 

After Cocktail hour there are a few different ways of organizing the reception events. Typically after guests find their seats, a grand entrance will re-introduce the newly married couple. It can be as subtle as eliciting some applause for just the couple, or can get rather elaborate with the full bridal party being introduced to a hype song and all gathering on the dance floor. 

Roughly half of my clients choose to do their first dance after the entrance. The other half prefer to wait until after dinner. Some reasons to do it before dinner:

-You will look as fresh as possible for the photos - If you're a messy eater or drinking red wine, this is definitely something to think about...

-The spotlight and excitement would be high after the entrance

-Some want to get it out of the way early

-Maybe there are a lot of events happening after dinner and you’d like to chop it up a bit.

Alternatively, the reasons to consider doing it after dinner:

-People might be hungry after a long day.

-It can be used as an excellent tool to start the dance party.

-You have some time to relax a bit during dinner if it’s been a busy day.

-It can work in combination with the parent dances if you want to do all the spotlight dances as a single segment of the evening.

In either case, the next step I often recommend is a quick “Thanks for coming” or “Welcome” speech from the newlyweds. You probably haven’t had much of a chance to speak to everyone yet, and it’s nice to address the room briefly if you feel comfortable with that. Additionally, a family member/parent may want to do that as well, and someone may want to bless the food or say grace.

Dinner will typically be served at this point, and often times even if it is a buffet the caterer will make it a point to serve the newlyweds first. People will most likely want to come and talk to you, which is great, but I always try and stress to clients the importance of eating. Your adrenaline might be pumping and you might not feel hungry, but it is a long day and if you’re drinking especially you’ll be thankful you ate by the end. Once you’ve eaten, it is somewhat common to walk around the room and do some quick table touches and just say hi to everyone individually. It can be super easy to get caught up talking to your favorite people, so it might even be wise to have a quick timer on your phone if you are trying to stick to a schedule. If you are more relaxed about it, that’s fine too of course, but it’s definitely something to think about before the big day. Tips for a smooth wedding dinner

As dinner is winding down, the next item will typically be toasts. Some people like to cut the cake before toasts as well… it’s easy to get pictures if you aren’t looking to make much of a show out of the cake. If champagne is going to be poured it is usually best to check with the catering/bar staff and see if they are waiting to pour for everyone until all plates are cleared, or what their strategy is for that. Other events will just have the dj announce for everyone to make sure they have a drink to cheers with as dinner is still happening.  Wedding toast tips

After the Toasts, it will typically be a good time for spotlight dances (first dance/parent dances). The toasts will make sure everyone is paying attention, and often create some emotion, which is excellent before a sentimental moment.

I think after the spotlight dances is a great time to get a dance floor started. People can begin to get antsy if you hold their attention for too long after dinner. They may need the restroom, a drink, a smoke break, or just to stand up and move around. Beginning the dance party is a perfect way to keep everyone happy and engaged in many cases. There are some tips in my previous blog post for how to maximize this moment to help keep the dance floor active for the rest of the night. 3 Pro Tips To Get A Fun Wedding Dance Party Started

I usually recommend to let the initial dance party go for 20-45 minutes before proceeding with the other moments of the night. Even a somewhat brief dance party will heighten everyone’s mood and set the tone for the rest of the evening. Cake cutting, bouquet toss, garter removal toss, and any other traditions you decide to do will appear much more lively in photos than if everyone just got up from dinner and tried to participate. These should take place early enough to include kids or elderly people who may not be able to stay all night. Also, not all photographers are booked til the end of the wedding, so it might be necessary in that regard as well. I typically recommend finishing this portion of events with the bouquet/garter if possible to get the younger crowd active before transitioning back to open dancing. Is the dollar dance dead?

If the wedding has a niche style of music that needs a segment this is a great time to do that as well. Some clients have family from another country, or maybe there are swing dancers, polka fam, or something else that isn’t easy to mix with most music, and this is a great spot to let that style shine.

Every event is different, and there isn’t really a format for open dancing, but after filling out our planning form we will have everything we need to make great decisions to keep your friends and family going til the end of the party!

 


Book a !dj before it's too late

Why it’s an important time to book a dj!

