Here are some popular questions to ask your DJ before you book a DJ or entertainer for your event. Booking the right entertainer will make or break your party.

What is the average cost of a DJ? How much is a DJ? It depends on DJ’s expereince, date, location, what sound and lighting is required, how many people will be there, the hours and package and the services required. As a guide purely, an average MOBILE DJ cost (where the DJ also brings all the sound and lighting) in Ireland ranges from €200-300 for a starter/hobby DJ, €250-450 for medium level DJ with perhaps 3-10 years expereience and €400-900 for a professional DJ with 10+ years experience. Without hiring all the sound and lighting equipment, the DJ’s fee is often lower as Public Liablilty insurance would not always be required.

How much is a Wedding DJ? Cost of a Wedding DJ? This often depends (as above) on expereince and the work involved. Unlike a standard party, most Wedding DJs will meet in person to help plan the event, so this often pushes the cost up as breides and grooms want to plan their big day more than an average birthday party for example.A wedding DJ usually commands a higher fee as they are more expereienced in reading a wide range of ages at a wedding compared to a club or pub night. Another factor in the cost is the type of package. Some brides and groom book a DJ only package for the full night, others for after a band and others book a DJ all day package to combine drinks reception , dinner, MC duties and sometimes even the ceremony. Therefore depending on the DJ package, you could pay anything from €300 to €1200 for a wedding DJ.

How much is a DJ per hour? usually you pay a set fee for a DJ as it’s usually a night’s work. The DJ would also bill for the sound and lighting hire and this would not be an hourly but rather a nightly rate. Most DJs charge for a 4 hour event and then might charge per hour after that rate.

Does the fee include equipment hire (sound and lighting)? Most MOBILE DJs including our company bill out including sound and lighting hire. But always check this when booking as some DJs quote for their fee without equipment hire.

Who are the best DJs you have for an event? This depends on the event type. You don’t hire a chef specialising in Indian food to cook itlaian food so why hire a club DJ or a radio DJ to prform at your wedding. Visit our DJ page and view the profiles and the reviews on the testimonials page to find a suitable DJ.

Do you do DJ only Weddings? Yes, over 80% of our bookings are for DJ only weddings, with no band. Most DJs in Ireland don’t do DJ only weddings as they are the heardest type of event to perform at and only the most expereienced full time DJ ususally perform at full night weddings.

Are you Insured?  Many venues nowadays don’t allow contractors on a prem ises without Public Liability Insurance. Check if your event venue require it. ALWAYS ASK if your DJ has this.

Do you have have back up? What back up do you have should your equipment fail or you get ill on the day? This is why we always receommend you book a DJ company not a one man business.

Do you do planning and a conultation before my event? If the DJ does not offer at least a telephone consultation and some planning tips before your event then be wary of hiring them. Most epereeoicned DJ have run and performed at many parties and can offer a wealth of guidance as to what will work well for your event.

Find out more planning tips for your event by contacting Garvan on (01) 4604500

Garvan, a Dublin DJ is a founder/director at Star DJs and an experienced music programmer. He has DJ’d over 1000 events for the likes of U2 and other acts. He has also DJ’d in many bars and club events over the last 20 years, so has vast experience in the industry. Specialising in weddings and company events, he is an event planner & music consultant to venues and radio stations throughout the Dublin region, such as Christmas FM. He was the first DJ to introduce the full day wedding DJ service to the market, incorporating anything from the ceremony to drinks reception, the entrance song, music for cake cutting, MC duties, programming dinner music (changing the feel and mood by course) and then entertaining with music from first dance to last.

 

Do you recommend giving the DJ/Band a list of songs you like/don’t like?

I wouldn’t suggest providing a playlist per se, but certainly some song suggestions that you might like or don’t want and then your DJ can advise you on those. Even the most experienced DJs or music programmers couldn’t plan a full playlist in advance without “reading” the crowd and the floor on the night “as live”. What a client might like could be completely different to the people attending and the same song might work well at one wedding and not at the next. If you limit yourself to a playlist you are literally putting handcuffs on the potential for the event to be a success. I always take on board the no play songs, but again I will always ask for and then advise as to these in advance. Sometimes you get asked not to play song A or song B, but that could be the most popular song that works for the guests, so myself and my client will talk this through when we do our consultation.

