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Sammie & Nic’s Chesapeake Bay Wedding

This June bayside wedding hummed with strings and bounced with pop, dance, and rock tunes. Cambridge MD wedding DJ Jordan brought the dance floor to life!

Weddings
Frederick Wedding DJs │Music, Lighting, Photo Booths
Jordan Solender


The threat of rain loomed over Sammie and Nic’s wedding day at the Hyatt Regency Chesapeake Bay. But this cheerful couple was all smiles, and we like to think they scared the rain away with their warmth and enthusiasm.


The 342-acre resort that the couple chose for their wedding site is both gorgeous and fun. It features an 18-hole golf course, boat marina, pool, and full-service spa. If you have out-of-town guests coming to stay, this is the perfect place for them to pamper themselves over a long weekend.


The wedding photographer for Sammie & Nic was Kathleen of Love and Adventure Photography. And she takes the “adventure” part seriously. When she’s not shooting weddings in Maryland or Washington, DC, she’s traveling the world to capture weddings in places as disparate as Greece, Newfoundland, and Texas. How about an elopement to Antarctica during a solar eclipse? Think of the photos!!!


After the bride and groom, the next star of the show at this June wedding was the couple’s goldendoodle. This sweet boi had his own special moment during the processional. He even got to hold the rings for a minute.

For the pre-ceremony music, Sammie and Nic asked for a gentle playlist of string covers, which Cambridge MD wedding DJ Jordan was happy to provide. They maintained the string theme for the rest of the ceremony music, starting with the parents, grandparents, and bridal party entrance to Vitamin String Quartet’s cover of Island in the Sun by Weezer. This playful version of the song was SO much fun. You can’t listen to it without bobbing your head.

For Sammie’s grand entrance, they chose another string cover. This one was A Thousand Years played on violin by Alan Ng. The ceremony was held waterside (of course, because you don’t get married on the Chesapeake Bay and not enjoy the views!) After they were pronounced husband and wife, the party danced back down the aisle to a string cover of Walk The Moon’s Shut Up and Dance by Simply Three. By sticking with string covers from prelude music all the way through the recessional, the couple created a cohesive musical experience while still playing with several genres. We loved it!

After cocktail hour by the resort’s outdoor fireplace which overlooks the bay, it was party time. The bridesmaids got their own entrance to the tune of Vida 23 by Pitbull, followed by the groomsmen to In Da Club by 50 Cent. Then, DJ Jordan introduced husband and wife Sammie and Nic to the dance floor to Danza Kudro by Don Omar ft. Lorenzo.


For the couple’s first dance, they chose Arms by Christina Perri. Confession: A Thousand Years may be her most famous song, but we actually like this one better. ;-)

For the father/daughter dance, Sammie chose My Baby You by Marc Anthony. Then Nic and his mom sped things up a bit with Sweet Child O’ Mine by Guns and Roses. After that, the dance floor was opened up and DJ Jordan kept it packed all night long!


For the last song of the night, the couple played the original Shut Up and Dance by Walk the Moon. We love this way of connecting ceremony to reception, playing a string version of a song first, and the original later in the night.

We’re currently booking weddings for 2022 and beyond! So fill out our quick online form to confirm your date and start planning the soundtrack to your special wedding day!


Your LGBTQ+ Friendly Wedding DJ │Maryland’s DJ

Maryland’s DJ is an all-welcoming wedding vendor ready to bring the party to your dance floor! Learn how we create an inclusive space for all couples.

DJ Thoughts
Steve Hartka
Jordan Solender

It's amazing—astonishing—astounding that same-sex marriage has only been legal across the country since 2015. 

2015, y'all.

Here in Maryland, marriage equality has been the law for a bit longer, but not by much.

While the state can no longer prevent same-sex couples from saying their vows and being legally recognized as married, unfortunately privately-owned companies can still refuse service to queer couples. 

And since some vendors don't make their position on same-sex weddings clear up front, it can lead to uncomfortable conversations. Clients may feel they have to disclose that they're gay in the planning process, to make sure a vendor's wedding services are available to them. That conversation comes with the risk of judgment at what is supposed to be one of the happiest times in their lives. 

At Maryland's DJ, we're proud to serve all types of weddings, including those of the LGBTQ+ community. Here's how we work to make the experience a welcoming one.

Inclusivity From Start to Finish

Just because a wedding DJ is happy to work with gay weddings, that doesn't mean that they have their business set up in a way that feels inclusive. 

This industry has been very hetero-normative until recently, and much of the language surrounding marriage continues to reflect this. Bride and groom, Mr. and Mrs., bridal party, maid of honor, best man. While there is nothing inherently wrong with these terms, it can make gay couples feel like the wedding industry isn't "for them." 

Marriage is for everyone. 

So at Maryland's DJ, we've updated our online forms to be more inclusive. Rather than "bridal party," we refer to your wedding party. Instead of assuming there will be a father/daughter dance, we ask about any special parent dances, regardless of gender. 

We hope that this non-gendered language will make all couples feel welcome and validated!

Flexible Options

One big mistake wedding industry vendors make is assuming that gay weddings will look just like straight weddings, but with a same-sex couple.

Sometimes, this is true.

And sometimes, there are changes to the format of the ceremony and reception. For example: if there are two brides, does one walk down the aisle (like the "traditional" bride) and one wait for her arrival (like the "traditional" groom)? Or do they both get walked down the aisle? Or neither?

An LGBTQ+ wedding DJ will be happy to make the adjustments to your ceremony music to make it work with your unique format.  

At one recent wedding for example, our two brides danced with their fathers together, and then danced with their moms together over the course of two songs. 

In your pre-planning sessions with your DJ, you can explain the timeline and get advice on some ways same-sex couples have approached these decisions in the past.

Playing Appropriate Music

We love music, obv. It's what we do.

And as music lovers, we are aware that not all music is equally welcoming and inclusive. Hip hop in particular has a reputation for not always being gay-friendly, but it's far from the only genre that has this issue.

We want your dance floor to be a happy place of love and celebration, and that means being discerning with our music choices. 

Not only will you have the opportunity to create a must-play and do not play list for the music at your wedding reception, but we'll also be cautious about our own music selections to prevent offensive language from marring the magic on your wedding day.

As you plan your wedding, we would love to suggest gay-friendly wedding vendors that we've worked with in the past. We've DJ'ed hundreds of weddings with caterers, photographers, florists, videographers, and more who are happy to help you celebrate your same-sex wedding!

Love is love!

Planning your big day? Fill out our quick online form to get more information about working with Maryland’s DJ and get your date on our calendar!

Photos by Valerie Mitchell and Bradley Images

Tricia & William’s Kent Island Wedding

Classical, rap, and everything in between were on the musical docket at William & Tricia’s Kent Island wedding. DJ Steve played a surprise mash-up that wowed the bride!

Weddings
Annapolis Wedding DJ
Steve Hartka


William and Tricia’s June wedding was at one of our favorite seaside venues, the Chesapeake Bay Beach Club in Stevensville, Maryland. We never get tired of their classy ballrooms and stunning views of the Chesapeake Bay and Bay Bridge! 


Bekah of Evergreen Photo brought her “experiences over poses” philosophy to the photography. She focuses on personal, intimate moments, rather than a strict shot list. It really comes through in the personality she is able to bring to each couples’ wedding and elopement photos! 



William and Tricia’s wedding ceremony at Chesapeake Bay Beach Club took place in the enclosed rooftop deck of the Sunset Ballroom. We love this location for its huge, full-height windows that bring nature inside, while still protecting the party from winds off the bay. 


For ceremony music, the couple chose one of the absolute masters of piano composition Claude Debussy. The grandparents and bridal party entered to his Suite Bergamasque. L. 75: III. Clare de Lune. Then Tricia made her entrance to Debussy’s Arabesque No. 1. These are two stunning pieces of piano music, and ones we’d never played at a wedding before! Kent Island wedding DJ Steve always likes when he gets to play something unique.


After the couple said their vows and enjoyed their first smooch, they switched up the mood with Bruno Mars’ Marry You for their recessional. The guests then headed over to the open rooftop above the Tavern Ballroom for cocktail hour. They sipped their drinks to more piano music while taking in views of the Chesapeake Bay and Bay Bridge.


When it came time for the reception, the party had a short commute—just down the stairs into the Tavern Ballroom. We love this space for its warm, vaulted wood ceilings, big windows, and handsome wood bar. The wedding party’s entrance was to the tune of Touch the Sky by Kanye West. Then the newly-wedded couple made their entrance as husband and wife accompanied by Father Stretch My Hands Pt. 1, also by Kanye.


The happy pair’s first dance was to John Mayer’s cover of Beyoncé’s XO. Then Tricia and her dad, and William and his mom danced to Unchained Melody by the Righteous Brothers.



After dinner, the couple included lots of wedding traditions at their reception! They did the classic bouquet toss, accompanied by Wannabe by The Spice Girls. For the garter removal, they played Tunnel Vision by Justin Timberlake. Cheeky! And for the toss, they went with Death of a Bachelor by Panic! at the Disco, which has a real old-school crooner vibe. Love it. Finally, they did an anniversary dance for all the married couples to Perfect Duet by Ed Sheerhan and Beyoncé.


Towards the end of the night, DJ Steve created one of the evening’s highlights. He did a mix of  Ni**as in Paris by Jay-Z and Kanye West with Sugar We’re Going Down by Fall Out Boy and it was LIT. The whole dance floor loved it, especially the bride! 



The last song of the night was XO by Beyoncé, as a great throwback to the couple’s first dance earlier in the night. We had such a great time at William and Tricia’s gorgeous wedding on Kent Island—one of our favorite places to celebrate. 


Let our team of wedding DJ pros bring the right vibe to your special day, whether that’s in Maryland, Virginia, or Washington, DC. Fill out our short online form to get started!


All images by Evergreen Photo


Bethany & Mike’s Rose Hill Manor Wedding │Leesburg, VA

Bethany and Mike combined a classy, timeless venue with a thoroughly unique playlist for a wedding all their own. Read about their music choices & amazing photographer!

Weddings
Leesburg’s Wedding DJ Service
Jordan Solender



Bethany and Mike’s Rose Hill Manor wedding in Leesburg, Virginia was a dance party extravaganza against the backdrop of a classy, historic mansion venue. The building’s traditional Georgian architecture feels thoroughly timeless, but this crowd was anything but stuffy! With a sprinkle of musical genres from country to pop punk, this was a group that knew how to have a good time. 


Photographer Lynn Dunston brought out the romantic side of the day. She’s particularly gifted at capturing the quiet, intimate moments of a wedding. She can make a couple look like they’re completely alone, even when they’re surrounded by people. It’s a gift! 



Bethany and Mike set up their venue a bit differently than most couples. We often see weddings with the ceremony outside in a lovely setting, followed by an indoor or tented reception. For their celebration at Rose Hill Manor, Bethany and Mike swapped things around. 


Their ceremony was held in the Grand Ballroom at the manor, where the stately columns and polished wood floors brought elegance and class to the occasion. Then, they headed outside for the tented brick patio for the reception where they could kick back and have a great time. It was a super smart way to get the best out of multiple locations at this stunning mansion.


While the guests gathered, DJ Jordan set the mood with string and piano music from groups like The Piano Guys. Then the bridal party and Bethany made their entrance to the Guitar Tribute Players’ version of Fire and the Flood by Vance Joy. After the ceremony, the couple set a much different vibe with Crazy Train by Ozzy Osbourne, which was a blast!



The wedding party and the bride and groom made their entrances into the reception tent to Mean to Me by Brett Eldredge. Mike and Bethany went right into their first dance, to the same song. Then Bethany and her father danced to What a Wonderful World by Louis Armstrong, and Mike and his mom danced to My Wish by Rascal Flatts.


Once the dance floor was open, it was packed all night long. The playlist had an early 2000s-slant, with “must play” songs like: 


For the bouquet toss, no Shania Twain or Beyoncé here—instead, the couple went full hair band with Def Leppard’s Pour Some Sugar on Me. For the last song of the night, Bethany and Mike went a different direction yet again, choosing With Arms Wide Open by Creed.



We had so much fun bringing Bethany and Mike’s playful music choices to life at their Leesburg, VA wedding, just across the Potomac River from Maryland. And we’d love to do the same for you!


If you’re planning a wedding, hit us up. Let’s talk about your wedding date, musical style, and how we can make your wedding a day to remember.


