Monday, July 9, 2012

This Isn't a Picnic.

This is something that's difficult to talk about without sounding ungrateful or egotistical.  I am neither, but there are some things that need to be addressed to avoid these situations in the future.

As DJs, (not just myself, but just about every wedding DJ) we put in a lot of time to make your "once in a lifetime" event flawless and unforgettable.  From the time we leave for your event until the time we get home, we can put in as much as TWELVE hours.  That's a bit extreme and would probably include ceremony services, some overtime and a bit of a drive.  On average, it's at least EIGHT hours.

If a ceremony is included, there may be additional equipment to setup and tear down before the reception even starts.  If it's hot outside, that doesn't make it any easier to do our jobs, dressed up in a tux.

You depend on us to be energetic, good spirited and to keep the party's energy going through out the night.  So WHY would you treat your DJ (or any vendor for that matter) like your dog?  We are people too!  Just like you, we'd like to eat a hot meal with everyone else.  We aren't machines and we can't go for EIGHT hours on an empty stomach.  It wouldn't be much of a wedding if we passed out, would it?  Think about how this person feels, being singled out as "not good enough" to eat with every one else... What do you suppose he/she is thinking about while they're DJing your wedding?  I'll bet it's not "These people are so nice, I'm going to do everything I can to make their wedding the best I've ever done."

I know most of you would never think of doing this, and in the twelve years I've been a DJ, it's never happened to me personally.

When you can afford to spend $30,000 on a wedding (as was the case of this high end wedding last weekend) and you can't afford to give your DJ a hot meal, you're just being cheap.  Not only that, but it's about as tacky as you can get.  Take a look at wedding etiquette on or ask Ms. Manners and they'll both say the same: "vendor meals should be included into your budget."  Many caterers don't even think to charge you for your vendor's meals, especially if it's a buffet. 

Saturday was one of the hottest days of the year, and DJ Cory was doing a wedding at Meadowbrook Music Hall for me.  The location and the caterer had been quite a pain to deal with as they required a special insurance rider that I have never been asked for in all the time I've been in business.  Both the ceremony and wedding were outside in the 100° F weather.  He had to setup for the ceremony as well as the reception because there were in two different areas.  When it came time for dinner, this is what he was given...

A bag of chip, a bottle of water and a sandwich 

Fortunately for the wedding couple, DJ Cory (like myself) is a true professional and did his best not to let this get to him while DJing their wedding.  It did not stop us from discussing it afterwards.

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