Frequently Asked Questions: Wedding music
We pride ourselves on operating our business with complete honesty and transparency, and we're happy to provide the information you need to help you select the right music for your event. Here are some of the most common questions we receive.
Services & Style
What types of events are your specialty?
I have been a soloist for many year and I consider myself a wedding music specialist. I am experienced with a wide variety of wedding celebrations and protocols. Weddings are our passion and make up over 95% of the business booked through MyDeejay. The only other types of events we do are high-end corporate functions, which typically require a similarly elegant approach and attention to detail. MyDeejay does not book children’s parties, bars, nightclubs, or school events.
How would you define your “style” or approach to providing DJ entertainment?
Our performers’ presentation is polished and understated, marked by artistic mixing and a professional “cheese-free” approach to announcements and microphone work. Many DJs think that it is their job to put on a show and be the center of attention at the reception. We believe firmly that your wedding is your show, and we have no interest in taking the spotlight from you. Your dance floor will be packed, but it will be because the DJ selected just the right songs from your request list and mixed them in just the right sequence - not because he chattered endlessly on the microphone.
I don’t want the music at my wedding to be traditional wedding music. Can you do that?
Of course! We’re not at all attached to tradition – we’re here to incorporate the music you request, and to mix it in a way that will create the kind of wedding you’ve envisioned. Somewhere along the line, the phrase “wedding DJ” became a bad word, synonymous with cheesiness. We couldn’t be any further from that image.
Do you use dance or provide laser shows?
No. All my dance moves come from the 80's and I don't provide visual entertainment. I also don't hop onto the dance floor with your guests. There are other local violinists who offer this kind of entertainment.
Do provide microphones or amplification for the officiant or guest speakers?
My business model centers on the service I know best: unmatched live music which matches your taste and the scope of your event or wedding. Quality sound is a complex specialty service which should be hired to a sound professional.
How will you help me plan music for our event?
Just as you would hire a caterer for his or her mastery in cuisine, you are hiring The Electric Violin Lady in large part for my expertise in music and ability to perform it well. I can provide you with a multitude of suggestions based on your tastes and preferences, and I am perfectly comfortable creating a music program if you aren’t interested in doing so. My ability to read music and learn by year grands me extensive knowledge most other soloists can't provide. Meaning, I can work with your requests and create a mood that reflects what you want while creating a great atmosphere for all of your guests. I also have the expertise to addressing music “challenges,” e.g., meshing together multi-cultural musical styles or adapting an upbeat song to one which matches the formality of a wedding.
Will you allow me to plan music for my event
Yes! Most of my clients select me because they love music and want me to bring to life the songs they want their guests to hear. I am happy to accommodate you if you want to select every song. I pride myself on listening to clients and respecting their input and wishes, while providing additional suggestions and guidance when appropriate. It's your event - you should get the music you want.
What kinds of music do you perform
Over the years, I have amassed huge collection of music, including international repertoire. I will gladly acquire any commercially available song that we don’t already own, at no additional cost. Because of this, we can virtually guarantee that we will be able to accommodate any request.
How loud does your instrument get?
Mixing is a pretty basic skill for a professional disc jockey, but how a DJ does it says a lot about his or her style. We mix music with the purpose of creating seamless transitions between songs and maintaining the energy and momentum on the dance floor. Mixing for us is something we do on the spot, based on the tempo and “feel” of the songs and the reaction of the crowd. We don’t treat your wedding like it’s our personal nightclub appearance, and we don’t use your wedding to test out remixes that no one recognizes. Our DJs always use the original and most popular versions of each song unless there’s a really good reason not to. We also don’t use any cheesy, pre-fabricated “DJ mixes” from subscription services.
Booking & Working With MyDeejay
How will I know who my DJ will be, and how do I book that DJ for my event?
