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S3, EP30: We went to a DJ conference! Chatting all about Beat Mix 2023!

CategoriesWedding suppliers.Wedding tips.
25 Aug, 2023

On this episode of Project Engaged, we chat about the Beat Mix conference we both attended in Tweed Heads in early August.

It was a fantastic opportunity to catch up with wedding DJs and MCs from all around Australia. The conference was organised by a member association – the DJAA – DJ Alliance Australasia.

We talked some technical stuff but otherwise it was a huge variety of topics related to business, marketing, music, wellbeing and client service.

We cover some of the topics and themes that may be interesting for you guys, our listeners! We also captured some sound bites from other attendees so we’ll play those throughout the episode.

One of the things we noticed is how many skills DJs need. There were so many incredibly smart people in the room! Lots of them have their own businesses so need business, marketing and operational skills, but it goes beyond that. You need great people skills, you need emotional intelligence to be able to read a crowd and you need technical skills too. Plus lots of problem solving and working under pressure!

So all in all, we were really impressed. Plus everyone was lovely and we had lots of fun!

Shout out to the DJAA and all the various committees involved in planning the conference. And thank you to those who provided sound grabs and who we’ve mentioned in this episode:

Mark from Retro DJ Event Entertainment; Daniel from Diesel Productions; Brett from BE Entertainment; Chad from Musicland; Aaron aka Cut A Rug DJ; Steve Bowen from Bowens Entertainment; Dan from Party Liaison; and John Edney from Edney Celebrations.


Full episode transcription

Eddy: Welcome to Project Engaged, a podcast for fun loving couples planning their non traditional wedding.

Aleks: We’re wedding DJs Aleks and Eddy Mac from Melbourne. We run a business called One More Song, and our tagline is No More Nutbush.

Eddy: In this podcast, we’ll share our wedding experiences and chat to some of our past couples.

Aleks: We’ll also interview bold wedding suppliers who share our philosophy of your wedding being a celebration of you as a couple and one epic party.

Eddy: Let’s get into today’s episode.

Aleks: And we are back. We’ve had a little break, but we are back. How are you, Eddy? How you going?

Eddy: Yeah, I’m very well. I’m actually just on the couch at the moment.

Aleks: I know. And you’re holding up your microphone very casually.

Eddy: I don’t even have headphones in. Pretty good.

Aleks: Yeah. Hopefully it will all go well. So it’s been a little while. Three weeks, I think. Four weeks, maybe. Oh.

Eddy: We’ve taken a little bit of a break and we have a lot to discuss. But you know what? I think what we’ll do is wrap our last couple of weekends up, first and foremost.

Aleks: Yes.

Eddy: So we are going to do the weekend wrap up.

Aleks: Oh, I’ve missed that jingle.

Eddy: It’s a good one.

Aleks: We’ve got a few weekends to wrap up. So shall we start from the most recent one and work backwards?

Eddy: Yeah, let’s do that. So last weekend. I’ll go first, if you don’t mind. So, last weekend I was at Panama dining room for Mayor and Reese. Absolutely lovely couple. They live in the UK, but they flew back to Melbourne to celebrate their wedding. So there were a bunch of people a little bit older crew, so forties and up, all from around the world, and a lot of their friends spent a lot of time with them at various festivals throughout their time.

Aleks: Nice.

Eddy: So it was a big festival vibe for their wedding. I absolutely loved playing the chemical brothers. Hey, boy. Hey, girl. That was the highlight of my night.

Aleks: What a banger.

Eddy: Just quietly.

Aleks: That’s awesome.

Eddy: Yeah, it is a banger. So that was a really good one. They were over the moon and it’s just one of those weddings where there was just so much good energy in the air. So much, dare I say it, so much love in the air.

Aleks: Yeah.

Eddy: No pun intended. And it was just a great night.

Aleks: Overall, it looks really good. Really good. Where was I? Oh, I was at Rupert on Rupert in Collingwood for the lovely Sophie and Ben. Also. Really? Yeah. Actually, also from the UK. Sophie was from the UK. And so we had a lot of visitors from overseas and they were just up for it all night. Like, just dance. Dance floor. That did not sound right. Um, you know, the oldies. I want to say the oldies, not really that old, but, like, fifties and sixties. They just wanted to dance to, like, EDM bangers. It was pretty crazy stuff. Loved it. Loved it.

Eddy: Yeah. That is awesome. I saw a bit of footage from your wedding, and it looked. Yeah, it looked really cool.

Aleks: Yeah, it was really, really fun. I was set up a little bit further down, so I was, like, more in the dance floor. It was a sit down at Rupert, so I really liked that. I was. Felt more like I was with the crowd. So, yeah. Shout out to the team for letting me set up there.

Eddy: Yeah. So for those that are listening at home, depending on the format of weddings at Rupert, there’s two main formats. You’ve got cocktail or you have sit down. If it is cocktail, the DJ is set up in the main dining room, where all the action is. If it is sit down, the DJ is set up now at the end of the atrium overlooking the back bar. So when people are ready to get dancing, they’ll move from the dining area to that back bar area. And before, we used to be a little bit further up the atrium towards the dining room, which I found probably wasn’t ideal because you didn’t get a gauge of the dance floor. But now they’ve got us further down, so you can see what’s happening a lot easier and get amongst the action.

Aleks: Oh, it’s so good. Yeah, really good. And we were on Rupert. Both of us were at Rupert the next day on Sunday for our elopement extravaganza.

