One can plan the most amazing, unique, elegant and fun wedding, but if the music sucks, the reception is doomed! 22 years of programming music for brides and grooms has given me plenty of insight on what to play for even the most diverse crowd of dancers.
I find that every reception I play has its own particular kind of energy about it. I try to play music that reflects that energy. I could never guess what will be the best music to play before a wedding reception dance begins.
For this reason I try to discourage my clients from pre-planning the majority of the music for their wedding. I always welcome your input and will incorporate your personal tastes. Obviously there are going to be some “must play” songs, and I openly encourage requests from your guests, but keep in mind one of the main reasons to hire a professional dj to perform at your wedding, is to trust their expertise. Some brides and grooms opt to take advantage of my “do not play” policy. If there are any songs you do not wish to hear at your wedding, I will not play them.
Quite often overlooked at many weddings, are the cocktail and dinner music selections. Although this music is secondary, and is played in the background, I feel it is a very important component of the music programming. The days of a dj pulling out their “Kenny G” collection for background dinner music should be long gone.
When my clients have no preferences for their cocktail and dinner music, I tend to lean towards light selections from popular artists ranging from Michael Buble, Jack Johnson, Frank Sinatra, Ray Charles, John Mayer, Norah Jones, and various other artists including Motown greats. Why risk putting your guests to sleep during dinner with extensive amounts of “elevator” music. The goal is start building energy in the room.
Have you ever attended a wedding where the music was so loud you couldn’t talk to the person across the table from you? I am a strong believer the sound quality and volume of the music is just as important as the song selection. We closely monitor volume settings all evening to ensure they are kept at a reasonable level.