In the early stages of planning, we tossed around the idea of just creating a Spotify playlist, finding some speakers, hooking up a phone to the system, and finding a reliable friend who could manage the system during toasts and dancing. Then I remembered the debacle that was Teh Sister's music situation and I nixed that idea in favor of hiring someone to manage the music.
We never discussed having musicians for the wedding or reception. I think we both just gravitated towards pre-recorded music and that was that. When I pointed out that we'd probably need a sound system for the wedding ceremony (because someone becomes Miss Mumbles when she's nervous), a DJ was the obvious choice. They could set up for the wedding ceremony outside and the reception inside. Teh German agreed with this logical deduction.
So I set about researching DJs. Our coordinator had suggested a company that I looked into. Around the same time, a neighbor added me to a Bride Recycle/Sell/Swap FB group. I joined another group that was similar and watched. Several DJs posted on the FB groups advertising their services. I checked them out, slowly. Most of them seemed out of our price range. I wanted to pay $500 for a DJ for all day. Call me cheap, but even after getting a deal on the photographer, I'm still.. on a budget.
I messaged one called Jus Luv Music that didn't have set prices set on her FB page. I also checked her website to see what was there, but it wasn't a completed website. When she responded, she tried to say the prices were listed and I had to explain that they were not listed. I even sent her a link. She was willing to give me $50 off for just pointing out the deficiency. We chatted back and forth and I explained that creating a website wasn't overly difficult, I had done it (and sent her the link to Teh Blog). I explained that our needs were slightly different, but it was possible to build a site for her with minimum costs.
She was over the moon. She then asked me if I would build a website for her in exchange for DJ services and I said yes. Any discount was better than paying full price. A few days later, we set up a meeting to discuss our needs. Shit started to get rocky.
Originally, I had planned our meeting for 4pm near my work since I knew I could be there pretty quickly. Then I ended up needing to work from home that day. At 3:30, I got a text from her saying she was stuck behind a school bus and could we push the meeting back to 4:30. I said ok. Shit happens. At 4:30, I was sitting in the cold at DIG in the Park, alone. 4:35, 4:40, still alone. She finally texts and says she's on her way, but should she have crossed a bridge? I move inside because I was tired of being cold. I call her because texting and driving is pretty stupid. She says she's 5 minutes away. 4:50, 4:55, still alone. Finally at 5 after 5, she shows up, apologizing. I had originally had an appointment at 5:30, but messaged that person to tell them I would be running late and asked if 6:30 was too late but they said it was ok.
Obviously, I am not impressed. Nonetheless, I eventually start to warm up to Jenny. She explains how she got into DJing (generational) and why she continues to do it (she loves music). I tell her the details of the wedding day and explain that we'd need a set up for the ceremony and the reception, which she says she can do.
Then we moved on to discussing her website and what features she'd like to have. She was thrilled with my bride perspective since I can give her first hand insight into what brides are looking for. She explained that if I can build her website, she would be willing to do the entire wedding day for free. Tickle me pink, fuck yes.
She told me that she was doing a charity event in Summerville a few weeks later if I'd like to drop by and check out her work. That night over dinner, I explained all of this to Teh German who was excited with me. We put the event on the calendar.
Fast forward to the day of the event and I'm laying in bed scrolling through FB and see someone post in one of the bride groups looking for a DJ for that day for their Summerville charity event since their scheduled DJ was sick and had to cancel. Turns out, MY DJ was the one who cancelled. The DJ who promised me that if anything were to happen on our day, she'd have backup, blah blah blah. At which point I start to panic.
I wait a week or so to try to settle down and it never happens, so finally I sent her an email with all my feelings, essentially, detailing all the things I just told you about. I ask to meet her so we can hammer out our arrangement, I can show her the website that I had created for her, and arrange a contract. She emails back saying I took her by surprise and she's never had anyone that was unsatisfied with her work, of course she'd meet.
We set up an meeting. This time she wasn't late (wise life choice), although she did bring a grandchild with her, which I let go since she was upfront about being family oriented in our first meeting. We went over her contract and I showed her the website. We were both pleased. My brain felt soothed and she offered to let me write up our contract and send it back to her and she'd sign it. I gave her some homework to get me some info for her website.
Done. We have a DJ!