Updated: Jul 6
With so many wedding DJs in Austin Texas, what does it take to be the crème de la crème in the “Live Music Capital of the World"?
Weddings in the south are an epic lifetime event, folk's around here go BIG or go home, and Texan Bride and Groom's always go big (in their own way)! I don’t know how wedding DJ companies do it in other cities because I was raised in Austin Texas and my wedding DJ company U7 Austin DJ is here in the city. But, here, in the music capital, DJ's know how to bring their electronic music A game to wedding's. So, with so many great DJ's in Austin, it's no surprise that the crème de la crème of wedding DJ's all share certain characteristics in common. In order to make it in such a competitive industry, said DJ's have to come with a level of professionalism and customer service that is next level. How do I know this? I’ve been an Austin Wedding DJ long enough to have met some great wedding DJ’s here in Austin and the ones that impress me all share the same seven characteristics. What are the attributes that will make a wedding DJ stand out as a professional Austin entertainer you ask?
Great question, let’s drive into what it takes to be at the top of the Austin Wedding DJ mountain of success and how couples can tell if a DJ is the right fit and “your” Austin Wedding DJ? The best wedding DJs in Austin have:
In this blog, I would like to share with you what it takes to make it to the top as a wedding DJ and what you should be looking for when booking a wedding DJ. This post will take a closer look at the 7 characteristics of a professional Austin wedding DJ.
7 Characteristics of a Professional Austin Wedding DJ
“You must have confidence in your competence.” - Elijah Cummings
As a professional, any wedding DJ worth their weight in salt will get the job done and done well. This level of wedding DJ professional has the skills that match the job requirements and they often produce results that exceed the expectations of their clients. A professional wedding DJ can easily provide you with the confidence of knowing you hired the right DJ company for the job. This level of DJ’ing is often booked a year in advance and that is for a good reason, they are the best of the best in the crazy competitive world of wedding DJ’ing. This level of wedding DJ’ing comes with years of knowledge on troubleshooting live event production, time management and results in a packed dance floor with unforgettable memories. A professional wedding DJ will create a dance party that keep’s you and your guests' dancing and talking about how much fun they had at your wedding long after your wedding day is over.
Pro Tip - Look for 5 star reviews from past clients on third party apps like;
1. The Knot
2. WEDDINGWIRE, and
Also, search engine profiles on google places and bing places are great insight into a wedding DJ companies work ethic and how they deal with unhappy customers. And, don’t forget to read the “bad” reviews to make sure you are comfortable and fully trust your wedding vendor to bring their A game to your important night. While, it is true, some people are negative by nature most if not ALL clients complaints are relevant and worth investigating not just as a business owner but a couple looking for the perfect wedding DJ for their big day.
“Good, Better, Best, never let it rest till your Good is Better than your Best.”- Saint Jerome
The best Austin Wedding DJ’s have a decade of knowledge under their belt. While that is not to say you can’t find a great newbie wedding DJ, because I’m the first to admit they do exist but they are a rare force to be reckoned with because professionalism involves digital and physical organization, time management, a crafted Master of Ceremonies skill set, and musical history knowledge to know what people are requesting and these wedding DJ skills take time to truly master as a professional. Moreover, a wedding DJ can create personalized playlists because he/she/they stay up-to-date on wedding and music trends. At every stage of a wedding DJ's career (newbie, professional and master) the DJ strives to master their Disc Jockey and MC role of the evening and continues to add to their musical library and what they already know as a professional wedding DJ. This high performing level of commitment is necessary to be the best wedding DJ that he/she/they can be and said wedding DJ will never let it rest till their personal good is better than their best.
Pro Tip: An itinerary created by a professional vendor is crucial to the success of an epic wedding that is flawless and moves with grace and class throughout the event. The DJ is the background maestro that keeps the wedding on time and said DJ can not do this without a detailed itinerary of your expectations for the evening. It is always a good idea to have your wedding itinerary created by or at least approved by a professional day of coordinator or wedding planner. While creating your own itinerary might seem easy it is not and you need wedding vendor professionals that work as a team to time manage your wedding so that it stays within your budget.