 

Do you think it’s a good idea to give guests a song request option on the night?

I don’t really think this is a good idea. Why allow one guest with no knowledge or experience of music programming or DJing chose a song for a room of 150 people that most likely would not work. It’s too risky. It could clear the dance floor and kill the night, all over one bad or wrong song played. If that happens you could also find the guest not even dancing to that song and it could take 10 minutes to get the floor back up busy again after killing it over that bad song! If you have a lot of wrong song suggestions and you play them you will kill the night and if you don’t the guest might be unhappy.

 

What are the best songs to end the night with?

That’s the million-euro question. This very much depends on the direction of the night and what is working at the time or based on some suggestions when I consult with my clients on their ideals and dreams for their event. I will probably not know what will work till the 2nd or 3rd last song and then choose a song based on the previous reactions to the songs playing to end on a high. Some of my clients do make suggestions and I often discuss with them in advance.

 

What are the most popular first dance songs?

There are hundreds of them. I find most of my clients like to go for something a little different than just the same obvious songs, but I do advise them to select something appropriate for them and that will work with the right tempo that you can then build up your set from thereafter.

What songs work well for the reception entrance?

Again, as above, there are hundreds of potential songs. When I consult with my clients I try to find out what fits their personality and if there is a song that might sum them up as “their song”? I would always go up-tempo and just use the hook so it has immediate impact when they walk into the room. An entrance song always lifts the mood and lays down a marker for the evening ahead.

RadioToday.ie interview: http://radiotoday.ie/2016/08/garvan-rigby-talks-pirate-radio-and-christmas-fm/

Garvan Rigby Co-Founder Christmas FM, programme director and breakfast presenter talks to Dave Miller of RadioToday.ie on radio and running the festive station.

You started on pirate radio in Dublin, how did that happen and do you miss the freedom of illegally operating?

No, I don’t miss illegally operating of course. They were fun times looking back naturally. I guess like almost all radio people over the age of 30, I started in pirate radio. My first gig was a spinner on a pirate radio station in 1987 at around 13 or 14. A guy in school ahead of me was involved in a station called Signal Radio and I gave him a demo. It was so bad I was offered a gig, but wasn’t allowed to speak! The guy was Kevin Branigan (now CEO of Radio Nova) and we became lifelong friends. Mike Ormond and himself ran the station and Kevin later split off and set up his own pirate. I later did a few other shows on pirates before doing some promo work as a student for Capital 104 in the early 90s before once again getting the bug to be on air and went back into pirate radio with Sunset Radio in 1991. In 1993 I got a call from Kevin and Mike to be their new PD at Kiss 103 where they wanted me to target the underserved youth market as at the time both licensed commercial stations were doing an AC format and there was a gap for a good CHR format in Dublin.

Kiss launched as the first of the big pirates of the 90s and became an instant hit with almost every teenager tuned in. Numerous jamming attempts from other sources and raids caused the station to close. At that time, I moved to 98fm and worked in advertising for two years. One sunny summer’s day I saw an OB taking place on the beach of Portmarnock by Hot 107 and suddenly I had the urge to be back on the “radio side” of radio and left 98fm and set up my own DJ business with a colleague Ian Redmond and started on-air with Pulse 103 soon after.

Pulse became the big super pirate of the late 90s. I took up the breakfast show and then the evening controversial doghouse show of the late 90s with a host of strange characters and co-presenters which became known for the bizarre, where literally anything could happen and did! It was great to see some of the characters and the show style and games used later on 2fm by others.

Following stints also with Energy 94 I set up Sun 101, an all 80s station and programmed that as a tight retro station and was one of the first stations to use all voice tracking. Since then I have gone legal all the way with stints at temporary stations The Rock, Premier and Choice and more recently at Spirit Radio and Christmas FM.

When you moved into legal radio where did you work and what made you decide that being a Programme Director was the job for you?

I initially moved into the advertising side of the corridor in 98fm but I missed the bug that is radio. Everybody knows once you get the bug it’s for life! I have always been fascinated with the programming side of radio and what comes out of the speakers rather than the internal technical workings of radio and engineering. I grew up intrigued by formats and brands of radio and how an overall sound fits a format. I learned from two very inspiring people over the years, Dick Jenkins who programmed the Klove Network of over 300 stations in the US and Clarke Sinclair (An Australian Radio legend) from a radio programming course I did in Melbourne, Australia in the 90s. Dick’s first bit of advice was that “nobody has ever turned off the radio because the DJ didn’t talk enough!” Makes sense to this day right?