Eddy: Yes. So this was. Yeah, a big day, and we’ve had an episode talking all about this, obviously, with. With Judith from Toko events.

Aleks: Yes.

Eddy: Yeah. How did you find it?

Aleks: I thought it was great. I loved it. They were more micro weddings than elopements because they. Both couples had, I don’t know, 30 guests or 40 guests.

Eddy: Yeah. I think mine was 35. Yours was closer to 50.

Aleks: No, mine was 34. So we were similar. I loved it. I thought it was great. I really thought the team that Judith put together was first rate. Awesome, awesome, awesome. I thought the way that Rupert was styled was incredible. And Marley, the owner of Rupert, described it perfectly. She said, thanks for bringing a neon flair to our usual moody venue, which is such a good way to describe it. It was quite contrasting.

Eddy: Well, you gotta thank banging hangings for that. And I think I’ve just crossed my own lines here. I think mine was about 50, and yours was about.

Aleks: Yeah, yeah, yeah. You actually had more well, banging hangings. Also, Stevie Winter, who does some work for good day club and she did all the signage as well. The signage really popped, was kind of like all pink and orange and super, super fun. And it was during the day. Mind bleeding to the evening a little bit, but yeah. How did you find it?

Eddy: I loved it. Yeah, I had a shorter, shorter stint than you did, so I rolled in at 12:15 we had left our DJ booth there because you were there the night before and I just plugged in in the dining area because you were out in the atrium and. Yeah, it was really, really fun. I only got about a 20 to 25 minutes dance floor, unfortunately, because things were running a little bit late. But my couple, absolutely lovely couple and their guests went to Le Bon Tonne, which was down the road, after they did all their speeches and carried on with the celebrations there.

Aleks: Yeah. So your format was a little bit different to mine. Mine was about three and a half hours in length. So we had more time for dance floor did take people a little bit of time. I didn’t expect dancing. There was a little bit which was good. But we wrapped up about 08:00 p.m. And they carried on at Paradise Alley, which is, I think is a bar somewhere in Collingwood. So, yeah, a little bit different. They had speeches and stuff as well. But it was cool. I liked it. Micro weddings.

Eddy: Micro weddings for the win.

Aleks: Yeah.

Eddy: And prior to last weekend, I saw myself at Rupert as well.

Aleks: You saw yourself?

Eddy: Yeah. I was just like, oh, staring in the mirror. Here I am. Um, so, yeah, look, we’ve had a lot. We’ve had a lot in the city of Melbourne. I’m back at Panama dining room tomorrow. So we really are honing in on our very favourite venues at the moment.

Aleks: Yes. And forgot to mention I was also at Panama dining room the week before that.

Eddy: There you go.

Aleks: When you were at Rupert. So we did little swaps.

Eddy: So we’re just swapping around.

Aleks: Yeah. Which is really lovely for Rachel and Darcy as well. Really fun one I got to play for the first time, Dave Winnells Africa, like a version which I absolutely love, had a couple of dedicated people on the dance floor who were absolutely loving it. So I will be playing that more often, I think.

Eddy: Fantastic. Well, that’s the. That’s the wrap up. So let’s.

Aleks: If you’re still with us, if you.

Eddy: Are still with us, let’s have a chat about what we’re talking about today.

Aleks: We are talking about the beat mix conference that we attended three weeks ago at. On the Gold Coast, I should say, or eight tweed heads. It’s a basically a DJ and MC conference attendees from all around Australia. It was our first time attending so we just wanted to wrap that up and talk about some of the themes that came out, some of the people we met and really keep it focused on, you know, what’s relevant to couples as well as other suppliers as well.

Eddy: Yeah, so they broke it up over a couple of days with a bunch of seminars and breakout groups. There was the time for us to sneak out for a cheeky beer or two every day as well at lunchtime. And we were kind of the naughty crew, I think, ourselves. And there’s another DJ celebrant MC, John Edney. So shout out to John, who was a very bad influence on us, I.

Aleks: Think, or we were on him. Anyway, it’s never. It’s.

Eddy: We’re always batting a bit of cross pollination on that. But look, it was a fantastic opportunity to catch up with wedding, professional wedding DJ’s and professional MC’s from. From all around Australia. I don’t think there are any internationals, but it is the DJ Alliance Australasia that is the organisation that runs the beat mix. It does include New Zealand, but I.

Aleks: Think there was a kiwi there.

Eddy: Yeah, I think there were Kiwis there. I think they were living in Australia.

Aleks: So.

Eddy: Yeah, so out on a technicality there. So we obviously talked a bit of the technical stuff when it came to deejaying, but otherwise it was a huge variety of sort of topics that we covered and they were all related to obviously, deejaying, the art of deejaying itself, but also the business side of things, marketing side of things, and even some wellbeing things as well, which was really good.

Aleks: That was really good too. And client service was spoken about a lot as well. They also organised a DJ takeover. So we hit the coolie, the Coolangatta Hotel to. We had kind of a private area and a few DJ’s went back to back, did 15 minutes sets. That was pretty epic. That was a lot of fun. Very, very.

Eddy: Are you going to do it next year?

Aleks: Talented people. I think I put my hand up to MC one of the days after a few drinks. After a few drinks. So we’ll see what they have me do.

Eddy: That comes back to bite you.

Aleks: It does. I know I should just keep my mouth shut. So that was really fun. We also went around, captured a few little sound bites from some of the attendees, which we’ll share throughout the episode. Unfortunately, I was yelling into our new little microphone. So a lot of it is unusable, but we have edited it so we can use some sound bites.

