How To DJ A Birthday Party

How To DJ A Birthday Party

Are you wondering “how to DJ a birthday party”? We’ve got some tips for you! As professional DJs, we have experience in working all kinds of events, from weddings to birthday parties, all over New England ranging from Massachusetts to Maine.

Being a DJ for a birthday party can be a lot of fun. For one thing, birthday parties are usually a little more relaxed than weddings. For another, it can be easier to tailor your playlist to a particular group of people.

Whether you are DJing for your great aunt’s quiet get-together or a friend’s daughter’s sweet sixteen, as long as you have done your prep work, both you and the guests can have a good time.

An older couple and other party guests dance in front of a picnic table outside on a sunny day

Preparation Before the Party

Before you DJ a birthday party, you’ll want to gather as much information about it as possible. This will help you pick your music, your equipment, and help you plan for requests or a genre switch-up.

Ask About the Crowd and Honoree

How do you DJ a birthday party for a 20-year-old compared to a 75-year-old? Your choice of music will have a lot to do with how old the birthday person is, but also the average age of the attendees.

Before the party, ask your contact or the planner what kinds of music the crowd will enjoy. If they’re an older crowd, will they want music that was popular when they were young? If it’s a younger crowd, find out what genre they’re into. (Also, make sure you’re up to date on what is currently popular, aka “what the kids are listening to these days”.)

You will also want to ask the planner what your primary role is supposed to be. Are you supposed to get people dancing or provide a pleasant ambiance? Find out as much as you can about what kind of party they are looking for.

Find Out If There’s a Theme

You’ll want to know if the birthday party has a theme so you can pepper in some appropriate music. While you may not have to play music only having to do with the theme (unless specified), it helps set the mood…and that’s what you’re there to do!

Is it a Gatsby-themed party? Have some swinging 1920s jazz ready. Is it a tropical theme? You’ll want to have some upbeat, beachy music ready to go.

Inquire About the Venue

It’s definitely important to ask about the venue so that you can plan to bring the appropriate equipment. Find out whether you will be setting up in a big or small space and whether you’ll be inside or outside. You’ll need to know how far your sound will need to reach.

If you will be using equipment outdoors, make sure you have a proper covering in case the weather turns out to be poor!

Also, ensure that you’ll have access to electrical outlets if needed.

Make a Large Music Collection

With all the information you’ve gathered about the crowd, make one large collection of music that you think they would enjoy. To be safe, you should have more music than could cover the entire event.

You can make several different playlists based on genre, mood, or era.

A woman's hands turn knobs on a DJ set up outside with grass in the background

The Day Of the Party

Test Your Equipment

One of the most important parts of DJing a birthday party is setting up your equipment! (Don’t know how? We have a whole post about how to set up a DJ system.)

You’ll want to arrive at the venue with plenty of time to set up, set your levels, and check the sound of your equipment.

Keep Track of the Flow

While you DJ a birthday party, you will want to keep track of the flow of the party. Are people still mingling and catching up? If so, that’s probably not the time to turn things up.

Alternatively, if people are singing along and having a good time, you won’t want to bring them back down yet.

Make Yourself Available

When you DJ a party, don’t just go on auto mode. People love DJs who are present, available, and involved. Interact with guests when you’re able and take requests if need be. At the end of the day, you are there to help them have fun!

If you were confused as to how to DJ a birthday party, we hope this post helped! By prepping as much as you can beforehand, you can set yourself up for success. Then on the day of the party, it’ll be easier to be flexible and relaxed.