When I Co-founded Christmas FM with Daragh O’Sullivan, Walter Hegarty and Paul Sheppard the main interest I had was in programming the format and bringing it to life. Daragh also had an interest, so we split the role and programmed Christmas FM. I wanted a high rotation of Christmas hits that people would recognise instantly when they turned it on but also create some songs that the station could “own”. We identified our bullseye listener and built the station around them. I felt programming was the job for me because I “get” all aspects of radio. I understood sales and business, but yet I also understood the creative arm of radio.

I like working with people and anybody who knows me will tell you I have a focus on organisation and getting things done.

As a PD how do you think presenters view you, Methodical, creative, radio genius or a dictator?

Definitely a dictator ha-ha! I remember one person telling me at a station that they feel like I listen 24 hours a day and that I am in their head when they link! But in fairness I am a soft dictator and I try to get the best out of people and I love to see new talent and help nurture it. I had so many people who gave me help along the way, so it’s nice to pay it forward.

However, I am a perfectionist and that’s why I listen constantly to a station I work with because every single ingredient has to be right. If you mess up the peaks and troughs in the music and content delivery you lose the listener.

You launched Spirit Radio and remained there as PD for 6 years. Which is the better service in your opinion Spirit Radio or UCB Ireland?

Well that’s an unfair question to ask! I am hardly going to say either. Both stations are different and serve a different audience. Spirit is a Christian HOT AC format and UCB is more AC and talk based. I was asked to join as PD by the then CEO Dave Heffernan who was involved in radio for a long time. He wanted me to do what I was doing at Christmas FM, creating a feel good family friendly radio station with an uplifting feel. I knew nothing about the CCM (Contemporary Christian Music) format at the time, but I took the challenge and started to research the world and made contact with some of the heavy hitters who had vast experience around the world in the format.

I researched the Billboard CCM charts and I listened to the music on other CCM stations and started to build a sound, but tweaked for an Irish audience as were allowed play 30-40% mainstream music under the BAI licence. The station, unlike other stations survives primarily on donations rather than listener figures for advertising that commercial stations work off. My goal was to deliver a station that had listeners that would support it. I achieved that and at the same time I saw the the station do some good for people who were going through tough times. It was nice to get those listener letters and emails each day. It was time to move on and I went back into spending time with my own business again to build that up.

Part of the licence agreement for Spirit is to run a large AM transmitter have you ever asked the BAI if you can turn it off as the electricity bill must be huge and it doesn’t cover the whole of Ireland as it was planned to do?

I don’t know the answer to that as I was never really involved in the AM side of things near the end, so I don’t know where things stand right now. I know RTE turned off their AM. I think it’s too late in Ireland to rescue AM. It’s ok in other countries where they have strong talk based heritage stations, but it’s gone here. However, Spirit does reach rural areas around the border and in the six counties so somebody still listens to AM.

Was leaving Spirit a difficult decision for you or were you ready to go?

I think I was ready to go. I was brought in to do a job, set up a format never tried before and it lasted to this day. It has a good listenership as can be seen by the donation drives the station runs each time and has some business support also with some advertising. You don’t raise €40-50,000 each time with no listeners!

I needed to go back and focus on my business Star DJs and spend more time on Christmas FM as that project has become almost all year round and I couldn’t do 3 things! Just before I left I got a letter one day from a man to the station who was going to commit suicide. Just as he was about to do so, he was flicking around the channels and found Spirit Radio, a station he never heard of before. A song came on that I just put in the system the day before. It was about holding onto hope. He did that and changed his mind. It really struck me that the power we have in radio is more than just a job. People rely on us in radio in a very personal way. That one letter made my 6 years at Spirit worthwhile.

Christmas FM is the most successful trial radio station ever in Ireland do you still love being the Programme Director?

Yes, I still love it. I never sleep for those 2-3 months in the build-up and during it, but I love it. Myself and one of the co-founders Daragh O’Sullivan worked as joint programme directors for years and it allowed us both focus on different aspects which was great as we were doing that in our spare time trying to hold down day jobs also. I have taken on a more hands on role now with the station since last year looking after the station and project managing the operation from January to December each year which allows me more time to focus through the year on the project and on programming.

