Top 5 Event Entertainment Myths
1. Every DJ does the same thing.
Imagine this: you walk into your company holiday party, and you’re dreading it. Every year it’s the same thing: a DJ set up at a banquet table in the corner, wires trailing everywhere, playing the same top 40’s music you hear on the radio, and he doesn’t care if people are dancing or not. He’s just playing what he wants to hear. You plan on staying for the obligatory hour, and sneaking out of the event early as you typically do. Sound familiar?
Now, imagine you walk into the party and you see a beautifully lit dance floor and a colorful, illuminated DJ booth. A stylishly groomed DJ is standing behind a sleek laptop, and you don’t recognize the music playing, but the combination of groovy beat and funky melody make you consider hitting the dance floor. Surprised, you recognize pods of your coworkers bopping around the dance floor, cradling cocktails and laughing together. You know they’re the cardigan-sporting workaholics you see every day in the break room… but in the rose colored lights of this party, they look like the beautiful people.
Both DJ parties, so same experience, right? Totally wrong, of course. Lesson learned: your DJ should focus intently on the type of experience you want for your event, and then describe how he’ll deliver the total package.
2. Bands are too expensive.
We always begin by asking our clients if they have a specific type of entertainment in mind. If it’s music they fancy, are they interested in a DJ, or live musicians? We often hear in response “we’re looking for a DJ because we know bands are too expensive”.
We’ve even heard the blanket statements like, “all bands cost $5,000.”
Just as we’ve made our case for the various types of DJs with price tags to suit, such is the case with bands. Live musicians don’t all have the same price tag, and they don’t all offer the same experience. Let’s play “what if”. You’re a Groom, tasked with handling the entertainment for your wedding. You know your Bride-to-be loves John Mayer, Jason Mraz and other coffee shop-esque modern day crooners.
Think the best you could do is to ask the DJ to play their tunes? It may surprise you how affordable it is to have an up-and-coming cover band trio jam during dinner, and then bring in a DJ for the dance party later. These are the gems of wisdoms that a true event producer can share with you… priceless.
3. The only types of entertainment are musical.
Like them or not, theme parties are here to stay. Diamonds and Denim, ’80s Prom, ’50s Sock Hop or Haunted Halloween – corporate and social event planners relish these repeat themes. Why? Because, guests love them.
The perfect entertainment can make a theme magical, and it doesn’t stop at the type of entertainment you can hear. If it’s a ’50’s party you’re hosting, tunes from that era are a given, but what about roller skating, poodle skirted waitresses passing mini Coke floats? Creepy haunted house style tunes are a must for a Halloween shindig, but how about an axe-toting, cape wearing stilt walker? Terrifying? Yeah, that’s the idea.
4. Entertainment only happens in the ballroom.
If you’re a DJ salesman, your job is to sell DJs. But if you’re an event producer, your challenge – should you choose to accept it – is to add a “burst of life” to each potentially boring part of an event experience. You know what part of the typical special event is usually a snooze? Cocktail hour. Quick! Picture yourself at cocktail hour; what are you listening to? Elevator music? Yeah, so are most people.
Not at our events! If you want your guests to have a memorable experience, cocktail hour MUST be their energizer and music is a huge piece of that puzzle. Congo drums? Yes! Jazzy crooners? You better believe it! Let’s talk about who your guests are and what types of tunes will put them in the mood for a fun filled evening.
5. There are “dancing crowds” and “non-dancing crowds”.
Here’s the thing. Choosing the right music to play, at the right time, for the right people is a brilliant science and only the very best music men (and women) can achieve it. That’s why the smartest of party-throwers will give their DJ some input on the type of crowd to expect, and give that DJ the freedom to work his magic. It may shock you which tunes actually draw your guests out onto the dance floor. Your friends are trendy, super trendy, but can they dance to “Titanium”? If not, don’t fret – the DJ will play something they can “step clap” to while feeling just as cool. Maybe most of your guests couldn’t name a Motown song if you asked, but if we catch a few tables boppin’ their heads to “Ain’t Too Proud to Beg” during dinner, we start to get an idea for what makes them tick. Crowd reading is an acquired skill, and separates music boys from music men.
Like what you read? Talk to EEP Events about your next special event!