 

Covid-19 in Phoenix, AZ and The United States in regards to booking a dj now

It’s currently a great time to book a dj. The world has been flipped upside down with the emergence of Covid-19. Arizona Governor Ducey has cancelled gatherings of more than 50 people for the next 8 weeks. The CDC reduced that number to 10 for Seattle, and the President is suggesting that for the whole country right now. It seems like further containment orders are being put in place every time we check the news. This has had a particularly negative impact on the event industry as you might imagine. Major events like Coachella, SXSW, Ultra, and even Glastonbury have had to cancel or postpone.

A few reasons why now is the time to book a dj

1. Your Wedding Date

Not just major events have had setbacks. This is the busiest time of the year for weddings in the Phoenix, AZ area and there are countless couples looking to move wedding dates to fall, the holiday season, or even 2021. This is gonna make the year following this summer the absolute busiest year we’ve ever had. We have already successfully found solutions for a number of clients this has affected and it seems like it's just the beginning for many spring clients. Look, I don't wanna cause panic, but if you are planning to have a wedding in the next year it’s time to book a dj or the best ones might not be available. This is going to become more of an obstacle by the day right now if you haven't considered this yet! Secure your wedding date before it's too late!

2. What to do with your free time

If you are following the recommendations like me, you are going to have quite a bit of time to tackle major projects you might not otherwise have much time for. Wedding planning is that project for many people, and we anticipate this to be an incredibly busy time as a lot of people try and book a dj. 

3. Do it from home

With technology being what it is today, we can setup a meeting from home easily. I even have a home studio and can actually show you the equipment and lighting as we have a conversation. All our brochures, proposals, contracts, payments, and planning forms are digital on a client file system called honeybook that is mobile friendly. It’s a super convenient way to book a dj. 

4. Support local small businesses

Of course we are a local small business that would love your support. We also believe in supporting other local small businesses and have a special offer for any clients that book while we are still advised to keep public gatherings to 10 people or less. If you book your wedding prior to the lifting of the 10 person or less ban, we will give you a $50 gift card to your favorite local small business. This deal is time sensitive, so act now!

5. Wedding Dj Specials

We have done a few bridal shows recently, and are going to continue to honor our bridal show discounts for the unforeseeable future. Substantial discounts for non-peak dates and other custom fit deals are available if you reach out to us! It might change in time, so don't sleep on this one either, but it'll last more than a couple weeks for sure.

In summary

We are going to make it through this crisis and I believe we will be stronger than ever. Now is the perfect time to get some wedding planning taken care of with your free time. A lot of the best dates are in much higher demand than normal. If you book with us, you can do it from home with simplicity. It’s a great time to support small businesses and we are offering a $50 gift card to a small business of your choosing as a Covid lockdown bonus. On top of that, special bridal show discounts are available. All of these details lining up, really do make it a great time to book a dj for your wedding.

Are you ready to take your date off the market? Visit our Contact Page to learn more!


Wedding Toast Tips

Wedding Toast Tips

Giving a wedding toast is a special thing! It definitely helps create intimacy between friends and family of the newlyweds, many of whom will be meeting for the first time on wedding day. A wedding toast shouldn’t be as intimidating as public speaking. You are speaking about someone you love, to people who are trying to hear that message… that’s why they came after all. You can talk about how you know them, how they met, a special moment in time, or maybe even a funny moment that helped shape the bond. Ultimately, ending on a positive and having everyone cheers to the newlyweds! I have a much more comprehensive list of wedding toasting tips. I’d be happy to share that as well, but here's quick list of tips to help the wedding toast go smoothly…

3 tips to make your wedding toast great!

  1. If you plan to have everyone cheers at the end of the wedding toast it’s a great idea to make sure champagne has been poured (or the mc has announced for everyone to make sure their cup isn’t empty before the toast). I’ve definitely seen an over zealous best man or parent run up and want to go right now. Don't catch the caterer/bartender off guard. A 5 minute announcement is a solid way to make sure everyone who needs to be present is accounted for. 
  2. As a wedding dj, technicalities are always important to share with someone about to give a wedding toast. When holding a microphone, it’s important to hold it somewhere near your mouth. 1-2 inches is a pretty good target. A little further and the dj should still be able to adjust your volume accordingly, but if you hold it by your chest it’ll be hard for anyone to hear. Also, don’t hold the mic like a rapper cupping the top (diaphragm). It might look cool, but it muffles the sound in a way not desirable for normal speaking. Lastly, when figuring out where to stand, anywhere is better than directly in front of a speaker in order to avoid feedback. Your best bet for where to stand is next to the newlyweds. I’d ask the photographer where they prefer to make sure flashes are setup, but ultimately it’s a great photo of you and your favorite person if you can both be in the same frame.
  3. As far as content goes, my toasting tips document is much more thorough on that subject. Basically, be yourself while keeping the overall focus directed towards the newlyweds. Feel free to be funny/serious/etc as your personality would normally be. Keep it family friendly, have a few notecards you can read in dim lighting, and practice ahead of time for best results. A good target length-wise is 2-3 minutes as there may be multiple toasts. Oh, and don't forget your drink!

