Dos and Don'ts of Making Song Requests

Each week, we feature wedding music recommendations from Scratch Weddings, the nation's leader with the best wedding DJs at affordable prices. This week's post comes from DJ K. Ross. Hailing from upstate New York and currently based in Buffalo, K. Ross is a DJ, producer and performer who has spun for crowds in New York, L.A., Paris, London, Amsterdam, and everywhere in between. His credentials span from hip-hop to indie rock, opening for acts such as Cypress Hill, Mos Def, Matt & Kim, and Tribe Called Quest as well as performing at SXSW, Coachella and Rock the Bells. His encyclopedic musical knowledge is sure to impress even the most discerning couples, and with more than a decade's worth of DJ experience, K.Ross can effortlessly spin both hits and deep cuts from every genre imaginable. "I really try to get a sense of a couple's specific musical taste, because they should hear every song they want for their wedding.”

bride groom dancing

Photo Credit: Holli B Photography

Lately, it seems like word has gotten out that DJs don't like requests. In defense of DJs everywhere, I would say this is a half-truth. Requests aren't the problem; it's the way people ask for them. Here are a few notes and tips for your guests to consider when requesting a song at your wedding.

1. Don’t ask to see what songs we have. 
DJ'ing is different from karaoke. We don't bring a book of songs for people to look through. Every DJ catalogues and arranges his or her music differently. More importantly, we’ve had extensive conversations with the couple on what music they want to hear prior to the big day, and we tailor the music we have prepared to play based on these lists. It’s simple: what songs do we have? We have the songs that the couple wants to hear!

2. Do compliment usflattery will get you everywhere.
As a DJ, I work hard to make the wedding successful and fun, but it can be a major downer when someone is mean or aggressive. We appreciate people enjoying the music and telling us that they like what they hear! When we know you’re happy and we’re doing a good job, we’re excited to take your requests and see what music you’re into.

3. Don’t get touchy-feely near the DJ booth. 
We bring a lot of expensive equipment with us, and it can be quite nerve-racking when a guest is touching our gear, usually waving a drink around in the other hand. If you hit something accidentally or spill your drink, you can damage the equipment—or worse, cause an awkward moment by having the music stop playing or mess up the song queue. And remember, our number one job is to keep the party going and the music flowing for the newlyweds. If you want to learn about the DJ equipment, just ask. We love to show people how stuff works, but we prefer to do it when we are not in the middle of a mix—otherwise we risk getting distracted and messing up. And DJs are perfectionists! 

4. Do know the song you want before coming to chat with us. 
Our number one priority during the wedding is to meet and exceed the musical expectations of the couple. We need to be focused and concentrating on our craft to do so; therefore, we ask that you know the name of the song you’d like to hear before you come up to the booth to make a request. We’re happy to chat with you briefly about the music, but we do need to pay attention at all times, so the more you know before you come to speak with us, the more likely we are to be able to entertain your request.

5. Don't expect to hear your song immediately.
Often, DJs have mixes ready to go and are building up for the right minute to drop your favorite song. If you trust our professional instincts and give us time to prepare, we can expertly work in the request in a cool musical way you may never expect. If you don't hear your song after a little while, it’s OK to politely remind us. You are the client, and we want you to be happy. 

6. Do make sure to dance when you hear your request!
If we see you and fellow guests enjoying the music you requested, we are more apt to take further requests. Get up, boogie, and have a great time! That’s what we’re here to facilitate!

So what should you request? Here are some of the most requested songs our couples ask for as part of their special night:

► "Home" - Edward Sharpe & the Magnetic Zeros
► "Marry You" - Bruno Mars
► "Party Rock Anthem" - LMFAO
► "Empire State Of Mind" - Jay-Z feat. Alicia Keys
►  "P.Y.T. (Pretty Young Thing)" - Michael Jackson 
► "Mr. Saxobeat" - Alexandra Stan
► "We Found Love" - Rihanna feat. Calvin Harris
► "One More Time" - Daft Punk
► "Just Dance" - Lady Gaga
► "Bulletproof " - La Roux
► "It’s Tricky" - Run-D.M.C.
► "Just Dance" - David Bowie
► "Poison" - Bell Biv DeVoe
► "Firework" - Katy Perry