Vendor Spotlight: Day One DJ
Are you still searching for an amazing DJ for your upcoming wedding!? Look no further - introducing Joe with Day One DJ based out of Hudson, Wisconsin. We worked with Joe last fall at Cara & Lewis's wedding at Dellwood Country Club and he is seriously one of the best DJ's around town! He is professional, outgoing and most of all FUN! With that being said, we just HAD to find out more about him and his biz!
How did you get into DJing?
I've been a musician my whole life. When I was 14, I performed on stage with a band for the first time. I was hooked immediately on the live performance aspect of music.
When I got married and kids started coming into my life, I had to re-assess my goals of becoming a rock star. I met a guy who did the wedding DJ thing and he talked me into trying it out. Honestly, I thought I'd hate it, but it turns out that I actually love it!
It's the complete opposite as playing in a band. When you play in a band, you play your own music and hope somebody in the crowd likes it. When you DJ, everything you do is about the crowd. What do they like? What's getting them dancing? What do they respond to? It's reverse engineering the concept of stage presence. The guests run the show and I just facilitate that happening smoothly and effectively.
What led you to the wedding industry, specifically?
Everybody is always in a great mood at weddings. It's the most important day of the couples' lives and I'm there for it. I stay in touch with the couples I DJ for because I'm part of their wedding and instantly feel like I've known them for a long time. There's a connection there that I love.
Tell us about your most memorable and fun wedding/event.
I use the phrase "I could write a book," a lot. I really could. It's hard to choose. BUT... if you threatened to punch me in the face if I didn't come up with something:
- I did a wedding at a private residence for a couple who I already knew. The property was amazing and located on a lake in Hudson. They wanted to have their first dance on a floating dock out on the lake but things got a little rushed because a storm was rolling in. This turned out to be absolutely perfect.
They both got into a row boat filled with flowers as they were rowed out to the floating dock. I played their first dance song and all their guests lined up on the shore to watch. Almost immediately after the dance started, lightning started flickering in the distance. It was twilight, and lightning was igniting the clouds every few seconds. It would have been an amazing thing to watch even if there wasn't a first dance going on!
- My first gay wedding was for a middle-aged couple who had been together for 20 some years. Shortly after the Marriage Equality Act, they decided to tie the knot.
They didn't have a wedding party and one of the brides waited up front as the other came out of the back room. The second she came out, all of the guests immediately erupted in applause and cheers as they stood while she walked down the isle.
It was all so organic and natural. Everybody was legitimately celebrating this couple. All weddings are great, but so many get tied up in the traditions of "now we're supposed to stand" and "now we're supposed to _____" that they forget that they're there to celebrate what's actually happening. There was so much emotion and excitement in that room that it was hard to even handle it.
What makes you unique from other DJs?
I'm a high energy DJ who is 100% engaged with every aspect of the night. From the moment the first guest arrives, to the moment the last one leaves, I have my finger on the pulse of how to make the night flow smoothly. I talk with all the other vendors, meet the guests, and read the room so I know how to approach the dance.
During the dinner, I'm the voice of the event. I don't want anybody to worry about anything and I introduce everything that is about to happen. I always let guests know what's happening next and when it's going to happen. One of the biggest reasons wedding guests leave is because they don't know what's happening next.
Once the dance starts, my goal is to create an awesome party. That's what weddings are. People forget that sometimes. Create emotional moments, memorable moments, crazy moments, any moments at all and people will remember the night as a celebration and not just another wedding to check off their list.
Can you tell us about your packages and price point?
Pricing varies a bit depending on your package and DJ. All of my DJs have performance experience before I add them to the team and they start at around $1295, but you'll be paying a bit more for me. We also do full event lighting production. Want your wedding to look like a concert with video walls and crazy (but classy) visuals everywhere? We can do that. Want live music integrated in with your DJ or live cocktail music? We can do that. It all depends on your budget!
What is the most important piece of advice you would give to people looking for a DJ/band?
Nothing will end your night faster than a bad DJ. It's one of the aspects of your night that you should focus most of your budget on. People don't care about party favors. If you're on a budget, scratch them and route your money to places it matters like your DJ, photographer, venue, caterer etc.
Tell us one thing we might not otherwise know about you.
I'm an ultrarunner and do crazy races in the woods. As of now, my longest run is 100 miles.
*All photos provided by Day One DJ