(c)2014. All rights Reserved. There is no guarantee inferred, implied, or otherwise given that the DJ you choose will perform to your satisfaction. This article is meant to educate you, the consumer, in making an informed choice. The author or publisher shall be neither liable nor responsible to any individual or entity as it relates to any loss or damage (actual or alleged) caused directly or indirectly by the information in this article. Classic DJs and its publisher reserves the right to use full force of copyright law to protect all intellectual property contained herein.
(c) Copyright 2003-2014 by Chuck Johnson/DJ Publishing
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This excerpt is part of my larger wedding information multi-media package available from the BridalFoundation.Org.
Before you read this excerpt, you probably had many ideas about what hiring a DJ would be like. Hopefully, after you have read through this information, you will be a more educated and savvy consumer when it comes to Disc Jockeys.
DJs have come a long way in the past 20 years, with a lot to choose from. Today there are very capable and exceptional women in the DJ business, also. However, for easier reading, I will refer to "the DJ" as he. Please know that all of my tips and secrets apply to whomever you may hire!
You may have these pre-conceived notions about DJs:
- Pretty much all DJs are the same, all they do is press buttons and play music.
- DJs are cheaper than bands.
- After I get my church, my reception hall, my caterer, my cake, my photographer, my videographer, then I'll get my DJ.
- Why should I pay a lot for a DJ if he can download all the music from the internet for free?
- All DJs have goofy routines and blow-up balloon guitars, crazy hats, and nutty props.
- I can give a list of songs to my DJ and he can play them in order, according to my preference.
- If my family and friends don't dance, the DJ stinks.
- I should go watch a live performance or a video of a DJ in action to see if I like him.
- Why would a DJ need insurance?
- I know someone in a nightclub who DJs every night. He will be perfect for my wedding!
Hopefully, after you read this book, you will be the "super-educated" bride (or groom!) with an expertise in Disc Jockeys. Get ready to be "wowed" with all the secrets you'll need right here!
I want to be clear about my "resume"- I am not an employee of any particular Theme Park. The Wedding Department at the Theme Parks auditions DJs specifically to perform Fairy Tale Weddings for them. I am lucky enough to be one of the few, select DJs they use on a regular basis. I also perform at many receptions throughout the Orlando area.
Why This Book?
I have been on a mission for years to get the truth out there. I even have an entire page on my website called The Truth. I was dismayed for many years at the reputation of DJs. We were somewhere just above the "used car salesmen" category. Why? Our business is unregulated. It is strictly buyer beware. Think about it. When was the last time YOU hired a DJ? Probably never. You've only heard about it. Maybe great stories, or worse, horror stories. The situation of rarely having to hire a DJ brings out some (at best) hobbyists or (at worst) incompetent folks who are trying to make a quick buck.
- SECRET- these people are counting on the fact that you are uneducated (about DJs) or have pre-conceived notions about DJs. They are counting on the fact you probably will only hire a DJ once or twice in your lifetime. They are counting on the fact they don't need your repeat business- because in their mind, there is none.
What I Want To Do For You
It's simple. I want to be as up-front, brutally honest, and open as I can possibly be about all aspects of Disc Jockeys... even stuff they won't tell you in a sales pitch or a website. By reading this book, you will not only get a great "DJ education," you will learn many great ideas, tips, tricks, and secrets to having the most incredible wedding reception ever. Period.
CLICK HERE TO ACCESS THE REST OF THE PROGRAM!
TYPES OF DJs
What's the Difference?
When you begin your search for DJs, you will find just about anything you can imagine out there. There are two things for you to remember- Multi-Op and Single Operator. Almost all DJs will fit into one of those categories.
A former DJ who wanted to expand his business usually owns these companies. He may employ OR sub-contract three to fifteen DJs on an "as-needed" basis. Many Multi-Ops will have large Yellow Pages ads or a huge internet presence.
The Single Operator is just that, a DJ who works on his own. He may have working relationships with other companies to send referrals to if he is booked for a particular day. Single Operators usually start their career working for a Multi-Op to gain valuable experience.
I will give you the pros and cons of each, and let you decide. I want to be as objective as possible, so I will try and stick to the facts as a have witnessed throughout my career. On every account, the information I am giving you is generally accepted as fact throughout the DJ community, although some may deny it. Of course, there are always exceptions to the general rule.
