What’s essential when creating a contract for your wedding band or DJ?
Finding the right entertainment for your reception is a crucial part of the planning process. Great wedding bands and DJs can be rather hard to come by – especially when you’re looking for a specific sound or personality. But even after you’ve found the musician or band to do the job, you’ll need to make sure that your contract has everything necessary for a stress-free experience.
Every vendor you hire for your wedding will need to be sealed and promised with a contract – which ensures you’re getting everything that you’re paying for. This is the space where you agree on your deliverables and expectations – and your backup plans.
Make sure that your Wedding Band or DJ contractual agreements should include the following:
- The event time, date, and location. Include expected arrival time (incorporate time it will take to set up and break down).
- Package price and specifications
- For bands: Know how many musicians (their names and instruments) that will be in attendance. Also, know who the backup musicians are.
- For DJs: Know if the DJ will have an assistant for the night and what their name is – as well as the backup assistant. Also, make it clear as to whether the DJ will serve at the MC for the night or not.
- Make sure you know what you or the venue should be supplying and it’s outlined explicitly what the band or DJ is supposed to be held accountable for bringing as well. This includes any extra chairs, tech supplies, amplifiers, and the like.
- Attire expected. If your event is formal, make sure the entertainment knows what they’re expected to be wearing. Should the DJ be in a suit or does something more casual fit the event?
- Music preferences. You should hand over your must-be-played song list (and any songs that should never be played) from the very beginning. Make sure your first dance, cake cutting songs, etc., are included on a schedule of when they should be played – and also that the band is able and willing to perform them.
- Breaks are given (including dinner). The contract should include any breaks that the entertainment staff may need during their allotted time. This includes whether or not they’ll be offered a meal throughout the event.
- Overtime rates should also be outlined in the contract. In the event that the party just isn’t stopping anytime soon – are they willing to continue to play until the dancing dies down? And how much will that cost (usually per hour).
- Extra fees – talk about this ahead of time and make sure it’s also included in the contract. For example, are there any extra fees for having to break down equipment?
- Deposit and balance due dates. There should be a schedule included in the contract of these dates.
- Cancellation/Refund policy should be explicitly outlined as well in the event of an emergency or another conflict.
- Back up/ absence plan. What happens in a band member or DJ gets sick? Who will show up and make sure that the event runs smoothly? What’s the process for this?
Most importantly, meet the Entertainment in person. Make sure your personalities mesh and they understand your vision. And lastly, listen to them play and make sure they fit your vision for your big day!