Monday, July 16, 2012

How to have music at your party and hear it at your volume

A lot of time and money can be spent planning and having a party. You want to be able to hear the music at the volume you like. When renting a hall check with the management beforehand on any volume restrictions. In a restaurant or hotel even when you are renting a separate room the music can leak out and disturb other guests. As a DJ I have been told by management to turn the music down even at volumes that were appropriate for the event. Guests have come up asking the music be turned up and I have had to tell them I couldn’t. This can be very upsetting when you paid a lot to have the party and can’t have the music the way you would like.

I’m not talking about a heavy metal rock concert type volume but the expected volume for dance music. This also happens during karaoke parties as some of the less talented (bad) singing really gets to people outside the party. Some places have movable walls to separate rooms. These walls can vary in how they block sound. If you can scope out some parties being held in that room before you book. This will give you an idea of how loud the volume can be. Please be careful not to intrude on the event taking place. I don’t want to encourage any wedding crashers.

Some hotels have outdoor spots for parties. Outdoor areas can look beautiful and seem like a very tempting place to have a party. These can be fine for the ceremony part of a wedding but I have usually found they don’t work for the main party. The outdoor area is often surrounded by the guest rooms. The overnight guests complain to the management the music is disturbing them. Most hotels also have a strict 10 P.M. quiet policy. Sometimes this is due to the local ordinance. I have entertained at several events where the host wanted to go overtime but the management told me the music had to be shut off exactly at ten.

There are a few exceptions to these rules. If you want the music at a low volume, for instance, at a cocktail party. Check what time the hotel quiet policy is. It is most often ten but there maybe a few exceptions. Many banquet rooms at hotels and restaurants work perfectly fine to block sound and allow you to have your music at your volume.

Wednesday, July 4, 2012

How to Plan a Budget for Hiring a Party DJ

I have received calls from customers who have already booked their party at the most exclusive hotels. When I quote my rate sometimes my fee is over their budget. This always shocks me no matter how many times it happens. The hotel costs many times what the DJ cost. How can they afford such an expensive hotel but can’t afford a DJ. They over spend on the hotel and leave little for entertainment. How can this be avoided? The answer is proper budgeting.  Most of the time the party room is booked before the DJ. Customers book the room without knowing the total costs for all of the elements they desire for event. 
A simple solution is to call your first and second choice of hotels learning cost for the number of guests you are expecting and the room you want for your party. Next would be the food budget. Buffet is generally less expensive then sit down dinners. The types of food can greatly change costs as well. Find out the range of food costs and write it down.  Then call some D.J.s and find out who you like most. DJ rates can vary widely so finding the rate of the DJ’s you like is more important than speaking to a few random DJ’s just to get pricing. The music and the food make the party whether it is in the house or an upscale hotel.  Give the DJ an idea of time of year and day of week. Saturday nights may cost more than Sunday mornings. December may cost more than February. DJ rates can vary with supply and depend during popular party seasons.  Even if you don’t know the exact date yet, ask about the rate for your few preferred dates. 
You may find in the end you have the budget for your first choice of hotel, food, day and DJ. If you don’t have enough in the budget for everything your 2nd choice of hotel with the food, day and DJ you want maybe a better choice than your 1st choice of hotel with a substandard DJ or food choice. People will enjoy great music and a nice hotel over poor music and the best hotel. The bottom line here is find out the costs of the various components and then proceed to book them.  You and your budget will be happier.

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