Hopefully these tips help as you are planning a wedding toast! If you’d like to read my lengthier document, feel free to fill out my contact form. I’d be happy to share and help you with an amazing wedding toast! Cheers!


Tips For A Smooth Wedding Dinner

Dinner is a pretty important part of a wedding. Feeding 100+ people in an hour is no easy task, so it kind of goes without saying you should feel confident with who is catering your big day. Aside from that, I have put together a few dj friendly pro tips to think about if you want your dinner to go smoothly…

First, when planning seating charts, keep in mind that the speakers are most likely going to be near the DJ. If you place elderly guests in front of the speakers, they may not be able to tolerate much volume. This will make it hard to hear the music and announcements for anyone further away. It happens way more than you might think, as most people aren’t considering how loud it can be if a speaker at a modest volume is only 5 feet away from someone with a hearing aid.

Additionally, it is not wise to place tables between the DJ and the dance floor if it can be avoided. Not only will the speakers be further from the dance floor, and really close to the tables that are placed there, but any lights will also be further away which will diminish the effect. Also, the DJ will need to come from further out from behind his table to pass the microphone for speeches and other reasons which will create delays. It subsequently kills the connected energy from people dancing being close to the DJ and makes requesting songs more difficult for guests as well. It’s not technically harder to mix as a dj when you are separated from a dance floor, but it’s definitely trickier to read the crowd from across the room, and the sound isn’t as focused for the people on the dance floor. This happens most frequently when the dj is placed in a corner and the dance floor is in the middle of the room. It is definitely convenient space wise in some cases, but just be aware that dinner lasts around an hour, and the party will continue for the whole night.

Second, eating is important! The day can get long really quick when you think about everything that happens between your morning meal and dinner. If you are like me, it’s easy to forget to eat when exciting things are happening and your nerves get going a bit. I’ve definitely seen instances where my clients have gotten so caught up with their guests they barely touch their dinner. This can make for a very long day!

In many cases, the newlyweds will have been taking pictures during cocktail hour and miss hors d’oerves. Since you aren’t really around before or after the ceremony, most of your guests will naturally want to talk to you during dinner. 

I often recommend having a brief welcome speech after the grand entrance to thank everyone for coming. It would probably be the first time you’ve said hello to many guests. 

Another thing to think about… In many cases, the bride and groom will eat first and then go around and do table touches to talk to everyone briefly during dinner. It’s smart to have an idea of how long you want to do table touches, as this can take way longer than you might expect without a plan.

The caterer/planner will typically bring you a plate of food if there is a buffet so you can eat first to allow time to talk with your guests and prepare for the rest of the evening. DON’T FORGET TO EAT!!! Your wedding day is filled with excitement, anxiety and so many emotions it can be easy to forget, but it is such a long day that it is very important to make sure and eat the delicious food you selected. You don’t want to run out of gas by the end of the night, right?!? It’s not always possible to follow all of this advice for one reason or another, but just understanding these dynamics will be a huge help in making your wonderful wedding dinner go smoothly!


Is The Dollar Dance Dead?

Is the dollar dance dead?

Recently, I was asked by a client if people still do the dollar dance? It really just depends on the client. I would say a large percentage of people pass on the tradition for a number of reasons, while for some families it is still an expected way to help the newlyweds.

Some reasons the dollar dance has been skipped over at most weddings, and how to solve these problems if you want to do it…

  1. Not everyone carries cash anymore…

It’s definitely truer than ever that asking people to pull out a dollar bill to dance with a bride might result in a large percentage of people looking for an ATM. You can plan ahead for this by having your parents reach out to family members ahead of time and let them know to expect this. It probably wouldn’t be something you’d want to print on the invitation, but a quick text from your mom, and I’m sure Uncle Jerry would throw a twenty in his wallet before coming…

2.   It can take a long time…

The dollar dance can go on and on for an eternity it seems if you don’t have a plan in place. An absolute minimum you would dance with someone who just gave you money would be 15-30 seconds, and ideally you’d want a lot of participation which can stretch the activity between 10-30 minutes sometimes. It’s a great idea to have a bridesmaid or groomsman help regulate the line and collect the money if possible. You can have an established timeframe with them and a non-verbal cue to move on so you don’t get stuck dancing with Uncle Jerry for a whole song while 20 more people wait in a line. 