Eddy: Yeah, so it’s not perfect, but I think you’ll get the idea. And there’s some really good little gems of information in those sound bites.

Aleks: So it’s not just us banging on about stuff. One of the things that I really picked up during the conference was how many skills, wedding DJ’s or event DJ’s actually need, like what is actually involved. There were so many, so many smart people in the room. Like super, super smart. A lot of them had their own businesses, obviously. You know, you need the skills that come with that business, marketing, operational skills, but beyond that, you just need really good people skills. And that really came through for me.

Eddy: Oh, it really did. Everyone was so down to earth, but extremely switched on at the same time. And yeah, it was very, very refreshing because, you know, our listeners probably won’t find this as a surprise, but deejaying is a very, very, very solitary task. It’s not often that you are surrounded by other DJ’s, well, you, if ever, very rarely each other, obviously. But yeah, you do bump into different suppliers at weddings, but even then, you know, you might have one or two fleeting conversations because, you know, at the end of the day, you’re at work.

Aleks: You’re stuck behind the decks for the night. Like, you can’t really go around chatting to people too much. So I think that’s why we kind of where we get caught out and sort of feel a little bit siloed. So, yeah, it was nice to be in a room full of people who understand what we do, you know?

Eddy: Yeah. And look, and obviously because we are DJ’s and this is a podcast about us being wedding DJ’s. DJ’s do need great people skills. You need a fair bit of emotional intelligence to be able to read a crowd and just obviously the technical skills on top of that. Plus, you know, problem solving and working things out under pressure. If, you know, something doesn’t work and you’re in the middle of a mix, you have to think on your feet and kind of get things sorted without hopefully letting anyone else in the crowd know that something’s gone wrong.

Aleks: Exactly. Yeah. So there’s the kind of your equipment side and the actual music side and then there’s timings and stuff as well. So I find we’re affected by that a lot. So if something, you know, if the MC is a little bit rogue and we’ll talk about that in a bit and we’ve talked about it a lot in the past, but if the MC says, okay, we’re gonna do speeches now, but then kind of walks off and you don’t know where they are and there’s dead air, you have to quickly make a decision. Okay. Should I start playing something? You know, there’s stuff around timings that we have to very quickly make decisions on throughout the night as well.

Eddy: Yeah. Could not agree with you more there.

Aleks: Yeah. So all in all, we were very impressed. Already purchased our tickets for the next one. We did. Everyone was lovely. We had so much fun. So we are going to cover some of the themes, just a few of the themes that we discussed that we think our listeners may be interested in, hopefully. And some of those sound bites.

Eddy: Cool. So I reckon we should get started on the MC side of things. Okay, I’m stepping ahead here.

Aleks: I wrote very diligent notes and instruction, but that’s okay.

Eddy: I’m going rogue.

Aleks: Let’s go wrong.

Eddy: I’m going rogue.

Aleks: Yeah, exactly.

Eddy: So there was a presentation by Mark from Retro Entertainment, who is another Melbournite.

Aleks: Yep.

Eddy: So shout out to Mark about selling the MC service for weddings.

Aleks: Yeah.

Eddy: So we’re gonna play a sound grab from him now.

Aleks: Yeah.

Eddy: The MC is the glue to your event. Without a professional MC or an MC, who knows what they’re doing, you will have a disaster on your hands. A family member or a friend does not know what is involved in becoming an MC.

Aleks: It’s not just announcements, is it?

Eddy: Not announcements at all. It’s about the background, what we do. I spend all my time on my feet the whole night because I’m chasing everything. The timings, working with other vendors, you know, keeping you at the venue, keeping everybody in sync is what it’s all about. So you probably noticed there, while we cut out a lot of Alek’s talking with her interviewing because, oh, apologies if anyone just sort of, you know, threw out their pods.

Aleks: Oh, don’t throw out the pods. No, look, it was a new, very small mic and I probably should have tested it. I don’t. If I’m MC, I don’t yell like that into the microphone. I didn’t realise how. I’m sensitive and it is very sensitive.

Eddy: And look, to be honest, I’m happy to take the blame on that because I probably didn’t test it as I should have. So. Yeah, some great nuggets of information on that.

Aleks: So general consensus, you should have a professional MC. So professional MC. Either you’re a DJ celebrant or a full time MC. We had a couple of those at the conference too. So people who purely just focus on the MC’ing side, a lot of the attendance, we had a lot of conversations with other attendees about family members and friends just not being able to do the job properly. And us, as DJ’s having to step in to manage things. This happens all, all the time and we have talked about it all the time. We cannot stress it enough.

Eddy: Yeah, no, I couldn’t agree with you more there.

Aleks: The only time I think, you know, we might recommend having a family member or a friend is if they’ve MC’d before they understand exactly what’s involved, that it’s not just making announcement announcements, as Mark said, but it’s actually coordinating every single vendor and the venue and being able to adapt and be flexible and keep everyone in the loop. And there’s not many people that can do this in our experience. Would you agree?

Eddy: Yes, I would definitely agree.

Aleks: They also need to be responsible and they need to be confident and they need to be assertive.

Eddy: Sorry. The reason why I’m a little bit quiet here is that cat has just used her litter box and has just smelled the whole house out. It is pretty gross. Did you want to go and shut the door to the bathroom? Oh, wow. That is. That is putrid. Oh, dear. Yeah, give it a spray. Very interactive episode of project engaged today. There’s the culprit. She’s just run out looking like she’s innocent as all things.

