Wedding DJ Due Diligence

You’re tying the knot, and (usually) it only happens once. You want everything to be perfect, especially the music. After all, what’s the last thing you and your guests will remember from your wedding? How good (or bad) the music was, and how much (or little) everyone danced!

Here’s a useful list of questions that you should be asking when you’re choosing your DJ, plus One Night Only’s brief responses.

How much do you charge?

Start by asking yourself how important the music and the dancing is compared to other elements, such as decor and flowers, venue hire, photographer, bar bill, food spend, stationery, etc. How much are you willing to pay for each of those in relation to your music? Does it make sense to spend more on your stationery per head than your entertainment per head? It’s best to think about it in this way, rather than comparing the prices of DJs to see what the ‘market price’ might be. YGWYPF. You get what you pay for.

We understand the reality of budget constraints, and offer different packages to accommodate them, but we don’t play in the ‘little league’. If you’re looking for a cheap, inexperienced DJ with low-end equipment, you’ve come to the wrong place. We have a minimum standard that we can comfortably offer.

For those fortunate with unconstrained budgets, the sky is the limit, and we can put together an earth-shattering experience – just talk to us.

How experienced are you?

One Night Only has been entertaining dance floors since 2005, and we’ve learnt a lot on the way. We have 2 tiers of DJs (based on experience) that we offer as options.

Our “professional” tier consists of DJs who have at least 10 years in the DJ game, and 5 years in the wedding scene. DJing is what they do. With that much deck-time comes the ability to be vastly dynamic, and work a crowd with confidence to get the most from them. Spot what works, spot what doesn’t, adapt accordingly, and maximise the dancing.

Our “junior” tier DJs have at least 3 years behind them, have learnt from the maestros, have a vast knowledge of music, and have a natural flair for crowd-reading and crowd-pleasing. They’re gigging their way to becoming pros.

What’s your music style?

The real question is “what’s your taste in music?” We know that different folks need different tunes, so we work with you to figure that out first, and then choose the right DJ to match your preferences. It’s pointless and unfair on both parties to mismatch the DJ and the expected crowd.

If you want rock, alternative, folk and metal, we won’t suggest a DJ who specialises in house, electro, techno and EDM. If you want sokkie, langarm, treffers and 80s, you’re not going to get someone with a box full of kwaito. A bit extreme, but you get the point?

We’d rather be honest, and tell you that we don’t have the right guy for the job, if that’s the feeling we get. At the end of the day, it’s your wedding, not ours, and we’ll make sure that we stick to what you want, and avoid what you don’t want.

When do you arrive?

We arrive 2 hours before that package start time, which gives us plenty of time to get things setup and ready, plus deal with any possible hurdles. Things should be up and running within the hour, with the other hour giving us a safety net. If you need us there earlier, that’s not a problem. Simply add overtime and we’re good to go!

Do you do a site visit?

Typically no. We are experts, we prepare beforehand, we do our homework, and we arrive with plenty of time and additional cables so that we can deal with tricky venues on-the-fly. Plus we’ve probably been to your venue before anyway!

If you insist on a site visit, that’s not a problem, but you will have to cover the time and travel.

How does overtime work?

When the clock strikes twelve, the DJ turns into a pumpkin, but you have the option to keep him going until the sun comes up at an hourly rate. We are flexible, and we are there to keep you entertained for as long as you want.

Can we meet the DJ?

Yes indeed. It’s usually a better idea to delay the meeting until most of the logistical and musical details have been finalised, so that when you do meet, it’s more about ironing out the details, getting to know one another a bit, and preventing any surprises from both parties on the actual day. You will gauge from your interaction via email and phone whether a meeting really is necessary… very often it’s not, but that’s entirely up to you.

What’s your backup plan?

We are a group of DJs with a bunch of quality, reliable equipment, and we always have personnel and equipment on standby. Should anyone fall ill or should there be any accidental damage to equipment, we will provide a suitable alternative. Whether someone has to drive to site or step in, we will make it work.

Do you care about aesthetics?

Absolutely! We keep our equipment in pristine condition, we tape cables to the floor and stands, and our DJs dress to impress. You won’t have us rocking up in sneakers and vests, and you won’t find us displaying banners or signs. It’s your wedding, it’s your look, and we will respect and conform to the look and feel of the show.

What brands of equipment do you use?

We mentioned before – YGWYPF – and the same applies to equipment. We only use tried, tested and trusted quality brands, such as Pioneer DJ, Denon DJ, HK Audio, JBL Professional, Electro Voice, Shure, DBX. It really does make a difference when the sound is pure and the gear is reliable.

Avoid brands such as Wharfedale, Hybrid, Behringer, Dixon, and the like!