How to Hire a DJ for Your Unique Hudson Valley Wedding

For most couples, hiring a wedding DJ is a new — and sometimes challenging — experience.

Hudson Valley Wedding First Dance at Locust Grove Set to Music by DJ Bri Swatek Courtesy of Allan E Levine Photography

Hudson Valley Wedding First Dance at Locust Grove Set to Music by DJ Bri Swatek Courtesy of Allan E Levine Photography

Although some couples may have previously hired DJs for other personal or workplace events — and many couples have seen DJs perform at weddings for family and friends — most brides and grooms find themselves searching for a truly professional wedding DJ for the very first time.

What should you look for when searching for the best of the best in professional Hudson Valley wedding DJs? Where should you look for reviews of Hudson Valley DJs?  What questions, beyond the price or cost of DJ services, should you ask Hudson Valley DJs?

The number one question you should always ask up front of any Hudson Valley DJ is one that many couples often overlook:  “who is coming to my wedding?”

Hudson Valley Wedding at Locust Grove Set to Music by DJ Bri Swatek Courtesy of Allan E Levine Photography

Hudson Valley Wedding at Locust Grove Set to Music by DJ Bri Swatek Courtesy of Allan E Levine Photography

“If we hire your company, who will be working at our wedding?” and “Do you ever subcontract your work out to other wedding vendors?” are two excellent opening questions when interviewing a prospective DJ for your once-in-a-lifetime event.

There are many great companies in the Hudson Valley that offer multiple DJs for you to choose from for your wedding celebration. They offer the opportunity for you to see samples of their work and meet with your personal vendor before the big day. However, there are also a number of services in the tri-state area that offer “too good to be true” prices for “someone” to come work at your wedding.

I’ve said this many times in my career as a DJ, MC, and event host: the words “surprise” and “wedding” rarely go together well. You should know exactly who all your wedding vendors are — especially your DJ — and you should have the opportunity to be totally comfortable with them well in advance of the big day. Anything less than that feeling of complete confidence is not worth it.

Once you have confidence that you are talking to the actual person who will be there with you from the initial planning stages to the last dance of the night, it’s time to get to know your wedding DJ.  Don’t ever be afraid to ask your any of your wedding vendors — including your DJ — any of the following questions:

– Are you a full-time wedding professional?
– How many years of experience do you have in the wedding business?
– How many weddings do you work per year?
– How many weddings do you (or does your company) work in one day?
– Are you registered as a legitimate business? (DBA, Inc., or LLC)
– Are you a member of a professional association?
– Are you insured for liability?
– Do you use professional equipment?
– Do you provide backup equipment at my wedding?
– What’s *your* backup plan?
– What happens if I cancel the wedding or need to change the date of the wedding?
– When will you arrive on my wedding day?
– Will you be suitably dressed for our wedding?
– Will you be willing listen to me, and follow my plans for my wedding?
– What are your pricing packages, options, and services offered?
– What specifically is in included in your pricing, and what is “extra,” an “add-on,” or a “fee?”
– How much is your deposit, how do payments work, and what methods of payment do you accept?
– Do you provide a written contract?
– Can I have references and contact information from previous customers?
– Can I have references and contact information from other wedding professionals?
– Why did you decide to become a wedding vendor?
– What do you enjoy most about being a wedding professional?

Hudson Valley Wedding Dance Party at Locust Grove Set to Music by DJ Bri Swatek Courtesy of Allan E Levine Photography

Hudson Valley Wedding Dance Party at Locust Grove Set to Music by DJ Bri Swatek Courtesy of Allan E Levine Photography

The American Disc Jockey Association provides questions like these, as well as things to look for in your vendors’ potential answers, online. While the ADJA’s guidelines are mainly focused on hiring a DJ, these questions could easily be applied to most of the wedding vendors you are looking to hire for your big day.

In addition, as the owner of DJ Bri Swatek, Spinning with Style, I would recommend these additional resources to use when you begin to look for Hudson Valley DJs to provide music, entertainment, Disc Jockey, and MC services for your upcoming wedding:

American DJ Association
10 Questions to Ask a DJ before You Hire Them

Bridal Guide
10 Questions to Ask Before Booking Your DJ

Huffpost Weddings
10 Questions To Ask A Potential Band Or DJ

The Knot
22 Questions to Ask Your Band or DJ

Brides.com
Every Single Question You Need to Ask Your Wedding DJ or Bandleader

Martha Stewart Weddings
Hiring a Disc Jockey

Here Comes the Guide
Questions to Ask a DJ or Live Entertainment

Wedding Vendor Reviews:  The Knot

Wedding Vendor Reviews:  WeddingWire

Here are a few articles from fellow industry pros as well:

“Do Your Research – Finding the Perfect Wedding DJ”

Alan Robb, owner of Accent Events in Wisconsin suggests you “Do Your Research” when “Finding the Perfect Wedding DJ.”

