Choosing a DJ for your wedding reception is one of the most important decisions that you can make. It is important to insure the success of this most memorable event. Everything else can be perfect, but if the music is not great, the party will fizzle. Selecting the right Disc Jockey (DJ) can be confusing. There are thousands of DJs in Canada, all promising that they will do a great job for you. Amidst all of the confusion of planning the perfect wedding, how do you pick the right DJ? Read on for some guidance that will hopefully make your decision easier.

One of the best ways to find a DJ that you will like is to hire one that you have already seen. If you have recently been to a wedding or party where the entertainment was wonderful, find out who they are and book them!

If you have not seen a good DJ recently, ask your friends and work associates. Perhaps they can give you a good reference. If these suggestions do not provide answers for you, your real search begins. You might need to turn to your local phone book. For quick access, check under the categories of Disc Jockey, Music and Entertainment. Look for those that mention that they specialize in weddings.

Upon finding several ads that you like, how do you tell which one is best? Be sure not to choose on price alone. Although one potential DJ may charge less, that may be because the company is less experienced, or less well-equipped to handle your function. Shop around and look for overall packages. Of utmost importance is creating a rapport with the DJ over the phone. Pay attention to their professionalism; their personality tends to spill over into their DJ style. If you find a DJ that you like, but who has less experience, don't be too afraid. Just be sure to check out several of the company's references to make sure that they are indeed reputable.

Another thing to consider is a DJs policy on requests. The best DJ will take requests from the audience and work them into their routine; however, do not expect the DJ to play every request. Many requests are simply inappropriate for the mood of the event. An excellent DJ is not a jukebox, but blends requests in with songs that he feels will properly motivate the crowd. The art of DJ'ing is timing and this takes some experience. Forcing a DJ to ignore his or her instincts by making them play every request will result in an "uneven" (and less fun) party. A professional DJ knows how to 'read' and play to your group/guests. They know what is best to make or break a party. There is no need to give the DJ a complete list of songs that you want played for the night (or only from your list). We do recommend that you provide a short list to the DJ (maybe 20 songs) to give a flavour of the style of music you and your family/guest typically listen to.

Some companies have more than one DJ working for them. In this case, it is important to get references for the specific DJ who will be assigned to your event. Even if the company has been around for years, they might have hired your DJ last week. Be sure of who you are getting. Ask if the DJ belongs to any professional organizations such as CAMEO (the Canadian Association of Mobile Entertainers and Operators), the Canadian On-Line DJ Association (CODJA), CDJA (the Canadian Disc Jockey Association), or your local chamber of commerce. This does not guarantee that a DJ will be good, but it does give you an idea about whether or not he or she is a serious business professional. Many of these associations provide training and up-to-date information in the DJ trade. Networking in one or more of these associations is extremely valuable.

10 Questions You May Want to Ask When Searching for Your Disc Jockey:

Do you use professional gear?
Do you provide a back-up system in case of an emergency?
Are you insured? All DJs should have liability insurance.
Do you belong to any professional associations or trade groups?
Are we guaranteed the DJ of our choice on the day of the event? Is there an extra fee for a specific DJ?
How many years of experience do you/DJ have?
May we call three of your references?
How will you be dressed?
How early will you be there to set up?
Will you allow requests?

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