FAQs


How much experience do Top Dog DJs have?
Plenty! We take every gig very seriously and only book experienced DJs. Top Dog DJs have a minimum of 2 years’ experience in the industry.  All Top Dog DJs are individually selected based on their ability to provide quality entertainment to a wide range of age groups, play music from multiple genres and read a crowd.

If I book a DJ, can I choose who it is?
Most of our customers book though Top Dog based on reputation, service and performance.  They trust that we will provide them with the best possible DJ for their event.
You can either request a specific DJ if you know what you want, or you can let us expertly match the best DJ for your brief and music tastes. Some DJ’s have a higher rate than others and initial quotes can increase depending on the DJ.

What will the musicians wear?
Unless advised otherwise, our male performers dress code is suit and tie. Female performers will be in glamourous cocktail attire. All Top Dog entertainers will meet your required dress code standard.  If you want them in tuxedos, that’s how they’ll be!

When do the musicians set up for my event?
Bump in for a standard DJ booking is 1 hour prior to their set commencing. Other live music acts may require longer to set up.
If you are providing the AV, or it’s already at your venue, arrival and sound check time may be 30 minutes prior.
Bump out is immediately after the musicians set finishes.
If you require an earlier set up time, or a later bump out time, additional fees will apply.
We liaise directly with your venue to organise all the bump in / out logistics.

Can my DJs or band MC on the night?
Some can, some can’t!
Some of our artists are confident with public speaking and MC duties.
Others would prefer to concentrate on what they are best at doing – creating music.
For those that are, we can offer this service for an additional fee.
If you require more than just general announcements, we can recommend some great professional MC’s.

How long will the band play for?
In most cases, events are over a 4-5 hour duration.
Generally, most bands will play 3 x 45 minute sets during their call time.
Most bands are happy to break up their sets to fit with your running order (i.e. 4 x 35-minute sets or sets varying in length)
While your band is not performing live, they can play music from a pre-programmed playlist.  If the band doesn’t have some of your favourite songs in their repertoire, this is the perfect time to have those tracks played.

Do I need to provide meals for the musicians?
Musicians (and performers) booked for 4 hours or more, require hot meals and refreshments which are to be provided at your cost.
Most venues will provide a staff discounted meal for crew members.
For performance times less than 4 hours, water is required only.
As a rule of thumb, fed and looked after musicians will perform best!

What is an equipment rider?
If you are providing AV at your event (or have a professional AV company doing so), we will send you a list of equipment specs that our artists require.
We are happy to liaise directly with your venue or AV company to manage this for you.

Can I meet someone face to face to talk about our music choices?
We would love to meet with you to discuss the music and running of the night and answer any questions you might have.
We are available in our office anytime during the week, or after hours upon request.

How do I select the music for the night? Can I choose my own music?
Upon confirmation of your event, we will send you a link to access your own online event or wedding form.
The form will give you the option to select music for specific parts of your event and provide a general list of songs that you would like to hear, or not hear!
You can also upload spotify playlist links to the form.
Your form is editable at any time and you can return to it for updates as you wish.
Your DJ / musicians will use this as a guide for the evening, however, please don’t feel you have to plan the entire evening’s music.
Its also important to know that if you book a live group, they will have repertoire restrictions, so please make sure you understand what their set list includes before locking them in.Top Dog DJs are trained to read the crowd and play to differing age groups so they will make sure everyone is catered to and has a great time.
If you do not wish to create a playlist, and it is by no means compulsory, just let us know the age groups attending and a rough outline of what music you would like to hear, or not hear.
We are more than happy for your guests to request songs on the night too.
If you have music that you want played that we don’t have on file (traditional, rare, cultural, etc.) you can send us the files using our Hightail account (we will send you a link).
That being said we do have an extensive list of cultural music on file already.
This way you can be assured that we will play the exact version you are wanting to hear.

I’m stuck for music ideas – I don’t know the names of songs or who sings them, can you help?
No problems.
We are pretty good with our music knowledge (if we don’t say so ourselves)!
We have loads of playlists and DJ mixes that you can get ideas from.
Check out our Spotify and Mixcloud accounts (icon links in website footer) for heaps of playlists and DJ mixes – enjoy!

Can you provide music for our outdoor wedding ceremony (with no access to power)?
Of course!
We can provide a portable sound system for a fee that can be set up outdoors – it is battery powered and great for garden weddings or locations that are a distance from a power outlet. It has a wireless microphone, lapel microphone, or both depending on what you require. They are very easily operated and take CDs, USB’s and iPods / iPhones.
We can arrange for your DJ to man the system for an additional cost.
Alternatively, ask us about live acoustic options.

Song requests: Will the band learn a song for us?
It is always best to try to select songs from the band’s current song list.
If the song you want is not on the list and if it is in the same genre as the band already performs, then we can request this of the band.
Usually the band will advise us whether this is possible.
Some bands will charge a fee to learn a special song as there is practice and rehearsals involved to get it just right!
If the band is unable to learn the song, we highly suggest playing the original version of your special song (through the bands system) and then having the band play live straight after the song.
This option works very well.

