how much to charge?

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how much to charge?

Postby spewie » Tue Jun 06, 2006 2:49 pm

Im a bar dj who has been hired to work a couple of outside partys and Im wondering what to charge. Both partys are for friends one is a graduation party down at the jersey shore and the other is a 4 hour cocktail reception at the NY Athletic Club for a friends 2nd marriage.

I guess Im looking to you guys for some guidance
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Re: how much to charge?

Postby jbrown157 » Tue Jun 06, 2006 3:26 pm

Your fee should be based commensurate with your experience. Equipment rental and music also need to be accounted for as does the day of the week (Saturday is a premium day). These sound like fairly simple events. Fees vary wildly from one part of the country to the other. Around this area, the cost for a professional DJ for such a party would range between $300 and $700. Less for a novice, more for an experienced pro. The NY/NJ area guys can probably provide a better estimate than I can for your market.
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Postby djdonny » Tue Jun 06, 2006 3:27 pm

That's a loaded question, but I'm game...

I take it that these would be your first two private parties, and that you're offering nothing more than a limited range of music and very limited interaction. There's nothing wrong with that -- we all started there.

Don't be swayed by the fact that these events are for "friends".

The average rate for these types of less formal events by experienced DJs in the NYC area is probably around $600 - $900. If you want to charge less for your inexperience, that's understandable. In any case, anything less than $400 is an insult to the profession and probably not worth your effort.

And considering the NY Athletic Club is right off Central Park in Manhattan, I would strongly suggest that you charge at least $500 just for the hassle and costs (eg, parking) related to that location.

But here's the key question, do you feel confident enough to offer more than adequate DJ services for these friends' events? If not, then as a friend, TELL THEM!
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Postby spewie » Tue Jun 06, 2006 3:55 pm

djdonny wrote:But here's the key question, do you feel confident enough to offer more than adequate DJ services for these friends' events? If not, then as a friend, TELL THEM!



I know I do a good job at the place I work - Ive worked there almost every thurs,fri, sat for 4 years now and the place is doing pretty well. Im not sure of what to expect doing a party as opposed to working a bar/club.
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Postby Dave Miller » Tue Jun 06, 2006 4:28 pm

I know I do a good job at the place I work


Bar gigs are VERY different from private parties. And I'll bet that the first couple of nights at the bar you weren't quite sure of yourself. But then you got used to it, and, at the same time, the crowd got used to you.

---

As Donny mentioned, $600 to $900 is about average - for an experienced DJ. For a newcomer, $400 is more like it. The discount for 'friends' shouldn't be more than $100 or you'll suddenly learn that you have a lot more friends than you thought. Relatives too ("How am I related to you, again?")

Donny is right about charging extra for the NYC thing. What he may not realize is that NYAC is a chain with locations in NJ as well.
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Postby Dave Miller » Tue Jun 06, 2006 4:31 pm

DJ Teddy Bear wrote:What he may not realize is that NYAC is a chain with locations in NJ as well.

Oops. I was thinking New York SPORTS Clubs.
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Re: how much to charge?

Postby DJ Scott » Tue Jun 06, 2006 5:35 pm

Bars and Clubs are a whole different animal. At most clubs, there are certain "Themes" as to genre of music. 80's, Disco, Hip-Hop and such. Out in the Wedding or Party market you'll have to cater to a larger cross section of musical tastes. Be sure you have enough music to cover from the 40's and up.
After 27+ years as a DJ...I command the $1100 range for 4 hours (non club).
When I started out....I got $150 for 3 hours.
Man!........How times have changed.
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