All photos by Lynn Dunston Photography


Julie & Roy’s Washington DC Wharf Wedding

A gorgeous river-front venue and a DC wedding DJ who saved the day! Get the details on Julie & Roy’s Dockmaster Building wedding at District Wharf!

Weddings
Washington DC Wedding DJ
Steve Hartka


When you’re throwing a one-day-only event like a wedding, sometimes adaptability and problem-solving is required. Is it raining? Well then your outdoor ceremony has to move inside, and the room might have to be flipped pre-reception. Wardrobe malfunction? Who has a needle, thread, and knows how to backstitch? Guitar player gets into a car accident on the way to the venue? Uh...


That’s exactly what happened at Julie and Roy’s April wedding. They hired a talented guitar player to provide live music during the ceremony...and he was in a wreck on the way to the venue. When the wedding planner told our own DC wedding DJ Steven Hartka about an hour before the ceremony was due to start, he stepped up to the plate. He downloaded the music that the guitar player had planned to play, and used his phone as a hotspot to make it work. Boom. Crisis averted. 



Julie and Roy’s wedding was held at the Dockmaster Building at the District Wharf in Washington, DC. Perched at the end of District Pier, this glass-wrapped building provides 270-degree views of the Washington Channel. The couple said their vows outside right on the water, under the building’s protective overhang. Erinne Losinio of E. Losinio Photography was on-hand to capture the magic. 



But what ever happened to that guitar player? Luckily he was okay, and he made it to the venue in time to serenade the couple and their 35 guests during cocktail hour. 


When the reception began, DJ Steve got the party started. With such a small group, there was no need to introduce the wedding party. Instead, there was a simple—but enthusiastic—greeting to the bride and groom to the tune of All You Need is Love by The Beatles. 


We see you back there, Steve.


For their first dance, Julie and Roy chose the Eva Cassidy version of What a Wonderful World. This version is often overlooked in favor of the more famous Louis Armstrong original. And while both are fantastic, it was nice to play a version that fewer people know. 


Next, Julie and her dad danced to The Way You Look Tonight by Frank Sinatra, and Roy and his mom danced to A Song for Mama by Boyz II Men. This is clearly a couple that loves the classics—and yes, A Song for Mama is a classic. 


The couple requested jazz and contemporary tunes for the dinner part of their reception, with songs like Let’s Do It by Ella Fitzgerald and I Only Have Eyes for You by The Flamingos. This kept the vibe relaxed and classy, perfect for such a gorgeous venue. 

Once the floor was opened up for dancing, however, things got a little rowdier. With a great genre mix including songs by Beyoncé, Mariah Carey, Justin Timberlake, Steely Dan, Outkast, Patty Labelle, and a lot more, things were hopping on the dance floor. The groom’s family was particularly enthused about disco hit The Groove Line by Heatwave.



Thank you to Julie & Roy for letting us create the musical magic on your special day! And special shoutout to DJ Steve who went the extra mile at this fantastic Washington DC wedding. 


PS. Check out some of our other favorite venues in DC!


Let us bring the same level of care and service to your special day! Book your wedding date with Maryland’s DJ—before it gets snapped up by someone else.


All photos by E. Losinio Photography


Callie & Daniel’s Backyard Seaside Wedding

Callie & Daniel planned to wed in Baltimore, but COVID changed their plans. Check out their beautiful seaside wedding on Kent Island instead!

Weddings
Annapolis Wedding DJ
Steve Hartka


A private seaside residence on a perfect May day with a small group of family and friends? Sounds like a pretty pleasant way to get married. 


While this wasn’t Callie and Daniel’s original plan, they—like so many other couples over the past year—had to be flexible. They had to change venues several times, as their planned locations cancelled all events due to the pandemic. In the end, the couple booked a lovely Airbnb on Kent Island where they could hoist a tent and have the waterfront wedding they wanted. Adaptability is key!


This gorgeous event at a private residence in Stevensville, Maryland was personal and intimate, with about 30 family members and close friends in attendance. Just the wedding party, their dates, and the couple’s immediate family were there to celebrate with Callie and Daniel. One of the benefits of a limited guest list is that it opens up so many venue opportunities, and makes sweet backyard weddings a possibility.


We’ve worked with a lot of wedding photographers over the years, and they each bring their own unique talents and vision to the way they see a wedding. Baltimore-based photographer Hannah Mink’s special gift has to be lighting. Her photos from Callie and Daniel’s wedding make it look like the whole day was aglow, and they’re truly wedding mag-worthy. 


Stevensville wedding DJ Steve knew that the ceremony music for this wedding would be string covers of some famous pop songs. So he decided to go with that same theme for the pre-ceremony music. Highlights included string covers of some songs by Dr. Dre which set a fun mood without being distracting.


The bridal party entered the ceremony site to a cover of Stand By My by the Stringspace Orchestra. If you’re looking for string covers for your wedding, Stringspace has lots of great ones! Callie then made her grand entrance to another cover, this time of Ed Sheeran’s Perfect by Brooklyn Duo. And after the vows were said and the tears were shed, the couple’s recessional song was to the upbeat guitar of I Will Always Find a Way by Sheffield.


For cocktail hour, some couples have very specific requests, and some just go for DJ’s choice. Callie and Daniel were somewhere in the middle. They requested music “along the lines of The Lumineers, Mumford & Sons, [and] John Mayer” to keep the mood folksy and relaxed. This gave DJ Steve plenty of info to work with to make sure the vibe was right.



After cocktail hour, Callie and Daniel entered the reception tent to Hooked on a Feeling by Blue Swede. Then they had their first dance as husband and wife to Make You Feel My Love by Adele. After that, the party was off! This may have been a small group, but they sure didn’t lack energy or enthusiasm for the dance floor. 



For the last song of the night, they went with the ol’ classic Sweet Caroline by Neil Diamond. Good times never felt so good (so good, so good, so good)!


We are currently booking weddings for the 2022 wedding season, and we’d love to be at yours! Fill out our online form to check about date availability and start planning the soundtrack to your big day.


All photos by Hannah Mink Photography


Pre-Ceremony Music: Choose Well and Set the Tone

Here are some tips to help you choose pre-ceremony music that fits in with the rest of your big day. Choose live, pre-recorded, classical, or contemporary.

DJ Thoughts
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Couples often spend a lot of time thinking about their wedding ceremony music. Processional and  recessional songs are high on the list of musical priorities. But pre-ceremony music often gets short shrift in the long list of decisions to be made. We encourage you not to settle for any old thing, but instead to make intentional choices to set the tone for your special day. 

Here are some ideas that you can use for inspiration when choosing your own pre-ceremony music.

String Quartet Optional

Many couples default to the string quartet, either live or pre-recorded. We love a string quartet! But there are other instrumental choices that you can make that will still be classic, and will also be more unexpected. 

How about an acoustic guitar duet? Or a single harp? Get swingy with a small jazz trio. You could also go big with a full orchestra. (If it's pre-recorded, we mean. No one expects you to hire the local philharmonic to trudge up a hill to your ceremony site.) 

Photo by Dani Leigh Photography 

Brett & Maggie’s Wedding at Chesapeake Bay Beach Club

Also keep in mind—there's no rule that says you have to go "unplugged" pre-ceremony. An instrumental rock band could also be an excellent and intriguing choice. Or, just pick some of your favorite songs and ask your wedding DJ to play music in a similar style!

Classical Music vs. Contemporary Music

Going with a classic string quartet or even a solo piano doesn't mean you have to choose classical music. You certainly can if you like—there's a reason classical music is, well, classic. 

Recently, a bride we're working with was inspired by the series "Bridgerton" on Netflix for her pre-ceremony music. The show plays string covers of contemporary Top 40 hits, which is a great way to give current audiences some context for the music of the era. After all, the Regency ballroom was basically the dance club of its time! Our bride wanted to do something similar for her pre-ceremony tunes, and we were happy to comply.

This is a really fun way to keep the music classy but not classical. You can pick instrumental covers from a single artist with an extensive catalogue like the Beatles or Beyonce, or just choose a selection of assorted contemporary hits. 

This advice holds true for your ceremony music, too!

Consider the Transition

When choosing your wedding prelude songs, think about the transition into your wedding party processional. There should be a clear, but not jarring, transition from pre-ceremony music to processional music. 

A good way to transition smoothly is to choose music from a similar genre, or with similar orchestration. If your processional song is piano and guitar, your pre-ceremony music could be piano and violin, or simply guitar. 

Photo by Dani Leigh Photography
Brett & Maggie’s Wedding at Chesapeake Bay Beach Club

Give Them Something to Listen To!

Whatever you choose, make sure you choose something! No one wants to arrive at an event and sit in silence for 20 minutes. If you don't have a DJ playing music for your ceremony, you can still put together an awesome playlist to provide a little entertainment. Plan for at least 30 minutes of music, but 45 would be even better in case you get started a few minutes late.

If you need help selecting fun or romantic songs for your pre-ceremony time, we can help! Our team are pros at choosing wedding songs for all parts of your big day. 

Header Photo by Dani Leigh Photography 

Allie & Pete's Shadow Creek Wedding

Allie and Pete said their vows looking across northern Virginia’s wine country. Get the details about this stunning barn wedding and Pete’s surprising talent...

Weddings
Leesburg’s Wedding DJ Service
Steve Hartka


We are officially knee-deep in 2020 wedding reschedule season! We know that last year was hard on our couples, having to postpone after all of their hard work and planning. But we’re so glad that those weddings are finally starting to come to fruition. 


One of those reschedules was Allie and Pete’s wedding at Shadow Creek in Purcellville, Virginia. This barn venue sits on over 200 acres of rolling farmland in Loudoun County. From their vantage point, you can see for miles across northern Virginia’s famous wine country. 


The weather was touch and go for a bit on Allie and Pete’s big day. Fortunately, they had Stephanie from SRS Events coordinating their wedding. She kept a close eye on the forecast, and made the call to start the ceremony a bit early. And it’s a good thing. Just as it was ending, the rain started to fall.

The photographer for the day was Jennifer Bosak of Jennifer Bosak Photography. Just like us, she’s fitting two wedding seasons into one this year, but she has handled the workload with grace!



The bridal party’s processional took place to The Piano Guys’ cover of A Thousand Years. Then Allie’s grand entrance began. For her song, they chose Yoke Lore’s banjo folk cover of Truly Madly Deeply by Savage Garden, which is just gorgeous. 


This song choice is a great example of just how specific you can be with which parts of your song you choose to play and when. Allie and Pete wanted Allie to be walking during the chorus of the song. So they asked for the doors to be opened when the vocals start 17 seconds in. Then, they told DJ Steve to get through the chorus and fade out. A good DJ can follow this kind of specific direction to make sure you hear just the right parts of a song. 


The reception for Allie and Pete’s wedding was inside the venue’s stunning 300-seat barn. With all that wood, barn venues can be a bit dark inside. No risk of that at Shadow Creek. Their huge open barn is not only lined with windows all around to let the light in, but they also painted two of the walls and the roof behind the raw beams a bright white, which keeps the space feeling airy and luminous. 



For the bridal party’s celebratory reception entrance, Allie and Pete chose Kygo’s cover of Higher Love. Then the couple had their first dance to Always Remember Us This Way by Lady Gaga from “A Star is Born.” For the parent dances, they chose the classic What a Wonderful World by Louis Armstrong.

How often does the groom do a live performance at a wedding? When the groom is a Souncloud rapper, then the answer is always. Pete (aka Texas Pete) performed his song Tesla for at the reception and got everyone hyped. At the end of the night, Allie and Pete were sent off in a cascade of sparklers. It was a fitting end to a glowing day.


If you’re planning your wedding for 2022, we can help! Not only can we provide pre-ceremony, ceremony, cocktail hour, and reception music, but we can help you select your music as well. Plus, we offer custom event lighting and photo booth packages. Fill out our online form to reserve your date!


All photos by Jennifer Bosak Photography


Steve & Erica’s Rosy Antrim 1844 Wedding

Happy couple Steve & Erica said “I do” among the roses at Antrim 1844. Learn about their song choices and the surprising special guest at their Maryland wedding.

Weddings
Frederick Wedding DJs │Music, Lighting, Photo Booths
Steve Hartka


It’s hard to say what month is prettiest at Maryland wedding venue Antrim 1844, but May is certainly a contender. The roses are blooming and the temperatures are still comfortable. At Erica and Steve’s Friday wedding in mid-May, the high was in the low 70s—perfect wedding weather! 