Dan McDermott then comes on board also as station manager before launch to help guide the station through launch and it’s duration.

There is a fond affection for Christmas FM and it connects beautifully with its audience. Why are you not PD of 2fm with your ability to connect a station with its audience? Should RTE be begging you to go there?

Again like the question about UCB and Spirit, I feel it would be unfair to comment about another station and who RTE hires and why they hire them and what job they do. I think you could also ask the same question to me – why I haven’t gone to RTE begging them to have me? But yes I like radio programming. I get what it takes to makes a person listen and have an emotional connection. I think that only comes with a lot of experience and understanding the target listener. But to do that you must live and breathe radio at all times.

Somebody who wants an easy 9-5 job can’t be a Programme Director.

What is your dream job in radio?

I think I might have it. I know it’s not a big paying radio job, but I get to do radio, program a station I have a passion for and present a show on a station I co-founded and also get time to run my own business. Is that not perfect!?

How do you relax after the intensity of Christmas FM?

I listen to Christmas songs on repeat on January 1st!

Their wedding is in three weeks and the friend that had promised to DJ their wedding has all of a sudden decided that he can’t do it anymore or wants to go as a guest. PLEASE – for your sanity’s sake, hire a professional entertainer for your event. I don’t care if it’s a wedding or family gathering. The wrong choice can make or break your event. Have you ever been to a party where the DJ was terrible? It didn’t matter whose wedding it was or how good the food was or how beautiful the facility was – in the end, the party was a flop. The average Irish wedding is now around €15-25K. Why should you skimp on the most crucial thing? You work it out.

Bad DJ = Bad Party

Great DJ + rain+lousy food+no photographer+ limo broke down will Still= Great Party

A good DJ will create a good party. That is the bottom line. Even if everything goes wrong on the wedding day itself, when people dance and have a great time they will have had a great night!

It is often said that too big a room in proportion to the number of guests attending a any party is hard to create an atmosphere.

There is nothing worse than having a very large room with a small number of guests. The dance floor is usually too big in this case also which makes it look like the party is “not happening”.

So what is the ideal dance floor size to have for your party in proportion to the room size and number of guests attending?

Using the formulas below, you should be able to comfortably determine the square footage required for the dance floor.
Floor Space Needed for a Banquet with Dancing:
Expected to be Dance on dance floor at one time: Floor square footage needed:

60 percent 3 sq. ft.
50 percent 2.5 sq. ft.
40 percent 2 sq. ft.

Example:
If your event is for 300 people with an average dance participation (50 percent on floor at a given time.)300 (total guests) x 2.5 (sq. ft. needed per guest) = 750 (total square feet of dance floor needed)If the dance floor were close to square,its dimensions could be almost 27 ‘ x 27 ‘ or 27 ‘ x 30 ‘.(Note: Most floors come in 3 ‘ x 3 ‘ sections.)To establish the table capacity of the room, subtract the number of tables lost to the dance floor space and bandstand from the total the room is capable of holding.

We asked Garvan Rigby of star dj’s a few questions about weddings, DJing and the importance of the entertainment at a wedding
What makes a good Wedding DJ?

Somebody who can read the crowd. No matter how good a DJ you are at mixing, how good the sound is or how many songs you have, if you can’t read the crowd then you can’t be a good DJ no matter whether in a club a bar, a 21st party or at a wedding. This comes with time and experience. You have to know how to get the 60 year old aunt up while at the same time pleasing the 26 year old cousin and the college friend at the bar. You often hear of people hiring a DJ from the local bar or a band to “do” DJ. I think that is madness.

How long are you a DJ?

I have being DJing since I was around 16 years old at my first teenage school disco and have been specialising in weddings for 5 years.

How many weddings do you do a year?

About 35. My company does about 5000 events but I try to do no more than 40 weddings as I like to spend a lot of time on each event helping my clients with all the entertainment advice and organisation for their wedding, getting the right music and liasing with the hotel and other vendors. Recently I did a big movie theme wedding where I put together a full dinner play list of classic movie music in Dromoland Castle so that took a lot of work.

Ever do DJ for anybody famous?