3.   It can slow down the pace of the wedding

While it can be a great way to generate some extra honeymoon funds and get a chance to see people one on one for a minute, it can really slow down the momentum of a wedding. The majority of your guests will either be sitting down, waiting in line, or at the bar or outside. If you keep it moving and have the songs upbeat, it can still work out just fine… just be aware that it is not a tool for escalating into a wild dance party in most cases.


Thinking of asking guests to RSVP with what song they would like to hear at your wedding?

Over the years I have had some clients surprise me with a list of songs they got from all of the guests as part of the invitation process. I’ll admit, it can be a fun idea, and it has led to some cool moments. There are also some inherent challenges it is good to be prepared for if you decide to take this route, and this blog article will walk you through some things you might want to think about.

First things first… if 150 people select 1 song each and each song is roughly 3 minutes or longer, you have a base time of 450 minutes, or 7.5 hours. Many weddings in the Phoenix and Scottsdale areas of Arizona don’t last longer than 6 hours, even including the ceremony. This leads me to my first point…

Manage the expectations of your potential guests before they even write down a song. Let them know you are just looking for some ideas and you are going to filter through them before they reach the dj and pick some for cocktail hour/dinner and some for dancing. It might be nice to mention that if a particular song has some special relevance to note that so it gets proper attention. 

As long as the way you ask for the song suggestions doesn’t make people feel entitled to hear their song you should be fine. I have had guests that wrote down a song that would’ve been totally wrong for the actual group of people at the wedding, and then 5 different people come up when I announce I’m playing the last song of the night that the newlyweds selected, upset that I never played their song, when in reality I had no clue who wrote down what songs, and how long ago it was… They didn’t come up and tell me they were hoping for the song… They just assumed every song would be played, and that just wouldn’t have been possible considering the newlyweds had a general direction they wanted the music to go as well.

I personally don’t think it’s a necessary thing to do in order to have a good party. My planning form helps figure out what the couple having the wedding likes. Beyond that, it’s totally possible to handle requests at the event and play what seems right in the moment and have an excellent time. What’s that old saying about having too many cooks in the kitchen?

It can be useful as a dj to have an idea of what the group tastes might be like, but there are other ways to do that. Maybe have the parents ask family members for a small list of some favorites. I’ve also had clients create collaborative spotify playlists with their wedding party to get ideas for the later evening dance songs. Everyone can add songs leading up to the wedding and then you can trim it down to the best of the best.  

If you are trying to figure out what songs to play at your wedding, a healthy mix of your favorite styles and some family/friend favorites will go a long way before the wedding. Once you have the essentials, it’s never a bad idea to tell the dj what your ok with and not ok with and let them read the crowd and field requests with your taste in mind. This is usually a pretty surefire way to ensure a good time for most groups… What songs do you want to hear at your wedding?


How much should a wedding dj cost?

How Much Should A Wedding Dj Cost

How much should a wedding dj cost?

This is a popular question with brides and grooms in the Phoenix/Scottsdale area in Arizona, and probably the whole country and planet to be honest. I think the reason is that it’s kinda hard for a normal person to tell exactly what all goes into it. Every dj has a different origin story, different style and talent, and a different work ethic that dictate what they charge as a performer. Then equipment and all of the extras that can really make an event special all come into play as well as a myriad of other details. THIS ARTICLE IS NOT GOING TO BE ABOUT HOW MUCH I CHARGE! I’d be happy to send you my pricing brochure if that’s what you’re looking for. This article is more about all of the factors that go into being a great dj and how to gauge value vs. price as you’re considering your wedding dj cost for your budget.

I remember the first time I ever dj’d publicly… I had been practicing and going to the record store for a couple years and my friend invited me to come play at a new venue he was doing a weekly night at. I got a free bar tab and couldn’t have been more excited for my first gig. Nobody is really good the first time playing in front of people, and I was no exception. 