Aleks: She looks so innocent. Smelliest poop. My God.

Eddy: So I think, yeah, so I think what Aleks was saying reiterated in a sense that you do have to have that experience to MC. We see some fantastic MC’s that are celebrants. I’m gonna call out Z. Yes, Scott. She’s incredible and she has such a presence to her and she can command a room. And that’s. That doesn’t come easily to a lot of people, particularly as the night progresses and people have more and more shandies.

Aleks: Shandies. You love to say that, don’t you?

Eddy: They’re gonna be harder and harder to get the attention of.

Aleks: Yeah, definitely. Heidi hitch by Heidi’s great precious as well. So we’ve seen a few celebrants. MC.

Eddy: I love the fact that more and more celebrants are putting their hands up to stay and MC, because they’ve already established themselves as an authority from the get go.

Aleks: Oh, absolutely. Yeah. They’ve commanded the room. Everyone knows who they are. They’ll listen to them because they had to for the ceremony. Everyone’s more well behaved during the ceremony.

Eddy: Oh, for sure.

Aleks: For obvious reasons. Definitely. Look, I would say in my DJ career thus far, I’ve probably seen a handful of pretty good friends who have been MC’s, but they’ve been onto it all night, they’ve been running around.

Eddy: It’s a big job.

Aleks: It’s a huge job. And we’re not just saying this so we can upsell our MC service. Cause we are saying either get a celebrant, you know, your celebrant, or maybe a professional MC, we can do it as well. But we’re just saying, just have someone who’s responsible and who understands what is involved and is committed to running around and coordinating everything.

Eddy: Exactly.

Aleks: That is what needs to be done up until the dance floor. Then they can let loose and relax and we can do the final announcement for, you know, bar closing and final song and that sort of thing.

Eddy: Yeah, exactly.

Aleks: Cool. Do you want to kick off the next one?

Eddy: I do. So let’s go back to the beginning and talk about where music sits in your wedding.

Aleks: Yeah, so which would have made sense to go first? Yeah. So obviously we were all a little bit biassed being DJ’s, but we talked about the importance of the role of DJ’s and MC’s at your wedding. We’ve talked about this before, you know, that kind of aesthetic versus atmosphere debate. And we’re not saying that the aesthetic is not important. What we’re saying is people remember how they felt at a wedding, you know, and that’s the atmosphere that was created through music, through booze, through the space and that sort of thing. So, yeah. Cannot underestimate our role and they can blend as well.

Eddy: So if you talk aesthetic, you know, if you have lighting involved in your wedding, that can contribute to both the. And the aesthetic so the lines can be blurred.

Aleks: Oh, yeah, totally. And, you know, we always talk about them, but banging, hangings, they create an atmosphere of fun and, you know, setting the mood for a party. You’re there to celebrate. So, yeah, there’s definitely a blurring, but it’s just about thinking about the feeling that you want your guests to feel at your wedding and to remember. So we spoke to a lovely DJ, Daniel from diesel Productions in Perth. Killing over there. They do all types of events, including weddings, and he shares in Nissan. Grab some. Sorry. A top tip for couples who are planning their weddings, and we just couldn’t agree more with him. Here it is.

Eddy: Speaking of weddings, for a couple that’s looking for a wedding DJ, what is one piece of advice that you’d give to them, what did they want to feel after their event, as well as what do all their guests want to feel after the event? And that basically puts in tone on what you’re putting all your money towards or your budget towards. And that pretty much tells you if you want the best entertainer or the best stylus, for example, or do you more value your memories?

Aleks: Pretty much wrapped up what we said.

Eddy: Yeah, he did a really good job of that. And it is tricky because you’re really talking about hindsight here before the event has even happened.

Aleks: That’s so true.

Eddy: And I think where you can start to get a good sense of what you want as a couple is if you’re lucky enough, having gone to weddings before your wedding, it’s a really, really valuable way of taking a look at other people’s weddings that, you know, you’re a guest of and thinking, okay, I love this, this and this, but I don’t like that and that. But not everybody gets the opportunity to do that.

Aleks: No, that’s very true. That’s very true. It is difficult until you’ve been to a few, I think, to know, which is why you kind of have to sit down and really think about your priorities.

Eddy: Yeah, exactly. And prioritise your top three vendors. If you are someone that has been to a lot of music festivals in your time with your partner, then music will be important. But maybe music’s just something that, you know, isn’t nice to have. But you absolutely adore the aesthetic. You know, you’re all about table settings, you’re all about flowers. So it is just deciding what is important to you and how that makes you feel, which should, you know, educate you on the decisions you’re going to make.

Aleks: Yeah. Yeah. You should help inform your decisions. And, you know, it’s a big. It’s a big. It’s a huge event. So I think to. To step back, not listen to people. Get away from the Pinterest. Go. Don’t go down the rabbit hole of Instagram for a while. Just, first of all, make those decisions upfront and then start doing your research and planning around that.

Eddy: Yeah. So limit the amount of noise and just ask yourself and ask each other. Okay, what are the three things that are most important to us? Yeah. And we’re super lucky in. In our patch, in the. In the couples that we talk to, because most of the time it’s music, food and booze.

Aleks: Yeah.

Eddy: And that’s great. But it might be different for you.

Aleks: By the way, when you’re talking about food and booze. Your venue would dictate a lot of that.

