Why did you name your company Bass is Loaded???

March 31st, 2015

Every once in awhile someone will ask me why I named my company Bass is Loaded!  They’ll sometimes ask in a turned off way, which makes me wonder how they would feel if I asked them “Why did you name your son Roger??”  Don’t people know you should never ask people “Why” questions?  Why did I name my company that?  Why did I not name my business something more personal sounding like Rick Whitehead Entertainment or something even slightly romantic sounding appropriate for weddings?  Funny and true story before I answer; in the Fall of 2009 I sat down outside a Starbucks talking with a prospective wedding couple.  We were about a half hour into the meeting when the guy (who was doing almost all the talking) looks at me and says, “I have to be honest, I’m a former DJ myself and for weeks now she has been telling me ‘we need to contact this guy! I’ve seen his stuff everywhere and he looks really good’ and I wouldn’t because I HATED your company name.”  Um…wow.  OK.  They ended up booking me just minutes after that :)

Who knows how many potential clients I have turned away all due to a name.  Do people really NOT use a business because of a name?  Probably more than we think.  Perhaps more disturbing, I once read on a national DJ forum this other DJ goes on a rant saying “I like the quality of this guy’s work, but I hate, Hate, HATE his company name!!”  Again, wow.  There seems to be angst especially among my national peers, most of whom follow the DJ name template of First Name Last Name Entertainment.  That’s just not my style.  My business certainly is about me, but then again it’s not.  It’s about the incredible caliber of people that I work with.  I’ve chosen to leave my own name out of my company name and let my company do the talking for me.

So why didn’t I ever change the name after knowing people hated it?  Well, first of all that’s because it’s other peoples’ problem and not mine.  If they don’t like it they can move on! Haha.  They probably do!  I enjoy a good play on words (bases loaded), plus bass is an important part of a sound system.  But really it boils down to just good old fashioned brand recognition.  After you’ve been in biz so long it takes a very long time for people to get used to a change.  To me it was never worth it.  Plus I like the fishing references…think about that one :D   I get a kick out of solicitors that call me and say “Um yeah is this…BASS (like the fish)…IS…LOADED??”  No sir, I think you have the wrong company.  Move along.

So, in the spring of 1990 I was sitting in a high school math class talking to a friend of mine who was working with me on a Senior project which involved sound systems and doing school dances.  I knew I wanted to DJ, but I didn’t have a business name and if I wanted to run a business I had to have a name.  Instead of working on math that morning, I wrote a name on a piece of paper and slid it across the table to him.  There were 3 words: “Bass is Loaded!”  Today as I write this blog in 2015, I think about that note that I wrote a quarter-century ago and smile.  The name has grown on me, I have a very personal connection with it, and if I’m 100% honest I’m very proud of every part of what I’ve done.  For every one person that hates my company name, there are many more that love it – and get it.

Those are just my kind of people.

How to hire a DJ for your Oregon wedding

March 26th, 2015

Oregon Bride Magazine is a fantastic resource for couples getting married in Oregon.  As a previous “Best DJ” award winner, I sometimes take for granted how overwhelming it can be for couples to plan for a wedding – in particular hiring the DJ/Entertainment company.  Consider this list of DJs and Musicians on the Oregon Bride Magazine website.  This list is HUGE.  If you’ve already made the decision to hire a DJ for your Oregon wedding, let me be the first to congratulate you on this important decision.  This may just be one of the most important decisions you make!  But now when you see this list of potential Oregon wedding DJs, how in the world do you decide?  There are SO many.  Here are my top recommendations on how to narrow down the choices:

1)  Word of Mouth – Have you been to previous weddings and had a positive experience?  Find out who the DJ was!

2)  Ask your venue or other wedding vendors – Most vendors can tell you which DJs are fantastic and which are less than fantastic.  They have seen them all.  In fact, watch my video to learn more about what I mean.

3)  Google phrases such as “best rated wedding DJ in Oregon”, “Oregon wedding DJ reviews”, “Eugene wedding DJ reviews”, “Portland wedding DJ reviews” and other combinations and take a note of which companies you consistently see popping up.  Keep in mind there is a difference between website keyword trickery and actual real life reviews of wedding DJs.  Be thorough.  You will quickly see the difference.  Be sure to read several reviews, they are very telling!

4)  Speaking of seeing the difference, be sure to filter your search results on sites like WeddingWire.  Many of these wedding planning sites will show you only the paid advertisers who spend big bucks to be on top.  Often times you’ll find the real gems by sorting by the number of reviews.  Those are the companies that are often times the best in their industry and no longer need to pay top dollar to compete for paid advertising real estate.  It’s true.  Be savvy enough to sort through the fluff.

5)  Scan the DJ’s website.  By nature a DJ company website will mirror the kind of experience you can expect to have with them on your wedding day.  Do they appeal to you?  Are they an experienced authority in their industry?  Does their site seem “wedding” focused or are weddings simply one of many type of events that they do?  Is there passion with this DJ about the kind of work that they do?  If the passion is lacking, move along.

