By Dan Blankowski
In most states, it feels like any kind of outdoor FUN seems to be against the law.
That’s why I came up with “Front Porch DJ.” It started with me playing upbeat party music for the walkers, runners, bikers and neighbors (I have about 150 people passing the house every day), and now I’m getting inquiries from other neighborhoods about bringing “Front Porch DJ” to their subdivisions for quick (2-3-hour parties). As long as we respect the six-foot guidelines, I’ll be playing party & dance music that’s family-friendly.
I also keep a running monologue between songs that might include bad “Dad Jokes,” and friendly hecking of the neighbors. I told a neighbor with a 60-70-pound dog to “”please get your horse off my lawn!”
My running joke is that my front lawn is about 8,000 sq. ft. (100′ x 80′), and freshly mow the “dance floor” before every party.
I also take requests (posting my special cell phone number at streetside), and reply to every text request with a copy of my virtual business card.
My most popular announcement to everybody is, “Raise your hand if you met a neighbor who you didn’t know before today!”
I consider this the antidote for our Cabin Fever, and I receive text messages and feeedback from neighbors listening from their driveways or front porches over 700′ a nd two streets away (just using a pair of EV Evolve 50s and a Mackie sub.).
Even my elderly neighbors messaged me to say the event was “so uplifting” and enjoyable, and they were the only neighbors who I was worried might complain. The husband came onto his porch next door and I made him lead the first chorus of “YMCA!”
As long as this “quarantine” continues, and the weather cooperates, I’ll continue #FrontPorchDJ — yes, I have a Facebook page for it — every Saturday afternoon/evening.
This is 10000X better than mixing online from my basement, because this is highly interactive — even from 100+ feet away, and people watching and listening could possibly HIRE me in the future, unlike the 10 DJs watching other DJs mix online (I’d probably get bounced by Facebook anyway).
But I post photos and videos, and did a Zoom interview with the Atlanta NBC affiliate (11 Alive – WXIA-TV) which should air this weekend several time. I’ll post a link when it’s aired.
In this crazy time, we all NEED this kind of distraction – “fun” in any form is critical to our survival, and I’m thrilled that I have the equipment and the ability to help people cope.
Oh, and the key to the success of the party is the music programming! They must be upbeat … fun … family-friendly (not “The Bird”), and 99% of the people must KNOW the song to stay engaged! In Georgia, that’s lots of 70s, 80s, and country dance!!
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