Your wedding entertainment plays a HUGE part of what keeps your party going! In addition to keeping your guests singing and dancing the night away, they also play a role in making sure the day runs smoothly, letting guests know what is happening when. Having a DJ that is not only professional, but knows how to have a great time and create a fun environment is key. One of my favorites, Danny of It’s Your Night Entertainment is sharing more about the business and how he can help make your day the absolute best! Keep reading to see his interview below!
Tell us a bit about your background/career path.
I was born in Carbondale, Illinois. After years of touring with my musical family of nine, we moved to Canton, Texas. My passion was live music. I was the frontman in a pop/punk band in high school and early college. Dallas Baptist University was where I attended college and studied Music Business. I wanted to be a rockstar so I moved to Austin, Texas, where I started working in church music, which I still do today. In May of 2013, I married my wife. Soon after that, we moved to the Fort Worth area. I began working as a wedding DJ in December of 2014.
What do you love about working with couples to create their music?
I love getting to know each couple personally. Each couple and therefore each wedding is extremely different. I get to sit down with every bride and groom and ask questions to put together a game plan that fits their personality and tastes. I also love reading the wedding guests in the moment. That is the most creative part of my job. Seeing how guests react when I play this song or that song, and catering the next song by what I see.
What’s your advice for brides on a budget?
Decide what’s most important to you as a couple. Consider your own personalities and the feeling you want (for you and your guests) during the day. If you’re not too particular about something, have a gifted friend take the reigns and save your budget to hire a professional in the area you care about most.
What’s the number one question brides should ask a DJ before hiring them?
Make sure your DJ is also a competent MC. This is one of the most important things at your reception. When there is no MC, the guests feel uneasy about what is happening next. Therefore, they don’t dance or have as much fun as they could. People just need to know that someone is driving the bus. When you have someone competent who is obviously in control over the order of the reception, guests can relax, drink more, dance more, and stay longer because they are enjoying themselves.
What is the biggest piece of advice you’d give a bride as she selects her DJ?
Make sure you meet with every DJ face to face before you make any decisions. Your wedding DJ is important because he sets the tone for the entire evening right from the beginning of your reception. Guests may forget about the way your flowers looked, or the way the food tasted. Although those things are important, the thing your guests will remember is the feeling they had while there.
What is your favorite style of music?
I love the oldies. Mainly 60s and 70s.
How extensive is your music library or song list?
I currently have about 65,000 songs in my library. It grows with every wedding I do and part of my process is getting the music my clients want before the big day. If there is a request during the reception for a song I don’t have, I have the ability to get it on the fly.
What do you do to motivate a crowd if nobody is dancing?
The dance floor is a very delicate thing. I have a few preventative techniques to help ensure the dance floor doesn’t get cold. If the guests are allowed the time to warm up to it nicely, the whole night runs smoother. I give opportunities for guests to see others dancing and show them the dance floor isn’t threatening.
I’m also very purposeful in the first few songs I play to let the guests know we’re all here to have a good time and to gain their trust. But if it slows down, I read the room and consider the type of music and the personalities of the guests. I am not one to force myself on guests or make them feel uncomfortable by being loud or telling jokes just to get them to warm up. I try to be a gentleman with the tone I set and the way I treat them.
Should brides submit a do not play list?
Absolutely. Any kind of information you can give about your preferences helps a DJ to know your personalities and be able to cater everything to you. We all have artists/bands we don’t like and you never want a song played that gives you a negative feeling or thought.
You may have a song that reminds you of a past boyfriend/girlfriend that you don’t want played. Or you may have specific preferences about language/vulgarity. Those things are very important for your DJ to be aware of so you can enjoy the night without being anxious about what may be played. I also ask if there are any “must play” songs. Just as certain songs may bring negative feelings, some may bring great ones that could add to the energy and memory of the night.
What equipment do you bring on the wedding day?
Based on what the couple needs, I bring (2) Line 6 L3T speakers, a Yamaha soundboard, a wireless mic, a Newmark DJ controller, a 2017 MacBook Pro, all needed cables, equipment for a live music set if the couple chooses (guitar/piano). I also bring extra speakers, etc. if the need arises and we have discussed it ahead of time.
What is the process from Inquiry-Booking-Wedding Day?
When you contact the company, our administrative assistant asks questions about your needs and preferences and suggests which DJs may be a good fit for you. When I receive that email, I contact you and set up a time to meet with you in person. After that meeting, if you wish to book, we set up a contract and it’s on my calendar!
We will continue to email as needed and set up another face-to-face meeting to go over specifics. About a month out from your wedding day we’ll get all the details down on paper. We will create a timeline, discuss styles, equipment, etc. and make sure we are on the same page about everything you need and want. On your wedding day, I set up my equipment with plenty of time to spare and work hard to ensure a seamless reception for you and your guests to enjoy and remember for a lifetime!
From a personalized experience combined with passion and creativity, there’s now doubt Danny knows how to create an amazing atmosphere for his clients and their wedding guests! If you’re a couple looking for an amazing DJ, check out It’s Your Night Entertainment!