Antrim 1844’s Katie Coon made sure everything ran without a hitch. She’s the Special Events Manager at the venue, and she keeps all of the details organized so the couple can just enjoy their special day. Samantha of Samantha Jean Photography was also on hand to capture the  picture-perfect day. With these two pros on the team, along with videographer Josh Goodman and Maryland wedding DJ Steve Hartka on the scene, this wedding was in good hands.

For Erica’s entrance to Antrim 1844’s lush Rose Garden, she and Steve chose Can’t Help Falling in Love by Haley Reinhart. Is it sacrilege to say we like this version better than Elvis’ version? Maybe, but we’ll risk it. After the ceremony, things got upbeat with Marry You by Bruno Mars. 

When cocktail hour out in the garden was over, the party moved to the reception area—a beautiful white tent out on the grounds. The couple made their grand entrance to Hall & Oates’ You Make My Dreams Come True, which never fails to get big smiles (and major The Wedding Singer vibes.)



For their special dances, Erica and Steve chose a really nice combo of songs. Their first dance was to I Am Yours by Andy Grammer. Then Erica and her mother danced to You Say by Lauren Daigle. The lyrics are all about being seen and supported even when you don’t think you can measure up, and it beautifully reflects the unconditional love a parent has for their child. Steve and his mom finished out the formal dances to Humble and Kind by Tim McGraw. 


For the bouquet toss, Erica went with some pure 90s female empowerment by the legendary Shania Twain, with Man I Feel Like a Woman


Fun fact: did you know that the video for Man I Feel Like a Woman is a parody of Robert Palmer’s 1985 video for Addicted to Love? People got upset about Palmer’s video in the 80s because the “band” is made up of nearly identical women in matching outfits with dead expressions on their faces—and it was a bit objectifying. Twain played with a little role reversal by having her (all male) backup band dress in matching outfits and express the same blank faces. Checkmate, Palmer.


Steve and Erica are clearly a fun-loving couple. Not only did they have their pups involved in their day, festooned with garlands of greenery, but they also invited a special guest to their reception—Slapshot, the mascot for the Washington Capitals hockey team.

After a sparkler exit at 10:30pm, Steve and Erica disappeared into the night, to start their married life as husband and wife. 


We love weddings at Antrim 1844, and we have plenty more planned over the summer! If you’re getting married at this classic venue—or anywhere else in Virginia, Maryland, Washington DC, or the surrounding area—we’d love to be there to spin the tunes and provide fun facts about them. What can we say? We’re music nerds.


Fill out our super quick online form to get started with your Maryland wedding DJ!


All photos by Samantha Jean Photography


Denissa & Conner’s Hilltop Bash - Rochelle VA Wedding

See the stunning views at Denissa and Conner’s Rochelle VA hilltop wedding! DJ Ryan got to groove to the couple’s unique music choices and everyone had a blast.

Weddings
Northern Virginia Wedding DJ
Ryan Carr


The panoramic views from the ceremony site at Denissa and Conner’s May wedding were un.be.lievable. This beautiful couple said their vows atop a hill at Renback Fall at Falk Farm in Rochelle, VA, in front of a sweeping vista of the Blue Ridge Mountains. It was like something out of a fairy tale. Or a movie. Or a fairy tale movie. 


Renback Barn is a 27-acre property located within the larger Falk Farms’ 300-acre expanse. It has a huge lawn for all your guests, plus a massive rustic barn where you can hold a reception for up to 200 people. 



Denissa and Conner’s big day wasn’t quite that size, with COVID still on their minds. Instead, they gathered with closer to 50 friends and family, and had a spectacular time. 


Hannah Schones of Hannah Dawn Photography was on hand to commemorate the day with her beautiful pictures. They definitely did justice to the fantastic scenery!

Rochelle wedding DJ Ryan provided the music for both the hilltop ceremony and the barn reception. Some of the song choices for this event were ones we’d never heard before, which is always fun! 


The bridal party made their entrance to a piano cover of Oasis’ Champagne Supernova by Juniper Hanson, which we loved! Then Denissa made her entrance to a piece called Almost Idyllic by Sleeping at Last. It’s from the soundtrack of the film “Many Beautiful Things,” so it’s sweeping and cinematic, and fit the stunning landscape perfectly. 


After the ceremony was over, Conner and Denissa sauntered off the hill to class rock geniuses The Who and Baba O’Riley. We obviously know this classic, but we don’t hear it often during wedding ceremonies, so we were quite pleased.

After cocktail hour outside taking in those gorgeous views, the guests moved into the air conditioned barn for food and fiesta. The newly married pair made their grand entrance to Oh Honey by Delegation. If you’re not familiar with this funk and soul ballad from 1975, we recommend you check it out. 


For their first dance, the couple went back to a piano cover. This time, it was Pure Imagination (from Willy Wonka and the Chocolate Factory) played by Wesley Keys. Then Denissa and her dad danced to The Way We Were/Try to Remember by Gladys Knight & the Pips. Her father made a slideshow to play along with their dance. DJ Ryan said it was the highlight of the night. After the slideshow, Conner and his mom danced to a cover of Landslide by Molly Parden & Hollow Hum.


There were a few more excellent song choices for the night. For the money dance, they chose Grover Washington Jr.’s Just the Two of Us. When it came time to cut the cake, they were accompanied by a cover of Dancing in the Moonlight by Toploader.

And when it was time to say goodbye, they went big (band) with It’s Been a Long, Long Time by Harry James & His Orchestra. All of the music choices for this gorgeous, fun wedding prove that you don’t have to choose a single genre or stick to traditional “wedding music.” You can choose tunes you like from all genres to make your special day feel deeply personal!


Whether you know exactly what you want or need a little help with the tunes for your wedding, we can help. Give us a shout and let us know when we can play you down the aisle!


All photos by Hannah Dawn Photography





Elkridge Furnace Inn

Learn about this historic Elkridge wedding venue, and why this beautiful wooded spot on the Patapsco River is a must-see for Maryland couples.

Vendor Spotlights
Baltimore Wedding DJ
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If you: 

  • Love historic venues and big mature trees;
  • Are wild about locally sourced produce and upscale farm to table fare
  • Are looking for a beautiful but unfussy space that can be personalized just for you…

then you really need to check out the Elkridge Furnace Inn & Manor House in Elkridge, Maryland. 


The buildings on this property are old. One even dates back to pre-Revolutionary War! The Tavern (1744), Manor House (1810), and Brick House (1830) were actually in danger of being demolished until The Department of Natural Resources purchased the property to save it! Donna Wecker and her family provided the vision for the restoration and help run things day to day on this gorgeous property.


Since 1992, they’ve been feeding the Elkridge community, first as caterers, then as an onsite restaurant, and finally as a wedding venue. It’s a truly family-run business, with Donna running the sales and management, husband Chef Dan handling the food, daughter Genelle providing the pastries, and son Matthias helping out behind the scenes. 


We asked owner Donna Wecker to share some of her thoughts with us about what makes Elkridge Furnace Inn special, and some of the wildest things she’s seen in her years at weddings. 


Responses have been lightly edited for clarity.

Tell us the story of your wedding venue! 

We have been making wedding memories for 27 years at the Manor, which is uniquely apportioned for weddings. Chef Dan's famous cuisine is one of the highlights — couples come back and say their guests are still talking about it! With our location right on the Patapsco River, most of our couples choose to share an outdoor ceremony with us. Our couples appreciate the way we personalize and customize their day.

Photo by Dani Leigh Photography


When our couples arrive, they are greeted and taken to either the Celebration Lounge or Celebration Suite for changing, sharing some bubbly, laughing and taking photos.  Then with our main Ceremony Point just above the banks of the Patapsco River, couples and their loved ones are enveloped within wild and tamed natural spaces for the nuptials.  The front yard and Manor House are gracious spaces for Cocktail Hour.  When guests are invited into the Celebration Tent, we line up the bridal party for announcements while excitement mounts.  After first dances and formalities are completed over a carefully chosen menu by Chef Dan, it’s time for uplights and a bit of unrestrained revelry on the dance floor. (Note — this is Maryland’s DJ’s time to shine!)


The large side yard allows guests to spill out to enjoy the chef's Kitchen Garden and other fruit trees and berries grown on this Farm to Table venue. There is a unique space for every aspect of Wedding Day and a team of professionals ready to make memories happen.

Photo by Winnie Dora Photography

What is the most unusual or unexpected wedding you've ever had at your venue? 

We've had wedding rings delivered by a hawk and a dog ring bearer...who "misplaced" the ring.  It was finally found after many intense minutes. 

What's the wildest thing a couple has ever asked for?

That's a toss up between the adult-sized white bouncy castle or the wedding cake stand that hung from our tent rafters. 

What's the best "little kid moment" you've seen at a wedding?

Of course, we love our blended families and love them being part of the ceremonies.  But honestly, seeing the Flower Grannies meticulously tossing their petals before the grand entrance of a bride was priceless. 


What's one thing you wish people knew about running a wedding or event venue?

Just how much time and coordination it takes to pull off with staff who is mostly part-time!


Photo by Dani Leigh Photography


Photo by Winnie Dora Photography

Photo by Winnie Dora Photography

Photo by Winnie Dora Photography


Photo by Winnie Dora Photography

Photo by Winnie Dora Photography

Photo by Winnie Dora Photography

Thanks so much to Donna for sharing your gorgeous Elkridge wedding venue with us! If you’re getting married at Elkridge Furnace Inn, we can help you cut loose. Fill out our quick online form to secure your date.

Header Photo by Winnie Dora Photography




Allayne & Stephen’s Celebration at the Bay

Pasadena, MD wedding DJ Steve brought pop and country tunes together for Allayne & Stephen’s big celebration. It was a beautiful day for a beautiful couple.

Weddings
Baltimore Wedding DJ
Steve Hartka



Allayne and Stephen’s wedding by the sea was a perfect way to spend a lovely day in April. The venue was the stunning Celebrations at the Bay in Pasadena, MD. It seems like no matter how many weddings we DJ in Maryland, Washington DC, and Virginia, we never get close to seeing all of the amazing waterfront venues! 


Celebrations at the Bay has three different ceremony and reception locations. Our couple chose the Tented Vista Ballroom, which includes a half-domed arbor on the waterfront for the ceremony. Draped with flowers and garland, it feels like a place where real life royalty would say their vows. 



The photographer for the day was Emily of EEG Photography. She caught all the fun of this happy day, from the “I do’s” to the dance floor shenanigans.


Pasadena wedding DJ Steven was on site to make sure everything went smoothly. He had a personal stake in this wedding—he went to the same high school as the groom, and played football with the groom’s younger brother. It’s a small world!

The bridal party entered the ceremony site to Speechless by Dan + Shay, and then Allayne made her entrance to the same song. They lightened things up for the recessional, with the song Love and Marriage by Frank Sinatra. 


Note: Can you hear this song and not immediately think of Married With Children? I can’t, but I may just be showing my age.


After the ceremony, the 50-or-so guests at this intimate wedding headed over to the Tented Vista Ballroom. This pretty reception site has an outdoor feel, but the tile floor and temperature control keeps it comfortable for dancing in all weather.


The music choices for the evening were a combination of pop and country, starting with the grand entrances. The bridal party partied their way in (see what I did there?) to P!nk’s Raise Your Glass. But then things went country with Allayne and Stephen’s big entrance to Fire by Brett Eldredge. 


For the couple’s first dance, they chose My Best Friend by Tim McGraw. Then Allayne and her father danced to I Hope You Dance by Lee Ann Womack, and Stephen and his mom chose You’ll Be In My Heart by Phil Collins. There was one more special dance on the agenda—Allayne and her grandfather danced to Hero by Mariah Carey, which was a lovely tribute to a special man.


After that, we were all over the place! The Must Play list had a great blend of pop, funk, and country from a number of decades. A few of the choices that Pasadena wedding DJ Steve made sure to play were:





The last song of the night was Forever After All by Luke Combs, which made a fitting end to this country-loving wedding day.


But the weekend wasn’t over yet! The next morning, there was a big brunch for everyone at another one of our favorite venues, Elkridge Furnace Inn in Elkridge, MD. This is one of the many benefits to having a more intimate wedding! You can have a nice brunch or next day get-together with the whole crew. 


Whether your wedding music choices are country and pop, funk and soul, hip hop and R&B, or swing and showtunes, we can help put together the right soundtrack. Contact us today to tell us about your big day and let’s start planning!


All photos by EEG Photography



Winnie Dora Photography │Maryland Wedding Photographer

Meet Winnie Dora, talented Maryland wedding photographer and all-around awesome human. Learn what she thinks about weddings—and the one odd place she was asked to go.

