“Hey man, you’re killin’ it. Can you play
Perfect by Ed Sheeran?”
Every DJ’s most dreaded words. But stay with me and I’ll tell you why. It’s not because the DJ doesn’t like Ed Sheeran. It’s because he doesn’t like you. I’m kidding. But there’s a little truth to it!
Picture this, the entire crowd is singing “Shots, shots, shots, shots, shots, shots, everryyyyboooddyyyy!” The bride and groom are jumping up and down, the crowd is sweating like they haven’t worked out for a week, and basically the ballroom is on fire! Not literally but figuratively. The crowd is basically in the moment and having the time of their lives, and here you come, the “Ed Sheeran requester.”
Don’t get me wrong,
we love Ed Sheeran! But have you ever been to a party where the DJ actually listened to what an angry customer wanted? Oh my gosh it’s a nightmare! Keep in mind, we were playing for an older crowd with certain tastes. They were basically enjoying the music of the 70s and 80s. To sum it up, we re-opened Rumour’s nightclub that evening (inside joke for anybody living in Hawaii). Ok ok fine, if you want to understand the joke. It’s a nightclub for anybody who enjoyed oldies music.
My DJ gets tapped on the back, he turns, and John says (don’t think that was his name but he looked like a John), “Hey man, play some feel good music.” Not only was it such a vague request, but we probed him further only for him to say, “Can you play Perfect by Ed Sheeran?” The energy in the room was on such a high that this song would completely kill the vibe. Yet that same requester came three more times after to hound the DJ on why his song wasn’t being played. He wasn’t even drunk!
I get it, because I was like this guy in the past. He doesn’t know any better and he just wants to hear that song so bad; however, on a night that it’s about the bride and groom, he is the last person in the room the DJ would want to please. Most DJs will be super nice to the “Johns” like my DJ was, but now that you understand that there’s a science behind what he’s doing, feel free to ask but know that he may not be able to play it next. Or even after that song either!
There are times when the DJ plays that next requested song right away. It’s because it matched the energy, vibe, and beats per minute of the song (we’re getting technical here). Essentially, there are two things every DJ has to be good at when he’s on the job! Reading the crowd and matching every song with a song that has a similar beat to it. The moment he listens to the “Johns” and plays their song right away to satisfy their urge, that DJ kills the vibe, everyone walks off the floor, and John is left feeling embarrassed that he kept hounding the DJ in the first place. Or not. haha.
Here’s the thing:
“John” doesn’t get blamed. The DJ does! I’m not a DJ by any amount, but I do respect the amount of effort and work they pour into their craft. They spend hours upon hours just curating a playlist only for it to be nixed before show-time because the crowd is wanting something else.
I remember hearing from a colleague in the industry that being a DJ is one of the few careers in the world where people are always telling them how to do their job. I thought it was funny but it is my hope you understand that all a DJ wants more than ever, is to make the crowd have a good time! No scratch that. An amazing time! Practice being present in the moment and know that if you come and request a song, be aware that it may not be played… right away!
If you’d like to learn more about what to do during this #Ronatime, please contact (808) 234-KOOL (5665) for some more KOOL options! Be safe my friends and God bless us during these times.
With love from your friendly neighborhood Emcee,