Hey Party People

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Hey Party People

Postby FatFrogSound » Thu Dec 14, 2006 6:48 pm

I have been a club dj for years, and repeatedly saying "no sorry, I don't have my own equipment" - I finally bought a mobile DJ rig.

I have done a few private parties for friends - nothing fancy because all I have is the sound system and music. (no light rigs at all) I am not interested in getting into weddings and formal events just yet--maybe that will come later. I cringe at the thought of doing weddings....:) too much stress.

Anyway, what is the going rate for private parties? 100 dollars an hour?
As a club DJ, I make about 300 a night-- which is beans really but that is how it goes. Some club owners think they are doing ME a favor for booking me to work their club...whatever.

Also, do you generally have a playlist included in your contract package and the customer usually highlights what they want to hear? Or do you find that people tell you the genre etc and just trust you?

Thanks in advance
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Postby dokai » Thu Dec 14, 2006 6:57 pm

Welcome to the world of mobile work!

The "going rate" is whatever you need to make a legitimate living balanced against what the market will support. A lot of that is location driven, with some parts of the country being a lot more lucrative than others. Even within a specific region there's going to be a lot of variation between the bottom-feeders and the high-end jocks. It all depends on what your goals are.

My rule of thumb was always "If you're nearing 100% booked, then you need to raise your rates." Keep raising them until you're starting to lose bookings, down to 85% booked, then hold that price while working to improve your performances enough to justify it to your clients. When you get good enough at justifying it that you're near 100% again, raise them again.
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Postby LYoung116 » Fri Dec 15, 2006 2:36 pm

For a regular private party (unless it's a Birthday, Anniversary or something special like that) I just have them pick genres and perhaps a few specific songs, groups, or artists. They'll usually let me know when I speak with them. I.E.- last night's company party: they always end with :You've Lost That Lovin' Feelin' and New York, New York ( a 20 year tradition).
Weddings can be very stressful at first, but I love them (being a hopeless romantic).
Another "She-jay"? Welcome, Julie!
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Postby Joseph Ivy » Fri Dec 15, 2006 5:43 pm

I am more looking for a 75% booking rate. Maybe even 50% if I get my prices high enough for it.

Regarding the choice of music. I have an online music database and invite clients to email me with their requests. I also tell them that they can request whatever they want and I will try to find it. I have a wedding this weekend that I spent over $350 on music for. I have spent as more than $600 for music for one wedding.

I also have clients that will just give me genres or tell me to play whatever people want to hear.

In any case, I never include playlists in the contract. I don't promise to play any of their music contractually, but I do make a good faith effort to do so and I'm honest about it when I fail to get their requests. Several times, the client has provided me with some of the special songs that they wanted.

Wherever you are, I'd suggest charging at least $500 if you are going to be serious about taking requests. Taking requests costs money. On the other hand, if you are not going to be taking requests, then you may be able to do it for $300. I would decline a $300 offer, but that's me.

Just to illuminate what dokai has already pointed out, if everybody and their mom wants to book you at your current rates then you would do yourself a big favor to tac on another $100 to your price..
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