Can we see the Band / DJs perform live before we book?
As the majority of events we perform are private, it can be difficult to see the band or DJ perform prior to the night, however if an opportunity arises, we would definitely let you know. Also, the style of music they play at a public event may differ from that personally tailored to your event.
We pride ourselves on our video content, so you will know how the band looks and sounds before committing to booking them.
Our musicians all have video demos (as well as audio samples) that you can watch. We also have some sample DJ mixes for you to have a listen to as well.
Please visit either:
– our Vimeo channel for professional music videos (videos are categorised in alphabetical order and match the service categories on our website)
– our YouTube channel for nonprofessional music and other entertainment videos (videos have been sorted into playlists (again matching the service categories on our website for convenience).

Can we extend the finishing time on the night?
In most cases yes!
You are welcome to extend the finishing time on the night provided you advise the musician(s) this is dependent on their availability.
We will then invoice you for the additional time on the next business day.
No cash will be accepted on the night.

Do you travel outside of Melbourne?
Absolutely.
We are based in Melbourne and this is where we party most often, but we have people on our roster right up the Australian East Coast.
For Victorian events, travel outside of Melbourne is something we regularly do and is charged with a per km rate if the event location is further than 30km from the Melbourne CBD. Rates are calculated from CBD – event – return.
Accommodation may be required if the venue is more than 2 hours from Melbourne. If you can provide appropriate accommodation that’s great, otherwise we will charge a nominal fee to cover each performer.

How and when do I pay for my event? What’s the payment process?
Once you choose to work with us, a 50% deposit is required to formally secure your entertainment, with the balance due 14 days prior to your event.
Unfortunately, we cannot guarantee availability of performers until you pay a deposit.
You can pay by direct bank transfer or give us a call with your credit card handy and we will process it over the phone.
Amex payments will incur an additional 3.5% surcharge.

Cancellations – What happens if I cancel my booking?
All bookings cancelled, forfeit their 50% deposit.
Any cancellation within 14 days of the performance date will incur 100% of the fee.

What happens if the performer I have booked is ill and cannot attend my event?
We have incredibly reliable performers, however in the highly unlikely situation that your booked performer cannot attend your event, we would replace them as quickly as possible with someone equally as talented and as similar in style as possible.
All performers in our team know that if they are feeling even the slight beginnings of a cold, to let us know immediately so we can prepare a backup plan.
One advantage of booking with an agency, is that we have a large pool of artists on our roster, so any potential issues can be sorted before they become a problem.
If an act becomes ill, or for any reason cannot perform on the day, we will find you a suitable replacement or we will offer your money back in full, if you are not satisfied.
We won’t leave you in the lurch!

How far in advance should I book?
You can book as close to your event as you like, but if you want specific acts or artists, get in early.
Entertainers work on a first in best dressed basis!

Who do I call on the day / night if I have a question or there is an issue?
Our main number – 1300 658 718 is available 24 hours and we always have someone on call for event related questions or issues.

Are you guys insured?
Of course!
We have $20 Million Public Liability Insurance, so everything’s covered.

Do you provide a microphone for speeches?
We provide a corded microphone at every function (where we are providing music and production) and you are most welcome to use this for speeches or any announcements during the night.
If you would prefer a cordless / roving mic we can organise this for you at a small cost.
Many venues have their own in-house microphone, which feeds through the internal speaker system – we recommend this for MC duties and speeches if available.

Do you provide lights?
Our DJ service does not include lighting.
Some bands do come with basic (classy) lighting but if you want flashing lights, strobes and smoke machines, we can help you source this externally.
We have a sensational preferred AV supplier for lights, staging and events or performances that require more substantial AV set ups.
We can manage all these aspects for you if you need.

What does production mean?
Production is the equipment required to amplify your band or DJ’s music.
Speakers, DJ decks, amps and microphones may all be part of the artist’s production.
Production requirements differ for DJs and bands and can also depend on the size of your venue and the number of guests.
Production charges will be clearly communicated to you during the quotation process.

I’ve got quotes from other agencies that are lower than yours. Why?
You’ll find plenty of smaller agencies that will charge you cheaper rates, especially DJ only agencies.
If you are looking for the lowest price in the industry, that’s not us.
If you are looking for the best value for money, that’s where we believe we fit into the marketplace.
In our industry, you will get what you pay for.
If you work with Top Dog, you are choosing:
– A reputable agency
– Experience – from our performers through to our office team
– A very well reviewed agency online
– An agency that is recommended by Melbourne’s most prestigious venues
– An agency that is involved in some of Melbourne’s finest major events

Will You Price Match?
Apples with Oranges – No.
Apples with Apples – Yes.
Confused …?
Many of Melbourne’s most popular artists work for multiple agencies to maximise the amount of work they pick up.
What we guarantee is to beat any competitor agency’s written quote by 10% for the exact same performer, band or DJ for the same enquiry (venue, date, etc).
At Top Dog, we fully support artist opportunities and development, whether it be under our banner or someone else’s.
If you have a written quote for the same artist, we will beat it by 10%, on the condition that:
– The performer(s) are available
– The performer(s) can be released (if on hold with another agency)
We want to work with happy clients who have access to the best artists at the most competitive price.

What should I spend on entertainment?
Ask yourself the following:
– What is most important to you at your event?
– What do you remember about a sensational night out?
– What will your guests remember?
– What do you want them to remember?
At a wedding for example, think of what you spend on other elements – flowers, food, bridal cars etc.
We want to help you make the entertainment a highlight of your wedding and have your guests walking away with sore feet talking about how much fun they had!