Jim's Blog

Secret Tips To Male Your Reception More Successful

Chances are that this is your first time getting married, right?


You’ve done your research on Pinterest and Google and You Tube and TikTok. You’ve talked to friends that have gotten married and received their input. You’ve bugged your parents, trying to find out what you need for your wedding day.


I’ve been performing at events for decades now. I’ve seen it all and know what you should expect. And while I can go on and on and tell you way more than you need to know, that comes after you hire me!


But I’ve got some tips for you to think about today that should help you with a few things. Hope you take these to heart.


1) Most wedding receptions in Alabama end at 9 p.m.

You can end at whatever time you want but 9:00 is the time when the food has been eaten and put up, the cake has been sliced and boxed up, the guests have started to yawn (or hopefully their feet are killing them!) and they’re ready to go. Plus there’s always the chance that your wedding party wants to move the party to a more public place where the single guys and girls can check out a bigger selection of potential dance partners for the evening (to put it nicely). A few wedding receptions go to 10:00 but VERY FEW go past that time. In fact, I call 10:00 “the witching hour” … nobody in their right mind stays past 10:00. That’s when things can go bad with people who’ve indulged in their alcohol consumption and that’s the last thing you want your reception remembered for … the groomsmen who got in the fight with the security guard.


2) If affordable, keep your photographer/videographer until the end of the evening.

I’m a professional and I try to “stage” several moments on a dance floor. Most of those moments come within the last hour of dancing when people are comfortable with the dance floor and staying out there. That’s when they tend to do as I ask (everybody point at the photographer, for instance). It doesn’t sound like much but when you see the photograph of your guests on the dance floor, grinning from ear to ear and pointing at you in the picture, you’ll be glad you have that photo for years to come. So many photographers will try to sell you a package that sees them leaving before the fun even starts. Ask ahead of time if they will give you an unlimited time price, not to exceed whatever time the DJ quits. You’re thinking about hiring a DJ because you want a FUN wedding reception. And it’s nice to have PROFESSIONAL pictures of that fun!


3) Do you want a memorable party or would you rather show off your eclectic music tastes?

This trend has happened more and more in recent years. Couples like listening to Toad and the Frog Boys or Starship 10818 or Hannah Myers-Bell. And they think that since they like it, so will their guests. Let me be clear … they won’t. People respond best to songs that they KNOW when it comes to dancing. They also want to sing along or tap their feet to the beat. When you give them something they’ve never heard before, they tune it out and wait for the next familiar song. This means … there will be nobody on the dance floor except MAYBE your new spouse and yourself. And trust me … you don’t want to be out there either. You don’t want to look like the person that picked such a dance floor killer. You’ll be over in the corner, talking to your dentist and thanking them for coming. Trust me. I’ve seen it more times than I care to remember.


4) “But what if I have to hear ‘Our Love Is Like A Herpes Sore’ on my wedding day?”

That’s fine. Your musical tastes are out of the ordinary. So are mine! But I already know that people don’t want to hear Ursula 1000 or Tom Waits or The Ramones at a wedding reception. But each of those HAVE a place in a waiting reception. We can get away with obscure music for your first dance, your cake cutting, your dinner music, your cocktail music, your garter toss, your dances with your parents (although I doubt your parents will be overly thrilled). But the most successful wedding receptions are the ones where the couple and their friends and DJ have chosen popular songs that run the gamut from hip hop to country to oldies to rock to R&B. I send you a number of lists to help you choose songs and if you’re still confused, leave the music selection up to your DJ. If he or she is from the area, they will know the music that most people respond to and can handle this … that’s why you’ve hired a professional!


I’ve got plenty more tips but not enough time today to write them out. Meaning we’ll talk soon. If you’d like to discuss more aspects of your wedding day, email or call me … I’m always nearby my phone!