Updated: Aug 1, 2018
Since the 80's, DJs have been the go-to source for entertainment at wedding receptions. Classics from the era like Michael Jackson's 'Beat It' or Whitney Houston's 'I Wanna Dance with Somebody' can still be heard during many wedding dance floors. One could even go as far to say that the average American's idea of what to expect from a wedding DJ has been most largely influenced by the 80's 'wedding DJ persona'.
But is it still the same? After nearly 40 years, has anything changed? What should one expect from a wedding DJ in 2018?
Quite frankly, the bottom line is this: DJs and dance music have progressed into America's mainstream now more than ever, and with their rise, the average music listener has learned to expect more from those calling themselves disc jockeys. No matter you're own age, your reception is likely to have people of all ages, from kids to grandparents, in attendance, and it's also likely that you expect the dance portion of your reception to go on until(at least) midnight.
Younger people will be the ones carrying the energy on your dancefloor into the late hours, and as they've learned to expect more from DJs, you'll need someone who knows how to do more than simply fade from one track to the next to keep them dancing. If you want a memorable party, it begins and ends with how well your dancefloor goes. You can only reminisce about good food or good weather for so long. Your dancefloor experience will be something not only you, but your guests won't be able to forget, for better or worse.
So that covers the young crowd, but what about everyone else?
While it is true that the younger crowd is the hardest to please and that they will inevitably be the group carrying the dancefloor into the night, that doesn't mean you want a DJ who will cater ONLY to this crowd. You should expect a DJ to follow the energy on the dancefloor, and seldom does that mean going full-on 'Tiesto' at the beginning of the night. The older crowd will want to hear the slow songs, and the classics that everyone will know. They'll want to hear more than just a portion of the song they're dancing to. You should expect any DJ you meet to be able to please this crowd. They want to hear the whole song, and your DJ should recognize and accommodate this. What you don't want is a DJ who can appease your parents and grandparents, but can't push the energy any further after the older crowd has left. You should expect a DJ to have the skills to please everyone, and the experience to know when to 'turn up' and when to 'turn down'.