Fast forward about 6 years… I had been djing mostly as a hobby and at parties when someone asked me to do their wedding. I had the technical skill at that point, but I only had dance club music on vinyl and was kind of limited. There was a new piece of hardware that had come out and evolved into a pretty stable option that allowed a dj to plug in their laptop. It was around $6-700 and the couple bought it for me because they liked me and wanted me to do their wedding. I had no idea what a wedding dj cost at the time, so we were both getting a great deal. I had a bunch of mp3’s already, but spent a couple hundred dollars on music to make sure I had everything they could think of ahead of time. Was I great? Probably not. Did they have a great time? Definitely. I spent probably 40 hours prepping and making sure I had everything they could want and more lined up, and they already loved my personality, so it was exactly what they hoped for. All the groomsmen actually ended up in the pool in their tuxes, so it was THAT kinda party! That was in 2008-9.

So by the time I did my first wedding, I already had 6-8 years of experience mixing, controlling levels and djing dance music in small social settings. I had probably invested $5,000+ in equipment, and god only knows how much on records to be able to be a dj that could beat match by ear, read a room, and transition effectively. 

After the world of digital music opened up to me, I started djing a few nights a week at a local bar and doing weddings by word of mouth as they came across my path. Customers who loved my style at the bar gig would refer their friends and it was just a really organic process. I got some experience from people who weren’t super particular and I charged them more than I would make at the bar, but probably way less than an experienced wedding dj cost. I learned how the timeline and announcements of a wedding went just by trying it out on people who were getting a low wedding dj cost and weren’t too particular. Honestly, a lot of the early weddings were backyard budget weddings where I was learning the ropes. 

My hospitality background made it pretty natural for me to act appropriately at a wedding, which is basically a catered event with entertainment. I got great feedback and really enjoyed it to the point that I got a graphic/web designer to make my first website and business card. This was still before the age of Wix and Fiverr, where those things weren’t cheap, and honestly weren’t great by today’s standard. After I had a card and a website, I booked a booth at a bridal show (also not cheap…lol). This was around 2012. My wedding dj cost was still pretty low at $650 for the whole day and I booked 10 weddings which was great and I couldn’t have been more thrilled. I really started developing my planning form and getting a routine together at this point. I even started getting referrals from some other vendors who liked me and thought I was better than most of the other people they worked with… even at that point early on. The main things I kept hearing was that it just sounded better when I was there (probably because I knew how to mix and control levels like a boss), and it was refreshing to have someone that wasn’t cheesy and just seemed like a normal person (probably because that’s totally what I was/am…lol).

I took the things that were natural to me after all of that time in hospitality and djing as an artist and really focused on designing my approach to weddings. I wanted to help modern clients, who didn’t want their parents dj, have an amazing wedding party. Since my music tastes have always been pretty wide, it made customizing the experience to each client a really engaging puzzle where I figure out as much as I can and prepare before the event, and then adapt to the guests in real time while working with the model of what the bride and groom had in mind before the event. 

These are all things you can’t really put a price on, and you can’t see them on the shelf or an inventory sheet. You can see them in the things my clients have to say about me in reviews they leave, and I send most of my clients to The Knot where I come up as one of the top vendors and win awards.

It’s one thing to have a natural ability for something, but for me that wasn’t enough if I wanted to make a living doing this. I started going to conferences for wedding professionals and mobile djs a few years ago and have really been refining my entire business as I’ve been able to make a full time living primarily focusing on weddings. You can see my attention to detail in a lot of places. My logo and website are probably the first places you would notice. I invested in professional design because I wanted my visual appearance to match my performance talent. As you get into the process a bit further, my online client resource system makes it so that you can receive my pricing brochure, proposal, contract and planning form all in one place. You can even sign the contract digitally and setup an automatic payment if needed. The brochure, contract and planning form are all very carefully thought out to be as effective in translating information as simply as possible. I also have put together a spotify channel with playlists of song ideas for the different moments of a wedding. Even these blog articles I’m writing are a testament to how committed I am to making my clients experience the best it can possibly be. 

There are tons of intangibles that you won’t get with any other dj. At least not how I deliver the experience, because I created this all from scratch. I didn’t buy an already functioning company and manage a team of djs, or separate off from a pre-existing company and do things pretty much the same way they’ve always been done… I’m trying to pioneer a new experience where my clients get a relaxed experience that mirrors their personality in energy and music style at each point through the evening.

