Dj

Mavericks Event Center at Half Moon Bay Event (Wedding) Venue

Maverick Event Center in Half Moon Bay (https://maverickseventcenter.com)

This is one of the most beautiful ceremonies visually I ever been a part of.  The ceremony area is close to the reception area. The grass is well kept. You can actually hear the cute otters in the ocean. From the looks of it, one can have a wedding with 60 to 80 guests in the grass area. 

It was a wee bit windy so we opted to use the wireless microphone since the lapel would pick up too much of it.  I also included a wired microphone next to the officiant. Two days early I got my hands on QSC CP speakers. They are way lighter than the other qsc speakers I have but makes it convenient for ceremonies since it does not require super loud music. I like having two speakers than one in ceremonies. I know it is not necessary but it just sounds so much better.  The officiant did an excellent job with the ceremony. Alison (www.ceremoniesbyalison.com) was an awesome storyteller and it seemed like she knew the bride and groom personally from how well she told their story. 

 

 

The reception area was well decorated. They had a candy area for guests to stock up on sweets. The staff was nice. We were able to play music at a good volume. It is good to watch the volume because to be considerate of neighbors. 

 

Overall, Mavericks Event Center is a nice venue to have events at in Half Moon Bay. Keep in mind during the summer months beware of beach goers so allow yourself more time to get to the destination. But the view of the ocean and the ambiance is worth the extra drive. 

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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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Part 2 Wireless Microphone versus Lapel Microphone versus Wired Microphone for the Ceremony

We talked about the microphones and it is time to pick the right microphones for the ceremony. I have heard other djs speak about they rely on the corded microphone for ceremonies. As a dj company, they can offer the different microphone choices. They can be able to work any of the 3 types of microphones. A professional always prepares for the unexpected. What happens with the battery dies? What happens if the signal drops?  What happens if someone trips on the cord? What happens if the microphone picks up another signal and heard through the speakers?

 

Providing the sound, the dj has to let the officiant and or groom know how to use the wireless microphone or the lapel. Typically, the dj puts the lapel on the officiant or groom with the microphone pointed up. Then the dj will tuck the cabling in the shirt or pocket so its not totally visible. 

I always bring a multi channel mixer when it comes to ceremonies. I hook up a wireless microphone, a lapel and a corded microphone to it and test them all before the ceremony to ensure they work. Batteries should be within reach in case one of the wireless microphones need them. Depending on microphone, it gives indications if the battery is running low on the receiver or on the microphone itself. 

Which one is the best? It all depends what the bride the groom wants. With technology, every microphone sounds better than ever. At the same time, a classic never goes out of style (a corded microphone).

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Wedding Entrance Songs to get the Party Started (Grand Entrance)

Happy by Pharrel Williams

Crazy in Love by Beyonce

One More Time by Daft Punk

Let Me Clear My Throat DJ Kool

This is How We Do It Montell Jordan

Hip Hop Hooray by Naughty by Nature

I Got A Feeling by Black Eyed Peas

Turn Down for What  by Lil Jon

We Found Love by Rihanna and Calvin Harris

Hey Ya by OutKast

Celebration  by Kool and the Gang

All I Do is Win  by Dj Khalid

Uptown Funk  by Bruno Mars

Bitter Sweet Symphony by the Verve

You Can’t Hurry Love by the Supremes

Don’t Stop Believing by Journey

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High School and Junior High Dances Requests that I do in the Bay Area

  At some functions, I have an assistant with me who can get requests from students of a song they have to hear. Typically I have a list a week before that I follow, but I do take requests. Sometimes, I am doing the event solo so there is no one to take requests. Most often than not, a student will approach me right in the middle of a transition so they don’t have my all my attention. But when I m able to focus on their requests I will look it up and put it on my prepare list to have it close by so I can include it in the mix.