Vendor Spotlights
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Maryland wedding photographer Winnie Dora Nham’s path to the industry was a bit different than most! 


She wasn’t a photographer’s assistant, a coordinator, or a designer. She was a musician! 


As a long-time violinist, Winnie spent seven years as a member of a string quartet that played at weddings across Maryland, Virginia, and D.C. As a wedding musician, she and her group played ceremony and cocktail hour music, so she got a behind-the-scenes look at how weddings were run. 


Outside of her quartet, she was (and still is) also an avid traveler, which led to her capturing her trips through photography.


Now, she’s the mastermind behind Winnie Dora Photography where she combines her love of weddings with her passion for photography. Winnie and her team shoot engagements, elopements, portraits, and wedding days. Her photo philosophy centers around a lifestyle approach, capturing candid and genuine scenes from life’s big moments.


Another wonderful thing about Winnie—she’s always willing to help. Whether that’s stepping in when another photographer becomes unavailable, or helping a bride-to-be decide what to wear for an engagement shoot, she takes her dedication to service to the next level. And that’s something that makes her stand out. 


We asked this talented Maryland wedding photographer to share her thoughts on weddings and the local venue scene. Here’s what she had to say! 


Responses have been lightly edited for clarity.

What’s your favorite venue and why?

I gravitate towards venues with a lot of historic and architectural interest. There are so many gorgeous venues to choose from in the DMV, but DAR Constitution Hall and Meridian House are among my favorites.

Meridian House. Photo by Winnie Dora Photography.

What’s your favorite thing about weddings?

Wedding days are one of the most joyous, emotional days of a person's life. That happiness manifests itself in different ways at different little moments for every couple, and it is so touching to see my couples realize how surrounded with love they are as their visions come to life on a wedding day. Being there to witness that joy and capture it is an honor I don't take lightly.

Photo by Winnie Dora Photography

What’s the wildest thing a couple has ever asked for?

I once had a bride whose mother asked me to follow her EVERYWHERE. Everywhere, including...*drumroll* the bathroom. That was an interesting day!

What’s the craziest thing you’ve ever seen a member of the wedding party do?

Well, there may or may not have been a pool at the resort of a wedding I was at. The entire wedding party decided to jump in at the end of the night (including the bride and groom in full attire!). Does it count if I was part of said wedding party!? Haha.

What’s the best “little kid moment” you’ve seen at a wedding?

Literally, the little kids. I love when they run onto the dance floor and start dancing like nobody's watching (usually, everyone is). It cracks me up because sometimes they're dancing on their own before the festivities start, sometimes it's during an important moment like speeches or first dances...but it is always adorable.


Photo by Winnie Dora Photography

What’s one thing you wish people knew about working at weddings?

The amount of time and energy that goes into shooting a wedding—both the lead into, the day of, and post processing after the wedding day. I think there's a common misconception that we simply show up, press a few buttons, and call it a day, but there's an incredible amount of planning that goes into a timeline, thinking about lighting and locations, and capturing couples in a way that is authentic to them as individuals. 


It can also be backbreaking work since you're running around on your feet with heavy gear, contorting your body to get “the perfect shot.” I spend at least an hour before and after each wedding stretching, foam rolling, and doing yoga to help counteract the physical toll it takes on my body! At the end of the day, it's all worth it for the couples we serve.


Photo by Winnie Dora Photography

What’s the best speech you’ve ever heard?

I've heard so many speeches at this point that it's hard to remember specifics, but usually when someone starts crying I'm a total sucker and tear up as well. I also love speeches that don't go on forever, especially before dinner is served because everyone is hungry. 


(Can you tell I'm a wedding vendor? Haha!)

What’s your favorite wedding movie and why?

Bridesmaids! Such a solid laugh, every time.

What’s your best marriage advice?

After the wedding is over, it can be so easy to get caught up in the day to day practicalities (and annoyances) of existing together and life in general. Use your vows as a compass to steer you back to who you want to be as a couple when things go amiss.


Photo by Winnie Dora Photography


That is some world-class advice from a world-class wedding pro! 


To work with Winnie or see more of her beautiful photos, visit her website. And to reserve your wedding date with Maryland’s DJ, reach out today! We’re booking for 2021 and 2022, and we’d love to save the date for you!

Juan & Jessica’s Latin-Fueled Maryland Wedding

Central Maryland wedding DJ Steve brought the Latin spice to Juan & Jessica’s wedding! Held at historic Antrim 1844, this special day was classy and caliente.

Weddings
Frederick Wedding DJs │Music, Lighting, Photo Booths
Steve Hartka



It was impossible not to get into the spirit of things at Jessica and Juan’s Latin-filled wedding day. With a ceremony out in the English Tea Rose Garden of lovely Antrim 1844 and a reception inside the historic mansion’s glass-enclosed pavilion, this April wedding took advantage of both the indoor and outdoor spaces in one of our favorite venues. 


Antrim 1844 is a Greek revival home that looks right out of another time—because it is. It was built in 1844 (hence the name), and has been lovingly restored by the owners who turned it into a stunning central Maryland wedding venue. DJ Steve always appreciates a chance to bring music to such a beautiful space!

Our happy couple on this beautiful April day was Jessica and Juan, two Latin-music enthusiasts who brought plenty of their favorite genre to the reception. 


But first, the ceremony. 


For the intro music out in the classic rose garden, the couple went with lovely, simple violin covers of a couple modern pop love songs. For the bridal party’s entrance, they chose Perfect by Ed Sheerhan. And for the bride’s processional, they selected All of Me by John Legend. Both covers were by the super talented violinist, pianist, guitarist, and who-knows-what-else-ist Daniel Jang.



Winnie of Winnie Dora Photography took all the photos on Juan and Jessica’s big day, from the classy ceremony to the epic salsa party after! The groom’s parents set the tone for the reception with their entrance to Colombia Tierra Querida by Juan Carlos Coronel.



In a reception space draped in mauve, white, gold, and pastel pink, Central Maryland wedding DJ Steve made the room glow with custom uplighting. After a lovely meal, toasts, blessings, and love all around, it was time to dance! 


And of course, their Must Play list included lots of Latin music! Here are a few of the highlights: 



(Incidentally, those last four are on our list of Top 12 Wedding Salsa Songs...see what else we chose!)

But it wasn’t all Latin. They also chose a couple wedding classics like September by Earth, Wind, and Fire, and the Y.M.C.A. by the Village People.


We had a great time at Juan and Jessica’s wedding. And it’s been amazing over the past few weeks to start celebrating with bigger crowds again. 


Whether you’re planning a rescheduled 2020 wedding, or you just got engaged this year, we can help. The team at Maryland’s DJ can help you choose just the perfect songs for your perfect day. 


Contact us to check our availability and get a demo of what we can do!


All photos by Winnie Dora Photography


Party with DJ Darian Granger │Maryland Wedding DJ

Darian has nearly 10 years of experience at weddings, birthday parties, fundraisers, engagement parties, boat parties, proms, homecomings, and more!

DJ Bios
Baltimore Wedding DJ
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Time to celebrate, folks. There’s a new DJ on the team! Darian Granger, aka DJ V-las, has joined Maryland’s DJ and we are pleased as punch to have him. 


Darian has been sharing vibes since before he even started DJing! He began by sharing his own mix tapes with friends (back when people still made mix tapes) that he called D-Mixes, so his buddies always had good tunes to listen to. When he got a bit older and started going to parties, he was always responsible for the music, picking each song on his iPod. 


Soon it was time to take things to the next level, and he sought out a professional DJ to teach him the real deal. He spent some time as a roadie, and eventually started taking on his own events. DJ V-las has almost 10 years of experience, and he’s both DJ’ed and MC’ed hundreds of events including birthday parties, weddings, fundraisers, engagement parties, boat parties, proms, and homecomings, plus working at bars and clubs. 


Darian says, “I truly enjoy and play ALL types of music so I'm always prepared for any type of event. I strongly believe that it's about what the client and crowd want to enjoy, not the DJ.”


Darian can do it all, from disco to country, classic rock to EDM, top 40 to house music, and more. And if you need something custom, talk to him about a remix or mashup of a couple of your favorite tunes. 


Outside of DJing, Darien is a fitness buff, and he’s a pretty big Marvel and DC fan as well. 


We asked Darian to share some of his thoughts on weddings, the art of DJing, and the songs he thinks are a bit overplayed. (But don’t worry, he’ll still play them for you!)


Responses have been lightly edited for clarity.

What makes a great DJ?

I pride myself in my knowledge of all types of music and combining different eras of music through transitions and mixing. I also love interacting with people during events.

What’s your favorite local wedding venue and why?

For DJ V-las, it’s more about a wedding venue type than one specific venue. He says, “I always enjoy a barn wedding venue. They seem to have a more laid back feel for both DJ and patrons.”


Photo by Valerie Michelle Photography


*A couple of our favorite barn wedding venues include Stone Ridge Hollow (pictured above), Rosewood Farms, and Pond View Farm.

What’s your favorite thing about weddings?

Always dance time. It’s the time in the evening all the guests come together and enjoy themselves.


If you were getting married this weekend, what would your first dance song be?

My first dance song if I were to get married would be Elton John’s Can You Feel The Love Tonight.


What’s the craziest thing you’ve ever seen at a wedding?

The craziest thing I ever saw was a falcon that flew through the hall to deliver the best man's speech.

What’s the best “little kid moment” you’ve seen at a wedding?

I love seeing the little kids do the dances like they do on TikTok.

What's the most unique processional song you've ever played?

GDFR by Flo Rida. 😳


What do you think is the most overplayed wedding song?

All line dances.


What’s one thing you wish people knew about working as a DJ?

Not all DJs will deliver the same quality service. You always get what you pay for!


When you're not working, what kind of music do you listen to?

I love hip hop, pop, R&B and all music from the 2000s.


To get started working with Darian or one of our other awesome DJs on your must-play tunes, get in touch! All clients at Maryland’s DJ get unlimited planning sessions with their DJs, so you can ask all the questions and get everything set up just right.

The Maryland’s DJ 90s Music Playlist

If you grew up in the 1900s, you may want to harken back to your youth on your wedding dance floor. Here are some tunes you’ll want on your 90s music playlist.

DJ Thoughts
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Okay, 90s kids, it’s your time to shine. 


This is the music many of today’s engaged couples grew up with. Millennials are between 25 and 40 as of 2021, which puts them at that average age for marriage. We know that when we start up a Backstreet Boys or TLC track, we’re going to be playing the bridal party and friends’ jams. 


As mostly Millennials ourselves here on the Maryland’s DJ team, it was tough to pick just a few songs each to add to this 90s playlist. But we persevered. So here are 12 of our favorites from this formative decade. 


Eat your millennial heart out.

DJ Steve’s Top 90s Songs

Believe by Cher (1998)

Cher’s dance-pop jam Believe introduced autotune to the masses. We’re not sure whether we should thank her for that, but the song is still awesome. 


P.S. Lenny Kravitz co-wrote this particular hit. 

What Is Love by Haddaway (1993)

It became legendary through Saturday Night Live and A Night at the Roxbury, but What Is Love was already a hit five years before the movie. It’s incessantly catchy and we love it.


Better Off Alone by Alice Deejay (1999) 

This Eurodance song includes exactly two lyrics: “Do you think you’re better off alone” and “Talk to me.” So it’s not going to win any lyric awards. 


But that synth melody and drum machine are so bouncy it does. not. matter.


DJ Brian’s Top 90s Songs

Santeria by Sublime (1996)

It’s not all synth and drum machines and dance music. Sublime combined reggae, rock, and hip-hop into something completely different. That first guitar riff on Santeria will get all the 90s kids hyped.

Hypnotize by The Notorious B.I.G. (1997)

The one. The only. The Notorious. Even people who aren’t into 90s hip-hop know and love Hypnotize.

This Is How We Do It by Montell Jordan (1995)

This song was Montell Jordan’s introductory release. It sold a million copies, went platinum, and won Jordan a Grammy for Best Male R&B Vocal Performance.


Not too shabby for your first single. And it will get your dance floor fired up.


DJ Jordan’s Top 90s Songs

I Want It That Way by Backstreet Boys (1999)

You can’t talk about the 90s without boy bands. Backstreet Boys took the boy band genre and exploded it into a mania that we wouldn’t recover from for over a decade. 


Actually…(checks BTS’ record sales)...maybe we still haven’t recovered.

No Scrubs by TLC (1999)

The ladies at the wedding will lose their minds when No Scrubs starts. We’ve seen it. Never fails. 