One way to enhance the experience I’ve been developing is with some forward thinking lighting and ambiance enhancing technologies that not many other djs are using. One example is my new battery powered uplights. They are amazing. Because they are battery powered they can be placed anywhere, even on palm trees or cactuses outdoors. Uplights add texture to a space when the sun goes down, much like curtains add texture to a wall when there is light. These are some of the best on the market also. Nerd Alert: their beam angle is wider so the create more of an impact on the wall and I have high quality gels to create an even color dispersion for complex color mixing. I have a wireless signal transmitted that can match the lights in my custom made dj booth facade and totems. The colors can match your wedding colors and stay one color or slow change during dinner, and activate with the music during the dance party… and MATCH YOUR WEDDING COLORS! Nobody else is doing that… ask around. Almost anyone who has uplights either sets them to one color and they don’t change, or they use an auto program in the lights that matches the sound but doesn’t have any control over color… so you get greens, oranges, and whatever other colors you might not like… lol. My programming system took a lot of time and effort to learn and setup by the way. It also takes time to match your colors at the event. It’s an amazing detail that you would never think of until you see how much nicer it is than the standard programming that comes in the light. I’ve also invested in some nightclub quality moving head lights that work with the same program. They can provide ambient lighting decor on the ceiling or walls during dinner, a spotlight during the first dance, and a fully controllable dance party experience that a lighting technician controls to match the mood of the music. It’s pretty special. 

I also have a high quality projector on a professionally designed stand that lifts the projector above everyone’s head and keeps it out of the way against a wall. The projector can be used in a number of ways. It can project a personalized monogram with the couple’s name/initials/date in a stylish design. It’s perfect for a large blank wall or on the dance floor and looks great in pictures. The monogram can actually be designed to be animated as well. Picture how a logo before a movie starts might gradually have elements float into the screen until the full image of the production company is complete… this could be happening on the wall at your wedding with your personalized monogram. It can be set to loop every couple minutes or so also, so it’s not too distracting. It’s a really nice touch. The monogram could also project a design like little floating hearts, or a slideshow, or even a combination of these elements at different points if you wanted. It’s not even that expensive compared to chair covers, flowers, or the hundreds of other decor options you have.

If you are interested in more details about what all is possible, your best bet is to have a conversation with me as what I provide tends to evolve quicker than my website gets updated. I also offer a battery powered setup for ceremonies or cocktail hours that might be difficult to supply power for. I have a selfie station that uses digital props and sends photos, GIF, or boomerang digitally through email or text. I’m working on a video package as well. We can really do something special if you want to take your event from memorable to unforgettable.

As you consider pricing, there are a ton of logistical details that go into a professional dj’s pricing as well. I’m insured, continue to be educated, subscribe to the best music pool and purchase high quality music (cheap djs often pirate music to keep their cost low and sound quality suffers), I have high quality equipment, pay taxes and credit card processing fees, assistants for bigger events, advertising and webpage costs, all of the time and effort that goes into booking, planning, prepping, setting up an event, executing it, and breaking it down, not to mention health insurance, mortgage payments, food, utilities, and a healthy concert addiction in my free time… lol. The list goes on and on… One of the main factors I haven’t mentioned yet is scarcity… I can only do one event a day, and everyone wants their wedding on a Saturday when the weather is nice. If price is your main concern, you get discounts on almost everything by having a non-peak wedding.

Most of what I have gone over in this blog is essentially walking through the long and arduous process of what all went into me being a talented and proficient dj, and ultimately experience maker. Could anybody go purchase the same equipment as me? Of course they could. Would they be able to deliver the same experience that I can? Probably not. 

So how much should a wedding dj cost? 

If a wedding dj cost a few hundred dollars, you shouldn't expect much... Ultimately, the talent, personality, and work ethic of everyone is different. A dj is going to charge what they think they are worth and as long as they are providing value and are able to make a living doing it, that is how much they are worth. You are investing in a gorgeous venue, dress, flowers, cake, photos, etc. because you want everything to be perfect… why would you want to trust someone who doesn’t feel they are worth much to lead your guests through the most important day of your life? You’re going to remember this for the rest of your life… Our prices range quite a bit depending on the options we decide on. Let us help you make sure that the feelings of joy and excitement you experience are on a par with how beautiful everything else at your wedding is! 

