Here Are a Few SuggestionsHere Are a Few Suggestions Here Are a Few Suggestions
1. Does the DJ use professional sound equipment suitable for the job you need done? There is a big difference between the audio equipment you have at home and the equipment that a professional DJ uses. Professional audio equipment is built to go on the road day in and day out. Be sure to ask about the sound equipment, even if you aren't "stereo smart" you'll be able to tell the difference.
2. Can the DJ provide a written contract and/ or references from previous clients? I want to stress how important it is to get your booking confirmed in writing. All terms of the agreement should be in writing to avoid any complications at a later date. This insures you that the DJ will show up. If you don't have a contract, it's a pretty good chance they might find a higher paying job and give you the slip. References are also an important part of any service business and your DJ should be able to provide you with current names and phone numbers.
3. Will the DJ be suitably dressed for the occasion? I have heard many times over the years about wedding receptions where the DJ was dressed in blue jeans and a t-shirt. It is important that your entertainer looks the part by dressing in formal or semi-formal attire, your preference. Don't assume the DJ will be properly dressed. Be sure to ask what he or she will be wearing. Mr. Music ALWAYS wears his Tuxedo unless instructed otherwise.
4. Is the DJ willing to discuss music selections ahead of time, and is he willing to play requests? A professional DJ can't possibly know everything there is to know about all music styles and entertainment. He or she should be willing to listen to your ideas and input and incorporate them into the event. He or she will listen to your requests and play them where they are appropriate. Keep in mind if you have a lot of requests the DJ may not be able to play all of them. Believe it or not there are some DJ services that will not play any requests. My music selection is one of the largest of any DJ company, with over 50,000 selections all on compact disc & Laptop Computer from the 30's to current hits. It's also important to have a variety of music especially at a wedding; Styles like disco, polkas, country, jazz, big band, pop, etc.
5. Does the DJ know the proper etiquette and procedure for your type of occasion? A professional DJ should become involved in the planning of your function and will be prepared to handle any announcements or special events on that day. A guideline of the formalities should be discussed ahead of time. I always sit down with the Bride & Groom prior to the reception and go every every detail with them to ensure everything goes the way they want it to!
6. Will the DJ arrive on time? How many times have you heard about the entertainment being late, or not even showing up? This is probably because they are unreliable, or it happened because the DJ booked an event before yours and ran overtime. Make sure your entertainment is set up prior to any guests arriving and ready to start when you want them too. Also make sure to ask if the DJ has ever cancelled shows in the past. If they have they may be double booking shows and taking the one that pays the most. You should also be cautious of DJ's that charge for mileage if they travel less than 50 miles. I do not charge mileage, however, if I travel well outside (approximately 45 Minutes) the Cleveland area I increase my fee slightly.
7. Can the DJ supply back-up equipment or a replacement Disc Jockey in case of an emergency? This is really scary if half way through the party something happens to the sound equipment, what will you do? If the DJ has a back-up plan the party is only interrupted for a few minutes while he changes a component or replaces the system. Even professional equipment can fail on occasion, so it is very important to know whether your DJ has a spare system available to them. Any number of circumstances may arise between the time you booked your DJ to the time of the event. Make sure the DJ has a back -up plan in case of illness or accident. I have designed my system with many fail-safes, if one component mal-functions, for example a CD player, I can DJ from a laptop computer.