Backstreet’s Back (Everybody) by Backstreet Boys (1997)

Jordan wasn’t satisfied with just one Backstreet Boys song. He needed a second installment, so he went with a little tune called Backstreet’s Back (Everybody). It’s pretty obscure. You’ve probably never heard of it.


DJ Ryan’s Top 90s Songs

Return of the Mack by Mark Morrison (1996)

Inevitably, there will be someone on the dance floor who's been through a rough patch. Return of the Mack will help them get their groove back.

Rump Shaker by Wreckz-N-Effects (1992)

The earliest release on our list, Wreckz-N-Effects Rump Shaker holds over a bit of that late 80s hip-hop sound. 1992 was definitely the year of booty-themed songs—Baby Got Back came out that same year.

Another Night by Real McCoy (1994)

Another night, another dance-pop hit. This jam by Real McCoy is one that you may not recognize by the name, but everyone will know it when the music starts.



Working on a 90s music playlist for your wedding or event? The Maryland’s DJ team can help you pick all the hits in all the genres. Fill out our online form to check availability and start planning!


All photos by Glenn Clevenger III of I Live Art

See more photos from Mic & Corie’s wedding!

Fun 80s Songs to Bring to Your Wedding

Want to get the crowd riled up? The 80s were full of danceable songs and memorable hooks that will get your dance floor grooving.

DJ Thoughts
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With synths and drum machines on one end, and stadium-worthy guitars on the other, the 80s were one of our favorite decades for music. Huge hits were coming from the U.S. and U.K., both from bands that would have long-established careers and some very memorable one-hit-wonders. 

We asked some members of our team to share three favorite songs of the 80s that they think you should request at your wedding!

DJ Steven’s Picks for Fun 80s Songs

Let's Go Crazy by Prince & The Revolution (1984)

We’re starting out on a high note. Everyone—and we do mean everyone—-loves Prince. And this particularly awesome 80s dance song is the party jam of party jams. Modern party anthem wannabes can only aspire to this level of greatness.

Don't You Want Me by The Human League (1982)

So it’s technically a breakup song, but we all just love to sing “Don’t you want me, baby?” loudly and badly. Also, you do you girl. Don’t stay in a relationship that you’ve outgrown. That guy just wants power over you. 

Just Can't Get Enough by Depeche Mode (1981)

Another synth-jam, Just Can’t Get Enough is an iconic version of that new 80s dance sound and launched Depeche Mode into stardom. Plus, it’s a love song, so it’s totally wedding-appropriate.

 


DJ Brian’s Picks for Fun 80s Songs

Africa by Toto (1982)

It’s hard to put your finger on what makes this 80s song so great, but it just grooves, you know? The melody is super catchy, and even though most people mumble their way through the lyrics, everyone knows at least part of the chorus.

Come On Eileen by Dexys Midnight Runners (1982)

One of the most famous and catchy smashes of the 1980s is Come On Eileen. Everything from the riffs to the lyrics to the legendary video (not available on YouTube, unfortunately!) have been stuck in our collective unconscious since the song’s release nearly 40 years ago. Play this one at your wedding and everyone will get into it.


All Night Long (All Night) by Lionel Ritchie (1983)

Lionel Ritchie’s Caribbean-inspired vacation song All Night Long (All Night) is a chill-type of party anthem. It’s less “drink until you’re sick” and more “hey cool cats, let’s sip a mai thai and enjoy these sweet jams all night long.” We’re all about it.


DJ Jordan’s Picks for Fun 80s Songs

I Wanna Dance with Somebody (Who Loves Me) by Whitney Houston (1987) 

We have unilaterally decided that no wedding is complete until this all-time favorite 1980s wedding song has played. There will be no send-off, no sparklers, and no decoration removal until we hear from the Queen of the Night, thankyouverymuch. 

Shout by Tears for Fears (1984)

When the DJ needs to give the crowd a breather but doesn’t want to play a super slow song, he can start-up Shout by Tears for Fears. Everyone knows the chorus and they can sing along in between swigs of something refreshing.

Livin’ on a Prayer by Bon Jovi (1986)

By the mid-80s, the hair bands had a firm grip on the decade’s music scene. Bon Jovi was a little less “glam” and a little more “rock” than some of their contemporaries, which may be why they’re the only band of the genre that is still topping charts. 


One of their biggest hits was Livin’ on a Prayer, which will get the entire dance floor sing-screaming “Whooaaaaa, we’re halfway there…”


Also, someone needs to tell Jon Bon Jovi that he’s 59 years old and has no business looking as good as he does. 

DJ Ryan’s Picks for Fun 80s Songs

Get Down On It by Kool & The Gang (1981)

At the start of the 80s, funk and disco were still riding the wave of popularity. Get Down On It has such a simple chorus that everyone can sing along.

You Dropped a Bomb On Me by The Gap Band (1982)

It’s clear that DJ Ryan has a soft spot for 80s dance songs that hold over some of that 70s sound. You Dropped a Bomb On Me combines funk with the up-and-coming 80s synth sound for one of their biggest hits.

 

Fun fact! The Gap Band was created by three brothers, and they named it for three streets in their hometown of Tulsa—Greenwood, Archer, and Pine.

Sunglasses at Night by Corey Hart (1984)

Combining pop synth and rock guitar, this song is a jam even with lyrics that are a bit...odd. Does anyone know what this song is actually about? Regardless, the video won the first ever Video of the Year Juno award in Canada, so check it out!

 


Need more 80s jams on your dance floor? There are SO many good ones from this synth-heavy decade. Get in touch and start planning your wedding with Maryland’s DJ!


Photos by Emily Chastain
See more of Brock and Theresa’s wedding!

Maryland’s DJ’s Favorite 70s Dance Songs

Disco, soul, yacht rock, funk — the sounds of the 70s run the gamut. We’ve picked some of our top tunes from this funky decade to get your dance floor hustling.

DJ Thoughts
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The 1970s were a decade of soul, disco, yacht rock, and funk. The platform shoes were tall. The skirts were short. And the tunes were grooving.


We love the music from this era for its funky bass lines, plus the diversity of popular genres! Compare the jangly disco of ABBA with the smoooooooth hits of The Doobie Brothers with the upbeat funk of Earth Wind and Fire, and you get a feel for the sounds of the 70s.


Here are some of the Maryland’s DJ crew’s favorite songs from this happening decade!

DJ Steve’s Top 70s Dance Songs

Lowdown by Boz Scaggs (1976)

Boz Scaggs’ voice was one of the coolest in the game back in the 70s. His funk hit Lowdown always gets shoulders shimmying. 

Hollywood Swinging by Kool & the Gang (1974)

Kool & the Gang loved to boogie, and this song (with the ultra-famous intro that was sampled by DJ Kool for Let Me Clear My Throat in 1996) brings the funk.

What a Fool Believes by The Doobie Brothers (1978)

This jam by The Doobie Brothers was one of the few non-disco songs to top the charts in 1979. Michael McDonald’s voice is as smooth as Crisco and sweet as sugar.


DJ Brian’s Top 70s Dance Songs 

I Will Survive by Gloria Gaynor (1978)

Breakup songs aren’t always considered the “right” choice at a wedding or celebration, but this ode to female empowerment is an exception.

Signed Sealed Delivered I’m Yours by Stevie Wonder (1977)

From the second that “sitar-guitar” starts playing the descending scale in the beginning of this song, you know there’s good stuff coming. 

September by Earth Wind and Fire (1978)

This tune makes its way onto tons of wedding playlists, and it’s one that we never grow tired of. And if your wedding happens to fall on the 21st night of September, it deserves a special place in your big day.

DJ Jordan’s Top 70s Dance Songs 

We Are Family by Sister Sledge (1979) 

There aren’t many better songs to play at events with all your family and friends than Sister Sledge’s We Are Family — especially if there’s a close group of sisters or bridesmaids in the crowd.

Proud Mary by Ike & Tina Turner (1971)

Tina Turner didn’t write this tune — that distinction goes to John Fogerty. But when many of us think of it, we think of the icon Tina. She sloooooows down over “Rolling on a rivverrrr…” and then 


BAM. 


The sax starts, the energy picks up, and it’s time to hitch a ride on the riverboat queen. Classic.

Dancing Queen by Abba (1976)

It says it right there in the title. When this tune comes on, we’re all diggin’ the Dancing Queen.


DJ Ryan’s Top 70s Dance Songs

Le Freak by Chic (1978) 

Le Freak is an ode to Studio 54’s heyday and the glitz and grime of 1970s New York. It’s so firmly 70s disco that it’s practically polyester.

I’ll Be Around by The Spinners (1973)

Soul was alive and well in the 70s, as evidenced by The Spinners’ I’ll Be Around. And as a wedding song, it’s a hit. It’s got a mellower energy than some of the other tunes on this list, and gives the couple a chance to remind each other that, “Whenever you want me, I’ll be around.” 

Stayin’ Alive by Bee Gees (1977)

If you took a poll asking people to pick a song that encapsulates the 1970s, we bet quite a few would choose the Bee Gees’ Stayin’ Alive. All you have to do is strut when this jam comes on to feel like a million bucks.


 

Need to bring a little boogie to your party? The team at Maryland’s DJ can help. Fill out our online form to get your date booked and start planning!


Photos by George Street Photo & Video

See more of Matt & Christine’s wedding day!

Our Favorite Dance Songs of the 1960s

We dig the dance songs of the 60s for the slick vocals and major nostalgia. Add a couple of these crowd-pleasers to your wedding’s must-play list!

DJ Thoughts
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There’s no two ways about it—the 1960s had some fantastic dance songs. Music from the 60s makes an awesome, crowd-pleasing addition to your wedding playlist. The songs are danceable and upbeat, they’re clean and family-friendly (for the most part), and pretty much everyone in the crowd from kids to grandparents will know them. 


We asked our DJs to pick a few of their favorite dance songs of the 1960s. Choose a few to add to your “must play” list, or just tell your wedding DJ that you like upbeat tunes from this great decade for music and let them take it from there.

DJ Steve’s 1960s Song Picks

Ain't No Mountain High Enough by Marvin Gaye and Tammi Terrell (1967)

From the second that jangly xylophone starts chiming, you know you’re in for a treat. Just dare your guests not to belt out “Ain’t no mountain highhhhh enough!” when it gets to the chorus. 

Uptight (Everything's Alright) by Stevie Wonder (1966)

This earlier Stevie Wonder tune sometimes gets forgotten in the wake of his 1970s mega-hits like Superstition and Signed, Sealed, Delivered (I’m Yours). But this upbeat song with its happy lyrics is totally danceable.

My Girl by The Temptations (1965)

Could these guys be any smoother? This song is a wedding hit on the dance floor, plus it makes a sweet father/daughter dance choice.

DJ Brian’s 1960s Song Picks

I Heard It Through The Grapevine by Marvin Gaye (1968) 

Marvin Gaye’s recording of I Heard It Through the Grapevine wasn’t the first version of this classic, but it’s DJ Brian’s favorite and it’s one of the best-known.

I Want You Back by the Jackson 5 (1969) 

I Want You Back may be an odd song to be recorded by a 10-year-old lead vocalist, but that didn’t stop Michael Jackson and his 4 older brothers from creating a massive hit. 

Twist and Shout by The Beatles (1963)

Fun fact time! Ever wonder why John Lennon’s voice sounds so different on this famous recording? Almost like he’s struggling to get the notes out? That’s because he was. This track was made after 12 solid hours of recording by The Beatles, and Lennon’s voice was practically gone. They knocked out a single take, and that’s the version we all know and love.


DJ Jordan’s 1960s Song Picks

Respect by Aretha Franklin (1967) 

No self-respecting list of 1960s bangers would leave out the Queen of Soul. And honestly, a wedding isn’t a bad time to remind the people in your life of the kind of treatment you deserve.

Your Love Keeps Lifting Me (Higher and Higher) by Jackie Wilson (1967)

It’s been proven by science that it’s impossible to have a bad day after listening to this ultra-happy dance song of the 1960s. From the tambourine to the sax to Jackie Wilson’s falsetto, everyone will be singing this tune to their “one in a million girl.” 

Runaround Sue by Dion (1961)

This song is an absolute toe-tapper. And after hundreds of weddings, we can guarantee that it will get the crowd more animated than the stiff, mannequin-like people in this video. It’s like they directed the audience to look as bored as possible. Weird.


DJ Ryan’s 1960s Song Picks

I Can’t Help Myself (Sugar Pie Honey Bunch) by The Four Tops (1965)

Covered by everyone from The Supremes to Dolly Parton to La Toya Jackson, nothing can top the original! 

