I wanted to address a situation that happens a lot here at DJ Idea Sharing. That would be DJs who take on a event that they have NO experience with. Then, come up to the group 2 weeks or less before their performance to ask advice from other DJs on how to actually do the event. I’m sorry but I’m going to call this behavior for exactly what it is….. Irresponsible!
Whether you are a part time novice or a full time professional, if you accept compensation to perform services for a client you owe it to your client to provide the best possible services. If you have no experience with a particular event and still feel motivated to take on the challenge you owe it to your client to prepare and research so your performance can be up to acceptable standards.
A great way to ensure a smooth and well-executed performance is find a mentor, or even sub-contract a experienced professional to work with. You get a education and your client gets a quality event. Sure, you may not make much money for this time around but the knowledge will be worth it. Having a mentor is always in your best benefit and well worth your time investment getting to learn from a expert.
Next, do the research. Between on-line tutorials and books or video programs you certainly have a wealth of options available to educate yourself on performance and traditions. Take a Bar/Batmitzvah for example? There are customs you need to learn. Timing and structure for the event. Games and performance aspects and a general knowledge of the musical and MC approach needed to entertain the guests in attendance. If you are a bar/club DJ and think you can just go fake it, you are sadly mistaken.
Coming to a on-line community like DJ Idea Sharing is a great idea to gather advice and tips from pros. Just not 2 weeks before the event! If you are waiting until a few weeks before to learn how to do it, you are TOO LATE!
One of the key components to success is practice, practice, practice! And that cannot be done to sufficient level in just a few weeks. If you accept a event that you lack experience in I would recommend not taking it unless there is a minimum of 6 months lead time. Utilize that time to do everything aforementioned. Get a mentor, read, research and practice!
Also, be honest with the client! If you have no experience or limited experience tell them! Let them know you will do all of the things needed to bring yourself up to the standards they will expect. If they decide not to hire you, then at least you won’t misrepresent yourself and your reputation.
Finally, you owe it to any customer who pays you for services to give them your best effort! If you can’t give that find another line of work. The mobile DJ entertainment industry is about helping people make memories, and we want those to be good memories. If you take on a party lacking experience and don’t live up to expectation you do more than hurt your reputation. You hurt people and their memories. Sometimes, like with a wedding you can destroy a once-in-a-lifetime event! Is that worth a paycheck? How selfish if you can answer “yes, it is worth the deception for profit.” Remember that as an entertainer you have a lot of power over people’s memories.
So, please feel welcome to come to DJ Idea Sharing and ask questions. There will always be some members who mock you and provide no assistance. Ignore them! There will be plenty more who are willing to help you. Just not a few days before the event! Keep all these thoughts in mind and you will be on path to being the mentor and not the student.
“To Our Success!” – Mike Fernino (Founder of DJ Idea Sharing)