   I try to give all the students the attention that they want but it makes it difficult since I’m trying to keep the dance floor filled with paying attention to the lighting and the volume control. I have put down a notebook for students to put down their requests.  In the notebook, students are able to put the song name and artists.  Songs that have profanity or inappropriate I cross off since I cannot play them at a school dance. Once I see a song written a few times in different handwriting then I can slip it in. There were a few times students wrote their song in really big handwriting. Those ones are not played! This past week a student wrote please play this song and I will give you 10 dollars. Of course there was no student name but I thought it was funny so I played the song because the student was creative. I knew no one was going to be giving 10 dollars but it stood out.

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Let Djs Be Djs and Stop Telling Them What to Play (Unless it is a Jam!)

They use an analogy that someone would not go into a restaurant and tell a chef how to make food. I believe djing a party is a wee bit different.  As djs we play for the people. The best requests are the ones that go with the genre that the dj is playing. For example, if the dj is playing Bell Biv Devoe and a guest suggests throwing in En Vogue.  That is applauded. Usually I put in on my prepare list and throw in as soon as I can. If it isn’t the right genre I can still put it on my prepare list and can throw it on when its appropriate.  If they ask for a song I already play, then I ask them if there is another song I can play for them or I give them suggestions they can choose from.

   When I play at an event, I use the playlist given by the client and I will include music suggested by the guests. I will happily play the suggestion. If every guest came with a suggestion, I would add it to my list. It can be a little much when the same guest keeps on asking for more and more songs and the event becomes more about that guest than the rest of the guests of the party. As a dj, I never ask another dj to play my song since I know its difficult to dj a party and maintain the dancing vibe.  Sometimes djs get in a zone and playing hit after hit and the floor is jamming.  Be aware the wrong request can kill the party and the concentration of the dj.

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Ways to Save Money on the Wedding (so you have enough for your dj):

 

A way to save some dollars is to get married on a Friday or Sunday. If a Sunday is selected, then make sure a holiday Monday follows it to ensure your guest will stay longer.

 

If there is an option to have the ceremony and reception at the same location that can save time of commuting and places often give discounts since the couple are having both events at the same place. 

 

 

Having a buffet at the reception instead of a sit-down dinner will save money for the couple. Even if that is too much of a cost then appetizers can be served instead of a whole buffet. Brunch and lunch can be served instead of dinner to save on money.

 

 

Having liquor at the reception can be a high cost. It is more economic to have beer and wine at the reception and it can be done for a few hours or done the whole night unless the couple decides to do a paid bar.

 

Sometimes weddings are just for a small group of folks and it can be held at a restaurant. There is no need to pay for a rental space but only for the food and drink. Some restaurants have private rooms that may be reserved at no cost or a small fee.

 

 

An Officiate can help you with your budget or go over it. In California, officiants range from 250 to 500 dollars for the ceremony. And that does not even cover if they need extra audio for the ceremony if the venue does not provide it. In certain states, friends and family can be ordained and perform the ceremony. Please check if your state allows this.

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Wedding DJ Myths

It is just music and anybody can push play.

 

In essence, a monkey can push play, but are you going to trust a monkey with one of biggest days of your life? A professional dj prepares the playlist based on what the couple wanted. A true professional knows the keep the cocktail and dinner music at a lower volume, so the guests can socialize and not have to yell over the music. The party music is at a louder volume to get the party really started. With the excitement of the wedding, time zooms by and a true professional keeps the wedding within the timeline. 

 

They play the same music for every wedding.

 

You must be tired of the YMCA or the Chicken Dance or Celebration. To make sure the songs are not played at your wedding then make a DO NOT PLAYLIST.  Bride and groom work with the DJ to make a customized playlist. Cocktail hour can be classic Jazz sounds or can be 90’s R & B. Dinner music can be classical music or 80’s soft rock. Every wedding is different so the playlist will be different.

 

All DJs are the same.

 

This is not true by any means. Some Djs have the gift of gab on the microphone while others stand behind their music collection. Some djs do not know how to mix and fade songs out and put new songs in. Some djs can mix songs like you hear on the radio with a smooth transition. Equipment is not the same also and some djs would like a lot of bass and volume while others focus on the clarity of the music. Like other wedding vendors, there are so many choices out there.

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