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Just Said Yes April 2017

DJ Horror Stories!

Erik, on January 11, 2016 at 2:17 PM Posted in Community Conversations

Im currently looking to book a DJ for my wedding next year, and have been to a few weddings where the DJ was a joke. I want to try and get as much info on what NOT to look for with my wedding entertainment. Please share any thoughts, and stories regarding DJ's, good, Bad, and Ugly. Thanks!

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20 Comments

  • R
    VIP September 2015
    Rosie9615 ·

    I wouldn't qualify this as a "horror story," but we went to a wedding over the summer with a breakdancing DJ. He forced a dance circle (ok if they happen organically IMO, but not forced). After a few people awkwardly danced, he gets in the middle and starts breakdancing. Don't get me wrong, he was great, but no one wanted to follow that. It totally killed the vibe on the dance floor.

  • P
    Super October 2015
    puppybagel ·

    Ask to hear one of their mixes, ask for references, and ask how much he/she tends to interact with the crowd. Personally, I prefer more "in the background" DJs, so didn't want to hire anyone who thinks their job is to get on the mic and pump on the crowd. Good music will do that on its own.

  • Original VC
    Master July 2015
    Original VC ·

    I went to a wedding where the mic failed mid-ceremony, and the DJ didn't care at all. Nobody heard the rest of the ceremony. Then it failed again during speeches, and when the speaking MOH asked for help, he said (through HIS mic) "I'm not the problem, I'm not the one holding the mic". Awful. At another wedding, the DJ was nice but she had a very limited music library - it came from when her husband was a radio DJ until, like, 5 years before.

    So, if they're the ones providing service and mics during the ceremony and reception, I'd ask if they're prepared with extra stuff in case the mic or sound fails. And in either case, ask what kind of music library they have. Come prepared with a few genres you know your guests will like to have, and a few suggestions of songs for each genre, and ask if they'd be able to have music like that.

  • SoonToBeStoddie
    Super June 2016
    SoonToBeStoddie ·

    DJ has probably been the toughest decision for me so far. We were at a wedding last Summer and during the last song of the night, the DJ came around and was trying to get everyone to sing karaoke! Totally killed the mood for the last song!

    Then, as we were meeting with DJs, I swear the first 2 or 3 we met with had no personality! I feel like if you are going to be the MC and DJ for a wedding, you need some pep in your step! I would definitely keep looking until you find someone that you click with, and that understands what you guys want. Good luck!!

  • Ashley589
    Super August 2016
    Ashley589 ·

    I've been to a wedding where to DJ announced "and now for the first time, Mr. and Mrs. (insert bride's maiden name)!!!"

  • Private_User804
    Master November 2016
    Private_User804 ·

    I've seen some truly awful DJs too. Not every wedding needs to be like a nightclub dance floor! Sometimes you just want to sit and catch up with your family - but some DJs seem to take that personally. Can't count how many I've seen who think it's their job to "pump up the room" by saying cheesy stuff all the time or trying to order people around. Or who are so out of it they stumble over simple words or forget names.

  • JustPlainCat
    VIP September 2016
    JustPlainCat ·

    I was at a wedding a few years ago and the music was so freaking loud nobody could even have a conversation. When we left my ears were ringing like I had been at a concert. A lot of the older people left pretty early just because of that. I would recommend trying to see them in person if possible I know that can get difficult if they do mainly weddings and private events. When we chose our DJ, we narrowed it down to 3. One I spoke with on the phone and I was totally put off my his narcissistic attitude (although he just made the WW Best of list so go figure.) I kind of wanted to slap him. The second wouldn't call me just kept emailing me locations of weddings that he was doing. The third (who was actually our first choice) sent us a link to his Youtube channel and gave me the name of a pub that he plays at once a month. We went to see him, he did a good job and was really really personable, so case closed.

  • Celia Milton
    April 2019
    Celia Milton ·

    I don't even have enough space on here to tell you my DJ horror stories; pretty much what everyone else mentioned and more.

    The answer to this is, unfortunately, to not cheap out on your DJ.

  • IshAnish
    Devoted November 2016
    IshAnish ·

    Oh yeah. I've been to too many weddings where the music was just awful. They would mix random songs together in different genres and we all stood and looked at each other wondering what the DJ is playing than actually dancing. There's one DJ my friend recommended and I need to hear his work before hiring him.

  • K
    Just Said Yes September 2016
    Kayla ·

    DJ was the hardest thing for us as well. The dj can make or break a whole wedding. We found a great place that showed us video of their work, videos of each dj and we got to pick which one we connected with best. The key is communication and research. Planning a wedding is stressful for sure. Just make sure you trust your gut. Dont over think it too much. Much luck. Happy wedding planning

  • RJmargo
    Master May 2016
    RJmargo ·

    I've been to weddings where the music was bad also.

    One general recommendation though. Check with your venue about DJs they recommend and if there is a reason. Our venue is an acoustic nightmare. Our venue recommends a DJ that knows how to deal with that and does half their weddings every year. That's who we went with. He has access to a large music library, has backups with him at all times and seemed to be on the same page with us about what a DJ should do.

