Picking the right dj

We’ve had quite a few couples come to us last minute this year complaining that their dj wasn’t working out.  Perhaps they aren’t returning calls, perhaps they aren’t working well with other vendors, perhaps they are dropping out at the last minute.  My heart goes out to these couples because, by the time they come to us, we and all of our respected fellow dj referrals are usually booked out.

One thing all of these unfortunate couples have in common, they chose their dj, not because they felt that the fit was right, but because they found a better deal.  Look, I’m not saying that all inexpensive djs are bad, nor am I saying that all high end djs are great, but the old cliche is often true, you get what you pay for.

You see djs, and wedding vendors in general, aren’t coming up with their rates to gouge the client, far from it.  We are providing a higher level of service, including user friendly websites, online communication, high quality equipment with backups in place, full insurance, all of the little details you, as a client, are looking for to determine who is the right person to represent you at your one and only wedding day.

Problem is when the budget gets in the way.  Of course, times are tight for everyone, and we all have to be aware of where our money is going.  I don’t blame couples for being concerned with the bottom line.  However, there are tons of inexperienced folks out there, looking to earn a few extra bucks on the weekend, and these folks have no qualms about cutting corners, and doing the least amount of work necessary to get through the event.

I guess the rule of thumb is, trust your instincts.  If you have a bad vibe about this person, move on.  If you feel good about them, they may just be worth that extra money.  You don’t want to be that bride or groom that contacts us last minute, desperate because your dj is flaking, or just not working out.  Because last minute, the good vendors are already booked.

 


Our new Website!

I probably should have blogged about this last week, as that’s when we launched the thing, but I’ve always been one to do things my own way.  Or maybe just the way I felt like doing it at the time.

Whatever.  In any case, we here at Waveform Events are proud to launch our brand spankin’ new website!  Which, of course, you already know, as you’re reading this blog right now.

So what’s the point of blogging about it?  Perhaps it’s to show off our new gallery section.  Or to bring to your attention our videos of past events. Or so you can check out our new staff profiles.  I don’t know, why does anybody blog about their websites in the first place?

Do they even?  Am I serving any purpose by blogging about a site you’re already on?  Perhaps not.  On the other hand, perhaps you just like reading dj blogs.  Or blogs written by folks in the events industry.  Or maybe you just like reading any old blog.  I don’t know, you tell me, you’re the one reading this.

Oh wait, I know why I blogged about our new site.  It’s because we’re always looking to improve it.  If you have any ideas or see anything you think might need fixing or could be done a little better, let us know.  We have a very friendly staff (most of us) here at Waveform Events, and we’ll treat you right, don’t worry.  Drop us a line let us know what you think.

So there you have it, our blog celebrating our new website.  Now go enjoy it, you crazy blog readers, all of you!


Rachel and David 5-26-2012

Check it out!

http://vimeo.com/m/46079791

Rachel and David had a beautiful wedding day, the wedding day of their dreams!  Thanks to Kroh Media, they can relive the highlights for the rest of their happy lives together!  (Including a few choice moments, courtesy of Waveform Events… wink!)

Of course, no wedding is complete without the entire team.  Photographer Holly Steen of Cakes and Kisses Wedding Photography captured the moments as well, Lindsey of The Ultimate Affaire Catering provided a delicious meal that all of the guests loved, and, of course, our great friend Shannon of Castle Green in Pasadena opened the doors to one of Southern California’s most beautiful wedding venues for this party to take place in!

And you can see the results in the video!  Thank you, Rachel and David, for assembling such a top team!  We had a great time, and we know you did too!


The curse of the cheap dj

It’s a problem up and down the wedding world, those part-time vendors who charge next to nothing for their less-than-skilled services. They prey on unsuspecting clients and undercut true professionals in their field. Annette Hoegner of A Classic Touch Events, one of our favorite coordinators, tells this horror story of an unfortunate couple who chose to book a cheap dj:

As a planner I am always leery when I hear that a couple wants to hire a DJ that is offering a deal that seems to good to be true.

