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Request Lists and taking requests are a common thing at almost every wedding I dj at. There are positives and negatives to requests, whether they are from the bride and groom or from your guests. When getting married, you must ask yourself what type of party do you want to have? Do you want the type of party where its like a juke box? or iPod playing all night? Do you want to have a party where the dj is playing Top 40 music, then all of a sudden, the music changes to country, then the next song is a rock and roll?  This is the reality at some weddings and parties.

Some couples want an the DJ to go with the flow and play music in sets, and genres, and typically these are the weddings that are the most successful in my experience. Sometimes, at the end of the wedding, it is necessary to go into a bar style playing due to the fact guests are tired from dancing all night. This is usually the time to start playing some off tempo requests and sing along songs.

There is also this new trend of having your dj connected via an app to your guests so they can submit requests directly instead of coming up to the dj. Think about this, your dj is mixing, mcing, and do you want your dj looking at their phone all night with requests? This is similar to back in the day when dj’s used to put little cards, or note pads on each table before the dancing starts. This is a double edged sword. When a dj gets a list like this you must understand, if a guest requests a song and doesn’t hear it, they will be upset because they didn’t hear their song. Secondly this is going back to letting your guests dictate the party. Whose to say those requests are in sync with what your party needs? It could somebody simply wanting to hear a song from their teenage years, not a song that will get people up on the dance floor.

When I meet with a couple, I sit down with the bride and groom and we are very clear on the the type of party they want, and the request lists that they give me. I’ve experienced couples giving me pages and pages of music they want to hear at their wedding. I always tell them, what is the point of having a dj if you just want an iPod there all night. Just get an iPod and rent two speakers. Its a lot cheaper.

The best scenario I tell couples is to give me the genres or songs you definitely do not want to hear, and then give me a few songs that must be played, and then I will incorporate them into the night. As far as requests from guests, I take requests, but if they are songs that are not jiving with what the bride and groom want to hear, I tell them right then and there that this is not what the couple wants to hear. I get it in this generation of instant gratification, people think that this is their personal party and think they know what people want to hear. If a DJ played every single request people ask for, just to make one person happy, it would be ludicrous. Imagine, a couple hires a dj, they go through consultation, after consultation, plan their whole evening, plan the music, then a few selfish person insists on hearing the chicken dance. The Bride and groom said they did not want to hear that type of music. Now there are 3 people who are happy, but 97% of the people are sitting down, going for a drink, and the vibe gets lost because the dj wants to make these three people happy, and uses the excuse that it was a request.

The truth is, often some requests are in cohesion with the direction the party is going, and when it fits in, its a great addition to the party, but sometimes you get drunk wacky selfish people who don’t realize that the party is not just for them but the whole as a group.

Here’s what happens almost 98% of the time. Guests come up and ask do you take requests? I say if its what the bride and groom want, then they tell me, and I generally agree or don’t, and let them know so they are not in a bad mood, if I say no, I explain that is not what the bride and groom are looking for, and I would say they usually understand. This is a far better solution to taking requests and saying yes to everything and having your party filled with Chicken dance requests, and polkas!

 

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