“Say YES to the DJ!”

Elite Wedding and Event Planning’s Angela Christoforo — located in the Hudson Valley of NY — offers a list of great advice on hiring the perfect DJ for your wedding day.

“How Much Should Your Wedding DJ Cost?”

Stacie Tamaki of I Found the Place interviews a number of the best professional wedding DJs across the country to demonstrate that “there is a big difference between how “professional” and “stereotypical” DJ’s view weddings” in her article “How Much Should Your Wedding DJ Cost?”

“How to Choose a DJ . . . a Decision Worth the Effort”

Judy Lewis at HudsonValleyWeddings.Com offers great advice on hiring Hudson Valley DJs in her article “How to Choose a DJ . . . a Decision Worth the Effort.”

“How to Select a DJ”

Shandria Strickland, Chief Entertainment Officer of A Woman’s Touch Entertainment in Atlanta offers advice on “How to Select a DJ” that could be applied in any area of the country, including the Hudson Valley.  Hear her unique perspective on the value of hiring a professional to DJ your once-in-a-lifetime event.

“6 Things Brides Really Look For In A Wedding DJ”

At Digital DJ Tips, Barney Grossman offers a list of qualities that every good wedding DJ should strive for in terms of performance and professionalism.  It’s also a great list of questions to ask your potential wedding DJ.

Hudson Valley Wedding Dance Party at Locust Grove Set to Music by DJ Bri Swatek Courtesy of Allan E Levine Photography

Hudson Valley Wedding Dance Party at Locust Grove Set to Music by DJ Bri Swatek Courtesy of Allan E Levine Photography

Finally, while these articles are mainly focused on brides and grooms hiring Hudson Valley DJs, many of these questions could easily be applied to almost all of the Hudson Valley wedding vendors you are looking to hire for your big day.

Congratulations,

Bri

__________

DJ Bri Swatek, Spinning with Style
Your DJ for Your Unique Style
in the Hudson Valley of New York

Email:   briswatek@gmail.com
Phone:   845.235.0080
Online:   www.djbriswatek.com

Stephanie and Bradley’s Unique Theme Wedding at Dutchess Manor Courtesy of Allan E. Levine Photography

Using a running theme throughout your wedding day is one great way to share your unique style as a couple with your friends and family.

Earlier this summer I had the honor of providing DJ, MC, and uplighting services for Stephanie and Bradley’s unique New Orleans / Literati themed wedding at Dutchess Manor.

From the colors (Mardi Gras green, purple, and gold) to the centerpieces (featuring their favorite books) and from the favors (masks and custom Playbills) to the music (including a brass band style entrance), Stephanie and Bradley brought two of their shared passions — a love of literature and the city of New Orleans — into the heart of their wedding day.  Thanks to my good friends Allan and Vicki at Allan E. Levine Photography for capturing all the memories and to the staff at Dutchess Manor for providing the fantastic food, service, and setting.


http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=596X00omDXc

You can also view a complete photo gallery from this amazing wedding on Allan E. Levine Photography’s Facebook page as well.

Congratulations,
Bri

__________

DJ Bri Swatek, Spinning with Style

Your DJ for Your Unique Style
in the Hudson Valley of New York

Email: briswatek@gmail.com
Phone: 845.235.0080
Online: www.djbriswatek.com

Photo Slide Show of DJ Bri Swatek at Dori and Matt’s Hudson Valley Wedding at MountainView Manor Courtesy of Allan E. Levine Photography

Photo slide show of DJ Bri Swatek, Spinning with Style, providing DJ, MC, and lighting services at Dori and Matt’s Hudson Valley wedding at MountainView Manor courtesy of my good friends Allan and Vicki at Allan E. Levine Photography:

Congratulations Dori and Matt!
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Hbd7hr0ANVc

Congratulations on your upcoming wedding,
Bri

________________________________________________________

DJ Bri Swatek, Spinning with Style

Your DJ for Your Unique Style
in the Hudson Valley of New York

Email: briswatek@aol.com
Phone: 845.235.0080
Online: www.djbriswatek.com

Photo Slide Show of DJ Bri Swatek at Jessica and John’s Hudson Valley Wedding at Locust Grove Courtesy of Allan E. Levine Photography

Recently, I had the honor of providing DJ and lighting services for Jessica and John’s unique Hudson Valley wedding at Locust Grove.  My good friends Allan and Vicki from Allan E. Levine Photography were on hand to capture all the memories:

Congratulations Jessica and John!
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=jbm2tRpkaBM

You can also view an outstanding photo gallery from this wedding on Facebook as well.