6) Pay attention to the way that a DJ first interacts with you (via phone, email, etc).  There is a very good chance that the way they present themselves to you initially is exactly how they’ll be during the planning process and even the big day.

7)  Go with your gut.  It’s almost always right!

Hiring a DJ for your wedding in Oregon is important stuff.  Be armed with information and you’ll make the decision that’s right for you.  Happy planning!!

Wedding DJs in Portland, Eugene, Seattle, San Francisco, Sacramento and Boise – WeddingWire.com

February 20th, 2013

I recently made the decision to reduce my WeddingWire advertising campaign from a Featured listing to a Basic (free) listing.  This affects my ads for Portland wedding djs, Eugene wedding dj’s, wedding djs in Seattle, wedding dj’s in San Francisco, and also Boise wedding DJs and Sacramento wedding djs.  There are many ways brides and grooms can search for wedding DJ’s on WeddingWire.  For instance, they can search for Portland Wedding DJs by the number of reviews, average review rating, DJ name, and whether or not that vendor is a Featured (paying) advertiser.  Since I actually provide wedding dj services in Portland, Eugene, San Francisco, Sacramento, Seattle and Boise, it’s important for me to rank at the top for all those areas.  With a Featured or Spotlight listing, those advertisers appear on the 1st page of results.  But if someone is searching for say a wedding dj in Eugene, OR there could be Featured listings shown, but also some other very qualified Eugene wedding DJs that aren’t listed until the 2nd or 3rd pages because they don’t pay as much as other advertisers.

You could then hope that someone sorts their search by Average Rating.  On the surface, you would think Bass is Loaded! would rank at the very top, being one of the best rated wedding djs in the country.  Not the case.  Let’s say a bride in San Francisco is searching for a wedding DJ in the bay area and she searches for San Francisco wedding DJs by Average Rating.  The resulting list will show all the 5-star rated wedding dj’s in the San Francisco area.  In other words, a company that has 2 reviews with 5 stars would rank higher than a company that has over 100 reviews with an average rating of 5.0 consisting of only a handful reviews that are just under 5.0.  Another way of looking at this is if one student in a classroom had only two questions on a test and get them both right, and another student had 150 questions and got 98% of them right, that the first student would get a better grade.  Interesting concept, but perhaps not resulting in the best student.

Anyway, after deciding not to renew my WeddingWire Featured listings, the very first lead I received came from a bride looking for wedding DJs in Portland when she was able to find my company.  I asked her how she found me.  She said she sorted the listings of Portland Wedding DJs on WeddingWire by the number of reviews because she figured that Featured advertisers paid to be there and that sorting by the number of reviews would be a more accurate way to look.  She was absolutely right!

So I encourage brides and grooms to be thorough in their search for wedding vendors.  If using a site like WeddingWire or some other online resource where vendors pay to be on that site, definitely take the time to sort by the number of reviews if you can.  Just because a wedding DJ in Eugene shows up on the first page, that doesn’t necessarily mean they are the best choice, it just means they have the most expensive ad.  And also be sure to check out all the organic results online (the ones provided by Google and other online search engines).  Some of the best wedding DJs can be found organically, where you come across their website on your own.  Happy searching!

Treasury Ballroom Wedding booked!

February 1st, 2013

I am excited to have just booked a great wedding this July at the Treasury Ballroom in Portland, Oregon.  Danny and Ashley are currently living in New York and were looking for a Portland wedding DJ when they found me.  It’s funny to think along these lines, but when a couple finds a great wedding vendor (and a wedding DJ finds a great couple), in a way it’s like any other relationship that just “feels right”…there’s no other way to put that.  Personalities match, styles match, and in your guy you just know.  I’ve never DJ’d a wedding at the Treasury Ballroom before, so I am very excited.  I never grow tired of meeting great couples, working in great venues, and loving what I do!

San Francisco Wedding DJ Review

January 17th, 2013

My post at the beginning of the year was about the wedding I DJ’d in Berkeley, CA.  Patrick & Krystal were looking for a San Francisco wedding DJ when they found me.  They posted a review of my services tonight.  Very nice!Bass is Loaded San Francisco Wedding DJ

The Wedding Planning Buzz!

January 8th, 2013

The Oregon Wedding Showcase just wrapped up a Eugene wedding show this past weekend.  While I don’t get many opportunities to participate in the bridal shows much anymore, you can definitely tell there is a buzz in the air.  Newly engaged couples are seeking wedding vendor information at a fast & furious pace.  There’s so much to think about in such a short amount of time.  When it comes to hiring a wedding DJ, it can be a bit overwhelming and confusing.  One of the best resources I think I have on my website is this video I filmed that talks about the importance of 1) Why you should hire a DJ for your wedding, 2) What to look for in a DJ company, and 3) What sets my own company apart.  Who you hire to DJ your wedding will prove to be one of the most important decisions you make for your special day.  Definitely take the time to do some research so you can feel good about your decision, and so family and friends can have positive memories that will last a lifetime.