My big example of this is from a wedding I had last year. Against my recommendation my couple hired a DJ they found at a bridal show I had never heard of that was charging them only $700 for ceremony music, reception music, MC and an crew of 5 to pull it all off. Well it was an absolute nightmare. Below are the bullet points of the main disasters of the
night.

 

  • Forgot to let extended staff know they were doing ceremony music
  • Started ceremony 20 minutes late while they downloaded the music on the lap top (after I had confirmed all ceremony music)
  • All staff was dressed in faded t-shirts and tennis shoes after being told what appropriate dress would be
  • no recessional music until the 3rd bridesmaid went down the aisle (awkward silence when bride and groom exited)
  • The MC was dressed like a streetwalker and spoke with harsh slang
  • No music for cocktail hour until 20 minutes in since they arrived late and were still setting up
  • played first dance song for father-daughter dance
  • ruined voice over that was supposed to be played at start of father daughter dance from the bride to her father
  • MC called all widows and divorcees out to the dance floor for bouquet toss (TACKY)

All of this to say you get what you pay for and this couple deeply regretted their $700 DJ deal that ended up ruining their $20,000 reception so in the end it cost them much more then going with someone reputable. Don’t let this happen to you!

Annette Hoegner

A Classic Touch Events

The worst thing about the entire ordeal is that the couple couldn’t realize the mistake until it was too late to do anything about it. Of course budget is important. We all need to keep track of where our money goes, but the fact of the matter is, price is the wrong reason to choose a dj, or any other vendor for that matter. Waveform Events may or may not be the right fit for you, but the right fit is what you’re looking for, not the lowest rate. The unfortunate result of that is a once-in-a-lifetime event, forever tainted in your memories.


U Can’t Touch This

My favorite weddings are when I really connect with a couple. We had the pleasure of dj’ing Genevieve and Paul’s wedding earlier this year at one of our favorite venues Castle Green in Pasadena. I loved these two from the first time I met them.

Those who know me know that I’m a bit of a movie geek. Well, from the moment they walked in the door, we started talking movies. These two met in film school and are writers, directors, and other movie-type things themselves.

They chose Power of Love for their grand entrance, a song from one of my favorite films Back to the Future. Even more exciting, Paul and one of his groomsmen performed a couple of numbers in character as The Blues Brothers, a film no self-respecting geek doesn’t love. I got to introduce the Blues Brothers, a career thrill for me!

Moving beyond the film world, the party was phenomenal and there was a hilarious moment captured that I will now share with you, summoning the power of YouTube:

U Can’t Touch This

What a great party, great guest, a great couple. Thank you Genevieve and Paul!


Karina and Mark’s wedding

There’s this thing that brides love these days, the candy station. It’s an addendum to the traditional wedding cake, where various sorts of candy are available to guests in buffet form. I know you’ve seen these things. And we dj’s love them. Problem is, we still have to fit into our suits every weekend.

Karina and Mark got married at one of our premier venues City Club on Bunker Hill in Downtown Los Angeles. This place is awesome. An exclusive club, up on the 54th floor of the Wells Fargo Building, the ballroom boasts a panoramic view of the Los Angeles basin, and some outlying regions. Yet I only had eyes for Too Sweet Events’ candy.

Ok, beyond my sweet obsession, this party was a blast! Mark is a cop and, like I always say, cop parties always rock. ALWAYS. I don’t know what it is about those guys, but the uniform comes off, they hit the dance floor.

It was also a pleasure working with Alison and Mary of Just Married Videography and photographer Carissa Woo. When you put those three ladies, Ernest and his City Club staff, and Waveform Events together, you have a team that can make your wedding one that your guests will be raving about the next day.

And having a candy station doesn’t hurt either.


Photo Shoot

It’s a little unusual for a dj company, but last week we provided music and lights for a bridal photo shoot. Well, the lighting’s not so unusual; we got the chance to show off our decor and dance lighting, enhancing the shoot for Holly Steen Lowzik of Cakes and Kisses, one of our favorite photographers around town.