“Nothing in all the world is more dangerous than sincere ignorance and conscientious stupidity.” - MLK
My wedding DJ company, U7 Austin DJ along with other top Austin Wedding DJ’s is about conscientiousness and that involves being reliable, having high standards and a work ethic that sets the local industry bar. A wedding DJ cares about every aspect of his/her/their job and it shows. It's about being inclusive on the dance floor and well organized throughout the wedding night so said DJ can be the Master of Ceremonies that flawlessly moves from event to event with style. A top wedding DJ’s conscientiousness is second to none and he/she/they regularly follows up with the wedding planner, photographer(s) and videographer(s) throughout the night to ensure everything is going well and all the wedding vendors are on time and positioned for success.
Pro Tip - A top notch wedding DJ has great communication skills. Said DJ will be available to answer your questions at any reasonable hour of the day. While the weekend might not be the best day to connect because they are working, they should still be able to manage their day in which they can give you; an email, text message or call you back when you reach out. If you find communication hard from the beginning of the vendor relationship that is a sign his/her/their customer service skills might not be on the level you need them to be for an important day such as your wedding and you should move on from booking them and book the best professional wedding DJ you can afford. There are a lot of Austin DJ’s in the wedding game and it is no easy task but will be well worth the work you put into today by finding the right fit for your wedding day tomorrow. While we are all busy, a professional wedding DJ remembers that the day is about the clients' and their guests’ happiness and not their own. Not to mention if said DJ is unhappy being a wedding DJ in Austin they should get a new job that better fits their life and not make their career, or lack of career, their clients' problem. When you pay top dollar for a professional service that is exactly what you should get — professionalism from any vendor you hire to work with at your wedding, you deserve that.
“Always be yourself, express yourself, have faith in yourself, do not go out and look for a successful personality and duplicate it.” - Bruce Lee
To be a Master of Ceremonies you have to have a lot of personality. My favorite wedding DJs in Austin Texas MC weddings with charisma, they are down right likable from the second you meet them. Which I have to say makes them easy to befriend but tough competition for me because they set a high bar for the wedding industry in Austin. While I wish I could honestly say I’m the best forget the rest, the truth of the matter is Austin has the best wedding DJ’s in Texas and without a doubt the best of the best are great people in front and behind the DJ booth. I’m grateful to be part of Austin’s gig economy because the vendors I work with are creative, fun and all lead interesting lives when they aren’t making other people's dreams a reality.
Pro Tip - When choosing a wedding DJ, you should choose a DJ who’s style fit’s both your personality and the wedding themes vibe. While you will find many DJ’s are interesting people, a great wedding DJ/MC will have a certain charisma that they bring to the wedding that turns the night from a sacred ceremony into an epic dance party fast and right on time.
“Everyone should be respected as an individual, but no one idolized.” - Albert Einstein
Respect is what keeps professional wedding DJ's true to their word. It also stops said DJ from compromising their values on and off the job. Respect is bound up with being honest not to just yourself but also to the people you meet within your community. This means being a role model even if your role is as party god that leads dance floor bliss on a Saturday night. A Wedding DJ comes with respect and has good manners toward everyone, not just the people the DJ “needs” to impress. What's more, a wedding DJ shows you that they truly respect other people by taking your guests' musical requests (or job if they are on the clock) into account. A Wedding DJ works with all the other vendors you have hired and helps them to position said wedding vendors for that perfect shot or an epic moment in the evening. Having respect for other fields of work within the wedding industry seems obvious yet that all to often is not the case.
Pro Tip - Ask the professional opinion of the; wedding venue, wedding planner and other vendors who stands out in their mind's as the top wedding DJ’s of Austin. Most wedding venues and vendors have a preferred list of professionals that they can throw your way and all successful wedding DJ’s have created a large network around them with an impeccable reputation of five star customer service.
