DJ Jerry B’s Blog Mostly daytime ramblings

June 25, 2011

Maggie and Cindy – Rockport Art Association

Filed under: Weddings — Tags: , , , , , — DJJerryB @ 2:47 pm

A wedding celebration in an art gallery?

Yes.

On a Thursday night?

Yes.

Maggie got in touch with me by phone last year about her wedding. She and Cindy are from Chicago and, after many years together, decided to tie the knot in Massachusetts. It’s always a good sign when initial telephone conversations get into a comfort level right off the bat, so I knew we would have a good working relationship. Those feelings were confirmed when she sent me all of her contact information the same night in an e-mail with the subject line reading “Maggie and Cindy’s Big Gay Gala!” I had to (almost literally) pick myself up off the floor.

Toasts were offered up by Cindy’s sister Karen and Maggie’s brother Mike. Mike’s was especially touching when, after joking about the adventures of growing up with his twin sister, he spoke of his own issues of coming to terms with her realization of her preference. Noting that once he got over his initial feelings, he realized that SHE hadn’t changed. She was still the same wonderful, caring sister she had always been. Knowing that, he understood things better and it was HE who changed. He let us all off the emotional hook when he further observed that, being twins, they had a lot in common and that one of those was that they both liked girls (“Women!” as Maggie corrected him.)

This was a destination wedding in every sense of the word. Every single guest traveled to celebrate with this great couple. Not only were friends there from Chicago, but also Oregon, Colorado, Texas and many other locations. This is why the couple had decided on a Thursday wedding. They wanted to give their guests an opportunity to stay for the weekend to see the Boston area. I watched the guests enter the reception area and each one had the biggest, broadest smile on their face. They were positively beaming, clearly thrilled to have made the trip to celebrate with Maggie and Cindy.

June 20, 2011

Meli and Dave – L’Andana Grill

Filed under: Weddings — Tags: , , , , — DJJerryB @ 7:28 pm

Meli and Dave held their very intimate wedding ceremony and reception at L’Andana Grill in Burlington. If you haven’t yet visited L’Andana, you should. The ambiance of the upscale Tuscan restaurant is readily apparent as soon as you walk in the door.

The celebration was an international affair. In one of our pre-wedding consultations, I had commented to the groom that I wanted to practice pronouncing his name correctly so that I would have it right for the introductions. This is something of a personal obsession of mine. Ever been to a wedding and the DJ doesn’t know the names of his clients?   (I have…) In any event, when I voiced my concern over getting his name right, he joked that I shouldn’t worry about it since his own father insists that he (Dave) doesn’t even pronounce it the proper traditional way. In an absolutely brilliant move, not only did Dave provide me with the phonetic spelling for all members of the wedding party, the list was accompanied with an audio recording of the groom pronouncing each name. Aah, technology!

Since this was a small wedding, it was held in the private dining room and, due to size and sound restrictions, we were obligated to use their in-house sound system (I had offered this particular couple a reduced rate since I would not be loading equipment in and out of the venue.)  This was a first for me and, in all candor, it was a bit of a challenge. The sound was fine for the ceremony (voice) and during dinner (low volume). When it was time for dancing, it just wasn’t quite up to par. Fortunately, since I tend to over-prepare, I had taken it upon myself to bring my smaller system. I convinced the event manager that we needed a little boost and was given permission to use my own gear. It ended up saving the dance portion of the evening.

June 13, 2011

Regina and Greg – Hartman’s Herb Farm

Filed under: Weddings — Tags: , , , , , , , — DJJerryB @ 10:25 am

Regina and I met via a telephone call back in January. She and her husband-to-be had decided on Hartman’s Herb Farm as the venue for their wedding and reception. You can see from the above photo of the bride and her dad, the country setting at Hartman’s is just perfect for a New England wedding. I’ve worked at Hartman’s many times and am gratified to know that the owners there will recommend me to couples who are still searching for their disc jockey. That conversation with the bride was so comfortable that within 5 minutes I think we both knew that we were going to be working together. Of course, that didn’t stop us from talking about her vision of the day, along with my general outlook on things, for the ensuing 90 minutes!

Preparation for the wedding could only be described as a DJ’s dream. The couple had very few demands, considered themselves rookies at such a large production, and were looking for someone who could lend some insight on how to make the day totally theirs. Knowing that their own taste in music would be considered a little outside of mainstream, they wanted me to orchestrate a large portion of the planning for the day. Once she realized that she and Greg could contribute their own ideas in music to be incorporated into dinner hour, Regina provided  a good sized list of some songs and artists that were special to them and many of the friends that would be attending. I’m comfortable in saying that, based on the reaction of everyone, that become the most important component in putting the stamp on the night as being completely and totally unique. This night was truly “theirs.”

It’s not at all uncommon to get attached to the couple that you are working with. With these two, there was something really extraordinary about it. I couldn’t put my finger on it until I spent time with their families and friends. This was a very tight group — anyone could see that everyone who was there was SUPPOSED to be there. Her mom and dad were beaming all night. His mom was on the dance floor all night long. Brothers, cousins, extended families, close friends and “the gang” all exuded a warmth that was almost addictive. To me, there would be only one word to describe the night:

Perfect.

June 5, 2011

Joe and Deb – Bucksteep Manor

Filed under: Weddings — Tags: , , , , , , — DJJerryB @ 9:22 pm

Ever heard of Washington, Massachusetts?

Me neither. At least not until the groom contacted me last year to assist with their wedding at Bucksteep Manor.  This is way, WAY out in western Massachusetts in the heart of the Berkshires and, although my car didn’t like climbing those mountain roads, I was blown away at the location. It must be truly amazing in the fall when the colors change.

The ceremony at the stone chapel at Bucksteep was performed beautifully by Justice of the Peace Susan Pensivy. Joe and Deb had many of their family and friends coming in from New York for the weekend celebration and, thankfully, the area was unaffected by the recent tornadoes. In fact, it was just about perfect.  And it was definitely a fun crowd, very much ready to celebrate.

The layout for the festivities was somewhat unique in that there were three separate locations for the reception. The cocktail hour was at the Manor House, dinner was served outdoors under a tent and dancing took place inside the Carriage Barn. Yours truly got a pretty healthy workout for this one, managing to operate two sound systems in three separate locations. I love what I do, but don’t believe for one minute that a professional DJ is “paid to party”…

The attached photos are courtesy of one of my fellow professionals — Carm D’Amore. Teacher, photographer, and just an all-around good guy. How good a guy? So good that I was able to look past the New York Yankees necktie he was wearing. Carm, thanks again!

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