Your Wedding Day & AllTunes DJ Service
Shopping for Your Wedding Entertainment Solution
Congratulations on your engagement! What was the first thing you did after he asked you to marry him? Did you start by sharing your good news with your parents? My wife and I announced our engagement to her parents by asking if we could borrow a piece of jewelry that had been in his family for years and was only used for weddings. You should have seen her mom’s eyes light up. I’ll bet your family and friends were just as excited and happy for you.After telling everyone and showing off your ring did reality hit you? I’ve got to plan a wedding! How do I begin? What questions should I ask vendors? Where am I going to get the money? Wait, how much money am I talking about? Was it kind of scary to think about at first? I hope that part didn’t last long for you because planning your wedding can really be fun. There is so much to shop for and ideas to share with your friends. Can I ask you a question? Did you start calling dress shops and say, “I need a wedding dress and I was wondering what your prices are?” Or call florists asking what their prices are for flowers without even telling them the type of flowers you are interested in? Of course you didn’t! Your wedding is special and unique to you. You need to see the dress, look at pictures of bouquets, and even sample cake before making such important decisions. You wanted to meet photographers; after all, they are going to be spending four or more hours with you on your wedding day. You want someone you like. What about music for your wedding day? You probably didn’t give it much thought at first. It’s all the same anyway. Isn’t it?
Not really, music and the people who provide it for you are not all the same. That is why you have such a variety of choices, a wind ensemble, stringed quartet, bagpiper, harpist, live band, or a disc jockey. Whatever you want, it’s out there. You just have to find the right people who can musically express who you are.
How do you find those people? I’ll bet you already have some ideas. Have you seen someone you really liked entertain at another event? Are you asking friends if they know anyone, browsing through bridal magazines, talking with other vendors, and attending bridal shows? Wow! So many to choose from. What questions should you ask to help you decide? I’ll let you in on a little secret. The first question is not, “What do you charge?” Why waste your valuable time if they are not available on your wedding day? What type of music do they play? You wouldn’t hire a classical ensemble if you really wanted a good old-fashioned country hoedown. Just as you carefully and thoughtfully selected your wedding dress you should also be selective in hiring your music providers.
- So what questions should you be asking?
- Are you available on my wedding day?
- Are you the person(s) who will be playing at my wedding or are you the sales person/booking agent?
- Can I meet the person(s) who will be providing my music before I make a decision?
- Do you have a contract or entertainment agreement that guarantees my date in writing?
- Do you require a deposit or retainer?
- What styles of music do you perform?
- How long have you been in business?
- How will you be dressed?
- How much input can I give you on music selection?
- Will you take requests from my guests?
Your budget is definitely a factor and for that reason many brides and grooms are choosing to have a disc jockey (DJ) provide their wedding music since DJs are usually less expensive than a live band. While you don’t want to spend a fortune getting married you shouldn’t short change yourself either by picking your entertainment based on price alone. When choosing a DJ you will receive a bewildering array of information.
Some DJ companies are only part-time while ALLTUNES is my Full-Time business. The most important criterion for you is how well they respond to your needs. If you call and leave a message, how long does it take for them to get back to you? Are they personable and friendly or do you feel like you are getting the hard sell? Do they provide you with useful information? Are you comfortable speaking with them?
Unless you are an audiophile you are probably not familiar with the names of professional disc jockey equipment manufacturers. Some names you might hear are B-52, Peavey, American DJ, American Audio, Crown, Mackie, Numark, Denon, Chauvet and JBL. Professional gear is better simply because it is built to withstand the rigors of constant setups, strikes (tear-down) and transportation. More important is that your DJ treats his equipment with respect and has a routine maintenance program so it doesn’t break down in the first place. You will also want to know what the DJ’s equipment looks like when it is setup for your wedding. The great DJ you heard at a rave last week or mixing in the club on Tuesday night is probably not the same person you want to play for your wedding. Keep in mind that while you may love techno music and urban tunes, your grandmother may prefer to hear a Beatles song. You need a DJ who is familiar with, and has a variety of all styles of music in his library.
You will find that DJ companies are either a single owner-operator system or a multi operator system. When requesting references or asking about the DJ’s years of experience be certain that you are getting information about the specific DJ who will be doing your wedding and not about the DJ company in general.
If your wedding reception starts at 5:00 PM but you do not want dance music to start until 7:00 PM, do not expect the DJ to say, “No problem, I’ll set up my equipment at 4:00, leave for three hours and then come back to play.” You do not want the liability if some of his or her CDs “take a walk” between 4 and 7 and most DJ’s insurance companies will not allow them to leave their equipment unattended anyway. Nor do you want your DJ to start setting up at 6:00 PM. No matter how quiet they try to be they will be disruptive to your guests when they are rolling in equipment, setting up, and trying to do sound checks. Pay the extra money to have them set up early and play music for your cocktail and dinner hours. In the long run it will make your reception much more elegant and memorable.
Are you like me, at a loss when trying to figure out whom you should tip? Originally the letters stood for the words “to insure promptness” and generally referred to wait-staff in restaurants. With the passage of time it seems we are now expected to tip anybody and everybody. Most facilities and caterers automatically include a gratuity or tip in the bill. Remember that a gratuity is for excellence in service. If you don’t get excellent service make sure the appropriate party knows about it and fixes the problem. As tipping relates to DJ’s I can only say, if you feel the service was outstanding and you are extremely pleased with them, then by all means give your DJ a tip. I’m certain they would also appreciate a thank you letter or letter of reference.
I guess it’s time for the big question. How much do you charge? Remember you are buying a service not a widget so your DJ will probably not be able to give you a flat figure, unless they are like a lot of the bigger companies where they offer one package only. Do you want music only or music and lights? Will you need ceremony as well as reception music? Does the ceremony officiate need a microphone? How many hours of music? Will you need a generator for that mountain wedding in a location with no electricity? Do you want the DJ to also provide karaoke?
Choosing an excellent music provider for your wedding will not be inexpensive. Is there actually any part of paying for a wedding that is not costly. AllTunes DJ Service is your Best Entertainment Solution.
I guarantee it.
Peter “ALL REQUESTS ” Graves (Owner)