We receive this question quite frequently and always ask the bride and groom as well if they are comfortable with having guests request songs at their wedding. Some couples automatically answer that question by placing a space in their invitations for guests to request songs before they even have a chance to arrive at the wedding. This option is fine, especially if you are easy going and trust your DJ to make the choice of what songs to play at what time and what is wedding appropriate to play at your reception.
However, not everyone is comfortable with letting their guests guide the music atmosphere of their wedding. A strict “No Requests” policy can also be in place, although not highly recommended. You want your guests to be a part of your wedding and enjoy it with you, not just spectators.
The best choice generally is a median between the two extremes. You want your guests to hear songs that they enjoy and want to dance to, and also be able to go up to the DJ and requests something that has a special meaning to them. You also want to make sure that you have a competent and courteous enough DJ to be able to screen the songs as they are being requested and make judgement on what should be played at what time. Usually a good “Do Not Play” list can be very helpful to a DJ so that he or she knows what songs to stay away from, even if they get requested.
Our general guidelines include communicating with the bride and groom before hand to know what songs to stay away from and also with the guests if they request a song that does not fit the format being played. Keeping the flow of music going is very important to an event. If a DJ is playing a top 40 format and the dancefloor is full, and someone requests “My Girl”, although it is a great song, it would not fit with the flow of the music at that moment. We would make a note of the song and advise the guest that it would be played at a later time.
The main thing to keep in mind when making the decision on whether you want to allow your guests to request songs or not is to have clear communication with your DJ. Communication is key, so let your DJ know what you do and don’t want to take place during your wedding. In the end, your DJ should be professional enough to make the decisions on the songs as they are being requested, without having to constantly bug you on specific requests.
When planning a wedding, most couples try to make sure everything is just the way they want. The decor, the venue, the flowers, the food, entertainment, etc. However, the one thing that is truly unpredictable is Mother Nature and the weather, especially if your wedding is in Georgia. Just because your wedding will be under a pavilion does not make you immune to the weather.
The weather in Georgia this past week was a constant drizzle and occasional downpour here and there. The venue has a covered pavilion for the dancefloor area that overlooks the North Georgia mountains with a beautiful view, which is attached to the main building so guests can go in and out as they please. The ceremony was moved indoors and the rest was to be continued as planned.
Needless to say, the covered outdoor dancefloor was useless so we had to improvise and move everything indoors. We cleared a couple of the tables, moved some of the sound equipment indoors and continued the evening indoors. Even though the venue was full, the willingness of the couple, the staff, and guests to be flexible and content to make sure the night didn’t get ruined, helped make this night a successful one.
It is important to choose your vendors accordingly. Sometimes you have to go with the flow and be flexible because things may not go exactly the way you planned. A good venue with great staff and cooperative vendors will ensure that. After all, Mother Nature is quite unpredictable.