Eddy: Exactly.

Aleks: If you love music, your venue would dictate a lot of that because of things like sound restrictions or lack of dance floor space or whatever it is, or location of the bar relative to the dance floor. So your venue, it actually does dictate a lot of what, you know, you’re going to prioritise as well. So thinking about the venue is really important too, within that. Yeah, very good. All right, we’re going to move on to the next one, which was. There was a little bit of talk about AI and technology.

Eddy: And we don’t have a sound bite for this particular one.

Aleks: No, we don’t.

Eddy: So we’ll chat away on it. So there was a presentation by really, really young. And by really young, I mean 16, but really, really switched on. Smart DJ Dean who presented about AI and how it will affect the DJ profession. Now, AI is coming at a rapid rate. We’ve all heard of chat, GPT and Bard and whatever the Microsoft one is, there’s so many of them now, but it is definitely seeping into our industry and one of the ways it’s already done that is through what they call stem separation with AI. And I’ve chatted about this before on the podcast, but in a nutshell, you’re able to remove certain parts of songs, say the vocals, the drums, the melody or the bass, in real time, at any time during the track and bring it back in. So in terms of creativity, it’s just launched into another ethos, I think. And it’s. It’s making our job a lot easier to bring new songs in and mix out of other songs. Unfortunately, Aleks doesn’t have that with her software, so, you know, her eyes are rolling right now.

Aleks: Sorry. To my couples who are listening to this, I will sort it out ASAP.

Eddy: I promise it will come. So that’s definitely one of the biggest changes in deejaying at this stage with AI. And obviously AI is being used to produce music and you’ve got like Snoop Dogg singing songs from like Al Green and stuff like that. You might have seen that pop up on instagram or.

Aleks: It’s not actually him, it’s not actually AI generated.

Eddy: Exactly, exactly.

Aleks: I don’t know how I feel about that one.

Eddy: But, you know, it’s a tricky one.

Aleks: It’s like the deep fake stuff, but for audio.

Eddy: Yeah, absolutely. But look, at least at the moment, you know, AI can’t replace what we do as humans, deejaying, particularly when it comes to the element of reading a crowd reading, you know, the emotions on people’s faces. What happens when a song’s dropped and, you know, just general movement of a dance floor? And I say at the moment, because who knows what can happen in the future? But for now, at least for the next few years, I think our jobs may be safe.

Aleks: Well, you know what? I wouldn’t mind a little robot that stands next to me when I have to go to the bathroom and tells me what’s happened and what, you know, has read the face.

Eddy: Humans can do that.

Aleks: Maybe I just need a little assistant. The other thing, I just want to talk about that, you know, we experience AI all the time, is with Spotify, when you see the recommendations. Is that AI?

Eddy: Yeah, it’s a form of. Yeah, it definitely is a form of artificial intelligence. I think everyone just thinks of Arnold Schwarzenegger when you think AI, like. I certainly do because I love Sci-Fi in general, but, yeah, it’s definitely very smart systems that are put in place just to make things a lot easier for our general life. And I tend to use Spotify a lot for recommendations in my gig preparation.

Aleks: I do, too, but I want to say something. For example, a client provides you with a list of songs that they would love to hear for dance floor, then Spotify. Recommend some. I’ve had a look through that, and to be honest with you, it still hasn’t replaced what we have, which is a massive library, which is past set list that we go through for couples who have had a similar brief. Our experience of songs that work and don’t work on the dance floor, all of that stuff, you know, a bit of left to field thinking. Okay, they like this. I reckon they’re gonna like this. Spotify. It can be quite linear at the moment in terms of the way that the algorithm works, so. Don’t know. Don’t know about that one yet. We. You still need us. Now smelly poo cat is sitting on Ed’s lap.

Eddy: She’s just jumped on my lap.

Aleks: Right. Hopefully she’s licked her butt. All right. Anyway, moving on. That’s just a bit about AI. So our jobs are safe for now, I think so.

Eddy: At least for the. For the time being. So that’s. That’s all good. So the next topic that we wanted to chat about, which we did have a soundbite for, is thinking outside the box on weddings.

Aleks: Yeah. Yeah.

Eddy: We met a very lovely gentleman with the name of Chad. From.

Aleks: With the name.

Eddy: With the name. And I kind of.

Aleks: He’s named.

Eddy: His name is Chad. He’s a lovely, lovely guy from music land in Sydney. And he presented on the client experience, which is obviously really interesting to all of us business owners, and it very much aligned with our way, as in Aleks and my way of doing business and marketing ourselves, which is just to be authentic and just be ourselves so we can attract the right couples.

Aleks: Yeah. And he said in his presentation, know who you are, be who you are, and you will attract similar clients. This is so, so true. We’ve definitely seen that in our business. So, Chad, he does a lot of large scale events. So he’s a DJ himself, but he’s also an entertainment producer. So he’s involved in kind of the initial conceptual stage of lots of different types of events, and then he kind of finds the right entertainment providers for each event. What I really love about what he does is kind of seeing, particularly for our clients who are non traditional, you know, and just want a big party vibe, is kind of seeing how ideas from other types of events can be applied to a non traditional wedding. So we’re going to play a sound grab. He tells us more about this. It’s been cut up a bit due to my yelling into the microphone. So in the first bit, he talks about how you can approach your wedding in a unique way. And then he goes more specifically into how to have a festival style wedding, which I think a lot of our couples would be interested in.