I have played parties for many sports stars and celebrities. I suppose DJing for U2 would be the biggest name I can think of when I did their Christmas party one year.

What advice would you give to any potential client about the music?

Don’t try to play it too cool or trendy as you will loose 50% of your guests if you don’t cater for the older people. Every 17 year old knows Stevie Wonder but not every 50 year old knows the Keiser Chiefs! If you really want to avoid the “cheesy” songs you can still play well-known songs without going too trendy or cheesy.

What is the best advice you would give a Bride and Groom when hiring entertainment?

Don’t go for price alone. This applies whether it’s the band, choir or DJ. There is nothing worse than somebody who spends €25,000 on their wedding and it all goes bad because they tried to save €50 off the DJ or band and the night is ruined by a bad singer or a DJ playing the music you asked not to play. There are great value packages out there, however to add to that I would always ask for references as there is nothing worse than paying a top price and then getting the above!!!!

What makes a great wedding venue?

I think you have to decide whether it’s a food occasion or a party occasion. If you are going for food then hire the best venue with food and service, a nice room and great wine. If you want your wedding to be a great party then hire a venue that lends itself to be a great party venue with a good dance floor, good lighting and the bar in the same room so to avoid splitting the crowd and make sure the room is not too big for the amount of people attending. Put on a great DJ and then you have a great party!

Should you see the DJ play before you book him?

Not necessarily but do make sure that the DJ you meet and have a consultation with is the actual DJ that will be doing your wedding. I never invite clients along to another Bride’s wedding as I feel that I am there to impress my current clients and not to do a sales pitch for potential clients down the line. Also people should remember that if they do see a DJ he may be playing the music choice requested by the Bride and Groom so it may not necessarily be what you want or the style you might want for your event so take that into account also.

What is the best thing about being a wedding DJ?

Making somebody’s dream come true, watching a bride cry with joy to her favourite song during the first dance and of course the uncle doing that mad dance that everybody remembers and talks about for weeks to come. Honestly, I had a couple come up to me recently at the end of the night and they said that I made their wedding. That is what this job is all about.

Finally on a lighter note what is the strangest question you get asked as a DJ?

Oh, it has to be one of the following: “what songs have you got”, “have you got any songs I like” and the best is “how many songs have you got.” These are questions DJs get asked all the time but if you went into a restaurant and asked the waiter the same thing about food instead of songs you would get a funny look!!

This is an interview that appeared on the Weddingsonline.ie website.

With so much emphasis on the first dance as a married couple few Brides and Grooms spend enough time considering what the last song of the day will be. The last song of the day argues Garvan Rigby of the star dj’s agency is just as important to consider as the first song, after all it is the final dance of the day. The last dance is the song that you will have in your memory forever with all your friends gathered around you.

“Traditionally the national anthem was the last song not of choice but out of…..well tradition! Cliff Richard’s congratulations was also played just before the anthem as all the guests formed an archway down the room while the bride and groom would run under the arch saying their goodbyes as they run out the door”.

But traditions have changed and couples and their guests now are increasingly deciding to have more input into both the overall music selection and the last song too.

Many couples still like to end their day in the traditional fashion although the national anthem is played a lot less at most functions and discos nowadays. Garvan suggests perhaps playing the congratulations a little earlier if at all! About 50% of his clients don’t want the congratulations played at all. If they want the traditional ending he suggests it be played as perhaps the third or fourth last song followed by a number of other songs therefore creating an encore effect. Congratulations although a little cheesy does work time and time again. It gets everybody in the room on the floor. It’s a good photo or video opportunity, it gets the old and the young together on the floor and it allows you to build atmosphere towards the end.

Some couples have a specific song that is sentimental to them both but may not be appropriate as the first dance as it may be too fast to dance to or just not a romantic song. These songs can be great for the last song of the night.

A good DJ will know how to build the finale of the day in the right way. Whether you play congratulations or not, about 10 Minutes before the end of the evening your DJ will probably invite the Bride & Groom to the floor and then invite their guests to join them. This is when all the guests form a circle around the couple and dance to songs such as that’s amore by Dean Martin or New York, New York by Frank Sinatra. More recent songs to end on would include time of your life by Green Day or One by U2.

Other favourite end of the night songs includes wonderwall by Oasis, the wonder of you by Elvis or dirty old town by the Pogues.

