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Thread: Good Gig, Bad Gig.

  1. #4491
    MDD Supporter Imagine's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Imagine View Post
    Thursday night I'm in a venue where I don't have a lot of luck recently. The bar and the guests are in a different marquee to the disco (they're in direct line of sight)....but my last three there have been dire. The couple concerned got the guests to send in requests and to be honest, a lot of it is driving home in the car music as opposed to bangers that will fill the dance floor. We'll see how that one goes and ad-lib accordingly. Being a Thursday night though....I'm not expecting big things.
    Oh how wrong could I have been?

    It didn't start out like that though. I arrived at the venue, only half full of bodies and only another dozen due for the evening. It was going to be quiet. The venue staff were down in the dumps because it had been a "flat" wedding, the bar staff were bored because this lot weren't boozers, even the TOG wished me well for what was seemingly going to be a very long night looking at an empty dance floor.

    Sure enough....first dance dispensed with and everyone went and sat down. Okey-dokey

    Ten minutes later, they were back with a vengeance! And there they stayed for the rest of the evening. Every single guest was on my dance floor when I turned the sound off at midnight - still singing along.

    Just goes to show you can't judge a book by it's cover (or a wedding by it's breakfast).

    Time to rest up before Saturday's melee now. It's pretty much hard rock and metal for the duration .

  2. #4492
    MDD Supporter Imagine's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Imagine View Post
    As for next Saturday - I don't mind admitting I'm well and truly out of my comfort zone. The entire night's playlist has been provided (thankfully not in any particular order)....I've never even HEARD of half of the tracks, and the rest certainly aren't the sort of thing I'd normally play for a wedding . I might be proven wrong on this one and it'll certainly keep me on my toes....I've got a week to listen to them and familiarise myself with what's what...it's either going to be a complete belter of a night or a complete nightmare
    .....and I was worried because????

    Another absolutely AWESOME wedding!

    I was in an old barn (well, more of a converted Nissan hut actually so more than a little chilly as the night wore on). Very little room for setup so minimal lighting and I regretted taking the DXR15's as well because they had to go so close to my ears. Even with ear-plugs in, my ears were ringing at the end of that one. I was also based under a mezzanine so only had around 6 1/2 feet in head clearance. Hey ho!

    But - the guests were up for this one in heaps. From the first dance to the end of the night, the floor was absolutely rammed. Yes, it kept me on my toes as I had no idea what half of the tracks were and was doing a lot of previewing whilst the current track was playing out. But....I got it right and got applause and handshakes in abundance at the end of the night .

    Even better, the gig was referred to me by a respected local DJ who had retired when the call came for this one. Both of his grown up children were there as guests and reported back to dad at lunchtime today. There'll be more work coming my way after this one

    Time for a rest now before another two next weekend.....is it January yet?

  3. #4493
    Dinosaur Excalibur's Avatar
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    Default Turn up, take the money, and go home.

    And so it goes on. Friday night was at a very smart Sizzling Pub in Hull for Karaoke. Didn't bode well when we were relocated away from the normal performance area to avoid clashing with Rugby and Football on telly. Despite the offer of free shots for singers, we were underworked and bored witless. Finished an hour early, and went home feeling flat. There's the prospect of further work there, but it's not currently looking an appealing prospect.

    Saturday saw me donning my Hawaiian shirt and heading to Morley Cricket Club, for a surprise 40th Birthday. Customer hadn't been the easiest to deal with, and the promised playlist arrived one day before the gig, not ten or so as requested.
    I had been warned about the venue by Davesounds, who seems to have worked in every venue within fifty miles of Wakefield! The performance area was something else. There was a " booth " like none I've ever seen. Eight feet wide, a yard high, and two feet from the wall. Low headroom to boot. Couldn't set up in front, as that was on the dancefloor, nor to the side, as that obstructed the bar!
    I ended up putting the Fusions and VBars on the Micromax, and wheeling it in behind the booth, while I put the VMS and laptop on the shelf, to the side of it. Far from ideal, but workable.

    The playlist was 135 songs long, so little chance of getting those plus requests into five hours. Client came in, said hello, and proceeded to ignore me for the whole evening, as did all bar two guests, birthday boy and the person who informed of the birthday boy's arrival.

    Sixty guests invited, thirty turned up. Catering had been for the full whack, and there was loads to spare, including a delicious smelling curry. I was neither invited to announce it, nor partake.

    Playlist didn't seem to be doing a lot for the floor, but requests from one couple for Tamla/Soul/Disco were getting some action. Finish time arrived, and I packed up eagerly. Client comes up, and is absolutely lovely. Tells me how guests have been complimenting music, sound quality, and clarity of mic work, and how well I've done. It's a funny old game.