Congratulations,
Bri
__________

DJ Bri Swatek, Spinning with Style
Your DJ for Your Unique Style
in the Hudson Valley of New York

Email: briswatek@gmail.com
Phone: 845.235.0080
Online: www.djbriswatek.com

Video of DJ Bri Swatek at Sarah and Mike’s Poughkeepsie Grand Hotel Wedding, Courtesy of Allan E. Levine Photography

Video and Photo Slide Show of DJ Bri Swatek, Spinning with Style, DJing at Sarah and Mike’s unique Hudson Valley wedding at The Poughkeepsie Grand Hotel, courtesy of my friend Allan E. Levine Photography:

Congratulations on your upcoming wedding,
Bri

________________________________________________________

DJ Bri Swatek, Spinning with Style

Your Professional Disc Jockey and MC Service
in the Hudson Valley of New York

Email: briswatek@aol.com
Phone: 845.235.0080
Online: www.djbriswatek.com

Photos from Unique Hudson Valley Weddings — Summer 2011

The visual elements of your wedding can truly define your event’s unique style.  A personalized look can tell your guests what type of celebration your wedding will be:  a formal occasion, a gathering of close family and friends, an elegant reception, a real party, or a little bit of all of the above!

Hudson Valley Wedding Image Courtesy of Beautiful Memories

Consider these different looks from some of the Hudson Valley weddings I’ve had the privilege to provide music and lighting services for as the owner of DJ Bri Swatek, Spinning with Style over the past few months:

DJ Bri Swatek, Spinning with Style at Sarah and Mike’s Poughkeepsie Grand Hotel wedding, courtesy of Allan E. Levine Photography.

DJ Bri Swatek, Spinning with Style at Jamie and Jason’s Villa Borghese wedding, courtesy of Bedinotti Photo.

DJ Bri Swatek, Spinning with Style at Veronica and Zach’s Grandview wedding, courtesy of Maximilian B Nucci Photography.

DJ Bri Swatek, Spinning with Style at Dawn and Chris’s Christo’s wedding, courtesy of Bolton-Reuter Photography.

To truly create a unique look for your big day, talk to all of your professional Hudson Valley wedding vendors about how they can contribute to your wedding’s visual style–your caterer and / or reception venue or location, photographer, videographer, florist, and DJ can all give you great ideas on how to achieve the look you want for your once-in-a-lifetime celebration.

Congratulations on your upcoming wedding,
Bri

__________

DJ Bri Swatek, Spinning with Style
Your Professional Disc Jockey and MC Service
in the Hudson Valley of New York

Email:   briswatek@aol.com
Phone:   845.235.0080
Online:   www.djbriswatek.com

Photos from Unique Hudson Valley Weddings — Summer and Fall 2010

The visual elements of your wedding can truly define your event’s unique style.  A personalized look can tell your guests what type of celebration your wedding will be:  a formal occasion, a gathering of close family and friends, an elegant reception, a real party, or a little bit of all of the above!

Hudson Valley Wedding Image Courtesy of Beautiful Memories

Consider these different looks from some of the Hudson Valley weddings I’ve had the privilege to provide music and lighting services for as the owner of DJ Bri Swatek, Spinning with Style over the past few months:

Lisa and Michael at Mills Mansion, Images Courtesy of Lori O’Toole Images:

Click Here

Jill and David at The Links at Union Vale, Images Courtesy of Wishimay Photography:

Click Here

and Here

Jill was also interviewed by Stephanie and Jeff Padovani of Best Hudson Valley Wedding Ever about her wedding’s unique style: 

Click Here

Trudi and Patrick at The Grandview, Images Courtesy of Lori O’Toole Images:

Click Here

Katelyn and Fernando at The Grandview, Images Courtesy of Elissa I. Davidson Photography:

Click Here

Michelle and Dustin at The Poughkeepsie Grand Hotel, Images Courtesy of Vivian Photography:

Click Here

Nicole and Paul at The Grandview, Images Courtesy of Allan E. Levine Photography:

Click Here

Andrea and Nick at The Links at Union Vale, Images Courtesy of Owl’s Eye Studios:

Click Here

To truly create a unique look for your big day, talk to all of your professional Hudson Valley wedding vendors about how they can contribute to your wedding’s visual style–your caterer and / or reception venue or location, photographer, videographer, florist, and DJ can all give you great ideas on how to achieve the look you want for your once-in-a-lifetime celebration. 

Congratulations on your upcoming wedding,
Bri

________________________________________________________ 

DJ Bri Swatek, Spinning with Style
Your Professional Disc Jockey and MC Service
in the Hudson Valley of New York 

Email:   briswatek@aol.com
Phone:   845.235.0080
Online:   www.djbriswatek.com