The shoot took place at Pasadena’s historic Castle Green. For those digging showbiz trivia, that’s where Bridesmaids star Kristin Wiig got married, proving she’s not always a bridesmaid. Since I’m name dropping anyway, let’s see if I can get all of the wedding peoples who helped out on the shoot recognized…

Isabel Gonzalez shoot behind the scenes footage, Fantasy Frostings provided one of their delicious wedding cakes, Encore Bridal showed off their beautiful wedding dresses, Enchanted Garden brought the flowers, Calligraphy Katrina brought samples of their menues and placecards, and Wendy Ramos of Just Wenderful coordinated the whole thing, keeping the train on the tracks.

So, other than lighting, what did we do? Well, we added to the atmosphere, staging a first dance, a cake cut, we brought our photobooth, and, at the very end, our own Justin thrilled the fellow vendors, by leading them all in the Thriller dance. It was thrilling!

Thanks to all of you folks who helped out. If I forgot anybody (crossing my fingers that I didn’t), let me know so I can edit this thing. And thanks for asking us to be involved. We had a great time!


Vendor wedding

We wedding folks go to weddings more than other folks, big surprise there, but every now and then, one of us gets married. I know, just like regular peoples!

A month ago, on the anniversary of our country’s birth (July 4th, for those of you who skipped history class), one of our own, the very talented photographer Holly Steen became Holly Steen Lowzik as she married the love of her life Jeff Lowzik. We here at Waveform Events were honored to be among the LA Wedding community’s elite who were invited.

Now I could go on and on like a typical Angelino name dropping the who’s who of SoCal’s wedding professionals who were in attendance, but I don’t want to forget anyone. I will note, however that I didn’t see any other dj’s there…

Of even greater interest is the venue; none other than Dodger Stadium. And I’m not talking about just the clubhouse, we were in the stands, watching the game, cheering every time Holly and Jeff’s names came up on the screen.

Congrats to Holly and Jeff! We had such a blast at your wedding!


Happy 40th Anniversary, Leanne and George

We were to understand that there was going to be an orangutan at the party. It’s an in-joke for Leanne and George as they celebrate 40 years of marriage at the Long Beach Marriott. We were excited, an actual orangutan!

Well, some silly law or rule or something didn’t allow for simian visitors, so it was up to us to make the party happen. We may not (or may) be zoo animals, but that was one blast of an anniversary bash.

Of course weddings are our bread and butter, but we’re always up for showing a group a good time, no matter the kind of party. And George and Leanne certainly did have a good time. And so did those guests of theirs.

There was an open bar, a photo booth, and of course, that dance floor, which was hopping the whole night long. We didn’t have the orangutan, but everyone still had a blast.

Happy 40th, George and Leanne! We’ll be expecting the orangutan when we dj your 80th.


Allen Layton

I’m going to get a little more personal in this one. The Southern California wedding dj community lost one of its best this past weekend. Allen Layton owner of AAA Dj Service and Sounds Like Fun Entertainment was a talent, a professional and a friend.

I met Allen at one of his favorite venues, La Venta Inn in Palos Verdes, a few years ago and he really stood out to me. As most who know me can tell you, I’m pretty critical of other dj’s. Very few meet my admittedly high standards. When I saw Allen in action, I realized that he was something special.

So, impressed with his emcee skills, I struck up a conversation with him and started a professional relationship with a dj from whom I’d learn much.

The general impression of wedding dj’s is that of the cheesy attention hound, drinking from the open bar, hitting on the bridesmaids, showing up late, mispronouncing names, and so on. Allen was the polar opposite.

A professional in every respect, he listened to the needs of his couples, their dreams, their vision for their big day. And then he delivered. He never stole focus from the stars of the show, and he was one of the most respected, referred event dj’s in Southern California.

We often had a bit of a philosophy around here at Waveform Events whenever we questioned how to handle a situation with a couple or at an event. The answer was often a question: “What would Allen do?” To emulate a performer of his level could only yield success.

To those who knew him, a celebration of his life will take palce on Sunday, March 13th at La Venta Inn, 796 Via Del Monte, Palos Verdes Estates, CA 90274, from 3 to 8pm.

It was an honor to know Allen Layton.


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