    Davesounds and Matty turn up like a force of nature, and the kit is in the van in no time, and I'm on the road before midnight, and home early for the second night in a row. Thanks lads, much appreciated.
    Excalibur. Older than the average DJ.

    www.excaliburmobiledisco.co.uk


  4. #4494
    Senior Member Jim - Scotland's Party DJ's Avatar
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    Really good one on Saturday save for the grooms mum (who was reeking of wine and sambucca by 8pm) wrecking all but one of the ceilidh dances by screaming that everyone (which actually meant her and a few of her pals from up north, out of the 100 or so guests) knew what they were doing so just to play the music and get on with it.

    Groom, looking like he wanted the ground to swallow him up, told me just to play the tunes and they'd do what they could.

    Gay Gordons (which I'd instructed) was spot on

    Strip the willow - disaster
    Canadian Barn Dance - disaster and they did the completely wrong dance
    virginia reel - one group was fine, hers was a disaster
    can't remember the other two but you get the jist - half an hour of people bumping into each other, tripping up and generally being a shambles.

    Groom kept apologising to me about it - he didn't have to of course, it was nothing to do with him and probably was the best thing to do instead of having her get more wound up, but it was a shame he felt he had to do that on his wedding day.

  5. #4495
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    Friday night was a Disney themed wedding and, though I was told access would be from 6.30pm for a 7.30pm start, when I arrived, early as always, at 6pm main courses were still being devoured. So I consigned myself to a long wait with the laptop and hotel wi-fi. I eventually got my gear in for 7.20pm and set to it to get rigged for a revised start of 8pm and first dance at 8.20pm, just before the buffet at 8.30pm.

    The photographer had told me that he insisted I did the first dance at 8pm as they were supposed to have gone at 7.30pm but had stayed the extra half hour as a goodwill gesture. I told him that was fine, but it would be done in silence and in the dark if he wanted. He sloped off sulking.

    I just about made it and a quick dash for a change of shirt and a powder of the nose got me ready for the First Dance at 8.20, which, to my delight (ha ha Mr Tog), was delayed as the bride's mum wasn't there!

    She returned at 8.45pm so action stations. First Dance, a bit of a gap, then dad/daughter dance. Dad was apparently notoriously shy, so I was to big him up and get the guests to "encourage" him onto the dancefloor. No need for any of that, the couples daughter, aged 6, decided he was coming with her and she brought him onto the dancefloor before I had any chance to say anything. He duly danced with his daughter to Dancing In The Dark by Bruce Springsteen (how near it came to that!) and all was well.

    Bearing in mind that they had only finished eating at 6.45pm, the buffet was a it slow to take off, though the evening only guests were predictable in having starved all day.

    From then on it was party all the time with a 35 song playlist, plus requests from the floor. I did manage to slip a few chosen Disney tunes into the buffet break (they weren't really danceable) and finished the night off with the requested "Can You Feel The Love Tonight" by Elton John, I Wanna Be Like You and When You Wish Upon A Star from the Disney films to close out.

    Bride & Groom who, to my surprise weren't dressed as Mickey & Minnie Mouse, couldn't thank me enough for an "amazing" night and were still in the bar at 2.10am when I left.



    Saturday was the opposite!

    The daytime guest list was reduced by the bride's mother being admitted to hospital on the Thursday, but they decided to carry on with the wedding, even though the venue offered to postpone it with no additional charge. Then, on the day 6 more guests failed to turn up, so from 51 they were down to 44, including 7 kids.

    I arrived at 5pm as per my sheet access time, only to find food in full flow again. The hotel's sheet had turn round for 6pm, so another hour's thumb twiddling time then. I took myself off to the second room in the venue wher my associate was due to arrive and, boy, what a mess. It loked like someone had emptied the entire contents of a wedding wholesalers into the rooms there. There were flowers, arches, indoor arbours, bushes, an LED dancefloor, LED taple tops placed, well, on top of the tables, so the LEDs twinkled through the cloths. There was a HUGE wedding cake of 5 tiers, a sweet cart, photo booth, two wedding cars parked outside (why, they had got married at the venue, so weren't going anywhere), a replica pillar box for cards, a guest book, a massive photo for guests to sign. Apparently the bride's mother was "in the trade" so decided it was going to be a one woman Wedding Fayre with only her standing!

    I helped my mate load in and squeeze into his corner and left while I still had room to get out!

    My evening was booked for 120, buffet at 8.30pm. First Dance just before. All well and good. However, looking round the room, it became obvious that the attendance wasn't going to reach 120. Or 100. Or 80. Maybe 60? Nope. 50 at a push.