Once you’ve submitted the contact form on our website and indicated that you’re ready to connect with a DJ, we’ll send you a few easy questions to answer via email. These will enable us to match you with an available DJ who will be a great fit for you in terms of music, personality and any other preferences you may have. The DJ will then be more than happy to schedule an easy, convenient consultation via Skype or telephone (or meet you in person if you prefer) to discuss your plans, review a sample agreement and answer your questions. On the next business day after your consultation with the DJ, our office will email you a simple, customized online agreement and invoice guaranteeing the services of that DJ on your wedding day. You’ll have a 10-day window during which to make your decision, electronically sign your agreement and submit payment - and of course we're here to provide any additional information or assistance you need during that time!
Do you offer different skill levels or “tiers” of DJs at different price points?
Absolutely not. The way we see it, a DJ either meets our company’s high standards or they do not — and if they don’t, they aren’t qualified to represent our company or serve our clients. We would never sell a couple a “MyDeejay experience” and then send them less than the very best our company has to offer. For this reason, we don’t offer a cheaper “B-team” or associate level DJs. Offering multiple “tiers” of talent at different prices would mean sacrificing quality for the sake of more bookings, something we’d never be willing to do. Some food for thought: would a company that charges two or three times more for the owner actually acknowledge that your experience with one of their associates will only be half or a third as good?
Are any of your DJs fluent in other languages?
Currently, the only non-English language in which one of our DJs is fluent is Korean. Most of our DJs, however, are very experienced with the wedding traditions and music of many other cultures including South Asian, Middle Eastern, East Asian, African, Greek and more.
Terms & Requirements
How much do you charge?
Our base rates for weddings range from $300-450 per hour, with a four-hour minimum. We base our pricing on an objective structure that only factors in the month and day of the event, which ensures consistency and fairness to all of our clients. We are not in the practice of subjectively pricing events based on our estimation of your budget — for example, we don’t price events higher if a client is using an expensive reception site or if they were referred by a well-known wedding planner. A complete and accurate price quote will be provided to you in our first email to you, and specific information on our pricing structure and services can be found on our rates page.
What is included in the cost of my event?
Four hours of performance time (additional time is available at a prorated hourly cost), setup time, breakdown time, and ALL equipment, including additional sound systems and wireless microphones for weddings with up to 300 guests. For weddings over 300 guests, a custom quote may be necessary to ensure your event's equipment and staffing needs are met. Our flat-rate pricing is refreshingly easy to understand — there are no hidden charges, and all fees are clearly stated in your agreement with our company.
Why do you offer a 10% discount for paying in full with the signed contract?
We offer this discount because it simplifies our operations (it’s less work to process one payment than two, and the time saved in not having to track and collect a balance makes the discount worth it to us) and it simplifies our clients’ budget management. It’s completely optional, and we’re happy to accept a 50% retainer with the agreement and the balance a month before the wedding if that’s your preference.
What areas do you serve?
Our standard rates include a travel radius of 90 miles (one-way) from our corporate office in Annapolis, MD. This means we cover most areas of Northern Virginia, Washington, DC, Central Maryland, Frederick, Baltimore, and parts of Maryland's Eastern Shore with no additional travel fee.
What are the terms of payment if I book your services?
An industry-standard, 50% nonrefundable retainer is due with your signed agreement within 10 days of your initial consultation with your DJ. This retainer reserves and guarantees the services of that specific DJ on your wedding day, and includes his unlimited accessibility to you in providing music planning assistance. The balance is collected 30 days prior to your event. Clients who elect to take advantage of the full prepayment discount (offered to anyone signing an agreement at least four months prior to their wedding) would remit the full amount, less 10%, with their signed agreement. MyDeejay accepts personal and business checks, certified checks, Visa, MasterCard and American Express. We do not accept Discover or PayPal transactions at this time.
What do you require from my event site?
We require at least one 6-foot banquet table, with linens, and adequate power (120-volt, 15-amp circuit on a grounded outlet) within 35 feet of where the DJ will be set up.
Are you insured?
MyDeejay carries a full liability insurance policy for each performer with a coverage value of $2,000,000. We are happy to provide you or your venue with a copy of our insurance policy upon request.
How do you dress for an event?
Our performers’ typical “uniform” is a professional, dark business suit with appropriate accessories. We want to blend seamlessly into the background of any dance floor photos, and we never want to be dressed more formally than the groom (if applicable) or other men in the wedding party. If a tuxedo or other attire would be more appropriate for your event, however, simply let us know your preference.
