Jeff McCune with Forerunner Entertainment enjoys a cup of hot green tea now and again. Green tea is known to boost the brain and heart. Coincidentally, you know what else is GREAT for the mind and cardio health? Tearing up the dance floor. Jeff is truly a master in the art of the wedding reception, which is why Christen Westcott asked him to join us for this month’s edition of The Wedding Tea.
The Wedding Tea: Hot Green Tea and Hotter Dance Floors with Forerunner Entertainment
Christen: Mr. Jeff McCune of Forerunner Entertainment! First question is – how do you take your tea?
Jeff: I love green tea, it is my ultimate favorite. But if I’m on-the-go, I’m getting Peace Tea.
C: How did you come up with the name Forerunner Entertainment?
J: I’m a huge nerd and I love video games. Forerunner came from the game Halo! In high school, me and my buddies would hook up our XBoxes and put our TV’s back-to-back every weekend to play.
C: Wooooow! 😉
J: But, when you look up the term Forerunner, it means the pioneer, the leader of the pack! I like to do things that are outside of the box, that people aren’t used to seeing. I’m a DJ, but I also offer motion monograms on the dance floor, a retro photo booth, and more.
C: Have you ever had a couple that realized that the name was related to Halo?
J: Yes! Every so often, usually the groom, will kind of put it together and ask if the name is related to Halo!
Spilling the wedding tea: A good dance floor versus a GREAT dance floor
C: What are some of the telltale signs of a DJ who really knows what he or she is doing?
J: Anybody can give me a playlist that they’d be stoked about hearing. That’s the easy part of this job. However, I think the MC’ing portion is where you can separate the good from the great. You don’t want someone who sounds like a robot, or someone who is a real cheese ball. You want someone who is clear, natural, and just sounds like one of your friends. Additionally, I’m also paying attention to how a DJ is mixing the music. Are they blending music? Creating mashups on the fly? Or are they just fading songs out?
C: What makes you come home from a wedding reception and you say to yourself, “that was really fun!”
J: Personally, what I get pumped about is customization. I have an online portal that I provide to couples that serves as their “wedding toolbox” where they can pinpoint a song(s) that their specific crowd will really lose their mind over! I can certainly show up, play Sweet Caroline and everyone will have fun, but I get excited whenever we can really customize their experience!
Spilling the wedding tea: Forerunner favorites
C: If you could build your own wedding venue, what would that space look like and why?
J: First, in a lot of spaces, they kind of shove the DJ into any available corner in the room. If I were designing my own space, the dance floor needs to be near the DJ! Secondly, a lot of times in a layout the sweetheart table is front and center, and it kind of usurps the placement of the dance floor. However, the couple really only sits there for about 20 minutes, and that’s a bit of a sacrifice. Lastly, if I were building my own venue, I’d have the walls wired up so there are speakers all throughout the room. There’s nothing worse than having to really max out the speakers from only one corner of the room.
C: What is a high compliment for a client to pay you?
J: I’m going to sound so vain…but I love when people compliment me on my voice! No one likes when a DJ talks too fast or is monotone. I take pride in enunciating and engaging the crowd. I’ve taken vocal courses and tried to really educate myself on cadence. Anytime someone says that they appreciate that they could understand what I was saying, my head inflates like 6 times the size!
If a picture paints a thousand words, I want to show people who are smiling, a little sweaty, and a lot happy.
Spilling the wedding tea: Forerunner rituals
C: You have a unique Instagram ritual of taking a selfie with every couple. How did that start?
J: I love reading all kinds of business books, and one of the things that stuck with me is building a story brand. If a picture paints a thousand words, I want to show people who are smiling, a little sweaty, and a lot happy. My clients get really excited about it, and they remind me that we need to take the selfie! It’s become a culture within my business.
C: If you could choose one song to play every time you walked into a room for the rest of your life, what song would you choose and why?
J: I actually have one other ritual, and I love when people pick up on this one. After I get done setting up all of my gear for my sound check, I play the Back to the Future theme song. I crank that song and I walk around the room to check the acoustics. I have to do it every single time. It’s fun when people perk up their ears and they’re like, “heyyy, that’s Back to the Future!”