Maybe it’s just me, but thanks to some free spare time at night and a selective OCD, I’ve noticed little things that DJs do that get at me. Some of these things I used to do myself until I started watching my own videos and cringed at my own work, so some of this comes from experience; others comes from seeing DJs saying “I never thought about that.”
That being said, here’s the top 10 hints/tips that I’d like to offer. Some are common sense, but it never hurts to revisit!
10) Banners at weddings or corporate events
It’s 2012 and this topic has been beat to death. However, I stand by the rule that if you’re good enough, people will remember you. NO ONE will look at a banner and say “Oh, will you look that that? That’s a DJ, I didn’t know. Get his card before we forget what he does as he’s playing music. Want to plug your name in? Do it on video screens as a logo in the corner during music videos or live video, or maybe at the end of the event on a full screen as people leave.
Remember when you got married and the pastor said “Dearly beloved, we are gathered here today in honor and celebration of the marriage of Mr. and Mrs. Smith. I am here with the So and So Church of God. Please let me know if you need an officiant for your wedding….” at your wedding? No. It’s tacky.. and it’s just as tacky when you do it.
MAYBE during introductions, but why? See the previous post. Introduce yourself as a host, not as a company. Besides, this makes you more personable.
8) Inappropriate lights
I swear if I see more green or red lasers aimed at couples during a first dance, I will kill someone. Aside form the fact that it annoys the hell out of a photographer or videographer, it looks tacky.
The same goes for green floods on people during important dances.
One should learn a bit about color psychology and how various colors affect skin tones in order to create an amazing light show. Select your lights carefully and make each light count!
7) Lit up facade but a plain room
Lit up facades can look very sharp, but when you’re in a room with NO uplighting and NO lights on the head table, then that’s a subtle “I’m better than everyone in here.”
Why would you “pimp out” your area while the bride and groom sit in darkness? What better way to pull the spotlight from them and focus it on you at all times than have you brighter than a Christmas tree?
I am personally adding a custom lit up facade, but only on weddings with under table lighting or uplighting, and I’m putting lighting on the head table as well.
6) Let me get your attention for this one…
I keep hearing “Can I have your attention, please?” Well, duh. Who says that on the mic and the crowd reacts with a loud “no?” If you have zero idea on how to get the audience’s attention without asking for such, then I heavily recommend Randy Bartlett’s 1% Solution DVD series. You will learn all this and so much more.
This also applies for anything similar, including tapping on the microphone. Nothing screams amateur more than that.
Ugh, I even saw a DJ do that and say “Is this thing on?” I don’t know, you tell me… haha.
5) Hoooolllllddinnnggg youuurrrr wooordddsss.
Basic MC101, or so I thought. I’ve seen videos of “seasoned professionals” whooooo taaaaallkkkkk liikkkee thiiisss when trying to accent announcements. If it’s for a thematic approach (I once did this during a circus themed prom), I could see such; for a wedding? Ugh.
This also includes talking in staccato. This is where. You. Announce. One. Word. At. A. Time. With. A. Brief. Pause. In. Between. And. Accent. ON. FIRST. SYLlable.
4) Bunch of blinking dots.
I own some LED lights that throw “dots” (actually beams) on the floor. Gobos aren’t always noticed by the crowd, especially with haze, but they’re nice to have, too. However, a show of NOTHING BUT LED lights that throw tiny dots all over the floor looks horrible.
Remember that variety is the spice of life. Invest some of that money on floods to fill the dance floor with a nice even color. This is even more important for school dances– unless you like the venue lights on.
3) Students, not kids.
Want to make yourself look like an old fuddy duddy and not a super-cool-awesome-high-five DJ that will rock a prom/homecoming/etc? Call them kids and not students. This isn’t just during the performance, this is in ALL aspects of the process: marketing, sales, planning, event, AND followup.
Seriously, please don’t do it. It’ll make you sound like Mr. Rogers.
2) It’s not just a bridal party…
…It’s a wedding party. Unless you’re talking about the bride’s party specifically (or the groom’s party), then remember to say WEDDING and not bridal. I’ve heard way too many introductions that have “help me welcome our bridal party.”
Props to Peter Merry for driving this point home. It made me have a V8 Moment.
1) Cable management
The best setups can look like *** with poor cable management. I suck at cable management for the most part, which is why my wife handles it. Take the extra 10, 15, or 30 minutes to really sharpen your setup. Remember the banner deal? This IS your banner. Your setup is the visual representation of your company and having wires everywhere screams “I’m sloppy and I suck!” You could be the world’s best DJ but ultimately you’ll be an eyesore in their photos!
And that’s my small OCD list. Take a look at your own videos (and search on YouTube) and see if you see the same, or other nitpicks of your own!
Filed Under: Performing, School Dances, Weddings
Leave a comment