The party was held at a function center hired out for the event. I was hired to play from 7pm - 12am so I arrived at 5:30pm to setup for the event. Setup took just over an hour to get everything wired up and tested which is exactly the amount of time I had planned for. I had planned for my full speaker stack but the room was not as big as I had researched so just the floor speakers were more than enough for the night.
After arriving and meeting with the hosts I did a quick survey of the room (as I do) and noted 3 smoke detectors in the room. I always look for these for indoor events because of the smoke machine. There are 2 different types of fire detection used in buildings: smoke detectors (which detect actual smoke) and heat detectors that detect a rise in heat from a fire. Heat detectors are perfectly fine when using a smoke machine as they do not react at all but smoke detectors can be easily setoff by a smoke machine. I warned the host before I set up and we both agreed we would see how it went... It did not take long before they were set off so the night went without the use of smoke which was a shame because I just built a new timer controller for it. I also bought along the bubble machines but decided against these due to the highly polished floor which I decided could become very slippery if it started to get covered in bubble mix.
The setup and lighting looked great even without the smoke machine operating and I was able to dial in the sound for the room acoustics which were a little echoey. I had asked the parents when they made the booking what type of music their son was into which they advised he was mainly into EDM. This is what I had based most of my sets around but I did have plenty of popular music and some more classic stuff arranged for the night too.
Getting started is the hardest thing as people arrive they are not yet comfortable to enter into the dance hall so for a while the room was quite empty until people started to come in and check out the lighting. This was the draw card and all I needed to do was hit the songs they wanted to hear. Playing some popular EDM tracks did not seem to be interesting much of the crowd and one of the girls asked if I could just play R&B all night... nothing specific just "all the good stuff" which is typical of requests. R&B is one of my least favourite genres personally and I did not have much organised in the nights playlists so I had to start digging through my collection to try and find some hits.
I started to dial in on some tracks the crowd started to really love and once the requests started to come and the drinks started to flow it really started to take off.
Priority was given to the female song requests which were very predictable in what they wanted to hear (Beyonce, Kendrick Lamar etc) but this got almost all of the girls drawn into the dancehall which then also drew in most of the guys too. We managed to keep the energy flowing very nicely breaking things up with some classic 90s tracks and typical singalongs such as Oasis - Wonderwall which the crowd loved.
I had a lot of requests and managed to deliver close to 100% of these thanks to having access to online music using PulseLocker which integrates a complete online library of almost every song directly into Serato. Because PulseLocker is not yet available in Australia I had to register an account "from America" and do a few tricky things but was able to get it working and linked through my phone for internet... I used 3.5GB of data that night just on downloading new songs.
The photos speak for themselves. Everyone was having a great night and for the most part people were very well behaved. I did have to keep on top of people getting too close to my setup, leaning on the speakers and at one point when I quickly shot off to the toilet I came back to find one of the girls going nuts on the decks but they listened to my instructions and didn't cause any trouble.
I was able to wind the night up nicely playing some wind down songs to help slow down the night and finish up right on midnight. I was all packed up by 1am and luckily for me this gig was only 10 minutes from where I live so I was home by 1:30am.
I was able to learn some new music selections which I have now started tagging for future events and I received very positive feedback from the hosts who were impressed with the whole setup for the night which is always good to hear.
I was also pleased that some of the time I have spent making custom cable bundles and pre-wired lighting etc really paid off in saving time with setup. Between my DJ/Lighting controller and the amp rack is a huge bundle of cables which all use to be individually packed away in several bags which I had to find. This is all bundled together in a monster cable so this kind of thing helps save a lot of time with setup.
Big thanks to all the people that attended, it was a great night and glad I was able to provide the party atmosphere for this one. Reminds me of what it's like being 18 again and having so much energy. I couldn't help but think about the music I would have been listening too when I was that age and how different it was but even today it stands up and I was able to educate them on some of the classic tunes from the 90s. I really look forward to another of these events for the younger crowds.