Eddy: Let’s hear it.

Aleks: Yep.

Chad: Festivals are very much an aesthetic as well as music. So I think if. If the wedding couple goes to festivals and their friends go to festivals, if in their younger days or in their current days, they go out to clubs, then what is stopping you from doing that for your wedding party? What is stopping you from having your dream festival? You’re going to be spending a bomb on putting it on. So why not make it the way you want it so that you know that your friends will enjoy it as well. So, yes, you can have an aesthetic that makes it look a bit like Coachella, so you can have some theming that makes it look like an outdoor festival. You can even have separate stages if you like, or a lineup of musicians that alternate with DJ’s or a DJ that plays with musicians. And if you own that concept, you’ll bring your guests with you. You don’t be afraid to break that wedding mould. You know, the idea, as you say from your tagline of no nut bush, lean into that. You know, if you’re a wedding couple that loves a certain style of music and you know that your friends will go with you on it. Go all in on it. There’s no need to do the same thing. There’s no need to do what everyone else has done. You want to create memories with what you’re doing. You want your DJ, your band, your musicians to be completely part of that entire fabric of what you’re doing for this party. So if you want to have a festival where you’re playing bangers, do it. If you want to have a festival where you. I mean, I did an event last year for a corporate, and it was.

Chad: It had a Coachella theme. It was a thousand people, and they built giant teepees inside. There were lounge areas, and there was a temporary tattoo area, and we made the room smell like a forest. You know, that’s another thing, by the way, don’t underestimate the power of all the senses. So you’re going to be tasting great food, you’re going to be hearing great music. Have a think about how the place smells. You know, one of my favourite events from a couple years ago had a circus theme. And we wanted to not scream circus, but we wanted to psychologically trigger people to think that they were at a circus. And so when the doors opened, the first thing they could smell was popcorn. So instantly they got that psychological hit. And then when they walked in, that’s when our theming and our music for the first hour was completely in theme and on point. So think outside the norm.

Aleks: How good is that? So good.

Eddy: Yeah. Just a wealth of information. Chad is just something else. Yeah, we absolutely adore him, and we had a lot of fun. We had a lot of great conversations with Chad at the conference.

Aleks: Yeah, definitely drinks. Too few drinks. Yep, definitely goes hand in hand. But I just love the way he talks about it. And, you know, I think you can get so caught up in looking at other weddings that you lose sight of what you really want to achieve, and you can do some really creative things at your own wedding. So I love that. I love the festival approach.

Eddy: Yeah, the festival approach is great. And it is reminiscent, rather, of the wedding that I had last weekend.

Aleks: Yes, that definitely was not the venue so much.

Eddy: The venue so much was at Panama, but, yeah, just. Just the overall vibe. And the couple and all of their friends were just there for that. And it was like a festival. Once the dance floor kicked off, I really felt that. And that went, you know, back to their festival days when they were, you know, growing up and smashing out the festivals one by one.

Aleks: And I think a lot of our couples talk about this like it’s pretty common in that first call that we have to talk about the festivals they’ve been to and the memories they’ve created overseas, and, you know, all the local festivals they go to. It is such a big part of their lives because they’re generally pretty big music lovers.

Eddy: And I love that he’s started to talk about not just what you’re seeing, what you’re hearing, but obviously what you’re smelling as well. I’m not talking about Khaleesi, our cat, right now, but I’m talking about, yeah, adding that popcorn smell or adding something. I’ve not seen that at the weddings that I have played.

Aleks: Neither have I.

Eddy: And it’s a great idea.

Aleks: It is. It is really, really good. I have seen. We have had some couples get married where they’ve had, like, the food trucks, like, a few different, you know, areas. I like the idea of having, like, a couple of different stages or having different musicians added on to your DJ, too. There’s lots of different things you can do. And look, if you haven’t got an outdoor wedding, because, you know, outdoors can be a little bit tricky in Victoria. There’s other things you can do. I had a wedding recently where they gave all their guests flashing light rings. You know, rings that flashed in, and that was a little festival add on to, you know, an inner city venue. You don’t need to have the full shebang. You can just think about cute, quirky little ways to make it a little bit more of a festival feel. I love that.

Eddy: And they. They are the things that people remember as well.

Aleks: They do.

Eddy: They pop up in your videos and your photos.

Aleks: Oh, totally. I’ve had people, um, ask me. I’ve had to ask the groom to give me a link to the. Where they bought the rings. I had a couple of people ask me where they got them. They were super, super excited about it, so. Yeah, for sure. All right, we are onto our last soundgarden. This one’s just a funny, funny one. Oh, actually, no, I did want to mention something else, which was just probably not really for our types of weddings, but, um, Steve Bowen. Steve Bowen is a character. He is from Aubrey, I believe. I think he’s. He’s got some political role there, too. He is a pretty loud character. He’s a DJ and MC, but he does some crazy things at his gigs. He plays games, which I think would work more for maybe for our corporates, you know, break the ice a little bit. But he does stuff like, what was it? Song? Karaoke.

Aleks: No, not karaoke. Karaoke. Bingo. Something like that. We have to guess.

Eddy: Or just musical bingo.

Aleks: Bingo. Sorry. Yeah.

Eddy: Say, for instance, you’re at a corporate event, and it’s not really a dancey crowd. You can give everybody on their tables a sheet of paper that had a bunch of song names on it, and you pretty much just play a game of bingo throughout the night. So you’ll, you know, in the. In the background, kind of be listening to what the DJ is playing, and eventually someone yells, bingo.

