There’s enough pressure already being the host of a party, but one of the most crucial ways to make your bash a night to remember is by getting the party playlist spot on, This can, however, be difficult when you have to cater for everybody’s tastes. So what’s best way to achieve that killer mix?
Figure Out The Crowd
The first thing to do is judge just what kind of even your party is in order to assess what atmosphere you want to create with the music. What time of year is it being hosted? Is it indoors or outdoors? Does it include a large meal? People are going to want to dance less if the event is more formal so tracks should be more mellow, but if it’s something informal with plenty of plus ones then you’re going to want more high energy tunes to get people mingling.
It’s also good to establish where your laptop (or other device) is going to be while you’re partying. Are you locking it away or will you have access to it? This will determine whether you have one continuous playlist or smaller mixes that you can jump between depending on the mood (like ‘day’ and ‘night’ or ‘chilled and ‘club’). This being said, it’s almost always preferable to be able to access the music in case you want to change it up, so if you want to lock it away just keep a key on you and with those you trust. It’s also essential to have a back-up in case anything goes wrong, even if it means putting your mixes on CDs or having spare speakers. You should also take into consideration that relying on tracks from online web hosts is not ideal – you’re not always guaranteed a good quality recording of the track and this will be even more noticeable when the volume is turned up, so make sure you obtain the best sound with legal copies.
Ask For Everyone’s Preferences
If your party is going to be attended by people of different age ranges, get family members and friends to help. This way you know that you’ve catered to everybody’s preferences. Alternatively, you could throw your guests a quick email asking for recommendations (though you don’t have to include everything they fire back at you!).
Stick To What They Know
A party also isn’t the time to debut any new tracks you’re loving, especially if they’re from an obscure band. One or two maybe (as long as you have a good feeling about them), but that’s your limit, and save these for when everybody is already up on their feet. Showing off your musical knowledge may seem like a good idea in the heat of the moment but nothing will kill the mood quicker than a succession of tracks that nobody knows! This doesn’t mean your playlist has to be strictly top-10. Just give people things they recognise and mix up old classics with fresh tunes.
Go With The Flow
Shuffle playlists can be fun and spontaneous if you’re sticking to one type of music but it isn’t always the best idea when you’ve got a range of genres, as you can have awkward transitions between songs that don’t quite gel together. When you’re arranging the order play the last thirty seconds of one track followed by the first thirty seconds of the next. It’s about keeping the tempos correct and making connections. Three rap songs don’t have to follow each other necessarily, but you want to achieve the same pace and vibe from track to track!
- License: Royalty Free or iStock source: http://www.sxc.hu/browse.phtml?f=download&id=1422457
Matt Woil is a DJ and passionate music blogger for Essex Disco, the number one mobile disco company in the south of England. Matt also enjoys playing the guitar and piano and hopes to be a music producer some day.