When you hear the phrase “Wedding music” what does it mean to you? it can have entirely different meanings to many different people. But in general to many it represents cheesy one-hit wonders that have their own dance.
From the perspective of a professional wedding DJ, my aim is to generate a great atmosphere that is fun for as many of the guests as possible, which by definition means having to play many different genres, era and cultures during the night, because everyone has different music taste.
The Bride & groom have completely different tastes!
Before every wedding that I perform at, I always meet with the bride and groom a week or so before their big day, and one of the subjects discussed is the music they want on the night. I find it is rare that they have the same music tastes, and extremely common for them to have very different taste in music. Often being the groom is in to Indie, Rock or Dance, while the bride is into R&B, Pop or Cheese! and sometimes they fear that because their personal tastes differ so much that they wonder if it will be possible to keep everyone happy throughout the night?
Most of the guests dance to the atmosphere, not the music!
The thing is though that what gets them and their guests’ dancing isn’t so much the music, as the atmosphere. For example I did a wedding not so long ago where the brides very elderly grand parents were on the dancefloor around 11pm at night, jumping up and down with their hands in the air to Faithless-Insomnia! I’d bet good money that it wasn’t a track either of them would ever listen to at home! but they got caught up in the atmosphere, and as the rest of the dancefloor was jumping up and down with their hands in the air, they joined in and were loving it.
17 different music genres in one night!!
It’s not unusual that within the course of 1 night, that I might have to play music from all of the following genres/era’s: 60s, 70s, 80s, 90s, 2k, latest pop and dance chart hits, dance classics, soul, Motown, indie, rock, R&B, reggae, rock & roll, disco and cheese! and although such a wide range of music has been played, the dancefloor has remained busy throughout the night. Although that wouldn’t be the case if those different genres were played one after each other, which would cause total confusion and completely clear the floor, such as playing an indie track, followed by a soul track, followed by rock & roll and so on.
Why didn’t you play my request next?
This can be the issue that annoys some guests, as many will ask for a request and then expect it to be played next, and not realising that very often this might devastate the dance floor! Or on the other hand, a good DJ knows just when to change the genre and not play too many songs from one genre. For example at some weddings you can play 3 Motown songs back to back and keep the floor packed, but if you then played a 4th you could start to lose many of the people from the dancefloor, and a good DJ can just sense when to change to a different era/genre, but if a guest has asked for another Motown song while the 3rd song was being played, they can sometimes take it personally that their track wasn’t played next, and attempting to explain why would often be futile (especially when people have been drinking!).
The DJs music knowledge
Additionally, because the guests at most weddings have many different music tastes, it is essential that the DJ has the music knowledge and collection to handle them all. So if for example an inexperienced DJ is hired that is extremely knowledgeable in the latest dance music, but knows little of anything prior to the 90s, you might find that a lot of your wedding guests might not enjoy the night as much as you hoped they all would.
The Clubbing generation
Many couples getting married today grew up in the clubbing generation, regularly going to clubs playing the big dance tunes, where a club DJ skilfully mixes the tunes into each other throughout the night, while creating an electric and energetic atmosphere. From speaking with literally hundreds and hundreds of different couples, they then think that they have to choose between a wedding DJ that has a wide knowledge of many different music genres, (but plays the entire song back to back, with a gap between each one, or that he talks between each track), or a club DJ that will only keep their younger guests happy, while totally neglecting anyone over 30!
It doesn’t have to be this way!
As the Blow Monkeys told us! It can be quite different, and you can have it all! I was a club DJ for 15 years around the world, and amassed a great deal of knowledge of music from many different countries and cultures, plus became a skilled mixing DJ. Which added to my extensive music knowledge of a huge range of genres and era’s, is the reason why I regularly receive happy letters and evaluations from couples mentioning that so many of their guests danced all night.
The drinks are on me!
It’d be great to have a chat with you and your fiancé over a coffee, (or something stronger if you prefer!), I’m buying; to discuss your day, and give you some ideas to ensure that it is a lot of fun for everyone, but most of all, the two of you 🙂 Even if you don’t decide to book me, you’ll leave with a much better idea of what wedding entertainment can be, rather than what it often is!