Aleks: Yeah.

Eddy: And throw a prize at them or something like that. So there are. I think his talk was. What happens when people aren’t dancing.

Aleks: That’s right. Yeah.

Eddy: Activities that you can do for non dancy crowds or, you know, something that. Yeah. Could work well at a corporate event or different type of party.

Aleks: Yeah. I thought maybe for a wedding, if you’re having a wedding, maybe you don’t necessarily have a big dance floor, or you don’t have a dancing crowd, or a lot of people don’t know each other. It could be a cool icebreaker for background, like, to do something like that.

Eddy: I’ve seen a couple of those types of things at weddings. Again, it was. It was at Rupert, but they had break the ice cards or something like that. I can’t remember exactly how they worked, but they were given a bunch of cards, and they had to go and ask another person. They didn’t know a few questions off the back of that. So that was a really nice way to bring people together. I think for this particular wedding, there were a lot of people from different parts of the world that didn’t know each other. So they obviously thought, you know what? This is the clients that is. They obviously thought this is a great way to kind of get people, you know, chatting, I suppose.

Aleks: I think that just that interactive element.

Eddy: Exactly. And another wedding I had, they had magician, which sounds tacky, I know, but it actually worked quite well because he’d get groups of three or four to participate in card tricks and all that kind of stuff, and it really got people together and talking. I thought it was a nice touch for the start of the night.

Aleks: Yeah, definitely. I think that. Yeah, I think at the start of the night, bang on just to get people warmed up. And you know what it’s like when you’re a wedding guest. We’ve attended a few weddings where we haven’t really known that many people apart from the couple. And how nice is it when you strike up a conversation and you get to interact with other people? You feel much more part of that that day. So, yeah. Thinking about little things like that. Definitely. Chad mentioned it, too. Just that interactive element which we talk about a little bit. And that’s where you might, like, bring in a photo booth or, you know, an audio guest book or a sax player or whatever it is. Just something to kind of add a little bit more. Exactly.

Eddy: I did. Before we move on, I did want to tell a very quick story. It is in relation to chad. So another presentation was from Aaron Duncan, who is aka Katarug. He. He’s a DJ a very, very good DJ that plays up in the Sunshine Coast. Sunshine coast and surrounds and surrounds. Really, really nice guy. He presented on. He called it fix your mix. So he presented on basically how to DJ mix better, how to transition between. How to transition between songs better, and all that kind of stuff. Anyway, during his presentation, he had a bunch of sort of animated gifs and memes and all that come up on that, on the PowerPoint screen just to make it a little bit more dynamic and interesting. And one of these memes was the. I don’t know if you remember the old El Paso advertisements where they were. They were selling tacos. Soft tacos and hard tacos.

Aleks: Yeah.

Eddy: And the basis of the ad was, you know, we love hard tacos, but we love soft tacos. And there’s this little girl that came up and said, why not have both?

Aleks: Have both. Yeah.

Eddy: Anyway, so I can’t remember exactly what he was talking about. Aaron was talking about at the time. He’s like, why not do both? Why not have both? And it’s funny because, as it turns out, that particular little girl who portrayed a mexican girl on the advertisement is Chad’s stepdaughter.

Aleks: Yeah.

Eddy: So Chad tapped Aaron on the shoulder. This was later on that evening, said, hey, can you show me your presentation? So he whipped it out, and lo and behold, that was his stepdaughter.

Aleks: Yes. He. Because he turned his head at that moment.

Eddy: Yeah. So funny. It was quite funny. Little, you know, six degrees of Kevin Bacon moment.

Aleks: That’s so funny. The weirdest thing was, I actually bought that pack of hard and soft taco shells the week after. So ads work, people. Ads work.

Eddy: Ads work. Anyway, moving on, moving on.

Aleks: We have got just one funny final little sound grab from lovely, lovely guy Dan from party liaison. He is based in Byron Bay, I believe, and also does gigs kind of around that area. Tweed heads, etcetera. We asked him, well, you asked him specifically about the weirdest experience he’s had at a wedding. And we just wanted to share it with you guys. Here it is.

Eddy: So what is the strangest thing that’s ever happened to you at one of your weddings?

Dan: First ever wedding I did was at the top of a mountain. We had to get a gondola to the top of the mountain, cart all the gear up there. Turns out that the groom slept with the bride’s sister two weeks before the wedding, and they decided that this would be part of the speeches. So during the speeches, a third or so of the guests left in disgust and protest. And a little twist in the tail is the fact that one of the groomsmen got too drunk and aggressive and had to call the cops. But the cops could not drive up that mountain. They had to get in a gondola and cuff him, put him in a gondola, cuff to the gondola by himself, and then take him down to the station for processing afterwards. The boys continued on, the groomsman continued on without his wife, and they partied to Melbourne bounce. Will Sparks. This is about ten years ago, so that was kind of timmy, trumpet and the boys. Will sparks. They were loving it without his wife, just quietly.

Eddy: I don’t think anyone’s going to top that story.

Dan: Whether they’re still together, I don’t know.

Eddy: Oh, my God. They have it. So I wonder if they are still together.

Aleks: I’ve heard so many crazy story. That one is pretty nuts, but.

Eddy: Yeah, I don’t. I don’t know if. Yeah. Fucking think of a story that’s topped that recently.

Aleks: Not. Not of our own weddings. I’ve heard of other weddings.

