Should You Have Music At Your Party? Yes, Every. Damn. Time.

San Diego DJ, Justin Kanoya, gets onto the floor and hypes the crowd up alongside the bride and groom. PHOTO: Pam Scott Photography

No matter how long your party is scheduled for or how many people are attending, make sure you have music

As a DJ I provide a service. At the most rudimentary level, the service I provide is music at special events. And as with any service provider, I realize I am in competition with many other providers that provide the exact service I do.

Because of this, I’ve familiar with the saying, “you win some, you lose some.”

But lately there have been some “lose some” situations that have been difficult to take, and not because I lost a bid to a competitor. It’s not even that I lost out to a some guy that is friends with the cousin of the person planning the party.

I’ve lost out to a flawed thought process. The thought that a DJ … that music, is not needed at the party. Reasons such as “it’s just two hours” “or it’s really a small gathering” have served as justifications for the absence of music.

This type of thinking, to be blunt, is nonsense and I’m here to declare that every gathering needs music.

Of course at events such as weddings and other parties, it’s natural to expect some type of music or entertainment. But it should not just be relegated to those events, and it certainly should not be specific to how many attend or how long it’s expected to go.

Just because an event is scheduled for two hours or four hours, or 30 minutes; or just because the party is taking place in your backyard or in a small community center, should not make the need for music less important. Music is always vital for setting a tone so determining the need for it should be less about the length and location of the party and more about what vibe you are trying to create. And that vibe, I would assume, is a fun, upbeat atmosphere.

In fact a good DJ, like good food or good decor or good drinks, enhances an event. There isn’t a requirement to have any of these things for a party, but having them will certainly make it a much better one.

From my own experience I have been asked to DJ in situations that typically do not call for a DJ, but in the end, my presence and the music I was playing completely changed the vibe.

Check out this assortment of photos from corporate events I’ve DJ'd. Did I have to be there? No. But being there certainly provided a little something extra.

San Diego DJ, Justin Kanoya, at the 2015 Lululemon Managers Conference in Vancouver.

Thinking back to the corporate event I did for Lululemon Athletica last year, my primary job during the three day conference was to provide music in the lounge/break area. Could they have easily loaded a music player with music and set it on autoplay? Could they have just forgone the idea of even playing music in this lounge? Absolutely.

But having me there changed the whole perspective. The attendees walked up to me and engaged in conversation. They requested songs. They even began to dance while enjoying their morning coffee or afternoon snack.

They responded as such because even though I was not DJing for a dance floor, I was still there to read and respond to the vibe of the crowd. Something that an iPhone set to autoplay just cannot do.

I realized I was doing more than just playing music in a room. I was setting the tone for everyone. I was creating a space to help further creativity and relaxation.

So remember the next time you are planning a gathering. As you consider how much water or bags of ice you need; how many orders of chicken wings and veggie platters you need; or how many bottles of wine to get, do not overlook how you will incorporate music and a DJ that can provide that music for you.