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I won UK Wedding DJ of the Year …and it’s not a dream 🙂

I won UK Wedding DJ of the Year… and it’s not a dream! Life can be amazing sometimes! In November I felt extremely honoured (although surprised) to hear I’d won the Wedding DJ of the Year for London & the South-East and that felt great… Then on January 14, 2016 that feeling was multiplied by around 10 when I was awarded UK Wedding DJ of the Year in a lavish ceremony thrown by The Wedding Industry Awards at the plush Cafe de Paris in Leicester Square, which saw awards given out in 26 different categories such as florists, wedding planners and make-up. The competition I faced was extremely tough with some excellent DJs that had won their regional award from areas such as the south-west, north-west, midlands and so on. […]

Wedding songs and playlists

Wedding Songs and Playlists As I was having my haircut today the hairdresser asked whether I prepare sets of wedding songs that I’m going to play in advance for the weddings. I explained him to my process of working and he suggested that would make a great article… and so it inspired me to write this blog post after a long break! Having been DJing a long time both as a club DJ and now as a specialist wedding DJ and have never been a fan of creating set playlists and while I never criticise what other DJs choose to do, on this subject I think those that do create set playlists in advance and then stick to them rigidly are missing a trick and possibly even shortchanging their audience. At weddings I generally rarely know more than 2 songs ahead what I’m going to play because I prefer to react to the atmosphere and to how the crowd are responding to the music that is being played as well as taking into account both the requests received on the night as well as the music preferences of the bride and groom. […]

The Wedding DJ of the Year 2015/2016

The Wedding DJ of the Year 2015/16 This week I was honoured to discover I have been awarded The Wedding DJ of the Year in the London & the South-East region in The Wedding Industry Awards. There was fierce competition and the shortlist consisted of 16 top quality DJs, many of whom are very good friends of mine. The Process After each wedding that I performed at between October 2014 and October 2015, the couple received an email requesting that they consider voting on my services. They were asked a series of questions and had to give a score out of 10 for each question and then leave comments on my performance and service. The Questions […]

Guess Who’s Better at Figuring Out Song Lyrics

Guess Who’s Better at Figuring Out Song Lyrics Does a super robot really care what song lyrics mean? Does a super robot care what any word means?  Robots have their time and place, assembling cars, traveling to the moon and bomb detonation. But can they accomplish voice transcription more successfully than humans? A challenge to figure this out was recently conducted between IBM Watson, known as the smartest robot ever and two professional  transcriptionists. After all, Watson kept Jeopardy fans on the edge of their seats when he appeared on the famous game show. Let’s see how he rocks to the transcription beat. […]

Does your background music work for you or against you?

Does your background music work for you or against you? Written by Tony Winyard and published in issue 61 of ProMobile the magazine for DJs, in September 2013 When it comes to playing background music at a wedding, all you’ve gotta do is stick on a Michael Buble cd and that’ll do, right?… after-all, no ones really listening, so it doesn’t really matter? If this is what you do why is the customer paying you for background music? They may just as well get the venue to play that same CD and save themselves a few bob! If the above is something along the lines of your attitude towards the background music you play may I suggest you could be missing a trick, and it deserves far more time spent selecting the tracks for each event, to match the audience. You won’t know exactly what audience it’ll be until they actually are there, so its not something you can completely do in advance, although you can set some of the groundwork in advance. When done properly, the background music can provide you with some gems to play for later in the night. Watch for guests’ reactions to what’s being played and take your cue from them. Be a little adventurous and cater for all of the guests, not just those that like the ratpack/Buble! […]

Should you provide refreshments to your wedding suppliers? A DJ fills us in…

 An article written by Anthony Winyard, published on 5 Star Weddings Directory on 10/11/15 (This is the unabridged version. The abridged version features on the following link) This is a tricky question and the answer isn’t black and white. Let’s start with food. How long will they be at the venue for? If it’s just for a few hours in the evening, such as the majority of DJs who will perform from 7pm to midnight then food is maybe not necessary, however if they are there for over 10 hours such as a DJ who also acts as an MC or is supplying background music and/or mood lighting then it does make sense to provide them a meal. When they will be entertaining your guests in the evening it won’t enhance their performance if they are starving. You want their minds on your guest’s enjoyment not on their stomach. […]

107 tips from a Top Wedding DJ – Save The Date Podcast

Want to hear some great tips on entertainment for your wedding? Check out the new issue of the Save The Date wedding podcast by Aleisha McCormack on which I’m interviewed. Aleisha asks me about subjects such as: Music that should and shouldn’t be played at weddings When to play certain tracks The image of wedding DJs How a new band of DJs in the UK are trying to raise the standard of wedding DJs and getting far more creative What does a master of ceremonies do Music for the wedding ceremony What is a wedding host Why you should meet your DJ Questions you should ask a DJ you’re interested in booking Ice breaking between the two families and friends Creating energy and laughter during the wedding day […]

For DJs looking to improve their performances

An article written by Anthony Winyard for the industry magazine for Mobile DJs, Pro Mobile, issue 62 November 2013 Every DJ that I know with any level of ambition wants to work with better clients at better venues and ultimately increase their earnings, but HOW do you achieve that? There are many factors that will contribute to that desired result, such as improving your skills and knowledge in areas such as marketing, social media, customer service etc. but one key area to work on is improving your performance ability. For those DJs that do seek ways of improving your performance and improving the experience your clients receive, have you ever tried a concept called a Ride-Along? A Ride-Along is where you go with another DJ to an event they’re performing at, from before the audience arrive until the end of the night, or vice-versa, where a DJ comes to your event. You can gain vital information on methods that could improve your performance, or maybe just tweak a few little things to enhance the client’s night, which in turn means a more enjoyable performance for you. […]

The ‘Eskiepades’ that took me from Kilburn to Harrow… via Amsterdam, Damascus and Bali!

An article written by Anthony Winyard and published in Pro Mobile the magazine for Mobile DJs, issue 65 May 2014. The ‘Eskiepades’ that took me from Kilburn to Harrow… via Amsterdam, Damascus and Bali! Picture the scene, I’m 20 and it’s a cold January evening at a flat in Kilburn, North West London. Suddenly the door to my room flies open, and one of my flatmates runs in, “Tone, there’s a phone call for… bloody hell, it’s flaming freezing in ‘ere, you must be a bleedin’ Eskimo to live in this place!” From then on my mates knew me as ‘Eskie’! Dr Who! At the age of nine I started my first job – a paper round – and virtually all of my earnings were spent on records. Two years later I moved up the earnings ladder and got a job as a milk boy around Notting Hill Gate in West London. In one of the houses lived Tom Baker, who at the time was Dr Who. So, on Saturday nights I’d be hiding behind the sofa watching him fearlessly battle the Daleks, then on Sunday mornings I’d hand him two pints of Gold Top! At another house lived members of the band Genesis and, it’s true, they can’t dance! Notting Hill was quite an affluent area, which was great for getting tips when customers paid their bill. This meant that I was able to buy far more records and, within weeks, started buying every new release in the top 10 of the charts, a habit that continued for many years. […]