When do you arrive to set up for an event?
Our performers always arrive on-site at least an hour and a half prior to the contracted start time of the event, and earlier as necessitated by the setup requirements of the site.
What kind of equipment do you use?
Our performers use the highest quality professional-grade equipment available: strictly Native Instruments TRAKTOR PRO Mac-based DJ systems, Pioneer and RANE mixers, Electro-Voice speakers and EV/Shure microphones. Wireless microphones are always provided, and wireless speakers (while not ideal in most settings) are available if necessitated by the venue.
How are emergencies handled?
We’re proud to have originated the most rock-solid emergency backup plan in the DJ industry. Each of our DJs takes the responsibility of performing for a wedding extremely seriously, and is both contractually and ethically obligated to do everything possible to avoid emergencies. However, to ensure your event’s complete success, every weekend we pay one of our DJs (one of the performers from our regular roster, not a semi-retired, “B-list” DJ or one from another company) to be the “Emergency DJ” on call. That DJ is prepared with appropriate attire, equipment, and the music and paperwork for each wedding on our schedule. In addition, each of our DJs brings a full set of backup equipment to every event, and the company provides backup transportation in case of car trouble. We believe our system is the most comprehensive emergency backup plan in the entire industry, and it costs us many tens of thousands of dollars each year to operate — a worthwhile investment in our clients’ peace of mind.
Will you bring an assistant?
Short answer? For weddings, rarely. Unless you’re planning a highly interactive, “New York style” wedding that needs a separate emcee/party motivator to dance with your guests (something we don’t offer, though we can refer you to other companies who do), deejaying a wedding is a one-person job. DJs who always bring an assistant do so because they don’t want to carry the equipment, or they want someone to fetch them drinks, or they want to break down and get out of there faster at the end of the night. We don’t believe that’s something you need to pay for, and unless we feel there's a valid reason for the second person, your DJ will be there on his own. The one consistent exception is for events with 300+ people, which requires a significantly larger sound system, additional speakers, and considerable added labor - our rates for these types of events include all of this equipment plus two separate DJs to transport, set up, and operate it all. In these cases, the second DJ is far more than an "assistant," and you'll be well aware of why he's there!
MyDeejay's Reputation, Referrals & Reasons to Hire
Do you have reviews or references?
We have both! We currently have well over 700 reviews (with a perfect five-star average rating) on WeddingWire, the industry's most prolific wedding planning website. If you prefer to speak with some of our former clients personally, your DJ will (upon request) gladly provide you with references who are more than happy to discuss the quality of his performance and customer service. You will not be asked to “cold call” people to check our references; we will be sure to let them know to expect your call. We want you to feel completely comfortable in researching our services.
Can we visit you at a performance?
Out of respect for the privacy of others on their special day, MyDeejay does not permit prospective clients to “drop in” on a wedding. However, our references, online reviews, and the information we provide you in our initial meeting will speak volumes of our experience, style and professionalism.
Do you pay “kickbacks” for referrals?
Never. MyDeejay does not pay kickbacks or referral fees in the forms of money, gifts or any other incentives. In fact, our company's president has been an industry leader in promoting exclusively merit-based referrals. We are proud to have earned referrals and endorsements from the area’s best wedding planners, venues, caterers, photographers and other event professionals based solely on the outstanding service we provide.
How do you maintain your great reputation while continuing to grow your company?
Simple: we are a values-based company and operate using a very standardized set of protocols, from communication to wedding preparation. Every one of our DJs knows our core values, our philosophy and the type of client experience upon which our reputation has been built. Because we’ve placed such an emphasis on carefully recruiting new DJs and ensuring that each of them “lives our brand,” so to speak, we’ve been able to grow without sacrificing any of the quality for which we’re known. The diversity of our reviews and references (reflecting the work of every DJ on our team) is a testament to our company’s consistency.
Most importantly…why should I choose MyDeejay for my event?
Simply put, we provide exceptional entertainment and the most accommodating and attentive customer care found in this industry. For more information about what makes MyDeejay unique, please read the section Who We Are.