DJ for a Party

Parent Q&A

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  • Bat Mitzvah DJ Advice

    (1 reply)

    My child is having a Bat Mitzvah this summer and we're wanting to hire a DJ. I'm wondering if anyone can give us some guidance? It was suggested that we hire a DJ team including an Emcee and dancers to energize the crowd, so it would be a team of 3-4 people - is that overkill?  It sounds like it will be in the $3-5K range for a party that's 4 hours long.  Does that sound right?  Any advice is welcome.  

    Darryl Grace is a Bar Mitzvah party specialist - has all the gear and dancers...510.915.3534

  • Bat Mitzvah or Wedding DJ

    (5 replies)


    Does anyone have a recommendation of an excellent, but low key DJ for a Bat Mitzvah.

    We want good music, but not too loud. A DJ who won't feel like they need to be the focus of the evening. Thanks for any advice.

    A wedding DJ with the same specs would work as well. They are probably interchangeable jobs.

    I cannot say enough good things about ET Hazzard, who DJ'ed our wedding, but my Yelp review is a good starting point ( Here's his website, which has an inquiry form:

    Darryl Grace is your guy!  He’s a DJ who is all about the kids, not himself.  He’s also a middle school teacher by day so he “speaks” 13- year old.  He works at a Jewish day school and has DJed countless bar/bat mitzvahs.  He’s personable and fun!  You can reach him at djdgrace [at]  Mazal Tov!

    We used Jason Shires with QMEP for our wedding in 2015. He really listened to what we wanted and respected the amount of involvement we wanted him to have during the ceremony and reception.  He is the owner of QMEP so he’s a bit more expensive than getting another one of their DJs. We actually ended up with him as a fluke, but really liked him! 

     Since it was a few years ago it’s possible they have changed their model, but it’s worth checking.

    DJ Tomas Diablo.

    We had a Jewish wedding and he was our DJ.  Nice guy, will totally work with you on music, also a really good MC if you have announcements and such.

    tomas [at]

    Check out Justin James of JustINtertainment. He’s a great DJ and super responsive and easy to work with. Handles all kinds of events really well.

  • My daughter's elementary school is looking for a DJ that can both DJ and interact with the kids (i.e. motivate kids to partake in the dance).  The school is having a Fall Dance.  Any recommendations?

    Give Justin James of DJ Just-In a call! He is a fantastic DJ who produces all sorts of events for all ages. He creates a custom playlist for every event that is tailored to the crowd and setting - and always gets the crowd on the dance floor. He has an elementary school age kid and a preschooler so definitely knows how to get kids up and moving - and he regularly dj's school events at Malcolm X Elementary in Berkeley.

    Phone: 650.483.6825; Email: djjustinbayarea [at] (djjustinbayarea [at] gmail [dot] com; )

  • DJ for a middle school dance

    (1 reply)

    The recommendations for DJ's seem to be on the older side.  Wondering if anyone has anything to add.  Middle school dance.  Prefer the works - games, full engagement, etc.   Thank you in advance!  

    My now 7th grade son and his friends raved about DJ Hightop who played their Middle School dance last year.  I wasn't there (oh to have been a fly on the wall!) but apparently he was awesome— fun, played great music and had everyone dancing. My son and his friends were totally sweaty from dancing so much....they still rave about him as being the best DJ. (He's been to two dances this year and while they were fun, still mentions DJ Hightop!)

Archived Q&A and Reviews


Mobile DJ for middle school graduation party

Feb 2008

I'm looking for a mobile dj for my daughter's middle school graduation party. We have a budget of $500.00. Does anyone have any referrals? Sarah

I can not recommend Kalvin Lathan (aka DJ Kal) highly enough! We have used him for many parties & he is AWESOME. We're referred him to other friends, coworkers etc & no one has ever been disappointed! He is fun, has a diversity of music & can warm up ANY crowd. Kalvin Lathan (510) 812-2174 KLathan[at]
party lovin' mama

DJ for Teen Birthday Party

(related page: Birthday Parties for Teens

My daughter is having a ''dance party'' for her 13th birthday. At first we thought that we'd just play some CDs ourselves. Then we thought again! We don't have enough music or a very good sound system. Now we are looking for a fairly inexpensive (?) DJ that will play hip-hop/pop type music that kids like to dance to. The party will be in El Cerrito. Are there any high-schoolers out there that do this kind of thing?............ Marcia

I would highly recommend Alan Sapalicio (D.J. Al). He's located in Alameda and does parties all over the Bay Area. He specializes in teen parties and school dances. His rates are very reasonable. He can be reached at (510) 517-1143 or djal at Rhea

March 2000

I'd like to get some feedback from parents on finding a DJ for an upcoming event for my son...he's 14. There seem to be so many out there and I'd prefer to go with somebody whose work and style is known to parents from previous parties, bar mitzvahs, weddings, etc. Thanks! Michael

I highly recommend Javier Corrales (DJ Nomadic) 925-472-2441 He has DJ'ed events for San Leandro Middle School, Bancroft Middle School as well as various UC Berkeley college events. I have heard him play at various college events. I took his card for a party that has yet to be realized (it is never the right time...) because I enjoyed his mix of music... Cruz