Garvan has one bit of important advice when choosing the last song. “Whatever you chose as your last song just remember that the elder members of the audience may not know the Oasis song but the younger members probably will know the Frank Sinatra song!”

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Most people only hire a DJ once in their life and most often it’s for their Wedding Reception. Too often I hear horror stories about how a DJ ruined a reception and in this case, once is too many! As DJ’s, we only have one chance to get it right! Some of the complaints I have heard or read over the years are:

  • The DJ showed up late or didn’t show at all
  • They didn’t play what I wanted or played music that I specifically asked them not to play
  • The DJ I hired wasn’t the DJ that showed up
  • The DJ was not a professional in manner or dress
  • The equipment was nothing more than a home stereo system and a few CD’s.

Unfortunately I could go on and on. Professional DJ’s have a name for the DJ’s that fall into this category… “Hobbyists”.

Contrary to popular belief, DJ’s are not all cut from the same fabric! In most instances, you really get what you pay for. If there is one area of your reception where you shouldn’t try to cut corners, it’s your entertainment. Notice, I didn’t say DJ, I said entertainment. The same would hold true for a band, a harpist or a pianist if you decided to hire their particular service to be part of your special day.

Brides and Grooms are willing to spend thousands of dollars on food, drink and the banquet hall but try to cut corners on entertainment. This could be a recipe for disaster. No one will remember if the potatoes were overly cooked, or how nice the hall was decorated, but most will remember if they had a great time because of great entertainment. I’ll concentrate more on DJ’s since that’s where my expertise is.

Knowing a professional DJ Vs a Hobbyist

Here are some of the things that separate “Professional” DJ’s from the “Hobby DJs”:

  • Professional DJ’s use professional equipment, not a home stereo.
  • Professional DJ’s will meet with you and help you plan your reception.
  • Professional DJ’s will have many references available for you to talk to.
  • Professional DJ’s WILL NOT subcontract out your event unless they tell you at the time of contract signing.
  • Professional DJ’s will be set up on time.
  • Professional DJ’s abide by your wishes and not just play what “they” like to hear.
  • Professional DJ’s will have public liability insurance to protect you and your guests.
  • Professional DJ’s will not drink alcoholic beverages on the job.
  • Professional DJ’s will not try to be the life of the party. The Bride and Groom should never share the limelight.
  • Professional DJ’s will not invite potential clients to watch them perform at your event. A DJ cannot give your event 100% attention if they’re trying to sell to others.
  • Professional DJ’s will use contracts, to protect both them and you.

This is not an all-inclusive list but just some of the major discriminators that should help you secure the services of a Professional DJ. We’re not saying that the higher the price a DJ charges, the more professional they are.

You have to ask yourself though, if the average price for a DJ in your market is €500 and a DJ will undercut or quote you €300 for the job, why is he willing to charge so much less. Not all DJs are created equal! Use the list to help you identify the professional DJ service and save yourself the heartache of a bad DJ

With your DJ often credited with making or breaking a wedding party one of the most important things you can do is spend time to consider who to hire to provide your entertainment. Here are a few questions you can ask before hiring a DJ.

1. Are you available?

You should always start off by indicating the date, time and location of your event to ensure that the DJ isn’t already booked. Saturdays tend to fill up especially fast and a year in advance is really not to soon to guarantee the availability of that perfect DJ.

2. How much do you charge?

Probably the worst way to choose a DJ is on price alone. With prices starting as low as €250 for the night, it’s tempting to choose the cheapest one available. However, when considering the pricing of one DJ to another, it’s important to make sure that you are comparing apples to apples. Are you really getting the same service? How much experience does the DJ have? Will he act as an MC or just play music? Will he help
coordinate the event? How much does he charge for overtime? How much equipment will he bring? Does he provide his own music and how many songs will he have? Does he have professional equipment? The list goes on and on.
Just remember to use your best judgment and make sure that a lower price is exactly that and not a lower level of experience, quality, planning and commitment.

3. Do you use a written contract?

This is a definite must! If they don’t use written booking forms don’t hire them.

4. What is the DJ’s level of professionalism?

As you speak with DJs, pay attention to their professionalism over the phone. Did they just answer the phone, “Hello?” or with their business name? If you get an answering machine or voice mail, does it say, “Thank you for calling So and So’s DJ Service” or “You have reached the Smith residence…”. Does the dj only have a moibile phone with not fixed business address?

