These are the 21 most important questions to ask any professional disc jockey you are considering for your event, and will help you accurately gauge the professionalism, reliability, and honesty of any DJ’s you are considering.

Do you offer a written contract?

One of the first indicators whether a DJ is reliable and professional is a written contract. A written contract outlines services to be provided by the deejay to his/her clients, avoiding any potential misunderstandings.  A written contract fulfills the DJ’s obligation to provide a service to the client and therefore is important when seeking a professional DJ service.

Will you be the DJ at our wedding?

When seeking a DJ through an agency,  the person you are talking to on the phone may not be the DJ that will be playing at your event.  It is important that you request to talk to the specific DJ  that will play at your event to discuss details about the event and get a feel for the DJ. A written contract will assure you the DJ you have agreed to hire will play at your event since his/her name will be specified in the contract.

May we meet with you in person before we sign a contract?

A website or a phone conversation may not always give you a good idea whether a specific DJ may be suitable for your event. It is essential to meet with the DJ in person and you should request to do so when looking for a DJ. Sometimes, a simple face-to-face meeting will create a level of comfort for you, reassuring you  the person you are discussing an important event with, will be the DJ making it memorable for  you, your family and/or your guests.


How long will you hold our date for us?

When you begin to shop around for a DJ to play at your event, chances are you are looking at more than one DJ. As a result, you need adequate time to meet with specific DJs in mind and decide which one is the best fit. After contacting a potential DJ, a reasonable amount of time you should expect the date to be held is one to two weeks. This period should give you enough time to meet with the DJs in mind and decided which one to choose. You should ask a specific DJ or agency how long they can hold a date for you until you decide.


How long have you been a DJ and how many events have you done?

Both of the questions are essential when looking for a DJ. Although a DJ may have quite a few years of experience in the industry, the number of events he/she plays regularly is important therefore, it’s also a good idea to find out how many events the DJ has played. If the event is specific, such as a wedding, find out how many weddings the DJ has done.


How many other types of events do you do per year?

There are number of DJ s that specialize in specific events as well as DJ s that are well rounded and can provide a fun atmosphere regardless of the event type. You should be cautious of DJ s that specialize in one specific type of event. A wedding DJ may to be suitable for a school dance party just as a karaoke DJ may not have the skills to play at a formal dinner.


Do you act as the “emcee” and make all of the announcements?

Making announcements during an event is an essential part of a DJ’s job.  You should consult with the DJ to clarify if he/she provides announcements during an event or if the event is more suitable  to keep the announcements at a minimum.


How would you define your “style” when making announcements?

This is an important question to ask since it gives you an idea of what kind of a match the DJ will be at the event you are hosting.  A DJ that is hesitant in making announcements may be a bad match for an event where encouraging your guests to dance is import. On the other hand, a very energetic DJ may be a bad choice for a more elegant event, such as a dinner party.


What do you do to motivate the crowd if nobody is dancing?

DJs have many different styles when it comes to approaching a situation such as this one. While one DJ  may use a careful song selection bring the guests on the floor, another one may choose the microphone in encouraging your guests to dance. Talk to your DJ to decide how you would like the situation to be handled.


What if something happens to you and you can’t make it to the wedding?

It took you months of preparation for your event to take place only to find out last minute the DJ you have booked cannot make it. Unfortunately, sometimes accidents do happen and professional DJs should be prepared for worst case scenarios. Most professional DJs do have an established back-up plan. As professionals, they have a network of DJ s they can turn to in case they cannot make it to an event. Some take it a step further and have specific back-up DJ s in place for every event they play. You should ask this question for assurance of booking a qualified DJ will make your event as enjoyable as possible.


How do you keep your music collection up-to-date?

DJ s have the opportunity to subscribe to a selection of music update services in order to stay up-to date with current music. A professional DJ will keep his/her ears open at all times for what is current on the radio and diligently follows the charts for the most requested, popular and new songs.


How involved can we be in selecting music for our event?

Your involvement in the music selection for your event should be at your discretion. Some DJ s like to keep the involvement of others to a minimum while others prefer their clients to make a music selection prior to the event. You should feel comfortable in talking to your DJ to make sure your involvement in the music selection is acceptable and accommodating.


Do you take requests from our guests?

Majority of DJ s don’t have a problem with taking requests from guests. It is you event and you want to make sure your guests are comfortable and enjoying themselves but you should also feel comfortable with their selection not being something you didn’t like.


When do you arrive to set up for our wedding?

Professional DJ s will arrive at least an hour before the beginning of your event to ensure reasonable time to set-up their equipment and resolve any unpredictable problems.


How much of a deposit is required to secure our date?

A 50% deposit is pretty standard in the industry. A deposit ensures the DJ’s protection as well as yours. Some DJ s require only a very small deposit which may potentially lead to unwanted complications. If a written contract is very basic with a specific cancelation policy, a DJ may easily back out from playing your event and liable to paying back only the small deposit you have initially made.


What is included in the cost of my event?

Different DJ s use different ways of charging for their services. Some DJ s prefer to charge an hourly rate for a specific number of hours with a new rate for additional hours. Other DJ s offer a flat-rate price for the entire service. Some DJ s also charge a fee for individual equipment accessories you would like at your event. Whichever pricing method a deejay decides to use, make sure you have a clear understanding which one it is.


How much would you charge for overtime?

Different DJ s use different pricing systems for overtime. Make sure the DJ specifies if the price for overtime is a flat fee or a rate.


Do you take any breaks?

To ensure your guests are being entertained at all times during your event, a DJ will need to provide a service during the entire length of the event. Besides taking a restroom break or eating a quick meal, a DJ does not need to take a break where entertainment for your guests will be interrupted for a longer period of time. Check with your DJ to make sure you are aware of any breaks that may require interruption of entertainment for you guests.


What kind of equipment do you use?

Not everyone is a DJ and therefore does not have the knowledge of professional equipment brands used in the industry. Some brands used in the industry include the names Technics, Pioneer, Denon, American Audio, Stanton, JBL, Bose, Machie, Rane, QSC and Shure.
If you would like specific equipment at your event, remember to ask the DJ if it can be provided.


Do you have a wireless microphone?

A wireless microphone should be available for use by every professional DJ. A wireless microphone offers the convenience of you or your guests to make special announcement, toast and speeches without being restricted to the DJ area.

Do you have a “light show”?

This is an important question to ask a DJ when organizing an event. Depending on the event, sometimes a live show may not be appropriate. As a result, some DJs charge additional fees for light equipment while others include it in their entire service fee. Make sure you specify to the DJ if you would like to have light show since it may have an impact the event and your guest in ways traditional lights wouldn’t.