How to throw an Event in the South Bay (San Jose, Morgan Hill, and Gilroy)

Rule 1: If you want to throw a fun party then you have to really know your audience. When you send out the invites make sure you use terms that would excite them. Be very detailed and specific so your guests know the deal from the start. 

 

Rule 2: Make sure your venue is easily accessible. People want it to be a piece of cake to get there so find a cool place with lots of parking. If it’s a formal event then you have a better understanding of the people that are going to the event and you know how many tables and chairs will be needed. Also make sure you have great communication with your venue. It is awesome when you call them or email them they get back to you right away. Nothing is more frustrating than an absentee venue manager. Some venues are all inclusive so that means they can do it all and less worry for the host. They can decorate and or host an open bar. Best ways to find venues is to ask other folks who secured venues before or you can trust strangers on Yelp. 

 

Rule 3: Find the right dj.It is good to secure the venue first so you know the date and times you need a dj and you have to see if the dj is available. So rule 1 is to know the audience and Rule 3 is to find the right dj. You would want a dj that fits the occasion. Find the right dj to do the event and call or email him or her to get a vibe from them

San Jose Morgan Hill Gilroy Set Up

Gilroy Gardens as a venue

Recently played at Gilroy Gardens located in Gilroy. I was able to contact the manager and she was very helpful and made sure she was available to guide me in the venue.  With the helpful staff, I was able to go through the employee entrance. Load in was very simple.  I asked in advance for a table and they gave me an extension cord. Once I arrive I asked for another extension cord and they were on it. I brought my big boy speakers and asked for a little barrier so dancers do not put their drinks or purses on them. This was done with little heads up and they were on it.

The coolest thing of the night was I left a mini table behind and I called the manager after midnight and she picked up and told me she would call security to locate it and text me if they find it or not. I just love the follow through. The manager even offered to drop off the table at my location San Jose once it was found. WOW. With teamwork, they found my table in the big park and I was able to get it back.  This is how this venue treats vendors and I was very impressed. I was very impressed with their customer service. I was working with 2 banquet managers and both of them went beyond the call of duty. 

Overall it was a pleasant experience. While I was playing my music students were dressed to the nines and it seemed like everyone was posting their experience on social media. The lights and the elegance made it a very special night. The park offered unlimited games and rides for the party goers. Students were able to win prizes that whey were proud of. Students seemed very excited and happy. Gilroy Gardens is an excellent place to have your party! 

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Sycamore Vineyards in Morgan Hill

Sycamore Vineyards in Morgan Hill

 

I was fortunate enough to play at Sycamore Vineyards in Morgan Hill. They are able to host ceremonies, receptions and private events. They were able to accommodate an inside ceremony or an outside in no time. I was set up inside then the weather cleared and within 15 minutes they were able to make the outside area ready and they were professional and made it happen!

 

The staff was very helpful. They did everything to make the event as enjoyable as possible. They let me know if there was anything I needed be sure to ask. They were easy to work with and kept me in contact before the wedding. During the wedding we were in constant communication to make sure the wedding went smooth as possible.

 

The outside ceremony area has a view of pretty vineyards. For the cocktail area people can play bocce ball that they offer at no cost while other venues charge to play the game. Inside the reception area was many wine barrels to give a nice touch. The venue offers their own food menu and I give it two thumbs up. The place offers their own djs and if other djs are brought it they have to have insurance and have to sign an agreement to follow the venues rules (such as professional attire and not having subwoofers). The manager was helpful with helping me find the right insurance.

 

Overall a very beautiful venue to have an event. They have everything inhouse and it best to go that route to keep it nice and easy. It is a good  all in one venue.

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Will Micheal Jackson not be played at Weddings and Events anymore?

The wedding is full of special songs for specific events. A romantic song is played for the first dance and Beyoncé’s “Single Ladies” is played for the bouquet toss. After all the selected songs are played it is time for the Open Dance. At that time, I would throw on Michael Jackson’s “Billie Jean” to get everyone to the dance floor. That song would get everyone in the party mood.

 

Recently HBO started streaming Leaving Neverland which talks about the allegations of Jackson’s misconduct. So, the question for djs is : Should MJ be played at weddings or events?

 

About two weeks ago, I did a school fundraiser with just adults. I asked one of the hosts if it would be ok to play Michael Jackson it was a quick no. I always play Michael Jackson. There was a point of the night where I felt I could have thrown in some PYT and one guest asked for Thriller but I did not play it for that event.

 

He has been an icon and a staple for years. I believe that since the show was recent there has been some folks who feel strongly about MJ not being played. I have asked some people if they have seen the documentary but not many have seen it. There has been debate in Dj circles and both sides have valid points. After hearing both sides and putting in more thought, I do agree with the djs who say that it is up to the clients who hire you and they can tell you if that are comfortable with playing MJ.