For our current pricing, go to our contact page or just fill out our contact form and let us know you want to check out the brochure. Our pricing is definitely a good value for the experience we’re going to deliver. Let us help you have the party of your dreams!


3 Pro Tips To Get A Fun Wedding Dance Party Started

As a wedding dj in the Phoenix, Arizona metro area, I have a wide range of clients… 

Some used to hang out in nightclubs with their friends, some are more subtle with their music taste and dancing proclivities, and a lot fall somewhere in the middle. One common theme between 99% of the people that hire a dj is they want a fun dance floor when the time comes. After dinner winds down, the toasts/speeches are finished, and the special dances are done, you might wonder how to ensure your dance floor fills up. With that in mind, I’ve put together some pro tips for how to make sure that your dance party starts easily, organically, and with an inclusiveness that makes everyone feel like they can get involved.

#1 Your friends and family will follow your lead

When the moment arrives, the music kicks in, the lights change, but if you go outside or to the bar immediately when the dance floor opens, your guests will follow suit. Similarly, if you stay on the dance floor most everyone will want to join. The first 15 minutes or so generally sets the tone for the rest of the night. It's almost like a switch goes off in most peoples head if everyone joins in the dance party early on. It's like they know they're going to be dancing all night and it's already been decided. Make sure and think about how you want things to kick off before dinner is finished. Need to change shoes or get a drink? Maybe do it before the dance party starts, or sneak away after everything is already rolling along.

#2 Have some inside help from fun wedding party/family members

Talk to your wedding party and some fun guests about joining the dance floor before the day of the wedding! If 5-10+ people run out right away to join you on the dance floor, it’s way less intimidating for everyone else to join in. After all, everyone came because they want to celebrate with you. A little encouragement is all it takes in most instances. Also, don’t let the photographer pull people away for photos right when the dance floor opens up. If it falls flat at the very beginning it can be harder to get the momentum back later.

#3 Consider the age range of your guests

If your guests range widely in age, like many weddings do, starting with songs that everyone knows can help with guest participation early on. Often, once people have already been involved with the dance floor they feel comfortable joining throughout the night, even if they don’t know some of the music. I often suggest a party starter mix of popularly requested wedding songs to get things going. I typically make it kind of like a mega mix, where after the first verse and chorus we transition into the next song to get things moving early on. Also since I mix live at my events, if a particular song is really working I can let it play if it seems like the right call.

Follow these tips and your dance floor is sure to get going early on and stay hot all night!


First Step

First Step

Every great journey begins with a first step, and that’s what we’re taking right now! I’m excited to see how this develops as all of these ideas I’ve been collecting get their moment to shine, and new ideas emerge for contemplation. I imagine this blog being helpful for many different reasons to many different people. I’m currently focusing the bulk of my dj efforts on weddings, so there will be many helpful tips to guide modern couples as they throw the party of their dreams without getting tripped up by obstacles that aren’t written down in the handbook they give you when you buy your engagement ring… oh wait, that doesn’t exist, does it?! I’ve seen things, and I’ll help you steer clear of common pitfalls if you wanna listen to my oratory. Fellow dj’s will be able to gain some perspective as well I’m sure. Knowing the dj forums, I wouldn’t be surprised to see those paying attention to have differing opinions on occasion and not be afraid to say it… I welcome productive discussion! Corporate clients looking to have a holiday extravaganza, parents of kids having mitzvah’s or birthday parties, and anyone who is interested in a dj’s advice when throwing an event will be able to gain something from the posts that follow. Take comfort in the fact that I am college educated, and have a vocabulary that ranges further than “Everybody put your hands up!” That’s right, I’m also an eagle scout. Growing up in a small town, being a good person was one of the most important things you could do. I’ve also passed level 1 with court of master sommeliers for any wine lovers out there, managed nice restaurants and worked in many areas of hospitality for 20 years. Hospitality background is extremely important for any dj who isn’t tucked away in a dj booth at a nightclub. After all, djing is only part of the job when working with a catering team, a photographer and a wide variety of guests and vendors. Artistic elements like lighting, music strategy, projection and timeline development are other areas I’d love to continue growing. I attend conferences for industry professionals and love furthering my knowledge in any way possible. I currently live in Phoenix, Arizona so there might be some location specific things as well. At the end of the day, if I think something is worth putting pen to paper and sharing, you’ll find it here… I hope it finds you well!