This Old Heart of Mine by the Isley Brothers (1966)

Upbeat, romantic, and totally danceable, This Old Heart of Mine is everything we love about tunes from the 1960s.

Ain’t Too Proud To Beg by The Temptations (1966)

The Temptations get a second entry on this list (and they could have several more) with Ain’t Too Proud to Beg. Begging never sounded so good.


Start with these tunes, and if you need more help with a bopping 1960s dance floor playlist, we can help! Maryland’s DJ offers its couple unlimited planning sessions, so we can answer all your questions and make sure your playlist is packed with danceable songs of the 60s and more. Contact us today to get on our schedule and start planning.


Photos by Love and Adventure Photography

See more pictures from Melissa and Nicholas’s Wedding!


How Much Does a Wedding DJ Cost?

Trying to put that wedding budget together? Start here to get a ballpark price for a high-quality wedding DJ, and learn what that rate will get you!

DJ Thoughts
Baltimore Wedding DJ
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Pricing out a wedding is a tough job! There are vendors to hire, rental fees to consider, food and  drinks to choose, decor and clothing to buy...it seems to go on and on!

When you start planning, it can help to have a ballpark budget in mind for each of your different expense categories. To help you get an idea of what you may expect to spend on a DJ, we’ve put together some info on wedding DJ prices. Start here so you know what’s reasonable and what you should look for when you hire this ultra-important vendor!


Photo by Bradley Images

How much does a wedding DJ cost?

Final pricing will depend on a lot of factors. In larger cities with pricier markets, you can expect to spend more on your DJ. For a longer reception, you may also have to pay more than you would for a “standard” wedding length. And of course, there are add-ons like a photo booth or uplighting


With all that being said, you can probably expect to spend between $1,500 and $3,000 on your wedding DJ for their standard package.


Some DJs may also offer smaller packages for a lower rate. For example, a minimony or micro wedding will probably be shorter and require less equipment, so this type of package may be more affordable. You can still bring the same level of professionalism that a great wedding DJ provides without breaking the bank.


Photo by Photography By Brea

What does that price include?

Contract terms will vary from DJ to DJ. Many DJs include the following in their standard package, but make sure to check the details before you sign! 


  • Planning sessions to help you make music choices and nail down the timeline
  • Full setup before the ceremony begins
  • High-end equipment including speakers, controllers, and microphones for great sound quality
  • Ceremony music played to your specifications, like fading in and/or fading out, or playing a short portion of a song
  • Cocktail hour and reception music for three to five hours
  • Emcee services, including introducing the bride and groom and calling guest attention to events like the first dance and cake cutting
  • A curated playlist that includes your “must play” songs and avoids your “do not play” songs.
  • Efficient teardown of equipment at the end of the night


For extras like an afterparty or lighting, DJs will charge an additional fee. 


Photo by Dani Leigh Photography


Pro tip: if you’re not sure what to ask a potential DJ when you’re comparing your options, start with these Top 10 Questions to Ask a Wedding DJ. 

What about budget DJs?

You may be able to find a “budget” DJ for a suspiciously low rate. Ever heard the saying, “If it seems too good to be true, it probably is?”


DJs that charge just a few hundred dollars don’t have the skills, the experience, or the equipment necessary to provide a good experience for you or your guests. They usually don’t have a backup DJ in case of an emergency, and they don’t have backup equipment if something gets broken. (At Maryland’s DJ, we always have both!)


And it’s not only about getting your dance floor moving. How would you feel if it was your grand entrance moment, and the DJ played wildly inappropriate music? That’s what happened to this poor bride, who had to stop her processional.



Or what about a DJ that’s so unorganized that they leave you and your new spouse standing awkwardly on the dance floor for over a minute while they look for your first dance music? One couple learned how it felt first hand. When the DJ couldn’t find the song, they started playing something else...only to start it over when they finally did find the right track. Warning: this wedding DJ fail is super cringey.


A DJ who doesn’t pay attention to detail can majorly mess up your all-important wedding milestones, from the ceremony to the first dance to the cake cutting. They can also ruin the vibe of your day, drinking on the job, looking unkempt, making inappropriate comments — there are dozens of ways a “cheap” DJ can wreck your wedding. 


To make sure you’re talking to someone with experience, check their reviews on sites like The Knot and WeddingWire, plus Google and Facebook. Look at the quantity of reviews as well as the star rating. A dozen good reviews are nice, but a couple hundred are better!

A great DJ makes wedding planning easier!

We know that you have a lot on your plate during your wedding season. At Maryland’s DJ, we work hard to be a fun and easy vendor for you to work with. All of our couples get unlimited planning sessions with their wedding DJ, so they can ask all the questions and get expert advice on song choices and timeline. 


To get your wedding date on our calendar, fill out our super quick online form and we’ll get back to you ASAP! 


Header photo by Glenn Clevenger III of I Live Art

Rebecca & Bill's Rosewood Farms Wedding

This sports-loving couple had a ball at their January wedding at Rosewood Farms in Elkton

Weddings
Baltimore Wedding DJ
Steve Hartka



Fun fact: did you know that Elkton, Maryland used to be the “Quickie Wedding Capital of the East Coast?” Back in the early 20th century, young people were migrating to cities like New York and Philadelphia in droves. In a time when doing...certain things...before marriage could be life-ruining, young people were tying the knot a bit impulsively so they could get to the good stuff. 


Cue the state governments imposing mandatory waiting periods on these youngsters, so they couldn’t get hitched quite as quickly. But for couples who were desperate to make things legal before mom and dad intervened, they had to look for loopholes. And they found Elkton, where Main Street was home to 15 wedding chapels to handle the influx of “quickie weddings.” 


None of that has anything to do with couple Rebecca and Bill, who had a large, lavish, and family-approved wedding at Elkton’s Rosewood Farms. It’s just something we thought you should know. 



This sports-loving couple had a ball at their January wedding! Rosewood Farms is a modern barn venue full of ponds, patios, and rustic elegance. The couple held their ceremony in The Rustic Barn, a stunning all-white double-height barn. This luminous space has wrought-iron chandeliers and huge windows to let in the light. With the greenery at the altar and the ethereal glow of the sun against the whitewash, it’s like a barn mixed with a cathedral in a fairyland.



Outside during cocktail hour, the couple asked Elkton wedding DJ Steven to play a contemporary country mix, which he happily did. The country theme continued for the first part of the reception. For Rebecca and Bill’s first dance, they chose One Man Band by Old Dominion. Then Rebecca danced with her father to My Wish by Rascal Flatts, followed by Bill and his mom dancing to I Am Your Child by Barry Manilow. 



The reception took place in the Rose Barn, a beautiful open space with 20’ ceilings and rustic wood beams. Outside, a covered patio overlooks one of the water features on the property. 


If their guests had any questions about where Rebecca and Bill’s sports allegiances lay, their doubts were put to rest during the reception. The Ravens’ playoff game was on the big screen during the whole reception, and Elkton wedding DJ Steven played The Whites Stripes’ Seven Nation Army, which is a Ravens hype-up song.



By time the dance floor opened up, this country party took a definite turn towards hip-hop. The couple’s “must play” list included songs by Gucci Mane, Kendrick Lamar, Megan Thee Stallion, and Cardi B — including one particular tune by those two ladies that was only played after 9:00pm when granny had gone to bed! 



After a mock send-off, DJ Steve played I’m the Ish by DJ Class featuring Kanye West, which got the party started up again. Photographer Madison Short caught this fun-loving crowd in all their glory all night long! 



If you’re planning a wedding in the “Quickie Wedding Capital of the East Coast” (or anywhere else in Maryland, Washington DC, or Northern Virginia), we can help! Our DJs can help you to make song choices and keep the dance floor hopping during your special day. Contact us today to reserve your date!


All photos by Madison Short

Top 10 Questions to Ask a Wedding DJ

If you’ve never hired a DJ before, you may not know what to look for. Start with these 10 questions to ask a wedding DJ before you sign that contract!

DJ Thoughts
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Hiring a DJ for the first time? If you’ve never worked with wedding vendors before, you don’t know what you don’t know! 


We want you to feel educated and empowered when DJ-shopping, so we’ve put together a list of 10 questions to ask when you’re vetting your options. Plus, we’re giving you an idea of the answers you should expect from a top-notch DJ service. 

  1. How many weddings have you or your team worked at?

This is your wedding we’re talking about. It’s kind of a big deal. You don’t want some wet-behind-the-ears amateur in charge of the entertainment! Ask any potential wedding DJ how many weddings they’ve worked to make sure they have the experience to wow the crowd. 


At Maryland’s DJ, our crew has to have major experience before they’re allowed anywhere near a DJ booth. 

Find someone who loves DJ-ing as much as Jordan. Brett and Maggie’s wedding, photo by Dani Leigh Photography

  1. What’s included in your base rate?

Different DJ contracts will have different terms. Some will be for three hours, others may be for five hours. Some may include travel within a certain radius, and others may require an additional fee for an out-of-town wedding. 


When assessing pricing, make sure you’re doing an apples-to-apples comparison by digging into the details and understanding exactly what you’re getting for your money.

  1. What kind of add-ons do you offer?

Some DJs offer extra services that can really spruce things up at your wedding. A photo booth  lets your guests create a digital keepsake from the night, and lighting packages can completely transform the vibe of a space. 


If you’re interested in these services, look for a DJ that can provide them so you don’t need to hunt for another vendor.

Hannah & Chris’s wedding with uplighting by Maryland’s DJ — photo by Whole Heart Studios

  1. Can you provide music for our ceremony, too?

Putting the DJ in charge of ceremony music will give you extra peace of mind on your wedding day. Instead of relying on your coordinator or a member of the venue staff to get things started, you’ll have a music pro handling cues and fading the song out at the right moment. Most DJs can do this, but make sure before you sign that contract.

Jake & Stephanie’s wedding, photo by Pearly Kate Photography

  1. Can you help us choose songs for the ceremony or reception?

A true professional will always be happy to help! Experienced DJs have been to more weddings than nearly anyone else, and they can make suggestions you might not have thought of. Instrumental covers, unique pop songs, movie soundtracks...even video games can be a great source of wedding music. 


At Maryland’s DJ, you’ll get unlimited planning sessions with your DJ so you can nail down the details.

  1. How long do you need to set up/tear down?

Your wedding venue contract lets your team into the space at a specific time, and they’ll have to be out at a certain time as well. Ask your DJ how much time they need for set up and breakdown to make sure there’s enough padding built into the event schedule. If vendors leave late, you may have to pay a fee!

Christine & Jordan’s wedding, photo by Lovefusion Photography

  1. What happens if my DJ has an emergency?

Wedding vendors take their commitments to couples very seriously. But unfortunately, emergencies do sometimes happen. What is the backup plan if the DJ can’t make it for some reason? 


Make sure your DJ has someone lined up to step in if something goes wrong. 

  1. Will you take requests?

Wedding song requests can be tricky! A great DJ has to balance three things:


  • The couple’s wishes 
  • The party vibe
  • The happiness of the guests


What will the DJ do if a guest requests a very cool song from Hamilton — that’s impossible to dance to? What if your cheeky teen cousin asks for a song that will send poor Nana into apoplexy? 


If the DJ’s approach is “anything goes,” that might not be one you want to trust with your party. At Maryland’s DJ, we’ll always take wedding song requests into account, but we’ll never sacrifice your vibe for a song.

Jen & Joe’s wedding, photos by Dani Leigh Photography

  1. Can I blacklist certain songs?

Along the same lines, make sure your DJ lets you create a “Do not play” list. This will let you blacklist songs you don’t want to hear, whether they’re inappropriate, cheesy, or you just don’t like them. 

  1. What’s your cancellation policy?

As we all saw in March of 2020...nothing is certain. Sometimes, things beyond our control can put a wrench in our plans. Illnesses, venue closures, unexpected moves — these things can all change your wedding plans.


Thomas & Stephanie’s wedding, photo by Hamilton Photography


Make sure you know about any fines for cancellations or date changes, so you’re not caught off guard.


Start the dialogue with a potential DJ with these 10 questions, and feel confident that you’re finding the right vendor. And to ask us these questions (plus any others you may have), contact us today!


Header photo by Dani Leigh Photography


Wedding Band vs. Wedding DJ: Which is the Perfect Choice for Your Big Day?

The choice between a wedding band and a wedding DJ is a big one! Consider factors like cost, versatility, and getting the right sound on your big day.

