From background music during cocktail hour to post-dinner dance party, music plays an important role in the success of your event. We sat down with DJ Jon Wiley to learn more about just how critical this element is and the role of a DJ at your event.

Jon Wiley

Everyone knows a DJ’s job is to provide music, but as behind-the-scenes professionals, we know there’s much more to it. So, what else does a good DJ do at an event?

“A good DJ is paying attention to what is working for the guests through physical cues,” says Jon. “What music is making people bob their heads or tap their feet. Usually you have a playlist prepped, but you will need to adjust based on what the guests are connecting with or what is being requested.”

From your perspective, how do the event planner and DJ successfully collaborate on an event? In your experience, has an event planner been an important partner to you?

“A good Planner is instrumental in making sure that the client’s expectations are being met and we’re all on the same page. Also, the Event Planner can suggest add-on things like up-lighting, video screens and dance floor lighting that can liven up an event significantly. The goal is to make the client happy and all of those things can help elevate the evening.”

How much preparation goes into an event for you?

“At least 4 hours of music prep – and that’s not including emailing the client back and forth. There is usually a ‘Don’t play’ list, familiar favorites I will suggest, setting the mood and then mixing up the decades from there. If the event has a specific theme or time period representation, like a ‘Great Gatsby’ party, then it becomes challenging to find music and prep time increases.”

DJ Jon Wiley working a Great Gatsby party!

Any other tips in working with a DJ on a company event?

“Keep it current and the DJ will make the event as fun as possible. A top DJ will ‘work’ the party and your guests will be pleasantly surprised to have a good time!”

We’d like to thank Jon for his time and for sharing some great insight when working with a DJ on an event. Some key takeaways: trust your DJ to read people and adjust music accordingly, event planners are essential (hire Swank today!) and stick with current tunes and rely on your DJ to handle the rest!

Contact us for more tips regarding music at your next event.