This may sound like a small detail, but their level of professionalism and commitment tends to spill over into their performance at the event. You want to hire someone who is 100% committed to your function, not just someone who DJs as a hobby.

5. How will the DJ be dressed for my event?

Jeans and a T-shirt may be appropriate for a summer Barbecue, but certainly not a wedding reception! Make sure they will dress appropriately.

6. Do you have experience with the type of function I am having?

This is especially important. This may be your first wedding, but it shouldn’t be your DJ’s! Your DJ should be able to act as the MC, provide pre-event planning and coordinate with the other suppliers to make sure that the event runs smoothly from start to finish. A 21st party DJ or a club DJ may not be suitable for Weddings.

7. Do you offer a written schedule of events?

A written timeline will not only prevent important events from being missed, but allows customisation also.

8. Do you provide a music list and take requests?

It’s important that the DJ has and plays some or most of the music you want to hear; after all, it’s your party!

9. Do you use professional sound equipment and include special effects?

Professional sound equipment is a necessity! It will not only sound better, but it’s designed to handle the stress of the day to day performances and will be less likely to break down during your function. Also, confirm that the DJ is not using outdated equipment like turntables, cassette decks. Special effects e.g. lighting may or may not be appropriate for your event.

10. What if something goes wrong?

Do you have backup equipment? It’s important that the DJ has a plan in the unlikely event there is an accident
or equipment failure. The plan should include a DJ that is on-call, as well as, onsite backup equipment.

11. Do you offer a consultation at no charge or obligation?

Many professional DJs will typically offer a free consultation where you can get together and learn more about their entertainment company and of course discuss what type of music is to played at the event.

12. Do you have references or performance evaluation forms from past events?

Feedback from past performances is a good way to determine the overall satisfaction of other people who have had events just like yours.

13. Do you have full liability insurance?

This is a must nowadays. Any legitimate business person carries liability insurance to protect themselves along with you and your guests. Some locations may require your DJ to have
liability insurance.

Up to 50% off the booking fee on certain event packages. Call us today on (01) 4604500 or email info@stardjs.ie to find out how you can save over €100 on bookings. Terms and conditions apply.

We will post you out FREE a wedding entertainment advice guide to help you when trying to decide entertainment and a disco for your wedding. This guide will provide you with information about the pitfalls when trying to organise your special day.

NOTE: Only 1 offer per customer, per event applies. Terms and conditions apply.

We currently give a 5% discount for anybody who produces a “WE DO” card from weddingsonline.ie For more information on how to get a we do card from WOL visit them by “clicking here”

NOTE: Only 1 offer per customer, per event applies. Terms and conditions apply.

We offer up to €155 off some of our wedding packages booked on Sunday-Wednesday Nights. Please contact us for details. Offer not valid on Bank Holidays or during December.

NOTE: Only 1 offer per customer, per event applies. Terms and conditions apply.

You are now engaged and are starting to plan your wedding. With some DJs booking up as much as 8 months to a year in advance it is worth considering booking your DJ at least provisionally, as soon as possible.

As soon as you have your church booked and a rough idea of which venue you will be using, I would suggest booking your entertainment, as it is one of the most important aspects of your wedding. It is what many people and their guests will remember the most. Not everybody will remember the teas, coffees and cocktail sausages yet often, Irish couples spend more time and money on these than entertainment.

The DJ is often in charge of about a fifth of your day and is also entrusted into entertaining all ages, acting as entertainment planner and advisor, MC and sound technician so getting the right DJ is important.

If you are planning on a DJ for either after the band or the full night I would suggest finding a professional DJ to meet with and get one to one advice on planning the evening’s entertainment. When choosing the function room I would advise as much as possible to choose a room that has the bar in the actual function room and an exit right onto a patio for smokers as close to the function room as possible. These two factors can make a massive difference, because if the bar is in a different room you will often find guests hanging out where the bar is, therefore splitting the party in two and the same will go for the smokers if there is a long walk out to a smoking patio. I would also suggest not seating your granny beside where the loudspeakers will be set up for the DJ!

