DJ Brings Big City Vibe to Central Florida
By Con Carney
Melbourne, Fla.—“From one to 10, [the event] was a 20.”
Such is the unbridled enthusiasm and confidence that Shane Presley brings to his gigs. Don’t mistake the confidence for arrogance, however—he’s supremely thankful for all the good will that has floated his way.
“I think DJs are the luckiest people on the planet,” he says. “We get paid to make people happy.”
Presley, who owns DJ Shane Entertainment in Melbourne, credits his success—he’s been making his living as a DJ for more than 15 years—with an approach that’s unique to his area.
“A perfect example is the bride I played for this past weekend,” he says, referring to the “20” mentioned earlier. “She wanted that big-city vibe in Central Florida. Now, I’m not from the city, but I do my homework, and I do this for a living. I’m on the Internet until 3 in the morning, every morning, because I want to see what every other DJ is doing out there.”
In his market, Presley says there are about 25 DJ companies. But, he says, there’s little to learn from them. “There might be three or four of them who are doing it for a living.”
But then, he says, “I look at guys in New York and on the East Coast, DJs with hundreds of competitors, and I see how they’re doing it, what’s making them special. I see that. I talk to those guys at the DJ Expo and I bring that vibe back to Florida—teaching dances, being an entertainer.
Specifically, Presley notices that DJs on the East Coast are “a bit more creative at their reception,” he says. “Instead of the basics, in terms of introductions, and just playing dance music, they are more involved.”
So how does Presley bring the Big City to Central Florida?
“I work with two DJs at every event,” he says. “I’m on the microphone, and never in the console. I’m going from table to table, because since I already know what the bride and groom want—I’ve sat down with them for several consultations—but now I’m talking to everyone. I ask them: ‘How was the wedding?’ I’m sitting down with the captain, and I do lots of stuff that has noting to do with DJing. It’s as if I work for the hotel, since I’m wearing a tuxedo, sometimes people will ask me: Is the bar open? Can you get me some ketchup?”
Presley laughs at the thought of it, and then reverts back to his talkative self.
“I’m lining people up, letting guests know what’s going to happen before it happens, so they don’t miss it by taking a cigarette break at the wrong time; so they don’t miss the niece doing a father-daughter dance that they’ll never see again. I find that it’s actually the small things I do that make every event a big one.”
Obviously, Presley is a big believer is personality; it’s the one essential element of what he calls “Big City” DJing.