DJ Thoughts
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When planning your wedding entertainment, you'll probably ask yourself if a band or DJ is the better choice.


There are certainly benefits to both! A live band can bring a unique energy to your wedding, but they also come with some challenges. Here are some important facts to know when you're considering the great wedding band vs. DJ debate.

DJs Are (Usually) Less Expensive

It's not always the case, but usually, a wedding band will be more expensive than a DJ. Bands have more members and more equipment, and their pricing will reflect that. A wedding DJ is a team of one, with a possible helper for set up. Instead of half a dozen instruments, amplifiers, speakers, and a PA system, a DJ only needs speakers, a turntable, and a controller to mix it all together.


Weddings can be pricey, and choosing a DJ instead of a band can help you to save costs and stay within your wedding budget.

DJs Are More Versatile

Got a favorite song in mind for your first dance? Hoping to hear several musical styles during the night? Want your guests to make song requests from the dance floor?


A DJ is probably your best bet. DJs have huge catalogs of songs that they can play in a wide variety of genres. Even the most well-prepared, practiced band can't bring the same number of options to your wedding reception. 


Photo by Dani Leigh Photography


DJs can also do triple-duty, providing music for your wedding ceremony, for cocktail hour and dinner, and for the dancing after. If you hire a band, you'll still have to arrange for music during the quieter parts of the wedding day.

DJs Take Up Less Space

At some venues, the logistics of bringing in a band can be a major stumbling block. Space restrictions may put that 8-piece band out of reach. They may also need a large electrical power supply and several outlets to keep amps and a PA system running. Not all venues have the electrical capacity for a band.


A DJ, on the other hand, can be tucked into a corner without much difficulty. With much smaller space allowances, DJs can be a better choice for more intimate spaces. And their equipment draws less power than a large band, which is great for outdoor or historic venues.

Bands Never Quite Sound Like the Original

We love live music, don't get us wrong! But no matter what, that local wedding band is never going to sound quite like your favorite artist — especially if your special song has different instrumentation or unique sound effects.


If you want your first dance song to bring back a shared memory, you may want to stick with the original!


Photo by Savannah Brown

DJs Attract Less Attention

Some couples are happy to share the spotlight on their wedding day. But for others, transferring the focus to a stage isn't what they're aiming for. No matter how you look at it, a live wedding band is putting on a performance, and they will become the focal point of the reception. 


A DJ enhances the party, without distracting from it. They can make introductions and help keep to the timeline, but the guest focus remains on the event itself, rather than the band on stage.

Photo by Guill Photo

Best of Both?

Some couples find that the best way to get that live entertainment component without breaking the bank is to hire a small group — like a string quartet or a solo guitar player — to provide ceremony and/or cocktail hour music, and bring in a DJ for the reception. 


This option lets you take advantage of the DJ's versatility, while still letting your wedding guests enjoy some live music. 


If you have questions about working with a DJ, we can help! Contact us today to learn more about working with Maryland's DJ and how we can make your wedding unforgettable.


Header photo by Pearly Kate Photography


Sara & Michael's Crazy-Happy Rosewood Farms Wedding

We had a fun time being a part of Sara & Michael's Rosewood Farms wedding! DJ Steve Hartka brought the party and the guests brought the moves. Check it out!

Weddings
Baltimore Wedding DJ
Steve Hartka



Aren’t springtime weddings awesome? Temperatures are warming up, everyone’s shaking off the winter blues, and love is in the air. This year in particular (spring 2021) we have a lot to celebrate, as COVID loosens its grip on our lives and our celebrations. 


Sara and Michael tied the knot at Rosewood Farms, one of our favorite Maryland wedding venues in Elkton. This modern barn space is classic and timeless. The Rustic Barn ceremony site manages to feel both like the barn that it is but also like a cathedral or chapel. It’s just stunning. 



The photographer for the day was Sara Vars Photography, who captured this happy couple’s day from beginning to end! 


The bridal party’s entrance was to Somewhere Over the Rainbow by Israel Kamakawiwo'ole, followed by Sara’s entrance to Noah Reid’s cover of Simply the Best. If you’re not sure why you know that name, Noah Reid played Patrick on Schitt’s Creek. And let’s be honest...this scene is where we all officially fell in love with him, right? 


After the ceremony, the newly married pair were all smiles. And they had reason to be — this was a seriously happy crowd! And stylish. I mean — look at these poses! 



Elkton wedding DJ Steve welcomed the bridal party into the reception to the tune of Come and Get Your Love by Redbone. Then there was nothing left to do but introduce Michael and Sara to Good to Be Alive (Hallelujah) by Andy Grammer. This song is such a celebration! The couple then enjoyed their first dance to Van Morrison’s Crazy Love



Quick side note — often, couples like to have a relative or friend give a short speech or offer a blessing before dinner. During the planning process, we ask couples to fill out some information, including the best way to find the people that will be giving this speech. Sara and Michael decided to give their own. So under “best way to find this person,” they wrote, “We’ll be the ones that just got married.” It gave us a chuckle, and we just thought you should know about it. 


This wedding was a multicultural mashup. Sara is Irish and Michael is Brazilian, and it all came together into an epic dance party! This crew was on the dance floor for three hours straight. They enjoyed disco, hip hop, pop, rock, a little salsa…it was all over the place and it was a blast! 


A few of the hits: 



It was a seriously happy playlist. For the last song, they kept the good vibes going with Lizzo’s Good as Hell, and it really was. 



We want to bring an equally awesome playlist to your wedding! Let us know when the happy event is taking place, and we’ll get to work on making your wedding dance floor as epic as Sara and Michael’s. 


All photos by Sara Vars Photography


Elisabeth & Aaron's Ceresville Farm Wedding

Frederick wedding DJ Steve was happy to comply with this gaming couple's unique and lovely music requests in this Ceresville Mansion wedding!

Weddings
Frederick Wedding DJs │Music, Lighting, Photo Booths
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Here at Maryland’s DJ, we love when couples bring their everyday interests into their wedding, whether that’s a devotion to a particular sports team or a passion for stories about a certain underaged wizard.


For Elisabeth and Aaron, their shared love of video games made its way into their ceremony at Ceresville Mansion. With ceremony music from their favorite game series, they were able to bring their hobby into their big day, and share it with their family and friends at this January wedding. 


Ceresville Mansion is easily one of our favorite wedding venues in Frederick. This elegant historic mansion on 25 manicured acres of greenery and gardens is as classy as they come. It has a covered pavilion overlooking a reflecting pond, and plenty of trees where the couple can get “lost” for a few minutes of alone time during their big day. 


Elisabeth and Aaron held their ceremony and reception inside the mansion’s Grand Ballroom. It was January, after all, and while it was a beautiful day, it would have been a bit cool for an outdoor ceremony. Photographer Rebecca Mitchell of Rebecca Mitchell Photography was on hand to capture the magic!



Not just any music would do for this gaming couple’s wedding ceremony. They tied in their love of the Final Fantasy game franchise with music from three of their favorite games. If you haven’t played a video game since the original Super Mario, you might be surprised — this isn’t the jangly arcade-style music of olden days. Written by Japanese musician and composer Nobuo Uematsu, the music in this series is well-known for beautiful scores and orchestration. 


For the parents and grandparents entrance, they chose Dear Friends from Final Fantasy V. Then the bridal party entered to a piece called To Zanarkand from Final Fantasy X. Finally, Elisabeth made her grand entrance to Final Fantasy VIII’s Fabula Nova Chrystallis. If you’re not familiar, we recommend you click through and give these pieces a listen — they’re truly lovely. 



After the ceremony, the party moved to the foyer and front rooms of the house for cocktail hour. The couple asked Frederick wedding DJ Steve to go a bit more traditional with some jazz instrumental tunes.


Then it was time to welcome the bridal party! They chose the upbeat Pop/Stars by K/DA, a virtual female K-Pop group. Then, for Elisabeth and Aaron’s entrance, they couldn’t pick just one song — so they picked four. The Best of 2012 Mashup by Anthem Lights includes:


  • Call Me Maybe by Carly Rae Jepsen
  • Payphone by Maroon 5
  • Wide Awake by Katy Perry, and 
  • Starships Nicki Minaj


No gaming music for the big dances. Instead, Elisabeth and Aaron’s first dance was to Tenerife Sea by Ed Sheeran. Then, Elisabeth and her father danced to I Loved Her First by Heartland.



The couple included a few fun add-ons during the reception, including a photo booth to let their guests create an instant keepsake, and a custom monogram with the couple’s names and wedding date.



All-in-all, this was a great wedding with a great couple! We loved to see how they incorporated their passion for video games into their day. It made the wedding that much more personal and unique. 


If you’re looking for a Frederick wedding DJ, we can help. We travel all over Maryland, northern Virginia, and Washington, DC, bringing the party with us. Contact us today to reserve your wedding date in 2020 or 2021!








Tina & John’s Chesapeake Bay Beach Club Wedding - Maryland’s DJ

Tina and John didn’t let a little thing like weather get in the way of their perfect beach wedding. When things don’t go exactly how you imagined, just pivot and enjoy!

Weddings
Annapolis Wedding DJ
Jordan Solender


A little drizzle couldn’t stop John and Tina’s picture perfect wedding from going off without a hitch. This October celebration at the beautiful Chesapeake Bay Beach Club on Kent Island was supposed to be held outside, but the weather wasn’t too cooperative. Not to worry! The team at the resort had it all under control. They moved the ceremony indoors to the Beach House Ballroom, so everyone could stay dry and still enjoy views of the bay in the background. 



Even with the change, John and Tina were all smiles. And during breaks in the weather, they were able to get outside for a few private moments with brilliant photographer Dani Leigh. A rainy day may not have been ideal for the ceremony, but it sure made for good photo lighting! 



Maryland wedding DJ Jordan got the ceremony started with the bridal party entrance, accompanied by covers of All You Need is Love and With a Little Help From My Friends covered by the Guitar Tribute Players. Then Tina made her grand entrance to A Thousand Years by The Piano Guys. After the ceremony, the newly minted Mr. and Mrs. left the ballroom under a chorus of cheers and Homecoming by Josh Ritter.


During cocktail hour, the staff flipped the ballroom to prepare for the reception, while the guests enjoyed snacks and sipped cocktails. DJ Jordan kept the vibe chill but upbeat, with music by Zac Brown Band, The Beatles, various Motown artists, and the Beach Boys.


When it was time to welcome the bridal party into the reception, the mood was set with Marry You by Bruno Mars. And for the bride and groom’s big entrance, they chose Can’t Stop the Feeling by Justin Timberlake. 



The happy couple danced their first to I Am Yours by Andy Grammer. There were definitely a few tears among the guests during this part…


I was free falling through the open sky

'Til you smiled at me and you saved my life and I

Knew I was put here to love you


You got the universe swimming in your eyes

I’m an open book when you look in mine

You'll find that I was put here to love you


Then it was time for the parent dances. Tina and her father danced to I Loved Her First by Heartland. Then John and his mother danced to It’s Your World Now by the Eagles. This is a great parent dance choice, and we don’t hear it too often! 


When DJ Jordan opened up the dance floor, he got to play with quite a few musical genres! The couple had added songs by The Beatles, Calvin Harris, Frank Sinatra, Neil Diamond, The Supremes, and more to their list. The party was a great blend of country, pop, soul, and oldies that kept the crowd dancing all night. 


For the last song, the couple chose Old Crow Medicine Show’s Wagon Wheel for a feel-good dose of Americana to round out the night. 


John and Tina’s Chesapeake Bay Beach Club wedding was a blast, and we were so thrilled to bring the party to their big day! Here’s what Tina had to say about her experience with DJ Jordan: 


“He read the crowd perfectly and got everyone dancing, even those that don’t normally dance. His website and process for making song recommendations prior to the wedding is seamless - with just a few recommendations from us as well as crowd sourced requests from our guests, Jordan created a playlist that was spot on from the cocktail hour through the reception. He helped make the day run smoothly and provided a lot of great advice leading up to the day. He was so proactive, fun and friendly with us during the wedding; we had guests asking if we knew him beforehand. We will be listening to the Spotify playlist he created for us for years to come! Thank you Jordan!!”


Thank YOU Tina and John!



If you’re looking for a Maryland wedding DJ, we’re ready to go! Fill out our online form so we can reserve your date and bring the boogie to your special day! 


All photos courtesy of Dani Leigh Photography


Hyatt Regency Chesapeake Bay - Maryland Wedding Venue

Learn why the Maryland’s DJ team loves weddings at Hyatt Regency Chesapeake Bay! It’s not 100% about the views...but it’s a lot about the views.