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Best Man Speech Tips

They have to organize the bachelor party and they have to deliver the best man speech at the wedding. Some folks may not like  public speaking but if one is prepared then they can really have a great speech.

 

If you fail to plan then you plan to fail. I know that you have heard that before but it is so true when it comes to the best man speech. With all that is going on, the best man should get the speech ready 2 to 3 months in advance. There will be so many distractions happening so its best done right away.

 

Only make jokes about your groom and leave the new wife alone with your jokes. She will get her turn with her maid of honor. Do not revel too much about the groom but some stories need to be shared while others should be left alone. 

 

Practice.. Some folks are awesome speakers while others not so much. But with dedicated practice then the speaker can at least look the part. Practice the speech in front of the mirror. Also, maybe have someone record you on your phone. You don’t want to talk to fast and you want to make sure you sound good. Speak slowly. One trick of the trade I used is really move your lips when you speak each word. They come out clearer than ever. Maybe practice in front of some trusted friends who can give you feedback. 

 

Don’t try to wing it and not have your speech not written down. It does not need to be written down word by word but at least be in bullet points. I would also have the notes on your phone in case your notecard gets lost in the shuffle of the wedding. 

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How much musical control to do you give to your dj?

The couple can pick the important songs such as the first dance song and cake cutting song and can trust the dj to play what he thinks would be good. Some couples can just give an outline and let the dj run free. Since some couples are super busy and would want to dj to do all the leg work. Other couples may incorporate a do not play list. Also, the couple can give a list of must play songs for the wedding. Dj would be able to incorporate those must play songs throughout the night. 

 

The best weddings I have been a part of was when couples gave a list to the dj. Often times the couple does not know when to start. With my couples I give them a list of popular songs played at weddings. Music ranges from 80s to pop to jazz to rock. From the list, the couple would send their selections. The couple is also free to include songs that are not on that list. From the selections, the dj can continue the vibe of the event with the songs that they were given. 

 

Also communicate is key with your dj so the dj can see what kind of music to be played at the wedding. The dj can use the playlist the couple gives them as the foundation and play songs that would fit in that category. Also, as a couple, it’s good to be specific with the music requests. An example would be if the couple wants old love songs but in reality, they wanted Motown. 

 

In a nutshell, the couple should help the dj build a list and the dj uses that as the foundation.

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First Proposal Mistakes

Proposals can be fancy. People try to out due other proposals. It has spread to proms. Youngsters are trying to do something special. It is a growing trend. 

 

A common mistake is when the man proposes without a ring. A ring is a symbolic of the love the couple shares. It shows that the man (woman) prepared and thought about his proposal before it happened. Plus, with the ring, its proof that the engagement happened. It was not a figment of the imagination. Sometimes the couple will pick out the ring beforehand so it makes it a less of a surprise. If the man (woman) is not totally sure what kind of ring to get then they can get another ring then later exchange it for one that the couple likes and fits.

 

Sometimes in movies you see someone proposing to someone at a baseball field and they are surrounded by thousands of strangers who will forget about the moment the next inning. A proposal is monumental for the couple. Make it special for the both of you. 

 

Also, technology can be a positive thing. It can get you to your destination and you can find out the latest news. Before the proposal, the one who will propose might let something slip on social media so it ends up on everyone’s feed. Next thing you know then the future spouse knows about it and it is no longer a surprise.

 

Sometimes couples are old fashioned and the future spouse wants the proposal on one knee. The other partner (the proposer) might not want to do it but it would mean a lot to the future spouse. Just get it done. It is a story they would want to share with their family and friends. 

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First Wedding Dance Mistakes

The First Dance of the wedding is monumental. There is debate that folks say the couple should dance the whole song so they couple can relish the moment and the videographer and cameraman can get different angles of the couple during the dance.

I do not believe in should. All weddings are a product of the couple so they can choose how long their song and dance can be. If the couple wants to dance for a few minutes and the dj can fade the song away can be an option. If a couple cannot decide on one song, the dj can premix two songs into one and couples can be creative with their dance. The first song can be a slow song then it can turn into a salsa song to add some spice to the dance. Speaking of being creative, the couple can hire a dance instructor for their first dance. Also communicate with your dj so he can play the song when the couple are on the dance floor since it may be choreographed. It would be good to get the right song version. Best advice, that I can give is to practice the first dance with the music before the wedding. Practice the moves and also smiling. Some people get nervous and forget to smile. 

 

When does the first dance happen? When I help set up weddings, I do suggest having it right after the grand entrance. All the attention is on the couple so why not grab their attention for a few minutes more. There is no food in front of the guests so there have less distraction during the first dance. 

First Dance Mistakes