It’s worth mentioning here that even though I am based out of Eugene, OR, I DJ weddings all over the West coast.  So if you’re looking for wedding dj’s in Portland, a Seattle DJ, a San Francisco wedding DJ, a Sacramento wedding DJ, or even a DJ for a Boise wedding, you’re in good hands right here.  There’s nobody better for the job!

Wedding at Lawrence Hall of Science | Berkeley, CA

January 2nd, 2013

On December 29, 2012 I DJ’d my last wedding of the year at the Lawrence Hall of Science at UC Berkeley.  Patrick & Krystal were married on an outside section of the property overlooking the San Francisco Bay area.  What an amazing view!  Although living in Chicago, this couple was looking for a San Francisco wedding DJ when the bride’s mom found Bass is Loaded!  They were looking for a wedding DJ that could keep guests informed of what was happening, MC the event from start to finish, and provide sound in 3 completely different areas.  I was up for the task.  I came in a day early, and coordinated their wedding rehearsal too.  And for the wedding itself, I was able to provide all 3 zones with sound from one single location.  Not too shabby!  So for anyone planning their wedding at Lawrence Hall of Science, or for any couple looking for a wedding dj in San Francisco, Oakland, Berkeley, San Jose or other Bay area location, you would be amazed at what you can pull off from this wedding DJ based in Eugene, OR…yes…all the way from Eugene!

Bass is Loaded San Francisco Wedding DJ Lawrence Hall of Science 1Main DJ Setup Location Lawrence Hall of Science Wedding DJ Ceremony Location Bass is Loaded San Francisco Wedding DJ Lawrence Hall of Science 2 Bass is Loaded San Francisco Wedding DJ Lawrence Hall of Science 3 Lawrence Hall of Science Main Wedding DJ Setup Location Lawrence Hall of Science Wedding DJ Dinner Location Lawrence Hall of Science Wedding DJ Walking & Buffet Location Bass is Loaded San Francisco Wedding DJ Lawrence Hall of Science 5 Bass is Loaded San Francisco Wedding DJ Lawrence Hall of Science 4


Wedding at Arden Hills Resort | Sacramento, CA

December 23rd, 2012

Karen & Tom were married last night at Arden Hills Resort in Sacramento, CA.  They were looking for a Sacramento wedding DJ when they found me.  These two were so much fun.  They had their ceremony in the East Terrace room, and their reception followed later in the Heritage room.  Here’s a photo of the ceremony setup, along with a quick pic of the travel required to get there.  Looking for a great Sacramento wedding DJ?  You’d be surprised to learn that your wedding can be spectacular when you hire this wedding DJ in Eugene, Oregon!  Most couples would look for a Sac wedding dj.  And although there are some great wedding DJs in Sacramento, it doesn’t hurt to look for the best overall wedding vendor for YOU.

California, here I come…

December 9th, 2012

…well, maybe not just yet.  Today I am about to leave to DJ a holiday party in Eugene, OR.  I have another party next weekend as well.  But weddings make up about 90% of what I do, and December is no exception.  I will be the wedding DJ for two awesome couples in California at the end of this month, and I’m getting excited.  The first wedding is on December 21st in Sacramento at Arden Hills.  Tom & Karen were looking for a connection with a Sacramento wedding DJ.  Their search led them to me.  Earlier this year I flew down to Sac and spent the day with this couple touring the venue and learning a little more about them.  12.21.12 is an ominous date, and this should be an electric night!

Patrick & Krystal are getting married on December 29th at the Lawrence Hall of Science at the University of Calfornia, Berkeley.  This is going to be a blast!  What a unique place to get married.  This couple of course was looking for a San Francisco wedding DJ when they found me (actually the mother of the bride found me, watched some of my videos, and then made the initial contact).  I’m really looking forward to this!

Two great weddings, lots and lots of windshield time, and one very happy wedding DJ that gets to help pull it all off!

Bass is Loaded! now on Pinterest

December 9th, 2012

So maybe I’m way behind the times with this whole Pinterest thing.  Perhaps.  But it seems like the hip, trendy thing to do.  So count me in.  My business page on Pinterest can be found here.  Check it out if you’d like.  There is hardly anything there!  And my first “pin” doesn’t even show up as a picture that you can see.  That’s fantastic.  My hope is that whenever people do wedding searches for the markets I’m in (Eugene Wedding DJ, Salem Wedding DJ, Portland Wedding DJ, Oregon Wedding DJ, Seattle Wedding DJ, Boise Wedding DJ, San Francisco Wedding DJ, Sacramento Wedding DJ, etc), that they’ll eventually find Bass is Loaded! and be inclined enough to take a look.  And maybe with time I can get a pin to actually stick!