  • Shea Harris
    April 2019
    Shea Harris ·

    I have a great recommendation if your interested, its a company that has worked with many of my clients and all the feedback has been wonderful. Yes, a bad DJ can make for a not so good time

  • Kmess
    Master October 2015
    Kmess ·

    DH and I did not vet our DJ very well and do, for the most part, regret it. He wasn't a total disaster but definitely wasn't ideal. Out of all the songs we checked off his list to have him play, only one of them was a country song, like 1 out of 80. During dinner he played 3 country songs in a row until my sister/MOH went up and said something to him. He told her that he thought we had requested a bunch of country (I had in fact requested he play Sinatra and some classics during dinner). He started the dancing off with the electric slide, which for me it's a no-no to start dancing with a choreographed dance. He also played like 3 slow songs in a row and tended to play slightly older music.

  • Kenneth Bouchard
    April 2019
    Kenneth Bouchard ·

    Wow- lots of horror stories! I've been deejaying for 28 years, and just when you think you've heard them all, more stories come along, lol. The trouble is the same as it was when I started out- anyone can get equipment and music and call themselves a DJ, but are they experienced with weddings and are they good? My advice is to take your time and don't skimp because of price. I'm not saying that there aren't higher-priced DJs out there who don't live up to the hype, but for the most part it is supply and demand. All of my Saturdays will be booked starting in March thru November (then there are the Xmas parties). I can raise my rates a bit because people want a great DJ and not the horror stories above. Unless you want to add to the stories above, forget about CL or Thumbtack. Those are usually the bottom-feeders. You may find a gem in the rough, but it's a longshot. Check reviews, ask your other trusted wedding professionals. But even more important is meet/Skype/FaceTime with your DJ and see if his/her personality matches with your idea of your day. He/she should be enthusiastic, full of great ideas, but willing to listen to yours and make your vision a reality. No other client-vendor relationship is as important except maybe with your photo/video professional(s). Good luck everyone and have a fantastic wedding day and evening!

  • Jessica Rajs
    April 2019
    Jessica Rajs ·

    I think the worst experience I've had with a DJ was with a budget client who hired a friend to DJ. He was a club DJ, supposedly, but had ZERO experience on a mic. And wasn't prepared for the traditional elements like bouquet/garter. Even though I printed out everyone's names for him, when he did the introductions, he messed up the names of 2 of the couple's kids AND said one of the bridal party couples twice. Then later during the garter toss/placement, he couldn't find the song they wanted, so instead of just leaving the song on that was playing already, he STOPPED THE MUSIC to look for the song they requested. The guy who caught the garter didn't want to wait anymore, so he just put the garter on the girl and walked away. It was a mess and it was completely out of my control.

  • Nicole
    Master July 2015
    Nicole ·

    There's a DJ who has done 2 family weddings I've been to and he's an awful MC. At both weddings he made every table sing a song on a microphone before they could get in line for the buffet. At the second, there were about 270 people in attendance so it took FOREVER and people were just getting up and getting in line.

    At the second wedding, when he was announcing the bridal party, he said something like, "And next up we have Sally. Sally has known the bride for 12 years and let me tell you, she gets around!" All 270 jaws dropped.

    Make sure you read good things about your DJ's MC skills.

  • NowASeptMrs
    Master September 2015
    NowASeptMrs ·

    Make sure your DJ can mesh to your style. We saw our DJ at a wedding we attended. He was a lot of fun but REALLY "a partier". I love how he got the crowd into it but the garter toss was super raunchy and not how our crowd would beat all. When we met with him, I addressed it immediately and he said that's how that couple wanted him to do it, but if we wanted it differently he would certainly follow our wishes! I was very pleased with him. We did a garter toss but it wasn't raunchy. He also played a game with us and got the guests to interact.

    My number 1 desire was to find a good MC. ALMOST anyone can press play on a computer. I wanted someone to lead dinner and the reception so DH and I didn't have to. He did our grand march, got guests up and dancing and clapping. He announced speeches and kept people on the dance floor. He even played the wedding waltz for our great aunt/uncle celebrating their 55th wedding anniversary that day. He was the life of the party. Without him, it probably would have fizzled and everyone gone by 8.

  • Robert Benda
    April 2019
    Robert Benda ·

    Stories I've heard 2nd hand:

    first song the DJ played after the 1st dance was Metallica. It was not a request by the B&G

    The DJ had been at a softball tournament all day and was drunk and sunburnt. During the dollar dance, he gave the mic to the best man and told him to wake him when it was over, then took a nap under his DJ table.

    More commonly, the DJ doesn't setup a sound system to fill the entire room, so guests can't hear the speeches and announcements.

  • Yasmina
    Master November 2015
    Yasmina ·

    My sister's wedding DJ didn't have the song for their first dance...and DIDN'T TELL THEM UNTIL THE RECEPTION STARTED.

    Not even a matter of "Oh no I thought I had that cd/file on my computer..." he never got it, because he said it was hard to find.

    My aunt and uncle went and bought the cd at the mall. No issue.

    He had NO personality, and played crappy music all night.

  • BrideTawny
    Devoted September 2016
    BrideTawny ·

    I'm lucky enough my FH is very well versed in music and DJ's. I let him handle this one but he was very particular in finding someone who wasn't in it for themselves (self promoting), isn't cheesy (we want someone more mature), who also enjoyed the type of music we wanted (and don't want) and last someone who will work openly with our wedding coordinator. We actually had a conference call with him (and his boss/ owner of the company) to make sure he was a good fit for us. I am very happy so far… I hope I don't need to post a horror story when the time comes I think they key in picking a DJ is just be very open and detailed on what's important to you.

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