Sunday 22 October 2017

Wedding DJ

6-years ago my friend Jillian asked me to DJ at her wedding. I was delighted to accept. The wedding was to be held in the beautiful House for an Art Lover in Glasgow, a venue I was familiar with as it had also been the setting for my friends Phil and Mary's wedding.

Jillian and Chris' wedding was a real blur. There was a free bar and it was draft Stella. I was sharing DJ duties with a guy from France called Tony. French Tony - as there was also a Scottish Tony. He cleared the dance floor several times so the decks became mine and I played Motown, 60's beat groups, Bowie, Roxy Music and then fine pop including Madonna, Kylie, S-Express and Deee-lite. All music I loved.

Jillian and Chris also introduced me to Ruby Andrews beautiful Just Loving You as that was their first dance. What a choice! It is a cracker and I'd later be interviewed on 6music by Craig Charles on his Funk and Soul show and he marvelled at the song - he hadn't heard it before.

I must have made an impression on Jillian's sister Jules as 2-months ago she got in contact to ask if I would DJ at her wedding.

We had a couple of chats and it was clear that other than the first dance (Andy Williams - You're Just To Good To Be True), Jules and Duncan completely trusted me to get people dancing and ensure everyone had a good time. No pressure!

1st dance

I love a good wedding reception. I trusted my friend Phil to DJ at my own wedding reception, but I also met with him several times to discuss 'must plays'!

For this reception I decided against vinyl. It was to be Spotify and/or iTunes. I discovered a great little APP called DJJAY2 for only £4.99 that allows you to DJ electronically on an iPad using Spotify.  You can mix, there are effects and if you have WIFI then you have quite a catalogue at your disposal!

I have always loved dj-ing with vinyl. You can only play what you have and if you're playing a 3-minute Motown special then you have extremely limited time to select and choose your next record and get it all queued up. I have always liked the excitement of choosing one, only to get it all queued up and then change my mind and fight against time to get another one chosen and ready.

But common sense prevailed on this occasion. I decided to go digital and it definitely helped on the night as in the end I took some requests for the Gay Gordons and Dashing White Sergeant (both of which were amazing) and also ended up playing songs I hadn't included on my 200+ Spotify playlist that I had created for the evening. Why Does It Always Rain On Me by Travis was also requested as it is the family anthem and that became clear when I played it!

Other than those requests, everything I played was entirely my choice. I fretted over playing Toploader (euuugghhh) but it packed the dancefloor. I also cleared the dance floor a couple of times! It was packed for The Fratellis Chelsea Dagger so I thought I'd keep it upbeat with Rocks by Primal Scream, but people vanished! Maybe they were just a little tired cause it had been pretty busy from the off!

The Proclaimers and Runrig were predictable but euphoric Scottish highs. Sunshine On Leith towards the end of the night was absolutely beautiful. Deacon Blue's Dignity sounded incredible.

Dancing and singing

The benefit of WIFI and DJ-ing electronically meant that I stuck Tony Christie, Black Lace (yeah i played them after people started a conga during Tony Christie), the Village People, the O'Jays and Journey off the cuff - I wondered why I hadn't thought of them beforehand! Total party tunes, really euphoric sing-a-longs and cheesey party anthems!

It was a great night in the stunning Ardoch House near Loch Lomond. There were many highlights; seeing people going crazy to Yazz, hugging and singing at top voice to Hey Jude, or being mesmerised by the beauty of Sunshine On Leith was incredible. And those from England who had never attended a Scottish wedding before were blown away by Runrig's Loch Lomond and the traditional circular pogo. I then followed that up with a cheeky encore of Whitney's classic I Wanna Dance With Somebody to end the night.

The last 2 songs of the night

The DJAY2 APP keeps a list of the songs played in each set that you can then transfer to a Spotify playlist. So check that below and there is also a full setlist. NOTE - for some reason it doesn't transfer to Spotify in order played!

It was great fun and it has totally got me in the mood for organising a night of playing records with friends and having a party.

Pre evening reception tunes
Somewhere In My Heart - Aztec Camera
Sparky's Dream - Teenage Fanclub
Baby I Need Your Loving - Four Tops
Good Vibrations - Beach Boys

Can't Take My Eyes Off You - Andy Williams
Crazy Little Thing Called Love - Queen
For Once In My Life - Stevie Wonder
Happy - Pharrell Williams
Twist and Shout - The Beatles
Love Is In The Air - John Paul Young
Can't Stop The Feeling - Justin Timberlake
Dancing On The Ceiling - Lionel Ritchie
Human - The Killers
Chelsea Dagger - The Fratellis
Rocks - Primal Scream
Do Your Thing - Basement Jaxx
Everybody Dance - Chic
Into The Groove - Madonna
Gay Gordons - Jimmy Stand (played twice!)
I'm Gonna Be (500 miles) - The Proclaimers
Don't Stop Me Now - Queen
Jump - Van Halen
Oh Pretty Woman - Roy Orbison
I Want To Hold Your Hand - The Beatles
I'm A Believer - The Monkees
Just Loving You - Ruby Andrews
Why Does It Always Rain On Me - Travis
Dashing White Sergeant - Jimmy Shand
You Can Call Me Al - Paul Simon
Valerie - Amy Winehouse and Mark Ronson
Dancing Queen - ABBA
Atomic - Blondie
The Only Way Is Up - Jazz
You Got The Love - The Source and Candi Staton
Groove Is In The Heart - Deee-lite
Just Can't Get Enough - Depeche Mode
Common People - Pulp
I Want You Back - Jackson 5
Don't Leave Me This Way - Harold Melvin and the Bluenotes
Stop! In The Name Of Love - The Supremes
Get Off Of My Cloud - The Rolling Stones
Brown Eyed Girl - Van Morrison
Young Hearts Run Free - Candi Staton
Dancing In The Moonlight - Toploader
Let's Dance - David Bowie
More Than A Woman - Bee Gees
Get Lucky - Daft Punk
She's Electric - Oasis
Hey Jude - The Beatles
I'm Gonna Be (500 miles) - The Proclaimers
(Is This Way To) Amarillo - Tony Christie
Do The Conga - Black Lace
YMCA - Village People
Love Train - The O'Jays
Don't Stop Believin' - Journey
Dignity - Deacon Blue
Sunshine On Leith - The Proclaimers
Loch Lomond (live) - Runrig
I Wanna Dance With Somebody - Whitney Houston

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