6. Emotional Intelligence
"Diamonds are formed under pressure.” - Unknown
While only one or two people get a diamond out of a wedding, it’s safe to say a wedding brings a lot of pressure to everyone involved. There is a lot of stress when your job is to live up to a (complete strangers) dream wedding day. The reality is high pressure is a major part of wedding DJing. To be a top notch Austin Wedding DJ you need to stay professional even under the pressure of a Bridezilla. This takes strategic moves on the DJ's part for managing both their time and emotions. Plus, a clear awareness of other people's feelings around them. In short, being a professional wedding DJ means keeping your emotions in check, checking in with other peoples’ emotions and what their nonverbal communication is expressing to you, this is called, reading the crowd and is what a packed dance floor is made of. All great wedding DJ’s have emotional intelligence, because they keep in mind, the day isn’t about them or their favorite songs, it’s about other people and keeping the dance floor lit so the guests will keep dancing long after the wedding is over and the DJ stopped playing music.
Pro Tip: Meeting your DJ in person, over Zoom or at least on the phone is crucial to hiring the right wedding DJ. There are a lot of great wedding DJs in Austin but trust me when I say that there are even more train wreck divas calling themselves DJ’s that will complicate your life (not just the day of the wedding). This is a fact, so I give you fair warning when I say meet the DJ that will be at your wedding not the owner or manager of the company. It’s great to like the owner of a wedding company you hire for your big day, it’s better to like the DJ that will be MCing your wedding day!
“I believe in a passion for inclusion.” - Lady Gaga
All DJ’s are passionate about music but are they inclusive on the dance floor? The modern day wedding is multi-generational and multi-ethnic with less attention being given to formal tradition. Instead, more details, now in days, are given to the authenticity of the couple's love-ship and their personal love story. The best DJ's adapt to modern (or traditional) weddings by practicing inclusiveness with all the couples guests from different cultural or religious backgrounds. Being a wedding DJ means you meet all kinds of people from all over the world, that’s the fun part of the job, the beautiful people! Diversity keeps the job enjoyable and moving forward because a big part of being a professional wedding DJ is knowing what's appropriate in different situations with different kinds of niche crowds. A wedding DJ/MC with an inclusive approach will avoid awkwardness, boosts the dance floor vibes, and helps the wedding guests to feel secure to let go and have fun on the dance floor. A great Austin Wedding DJ knows not just how to DJ an epic dance party but also offers wedding event design that welcomes your guests' into your celebration in the form of romantic wedding drapery, an open aired 360 booth, and custom colored event uplighting. All these event design details add up in a way that makes your wedding guest feel included in the wedding festivities. An example of how I practice inclusiveness on the wedding dance floor is that I always try to play the song requests of persons' in wheelchairs because they always have a place on my dance floor, they belong just as much as two feet dancers and will join in by dancing in their wheelchair. All to often I have witnessed people with assistance get out of their wheelchair and dance on their feet (if only for a moment), therefore including them in the dance floor celebration by honoring their song requests is honestly a highlight of every wedding DJ’s night. It's moments like this that make the night unforgettable.
Pro Tip: Ask your guests what songs will get them on the dance floor and add those song requests to your MUST PLAY LIST section on the DJ questionnaire so that said DJ can come prepared with your wedding crowd pleasers. Every wedding is different and some of your guests might be old friends of the family or distant relatives that you might not know very well. So asking “your people” what makes them shake their tail feathers is a great way to keep them entertained and enjoying your celebration to the fullest.
Lastly, in all my years as an Austin DJ I believe that a truly professional wedding DJ will gain your confidence immediately after your consultation with them, if you have doubts you should trust your instincts and continue to look for what feels right to you. I have met many awesome professional DJ’s here in the Austin area and I assure you there is an elite group of professional DJ's that brings their A game every time. Ultimately, the wedding DJ you hire for your big day should impress you with what they are doing now, but also show that he/she/they are eager to do it better and achieve more. Thus, when it’s all said and done your wedding day is about the two of you and celebrating your unique, one of a kind, love story, so choosing professional vendors for your wedding will ensure to keep the day focused on the two of you becoming one.
Note to reader... The above picture is of a wedding after party and I had been asked to go casual at the venue. This goes without saying, a wedding DJ should have the formal suit to meet the dress code for the night, even in a city that keeps it weird.