Venue Spotlights
Baltimore Wedding DJ
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Situated on the Choptank River just off Chesapeake Bay, the Hyatt Regency Chesapeake Bay Golf Resort, Spa & Marina is a stunning Maryland wedding venue. Nestled into 342 lush acres, this waterfront resort brings sunset views, full-service wedding packages, and resort-style accommodations to weddings of all sizes. 


Who should get married here? Couples looking for a fun, exciting experience that their guests will never forget! 



Hyatt Regency Chesapeake Bay has a variety of gorgeous spaces for ceremonies and receptions. What we love about these ceremony sites is that while they’re stunning on their own, they also leave plenty of room for couples to make them fit their vision. 


Manor Lawn is the most popular site at the hotel for ceremonies, with room for up to 500 guests. With its expansive view of the bay, it’s a classic, timeless spot for couples to say their vows. 



The Breakwater Pavilion may be the most unique ceremony site. Located at the end of the pier, this all white pavilion lets couples hold their ceremonies surrounded by sparkling blue water on all sides. How about a bridal entrance by sea?



The Regatta Pavilion is another sensational location for ceremony or reception. This covered pavilion is open on all sides, with sweeping white drapery to create a beachy enclosure for you and up to 300 guests.


The venue also has an infinity pool site, ideal for receptions with river views. And at the Grand Fireplace, the stone fireplace makes a lovely backdrop for the ceremony, with the Choptank River flowing right behind. 


Inside the hotel, there are two grand ballrooms where weather and temperature can be held at bay. Both spaces have lovely chandeliers, and they can become a blank canvas for your custom wedding vision with drapery and uplighting


Beyond the locations and services offered for weddings, this space is also a full-service resort. The wedding party and their guests can play 18 holes of golf, spend a day getting pampered at the spa, and enjoy Eastern Shore seafood at the on-site restaurant. Plus, they’re dog friendly! So everyone is invited to join in the fun at a Hyatt Regency Chesapeake Bay Resort wedding.


We asked Brianna Guzman, event coordinator at the resort, to share some of her favorite wedding experiences with us, and she did not disappoint! Brianna and the whole Hyatt team love to help couples make their dreams come true on their special day. There’s no request too big!

Responses have been lightly edited for clarity. 

What is the most unusual or unexpected wedding you've ever had at your venue?

The most unexpected experience I’ve had is when I was literally opening the doors for a bride to walk down the aisle with her father...she turns to me and says, “I forgot the ring!”

What's the wildest thing a couple has ever asked for?

I can’t think of the wildest things because when I get wild and unique ideas, I get so excited and want to find any way possible to say yes! Elephants, helicopters, entrance or exit by boat, hawks delivering wedding rings, or impromptu surprise videos from multiple famous NFL players congratulating the couple — just to name a few!

What's the best "little kid moment" you've seen at a wedding?

Probably when my bride and groom got a surprise video projected on the reception screens from their two favorite NFL players saying congratulations!

What's one thing you wish people knew about running a wedding or event venue? 

That when you’re in this industry, usually that means your heart is in a place of love, compassion, and enjoyment in other people’s happiness. So when I tell you everything will be okay, trust me, we will figure it out! I do this for a living, it will all be okay.

Getting married at the Hyatt Regency Chesapeake Bay? Can we come?? We all love providing the musical ambiance at this gorgeous venue — but especially DJ Mebaa. It’s his favorite place to spin weddings! 


To book your wedding date with the wedding experts at Maryland’s DJ, contact us today!


Photos courtesy of Hyatt Regency Chesapeake Bay


Melissa & Nicholas’ Waterfront Wedding | Annapolis Wedding DJ

Annapolis wedding DJ Brian Doane kept this intimate party of 25 on the dance floor all night! Though it was a small group, they had the energy of a huge crowd.

Weddings
Annapolis Wedding DJ
Brian Doane



Everyone was all smiles at Melissa and Nicholas’ September Annapolis wedding! And there was a lot to smile about — this wedding took place at not one, but two lovely Annapolis wedding venues — Annapolis Waterfront Hotel and The Chart House


The ultra-talented Kathy from Love and Adventure Photography took the photos for the day. Our favorite picture from the day is this shot of Melissa and Nicholas in front of the Wisteria Wall on Fleet Street in Annapolis. This sweet mural is the perfect place for a pre-ceremony smooch, just up the street from the Annapolis Waterfront Hotel. 


And that just happens to be where these two held their nuptials during this lovely afternoon event. Melissa and Nicholas said their vows in front of an intimate group of just 25 guests to keep things COVID-friendly. The bridal party entered to Pieces by Amanda Cook. Then for Melissa’s entrance, they switched to some classical with Pachelbel’s Canon in D. And for the post-ceremony recessional, they kept the genre cohesive with Beethoven’s classic Ode to Joy



After cocktail hour at the hotel, the whole party made the jaunt across Spa Creek to The Chart House for dinner and dancing. This waterfront restaurant has gorgeous views of the Annapolis Historic District and the Maryland State House. By time everyone arrived, the classical portion of the day was over. This was made apparent by the song the couple chose for their entrance — Enter Sandman by Metallica. We don’t get to play enough Metallica at weddings! 


For the couple’s first dance, they chose Blessings by Florida Georgia Line. 


A little house on a little land

A little creek, a little Jeep

Same old moon everybody sees

It sure ain't hard to count your blessings


The rest of the night was a fun musical combo of many genres, but country was the backbone. Even though there were only 25 of them, this group came ready to party! Annapolis wedding DJ Brian Doane satisfied both the couple’s wish list and kept up the energy of the crowd with songs like: 




There was also a special song dedicated to the maid of honor — Lean on Me by Michael Bolton. For the cake cutting, they went with the always-popular I Think I Wanna Marry You by Bruno Mars. And the last song of the night was I Belong to You by Jacob Lee.


Melissa and Nicholas had a gorgeous Annapolis wedding with this small group for friends and family. Our DJ team was proud and honored to be a part of it! 


Planning a wedding for 2021 or 2022? We can help! Fill out our quick on

line form and let’s get that date reserved! 



Matt & Christine’s Hyatt Wedding │Eastern Shore Wedding DJ

Matt & Christine’s Hyatt Regency Chesapeake Bay wedding had everything a seaside wedding needs — an ocean breeze, killer Eastern Shore DJ, and lots of love.

Weddings
Easton Wedding DJ
Jordan Solender




Do you think we ever get tired of seaside weddings?


Nope. 


Christine and Matt’s October wedding at the Hyatt Regency Chesapeake Bay in Cambridge, Maryland was a sunny, beachy, dreamy day and we loved being a part of it. Planned to perfection by Ocean City’s Belle of the Ball Events, this wedding was both beautiful and perfectly organized.  

Photographer George Street Photo caught all the special moments, and Eastern Shore wedding DJ Jordan made sure the music cues were just right. 

Christine and Matt’s ceremony took place inside the resort’s Regatta Pavilion. We love this pavilion — it’s cathedral-like, while still being outside. Tall white pillars hold up a vaulted wooden ceiling, and a brick chimney at one end feels like an altar. White curtains around the perimeter blow in the breeze and let the sounds of the bay come through. 

The bridal party entered to a cello and violin cover of John Legend’s All of Me by Brooklyn Duo. Then Christine made her appearance to another cover — Jack Jezzro’s instrumental guitar version of Can You Feel the Love Tonight from The Lion King


After the vows were said and the tears were shed, the newly married couple perked things up with a fun recessional choice...we’re not sure if we’ve ever heard I’ll Be There For You by The Rembrandts as a wedding recessional before, but we loved it!


The reception took place in the resort’s Chesapeake Ballroom, wrapped in white draping for a neutral palate. This let us change the feel of the room from moment to moment with multi-colored uplighting! 


This wedding was a hip hop/country combo — hip hip to get everyone riled up, and country for the softer moments. The bridal party made their entrance to Forever by Drake, Kanya, Lil Wayne, and Eminem. Then the new Mr. and Mrs. were introduced to Bring ‘Em Out by T.I.  

Things quieted down for the special dances, with the room bathed in a pink glow from Maryland’s DJ uplighting for Matt and Christine’s first dance. They swayed and dipped to Then by Brad Paisley. Then Matt danced with his mother to Tim McGraw’s Humble and Kind, and Christine danced to Daughters by John Mayer with her mother. For her dance with her father, they chose Nothing Else Matters by Metallica. 


This wedding also had something unexpected — a celebrity cameo! No, not in person, unfortunately. The bride is a huge Baltimore Ravens fan, and they got Ray Lewis to do to a video cameo wishing them well. 



When the dance floor opened up, expert wedding DJ Jordan got the party started! The couple only had a few must-plays on their list, which he happily provided. These ranged from Usher’s Yeah! To Elton John’s Your Song to Morgan Wallen’s Cover Me Up. Jordan took it from there, crafting a dance mix that kept this party moving. 

The couple wanted to end on a high, so they requested Shout by The Isley Brothers for their last song. This party was a blast from start to finish!


Planning your own seaside wedding bash on the Eastern Shore? We’re in. Contact us ASAP to get on the schedule and start planning your big day with Maryland’s DJ!


All photography by George Street Photo & Video


Ryan Carr at Maryland's DJ

Get to know Maryland wedding DJ Ryan Carr! This pro has been bringing the party to clubs all over Maryland, and he’s ready to bring it to your wedding, too.

DJ Bios
Baltimore Wedding DJ
Ryan Carr

It’s an exciting time at Maryland’s DJ — we’re adding a new member to the crew! DJ Ryan Carr is a Maryland native with some serious chops behind the booth, and we’re thrilled to have him on the team. 


Music has been part of this Westminster native’s life for as long as he can remember. When he was a baby and his dad was working nights, his mom would use music to soothe her cranky baby. Michael Jackson videos in particular could always get baby Ryan to laugh! 


As he grew up, Ryan added education and basketball for his passions, and dreamed of becoming a history teacher and basketball coach. After getting a Master’s Degree in Special Education from McDaniel College, Ryan taught and coached for three years. 


But music remained part of his life. A co-worker’s husband was a local DJ, and Ryan began to help out. He found himself in love with it and took pride in the fact that a great DJ can make or break someone’s event. 


Ryan has now been DJing for 10 years. He's got an extensive resume featuring places like Wayward Smokehouse and Mother’s Grille in Federal Hill. He started up Wild Wednesdays at Westminster’s The Greene Turtle where he attracted big crowds. And he held a residency at Rodos Bar in Fells Point.


Outside of Maryland weddings, Ryan’s favorite type of event to DJ is bar crawls. The crowd is always in a great mood! And when he’s not behind the booth, he’s on the golf course or giving a million pets to his Schnauzer, Kali. 


We asked Ryan to share some of his thoughts on weddings, music, and DJing. So let’s get to know the newest member of the Maryland’s DJ family.


Responses have been lightly edited for clarity.

What makes a great DJ?

Musical knowledge, transitions, and timing are everything! 

What’s your favorite local wedding venue and why?

Walkers Overlook in Walkersville, MD. I love how spacious it is! They also have a really cool gazebo often used as a cigar bar, which a great concept.


Walker’s Overlook, photo by Photography By Brea


*Their sister venue, Dulaney’s Overlook, is one of our favorite venues in Frederick, MD

What’s your favorite thing about weddings?

Weddings are so joyous! Everyone is always in a great mood when love is in the air! 

If you were getting married this weekend, what would your first dance song be?

Face The Sun by Miguel!



What’s the craziest thing you’ve ever seen at a wedding?

After announcing the Father of the Bride, his pants fell completely down to his ankles in the middle of the dance floor!


What’s the best “little kid moment” you’ve seen at a wedding?

I saw a stepmom pick her stepson up and dance with him, and he started crying. (It was beautiful.)

What's the most unique processional song you've ever played?

Frank Ocean’s cover of Moon River.

 

What do you think is the most overplayed wedding song?

Don’t Stop Believing by Journey (eye roll). 


*Disclaimer: Maryland’s DJ takes no responsibility for Ryan’s erroneous opinion about this absolute classic. 😉

What’s one thing you wish people knew about working as a DJ?

I carefully pick EACH song and analyze if it’s the right time to play it. I never show up to any event with a playlist! 

When you're not working, what kind of music do you listen to?

Miguel is my all-time favorite artist. But I’m listening to Jersey club music 90% of the time.


To work with Ryan or any of the other rock star Maryland wedding DJs on our roster, contact us today!  


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