wedding guests dancing to dj

Hiring a wedding DJ? Here's what to consider to make sure you have the best day:

28th March 2023

Want to book a wedding DJ but don’t know where to start? Don’t worry this article will give you everything you need to know about booking a DJ for your wedding. Whether you're planning a traditional wedding or a more modern celebration, the right DJ can make all the difference. We’ll cover all the essential information that will help you make the best decision including how to choose the right DJ, what questions to ask, and how to ensure that everything runs smoothly on the big day.

The most important things to know when booking a wedding DJ include your budget, their price, if they offer background music for drinks receptions and wedding breakfasts, how much space they will need and if they can cover a suitable selection of music for your event.

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Before we get into it, it’s also important to remember that wedding DJs are usually not club-style DJs who will perform live mashups, beat-match and use decks. Wedding DJs will usually use a music streaming service and focus on making sure your guests get the music that will keep them on the dance floor.

Should I hire a professional DJ?

Although you may have a few mates who reckon they’re a dab hand at spinning the decks or a large bluetooth speaker you’re thinking of sticking on the corner, it’s a better idea to actually hire a professional DJ who has experience in performing at weddings. Professional DJ’s will have the right equipment, music selection and be able to keep guests entertained while their experience will help ensure that everything runs smoothly.

Being able to read a crowd and choose the right music at the right time is a skill that an amateur is unlikely to possess along with the know-how to create a playlist that will appeal to everyone and get them on the dance floor. Mixing in appropriate song requests from guests (and ignoring the best man requesting “Baby Shark” for a gag) should help everyone enjoy the best time.

Professional DJs will have high-quality equipment such as speakers, microphones and lighting plus backup equipment in case of technical difficulties meaning that nothing should interrupt your fun on the night.

Need to make announcements throughout the day? A DJ will have you covered and be able to announce important points such as “The buffets open” or “Last orders” over the PA, keeping the reception running smoothly and ons schedule.

The Duplettes offer a FREE DJ service with any evening reception booking, click here for more info…

Should I choose all the wedding music myself?

Although it’s tempting to micro-manage the music for the whole wedding, any DJ worth their salt will be able to choose appropriate music throughout the day based on general style recommendations, the venue’s atmosphere and what is working on the dance floor. 

It’s a good idea to discuss any must-play and do-not-play songs with the DJ ahead of time too as this will help them to create a playlist that reflects your taste and ensures that all your guests enjoy themselves. But avoid curating the music for the whole day, you’ll just drive yourself mad. It’s also likely that your guests will want to make requests, so leave room for spontaneity!

Remember that you are hiring a DJ - you don’t need to do it yourself! Once you have given the DJ the broad strokes and a few specific songs to play or avoid then it’s a good idea to let go and focus on enjoying your wedding day. The chances are you will be so busy getting married that you yourself won't actually hear most of your painstakingly curated playlist, as long as your guests are on the dance floor then the DJ is doing a good job!

How much space does a wedding DJ need?

Most professional wedding DJs need an area of around 2m x 3m. It’s important that they have access to suitable power sockets for their equipment and it’s a good idea to have the DJ set up adjacent to the dance floor. Most wedding venues will have a regular spot that the DJ sets up in and you can always put the DJ in contact with the wedding venue in case they need to discuss anything in depth. 

How long does a wedding DJ need to set up?

DJ’s will generally need around 60-90 minutes to load in equipment, setup and clear away bags and cases. For an evening function a wedding DJ would usually arrive around 5:30/6pm to start the evening music for 7:30pm.

Do DJs play music during dinner at weddings?

If you have hired a wedding DJ for your evening reception then there’s a good chance that they will be able to provide background music during dinner as an extra service, which they will usually charge for. Although many venues will have a sound system that can be used during dinner, it’s often not a particularly great sound system and you may be limited to the venue's own playlist.

The Dj should also be able to provide microphones (preferably radio mics) for dinner speeches too.

When choosing music for dinner it's a good idea to choose fun, light styles will allow guests to converse without having to shout over the music. Popular examples of dinner music choices include Motown and Soul music, acoustic music and jazz versions of famous pop songs (such as Postmodern Jukebox).

Have a great wedding!

Hiring a reputable professional wedding DJ is a great way to make sure your wedding goes off with a bang. If you are hiring a wedding band then it’s likely that they will be able to offer a DJ service as part of a package. 

Make sure you communicate with your wedding DJ regarding musical styles, any “must-plays” and “don’t-plays”, the day's schedule including important moments like the first dance or cutting of the cake, and any other important information regarding the guests or the venue.

In the end a recommended, professional wedding DJ will be experienced meaning that you can relax and focus on having the best day!

The Duplettes are a professional function band available for weddings, parties and corporate events. We have a range of lineups to fit any event including our acoustic duo, cocktail trio and full party band.

You can also find our videos on our youtube channel here or contact us about your event using the button below.

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The Duplettes band playing music

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