Trapped In DJ Hell

I took the night off on New Years Eve and quickly found myself in DJ hell. My Facebook friends saw my status updates that night.  It was not good but by the time we figured out that it wouldn’t be good we had already spent a pretty penny and it was too late in the night to make other plans.

Here is some of what I put on facebook that night.

I’m at a new years eve party and the DJ sucks BADLY! No kidding he just went from New York New York to Sharp Dressed Man to open the dance floor. Calling a cab stat!

Ah Old Time Rock & Roll for a second time! Not! This is what I get for scheduling the night off.

A local hotel has been hosting a NYE party for years. The deal includes purchasing a room which gets you access to a party with open bar and dinner. My wife and I along with some friends decided to check it out because it was close to home and wouldn’t require us to drive anywhere. It sounded like a good deal and overall it was. Except for one thing, THE DJ.

It wasn’t just his poor choice of music, or his 20 year old speakers that sounded worse than my home stereo but it was also his constant talking between songs. It was also the random order of songs going from one genre to the next with a silent pause between some songs that would clear the dance floor. This crowd was ready to party and he made it so difficult for us all.

Although this post may sound like a DJ bashing, it is not. It is me telling you that I learned a lesson that many brides don’t learn until after it’s too late for them. You hire a DJ because it sounds like a great deal only to end up trapped in DJ Hell at your own wedding reception.

When you hire a DJ for your wedding, you are hiring someone who will have a live microphone in their hands in front of all the most important people in your life on the biggest day of your life. You are hiring someone who will be responsible for entertaining your guests for the majority of your wedding day. You are hiring someone who will oversee the flow of your reception and make sure that things stay on schedule. You are hiring the person who controls the energy in the room and helps create atmosphere. You are hiring the single most important wedding vendor of your wedding day.

Don’t be a bride who decides to save money on the DJ just because there are cheap DJs out there. They are cheap for a reason. They know exactly what they are worth and your wedding day is worth more than that. Once you arrive and realize your DJ isn’t very good, it’s too late.   DJ is not the place to save money in your budget, it just isn’t. If you want to know what to look for when you hire a DJ come meet with me. If you want to see the difference on video from one DJ to the next come meet with me.  Don’t find yourself trapped in DJ Hell at the biggest most important party of your life.

Lighting Up Receptions East

Josh and Tiffany seen below went with our uplighting package and a monogram.

I had a chance to snap a few pictures of them in front of their monogram before they left that night. I just pulled them off the camera and thought I’d share.



Return to French Park

Prior to this year I had not worked at French Park. In one of my earlier posts “Matt and Emily’s Uplighting” you can see the uplighting. Having been there I had even more ideas for Leah and Dave’s wedding pictured below.

All the guests were seated under the tent so everything was centralized. This made it much easier to focus the guests attention on the most important parts of the day.  The tent made the perfect Canvas for a monogram!

Leah and Dave’s first dance at dusk..with their monogram.(Provided by me)

What A First Dance!

What A First Dance!

The guests were treated to personalized introductions where Dave and Leah had provided me with some funny and cute stories to share about the wedding party members as they entered. We got even more creative for dinner as guests were asked trivia questions about the couple. Those tables that answered correctly were invited to the buffet line immediately. If they missed they had to select another table to go  just ahead of them.  Dave and Leah were also asked some questions about each other at the conclusion of dinner in a newlywed game fashion. It was terrific.

In a survey to us Leah said her favorite part of the day was “the mini love story” I did for them . As they met in the center of the dance floor for their final dance their guests heard the story of how they met , how their first date went and how Dave had asked Leah to be his wife on New Years Eve. It was very powerful and the perfect ending to a perfect day.

Here are a few more pictures.

Guests seated under the tent  for dinner

Guests seated under the tent for dinner

Patio Dancing - Pink Uplights

Patio Dancing - Pink Uplights

Here is what Leah had to say on our survey afterwards.

“It was awesome – it went above and beyond all expectations. You guys came up with so many awesome additions to the reception (the lights, the games, etc) that I know everyone will remember!!”

“I loved that our last dance was accompanied by the story of us (the bride and groom) getting together.”

“You guys do so much more than play the music, and you add so much to the event besides the music. My reception stood out from everyone else’s I’ve ever been to because of the DJ!”

Thanks Leah and Dave. I was so happy to be part of your day.

It Feels Good

I’m not the only MC working for my company. My partner Jason and I own 5 systems and with the help of great employees each weekend we can do multiple events. Our goal is to keep the quality high regardless of quantity. It feels good to hear how we impact people’s lives.

Jason and I did a wedding together back in 2005. For Julie and Ryan Tomlinson. Julie had seen me at her friends Ryan and Katie Wolf’s wedding, where she was a bridesmaid. Here is a picture of her dancing that night.

Julie dancing.

You go Julie.

Jason saw Julie again Saturday Night at Greg and Jill’s wedding reception.

Ryan and Julie

Ryan and Julie again Saturday

Because we believe in forming relationships with our clients and not just showing up and playing music, Jason remembered them and their reception. He also remembered their first dance song. For one of the slow songs that night he played it with no announcement. He just played it. He had a nice conversation with the couple and the reception held at RSVP at Wards Corner was soo good it went an extra hour Saturday.

Yesterday Jason received this email from Julie. He said he teared up a little bit.


Just wanted to say GREAT JOB at Jill and Greg’s wedding! I wish every wedding I went to was DJ’d by you guys. There is so much energy and it’s such as blast.

Like I told you at the reception, 3 years after my wedding, people are still telling me that my reception was the best they’d ever been to. Starlite Ballroom isn’t the most glamorous hall for a reception but you placed the attention on the fun and energy…thanks again for that.

I will continue to spread the word about Hey Mr DJ for as long as you all are in the biz. You’re awesome and thanks for the kind words after my tear-filled toast. Oh, and thanks for playing mine and Ryan’s song, that made my night.

Keep rockin’!
Julie Tomlinson

Thank you SO much Julie. That makes us all feel awesome!