Another aspect that I would always advise on is to make sure the bride and groom spend as much of their time in the room where the party is. The energy levels on the dance floor are always increased when the bride and groom are on the floor or at least in the room. Remember, your guests are there to celebrate and party with you not without you on your special day.

Another important aspect to planning your entertainment is to make sure that your DJ discusses your day with other vendors and the venue. Your DJ should chat with a band if you have one before him to ensure that there is enough room left for him to set up to either side. This is so the DJ can get on straight after the band finishes rather than wait around for 30 minutes till their equipment is dismantled. He should also discuss music with the band, as there is no point in your DJ starting off playing Van Morrison if the band finishes on ……….Van Morrison!

A good DJ will also liase with the banqueting manager as to when teas and sandwiches might be served if you are having them later in the evening. There is nothing worse than the floor rocking and everybody having a great time when suddenly the room’s lights are turned up and sandwiches are brought out and the energy in the room is suddenly ruined!

When planning the entertainment ensure that the DJ is fully insured for public liability insurance. I would also recommend that the DJ or his company have a back-up service or plan in case of any problems on the day or the night itself. DJs are only human after all and they can get sick also and equipment can fail.

When hiring entertainment be wary of services that offer a DJ with a band included or a band with a DJ included, as you may not know whom you are getting along with the main entertainment. It’s the same reason you wouldn’t hire a photographer who would also suggest making your wedding cake!!! If using a DJ company always make sure the DJ you book and meet from the company is the DJ who will be doing your event and not a junior staff member. There are a number of reputable DJ companies throughout Ireland.

Whether you hire a DJ or a band always and I mean, always for your own sanity hire a professional, not a friend who has a few CDs or an i-pod lying around the house. A bad amateur DJ can ruin a party.

Finally, always get the booking details confirmed in writing from your band or DJ.

This time it’s from weddingsonline.ie…

Star DJs win ”Best DJs” at the weddingsonline.ie wedding supplier awardsstar dj’s is celebrating having been named Ireland’s top DJ suppliers in the weddlingsonline.ie Wedding Supplier Awards 2010. The winners were announced recently (February 15th) at a special WeddingsOnline.ie awards ceremony in Dublin which was attended by Bill Cullen and Jackie Lavin from The Apprentice plus Dragon Den star and businessman Gavin Duffy.

star dj’s is a Dublin based company that provides professional disc jockeys nationwide for a range of events including weddings, corporate events, product promotions, bars, nightclubs and private parties. The company was set up in 1996 and administrates over five thousand events each year, including hundreds of weddings. star dj’s has 100 DJ’s on their books and they supply over 40 different DJs on any given weekend night.

Garvan Rigby Managing Director of star dj’s says “This award means a great deal to our company and to the DJs who put in 100% to each and every event we entertain at. It demonstrates that hard work, skill, value for money and listening to our client’s needs pays off in the end”.

About Awards:

The WeddingsOnline.ie awards were set-up to honour and celebrate excellence in Irish weddings. The awards were presented to Irish wedding professionals who continually go the extra mile for brides and grooms and who have a proven commitment to outstanding customer service. The top 100 list was determined by votes from the brides of WeddingsOnline.ie and an expert panel of judges.

The judging panel included businesswoman Jackie Lavin; Ian Dodson from Web Design Company, webkitchen.ie; Rachel Sandall, Editor in Chief of WeddingsOnline.ie and B Magazine plus Blaithin O’Reilly Murphy, Wedding Planner and Author.

star dj’s was selected as a finalist by brides and grooms who use and read weddingsonline.ie along with two other djs/dj companies.

Star DJs wins best DJs for 2009 from Realweddings.ie users. Users (brides and grooms) of the wedding website realweddings.ie have voted star djs as best DJs for 2009

StarDJs news

Star DJs have won best DJs in Ireland from the weddingsonline.ie wedding supplier awards for 2009. The glitzy event was held on Monday 15th February at the Crowne Plaze in Santry. Guests included Bill Cullen and Jackie Lavin, Gavin Duffy among others. The night raised much needed funds for charity and the auction went off great also. However, the highlight of the night was the awards ceremony.

The nominations were made by users of weddingsonline.ie (brides and grooms) who chose the best 100 suppliers in Ireland across 30 categories. The winners were chosen idependentlyof weddingsonline by a committee of industry judges.