Eddy: Yeah, definitely not of our own weddings. Yeah, there are some interesting stories. One of the benefits of knowing many, many wedding supplies. You get some real fun, interesting stories out of them. Some are very worrisome, some are troubling.

Aleks: Like the couple actually not being there for the reception, but the reception still goes on. That is so bizarre.

Eddy: Very bizarre.

Aleks: Yeah. Luckily, we don’t encounter that sort of thing. You had one more that you want to shout out? Oh, Brett.

Eddy: Yeah. So Brett from Be Entertainment, who was there with his wife, Danny. Danny. So she is a photo boother. So there was actually a photo booth conference going on at the same time. So Booth Con.

Aleks: All the cool kids were out.

Eddy: Yeah. One of our good friends was actually at Booth Con, the amazing Jimbo. We might have mentioned him a few times. We. We rent his backdrops for our live streams and some photo booths as well. So we asked Brett for some, I guess, unconventional dance lore, bangers or something.

Aleks: I have really worked really well lately. Yeah.

Eddy: Yeah. So what were the ones that he mentioned to you? Because you interviewed him.

Aleks: Yeah, he mentioned one. He mentioned London Bridge by Fergie. And I was like, what? I had to, like, sift through the depths of my memory to get to pull that one out. Yeah.

Eddy: And I actually played that recently. Also, rewind back to our weekend roundup. I was lucky enough to play a fundraiser event for Jack Curry.

Aleks: He’s a photographer.

Eddy: Yeah. I was ready to say Hogan for some reason. I don’t know.

Aleks: There is a Jake Hogan, the photographer.

Eddy: Exactly.

Aleks: You have to tag so many supplies. So.

Eddy: Yeah. Anyway, so Jack, he. He lives on a property and his property is on Crown land, I believe. And the bridge to get to his house basically caved in after some flooding.

Aleks: Yeah. So he must be the Yarra.

Eddy: Yeah. So. And I can remember that time, too, because I remember you having to drive to which venue were you playing at?

Aleks: Chateau Yering.

Eddy: There you go. And it was a nightmare for you.

Aleks: To get there because everything was flooded.

Eddy: And there’s all these back roads you had to go on. Anyway, really stressful. Got there in the end, so that was a good idea. Anyway, back to Jack. So Jack and a few of his friends, I think mostly his friends, basically organised a fundraiser for him.

Aleks: He didn’t organise it.

Eddy: He didn’t organise it. Okay. And I was asked to. There you go, Google.

Aleks: Oh, Google’s giving us the weather.

Eddy: I don’t know if you can hear that. You don’t need to set an alarm. It’s all good. Thank you.

Aleks: Gosh, we’ve had a few disruptions, haven’t we? Hey, Google, stop.

Eddy: See, I’m a lot nicer to. Okay, so there’s a couple of things out of that. Number one, I don’t know if anyone heard that, but I guess we’ll, you know, when we listen to the recording, we’ll see. Okay, so, number one, I’m very polite to our Google assistant because you never know what’s gonna happen, whereas you’re not as polite, so you should remember that. Secondly, I did rename Alek’s profile to poopy head. So every time she asked Google, something’s like, okay, poopy head, no worries.

Aleks: Can you go back? Go back to your story about the bridge.

Eddy: Yes. So, long story short, I played. And I played London and bridge.

Aleks: You did. Everyone enjoyed it.

Eddy: Everyone did enjoy.

Aleks: I feel like black eyed peas and Fergie are having a real moment this year.

Eddy: Yeah, they. They are. And I got a feeling. I know it’s kind of triggering for some people because it’s kind of corny-ish, but that has also come back.

Aleks: It goes. It goes off. I really avoid playing it, but I played it last.

Eddy: You got a picky. But I’ll play this weekend, I reckon. I reckon my couple this weekend will like it.

Aleks: Will like it.

Eddy: Yeah, yeah, yeah. Um, but, yeah, it’s interesting, isn’t it? Yeah, I’m a bee. Love that one. That’s so much fun. Mas Que Nada, their version of that.

Aleks: I play that, like, every rating.

Eddy: So, yeah, it’s come back around. I don’t know if, like, we’re ready for flo rider to come back around just yet.

Aleks: Oh, it’s a controversial one. I know people in flo rider, love or hate. That’s what we’re seeing without couples.

Eddy: Love or hate anyway, so, yeah. Brett Swain, unfortunately, our audio didn’t work for you.

Aleks: No.

Eddy: So if you listen to this, please accept our apologies and thank you for.

Aleks: Sharing London Bridge with us.

Eddy: Thank you so much for sharing and.

Aleks: Showing us the video of, as you said, white girl wasted going off to London Bridge. It was very good.

Eddy: Very, very, very fun.

Aleks: All right, I think that’s it. I think that’s it. We had a great time. We hope you enjoyed our dribbling. I mean, our summary, but, yeah, it was great to meet so many smart people. We can’t wait to be back. And if you are one of the DJ’s who attended listening to this, let us know what you thought of the episode.

Eddy: Yeah, yeah. Thank you so much.

Aleks: Thank you for listening. And please leave us a little review on Apple Podcasts if you can, until next time, thanks for tuning in. If you’re enjoying project engaged, please hit the subscribe button on your fav podcast app.

Eddy: You can also follow us on Instagram, @projectengaged and @onemoresongdjs.

Aleks: We’ll see you next time. And until then, have fun out there.

Best Wedding Reception Songs For Melbourne DJ

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