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A series of articles about all facets of event planning with helpful hints, planning ideas, sample schedules and budgeting tips from the B&E Team.

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Hiring A DJ


hiring a dj

Deciding on a disc jockey: Meet with disc jockeys in person, and make sure the person you meet is the one you are hiring for your event. Ask to see the equipment and portfolios or presentations of their shows so you know what to expect. If they do more than one show per day, check to make sure they have the appropriate equipment setups for two or more shows. The disc jockey should be able to provide you with a list of music available so that you can pre-select favorites you want played. Be sure there is a good mix of music so that people of all ages can enjoy and participate.

Written contract: It is advisable to get a written contract stating exactly what you have agreed upon: date, number of hours, types of equipment, who will be doing the show, the total cost, what is included, and so on.

Emcee: Ask whether your disc jockey can act as the emcee at your event. This will help the event flow smoothly. Give your emcee a list of special guests' names and see to it he/she can pronounce them.

Volume of music: Discuss the selection of music you would like with your disc jockey, as well as the volume at which it should be played. Keep the volume of music low for the first hour of your event, allowing guests to mingle and ensuring that the sound level is comfortable for older guests. Then when the dancing begins, the volume can be increased.

Setup requirements: Inquire about whether the site can accommodate dancing. Find out whether your disc jockey needs early access to the room and what the space and electrical requirements are. Make sure your facility contact knows about these needs and that they can be met.

Cutoff hours: When you make all the final arrangements with your facility, be sure to ask if they have any specified time limitations for music. Some facilities require that music be stopped as early as 10 p.m. for the comfort of neighboring homes, businesses, or other guests.

Special effects and requests: Most disc jockeys are glad to play special songs if they are requested. Also inquire about any special effects they can supply, such as lighting, strobes, mirror balls, and fog.