DJ for a Wedding 


June 2007

Re: Outdoor wedding on a budget
DJ: I'd recommend Spintronix (eric [at] who did our wedding last June. He also does wedding coordination if you need a coordinator (which was so helpful, it allowed me to have much fun on my wedding day). Congratulations and good luck planning! patricia

October 2005

Re: DJ, Photographer, Videographer For Wedding
For a DJ or band I recommend the Floorshakers. You can contact them thru their website Doug Mascardo the lead guitar player also has a DJ service. Ali

We used Aaron Texeira of A Perfect Impression for our DJ a few years ago. We liked his service, very professional, played what we wanted, had a good feel for the crowd. We interviewed four or so DJ's and liked him best.

April 2002

I'm hoping someone can help me out. My sister is getting married in July and is looking for a DJ for the reception. They are both musicians and care a great deal about the music for the reception, but can't afford a live band. They really want someone who will just play the music they want, and not schmooze, act as master of ceremonies or insist he knows best what they need. I have yet to find a DJ that is willing to stay out of the spotlight -- do you know one?

We had a guy named Jim Puser (Poo-jer) DJ our wedding. The name of his business is Sonnix. This was 12 years ago, but I'm pretty sure he's still doing it. He was EXCELLENT. A total non-schmoozer with an amazing CD collection. We gave him a list and he did exactly what we wanted. Highly recommended. Has done some friends weddings and they were very happy too. Dont' have a phone number or website, but if he's still in business, I'm sure you can find it (he used to be in Berkeley). Good luck! hilary Note from Myriam Puser, Jim 510-548-3181 1295 Campus Dr Berkeley From:

We had the same issue for our wedding. We decided to have our own cds made with our favorite songs. It took awhile to compile a list but we did and passed it to a friend who has a cd burner. He was able to get the music online. We had 4 cds with our first dance, parents dance, money dance, etc. songs on the first in order and then the others had the rest all mixed. He had a computer program that did the mixing. We even gave out cds as favors. If you don't have access or know someone with the same kind of access, maybe check with some of the djs you are calling and ask if they could make a mix with your requested songs and just play them at the wedding. We just had a friend be in charge of changing the cds. It was very simple. Anon

We used Dave Tutton (''DJ the Maestro'') for our wedding and he was fabulous! He DJs at several clubs in SF and does at least a wedding a two a month. Most of my family members have used him for weddings and other parties as well. He met with us to understand the type of music we liked to dance to, eat to, etc. Really easy to work with and very dependable. He lives in SF on Filbert St and can be reached at 415.474.9283. Angie

I used a fellow by the name of Reid Whatley. He has a web site I have to say, he really made our wedding. He wasn't overbearing, insipid or jerky in any way. I really didn't know what I was doing, but a girl friend of mine used to be a caterer and she had attended lots of weddings. She said he was the only one she would strongly recommend. In the past two years I've been to my share of weddings, and I have to say that Reid was far and above better than any of the other DJs I've seen. Good luck, p.s. Feel free to email me if you have further questions. Susan

My wife and I were in the same situation--wanting a DJ who would play what we wanted (not Celebration and YMCA, etc.), who would not be the center of attention, etc. We used a gentleman by the name of Al Flanagan, 510-741-8220 (based out of Pinole, I think), and we just loved him. The first thing he told us, completely unprompted, was that he was interested in playing music, not in being an obnoxious loudmouth wedding DJ. He knows a ton about lots of different kinds of music (used to host a radio show), listened very carefully to what type of atmosphere we wanted for our reception, and really respected what we wanted. Once he understood what we wanted, he asked if we could give him some leeway to play music that he picked out. We let him do it, and we were delighted. Everyone from the 20 somethings to the 80 somethings loved the music. I recommend him very very highly. Good luck! Michael

I know just the DJ for you. Jamie Robbers of Pure Sound DJs (; 800 870-0073) DJed my wedding in 1999 and my friend's wedding in 2000. She is great--she'll play what you want and not schmooze. She is happy to stay out of the spotlight if that's what you prefer. Nomi

[Dec 2003 update: website for Jamie M. Robbers, Pure Sound is and contact phone is Toll Free 866-Jamie13 or (510) 276 8897]

We also used Al Flanagan and were really happy with him. This was nearly 7 years ago now. We were in a terrible situation where our original DJ's son was murdered three days before our wedding and of course, had to cancel. We scrambled and found Al Flanagan, to whom we faxed a list of songs we wanted to be played. We were very lucky to get him on such short notice, and he did a really great job and did exactly what we asked him to do. Lori In regards to a previous recommendation: DJ Al Flanagan , his contact number is 741-8220. Looking for a wedding DJ

May I second (or third) the recommendation for Al Flanagan. He did my wedding 5 years ago and I can't count the number of guests who commented on how great he was. He has a vast selection of music, great knowledge of many styles, and is not a ham or an emcee type who will spend half the reception on the mike--he just plays what you want, and will take up the microphone to make announcements as necessary. I really can't recommend him highly enough. Virginia