    At buffet time we did a count round and there was 36 adults and 6 kids. After the first dance, I called the buffet, and no one moved! 10 minutes later, I issued a reminder and a couple went up. Eventually, word got round, but it was slow going.

    So, music started and to my surprise a few kicked off the dancing. I was handed a request list and was told "these will get everybody up". Let's have a look then...

    Come on Ailen - yes, I thought it said alien!
    Cha Cha slide
    Saturday Night
    Time Warp
    Oops Upside YOur Head.

    Oh well, in for a penny. Well, they were right, they did get most people up (apart from Oops Upside Your Head) but, strangely enough, not the two ladies that brought the request over!!

    The night went on, successfully, considering that 6 of the 12 round tables in the room were empty and the guests had positioned themselves in the four corners of the room, whcih is big enough to hold 250! For 100 or less, there is a dividingh wall than can be used, but this wasn't brought out as we were expecting over 100.

    At 10pm. there were 26 people left, at 11pm 13 and by 1115pm we were down to SIX. The groom had decamped to the bar down the corridoor, where he attempted to order another gallon of lager, staggered three steps back and fell over!

    The bride came over to talk to me and admitted she was tired (no, fully fuelled I would say). I suggested she might want to call it a day but she said no, those over there are my workmates and they are here until 12. They were by now showing signs of inebriation and slumber, so I looked for a way out. No need. 10 minutes later, the bride walked over making the ubiquitous "slit throat" motion. Fader one, Wash-FX on standby. Thanks for coming, safe journey home, blah blah blah, who's listening, goodnight.

    Music off, lights on. 1128, all done. 1 hour and 2 minutes early. Groom somehow managed to revive himself long enough to thank me profusely, saying the same thing three times and shaking my hand four or five times. He then proceded to give me a handome tip, which is the first I have had at in FIVE years! Often the B&G just disappear without even saying thank you. I wonder if he woke up Sunday morning thinking he'd lost some money!

    Pack up and go and see my mate who was stuck to the bitter end at 1230am. You just finished, he enquired? No, I've stripped down, packed the car and am on my way home I said. Through gritted teeth and his faceturning puce, he bade me farewell (at least it began with an F) and I went home.

    Two this weekend in the smaller venue, then off to Greece on holiday for 2 weeks.

  6. #4496
    Shakermaker Promotions Shakermaker Promotions's Avatar
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    Thursday, Friday and Saturday night, I was in Biggleswade DJing at the Hot Rod European Supernationals.

    I did the large event at Great Yarmouth racecourse a couple of months ago and the organisers liked what I did and asked me to do it again, albeit on a massive scale this time. The huge marquee I was in easily held 1000 and on the Friday and Saturday night it was packed (Thursday night was probably half full). There were 2 other marquees with bands and DJ's but they were much smaller than the one I was in.

    There were established bands from that scene playing and I was DJing for an hour before, in between and then an hour after too. I kept to the theme (rock 'n roll, 50's & 60's, Motown, Northern Soul and some Ska) and it worked really well.

    Just the one negative really which knocked my confidence a bit. I guess it was a silly mistake and my own fault really because I played something that was totally off the wall for that kind of crowd and a very large tattooed guy told me what he thought (despite him dancing around to everything I played before and after).

    It went like this - A girl came over who was with her parents and asked me if I could play Mambo No 5 as it was her birthday. I thought "why not?" and wished her a happy birthday. Lots of people were dancing at the time and continued to dance when it came on and in all honesty, it was a good atmosphere and I didn't see anything wrong with it but the guy came over and shouted "What the **** is this!!?, It's like a ****ing wedding reception!!!".

    Ok, it was 1 person out of probably 1000 but it peeved me off a bit.

    It was a long 3 days as I decided to sleep in the van on Thursday and Friday night and drive back after I'd finished Saturday night. I couldn't be bothered driving 112 miles back home each day and decided to save the money. After walking around Old Wardon Park a couple of times (it's huge by the way) and looked at 100's and 100's of superb hot rods, I struggled to find things to keep me amused and busy.

    I got on really well with the sound and lighting guys (again, this was a massive set up with superb quality sound and lighting and an enormous stage).
    I stood and watched the lighting technician program scenes for the bands and found that very interesting.

    I've been told that I am going to be booked again and will probably be DJing at their many events throughout the year which suits me fine as they have around 10 events per year and they are well paid bookings. Plus, I only have to take my Denon flightcase and mixer and my back up laptop as I go through the PA system.

    A very enjoyable but very tiring 3 days.

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