- The PROS of Multi-Ops
Multi-Ops usually have offices that you can visit, and a variety of different DJ personalities to choose from. They will have a business license and liability insurance, and most likely name recognition. Their prices may be cheaper in certain areas of the country.
- The CONS of Multi-Ops
Multi-Ops rely on volume, so you may be pressured to book immediately. You may not know who your DJ will be until just before the wedding.
SECRET- Most all DJs perform a part-time schedule. Until there are weddings on weekday afternoons, it is unlikely any wedding DJ works 40 hours a week performing weddings. It's true, there are full-time DJs where their DJ business is the only way they make a living. Being "onstage" is only a small percentage of what they do- many hours are spent "offstage" preparing for the event.
- The PROS of Single Operators
Single Operators can focus all of their attention on you. You will be the only event they have planned for that day. You will most likely speak to the DJ who will perform at your wedding the first time you call.
The Single Operator usually rose from the ranks of a Multi-Op and wanted to break out on his own... because of that fact you can guess he had the business sense and personality to do so. Great Single-Op DJs will also have many of the qualities of a Multi-Op, such as a business phone and license, liability insurance, and a great website.
- The CONS of Single Operators
Unfortunately, many DJs who struggle in this category do so because they have poor business sense. You may call a DJ who does not have a business phone, or even an answering machine. He may be a teenager starting out with illegal music downloaded from the internet. You can see right away such problems on first contact with these folks.
The one thing I did not really mention here are nightclub DJs. There are many club DJs who perform weddings on the side. If you decide to use one, make sure they adhere to the guidelines above.
You should be wary of hiring a club DJ who has never hosted a wedding. Their beat-mixing skills will be excellent, but a club is an entirely different story than a reception. A club DJ may have no idea how to MC your particular event, and may only be familiar with certain types of music (he may specialize in Hip-Hop if he works regularly at a Hip-Hop club, for example.)
There are many accomplished club DJs who can do weddings very well. Simply make sure they understand the nuances of how your reception will flow, and verify that they have been an MC (Master of Ceremonies) at weddings in the past.
Here's the Legal Stuff
Ah yes, here is the boring stuff. Well, not really, but it is important you consider these issues when hiring a DJ.
- SECRET- In the USA, there is no such thing as a "DJ License". No matter what any person claims, in the United States there are no legal regulations, lawful or otherwise, that apply to mobile DJs. Many DJs will be affiliated with certain professional agencies (ADJA and NAME are two) but licenses are only granted as general business by local governments.
Huh? For instance, I have a business license to practice business, issued by Orange County, Florida (where I reside) but it is not a "DJ License."
So Why Have A Business License?
Good question. If it doesn't guarantee anything, what good is it? Well, for one thing, it shows the DJ is serious about his business. In addition, the DJ is "legal." in the sense he can enter into a business contract with you. Literally anyone can go into a local music store, plop down a couple hundred bucks for the latest "DJ in a Box" setup, and call himself a DJ. That is something you do not need.
You definitely want one. It does not have to be fifty pages long, but it should contain:
- Your reception date, time, and rate.
- Any deposits/retainer fees paid.
- What the DJ needs for the performance (i.e.- a table, electrical outlets, access to facility, etc.)
- What the cancellation policy is.
- Your signature and his signature, agreeing to everything stated on the contract.
All DJs should have a method of finding out what you want done at your reception. For example, what your first dance will be, introductions, etc. You can speak on the phone or meet to discuss details, but is best to have everything in writing. You can also use my comprehensive Information Sheet- available at the Bridal Foundation.Org
It is typical for standard insurance coverage today to be at least one million dollars. I know, you are thinking, why does my DJ need to be covered? It really is for your protection.
Let's say a friend attending your reception trips on a wire from the DJ equipment. What if she cracks her jaw and possibly her head? Unlikely, yes, but possible. I guarantee, if her injuries are serious enough, she will sue the reception hall, the DJ, and you. Remember, you are hosting the reception. Personal injuries can run into the hundreds of thousands of dollars.
The odds are with you, but why not be safe? Most all major Hotels, including those at Walt Disney World®, and Universal Resort® require DJs who perform there to be insured. If they require it, you should, too.
How Will I Know About the Legal Stuff with my DJ?
Simply ask. You can ask to see a copy of the business license to make sure he is able to conduct business transactions. You may also request to see a copy if the liability insurance policy for complete information on coverage limits.
Yes, there is more! Click here to continue with the article.