Hollister Entertainment | Featured Wedding Vendors of the Capital Region, NY

I first met DJ Chris Hollister of Hollister Entertainment in 2013 when I was hired to photograph a pre-wedding party for a couple whose wedding I shot in Antigua.  I was instantly taken by his genuine kindness and by the way he diligently insured that no special moments occurred during the party or out on the dancefloor unless I was right there, camera in hand, ready to shoot.  It didn’t take me long to learn a few key things about what makes Chris tick: he’s fun-loving; he adores his wife, their two daughters and his dog Milo; he is always one step behind the first person in sight who looks like they might need a hand (I’ve never shot a gig without him offering to carry my bags, help me breakdown my photobooth, or to grab me a coke from the bar to keep my energy level on high); and he knows how to get an entire room full of people on a dancefloor and keep them there all night.

Chris has been DJ’ing weddings for over 25 years and he still loves every minute of it.  In Chris’ words, “It’s the best job in the world, we get to meet such wonderful couples who are in love and want to share a great night with their friends and family.  When you think about it, everyone at a wedding is there to celebrate with the couple; they’re all there to have a good time.  As a DJ I get to harness all that great energy to create a night they will remember for the rest of their lives…It is a wonderful thing!”

How did you get your start in DJing?

I have always loved music; when I was a kid I used to spend all my allowance on 8 track tapes and my mom would yell at me for wasting my money.  Then when I was in 10th grade I started to hang out with my cousin’s fiance who was in a band.  I would go watch them practice for hours.  Then he started taking me along to  help set up when they played at bars.  I was only 15 years old at the time, but no one ever questioned me being there!  After I graduated college the band started playing mostly weddings, and they needed a “sound guy”;  I had nothing better to do and by then I had been hanging around with them for seven or eight years, so they all knew me pretty well.  They knew I was a hard worker and they trusted me.  After a few gigs I started playing “real” music while they took their breaks instead of the Kenny G they were playing.  Pretty soon people were coming up and requesting songs from me and the breaks became longer and longer!  It was then we figured we were on to something; we marketed ourselves as a live band with DJ – the best of both worlds!  After the band broke up for like the 47th time, my cousin’s husband and I started DJ’ing as a team.

What do you think sets your approach to DJing apart from the rest?

One thing I really believe in is meeting my couples in person and really getting to know them.  I feel this results in establishing a real connection with them.  I have really been fortunate, (especially since I went back out on my own as Hollister Entertainment), to have worked with some really amazing couples.  I love creating memorable moments at their weddings; I love looking out from my set up and seeing my couples having a “moment” together.  When it is just them enjoying each other even though they are surrounded by a room full of people.  I tell all of my clients to try to just have a few minutes with each other at some point during the reception; it goes by so fast and everyone wants a piece of them…they need to remember why they are there in the first place!   I am very proud to still keep in touch with many of my clients on Facebook.  I love seeing them buying houses, getting puppies and having babies.  It’s great stuff.

 What do you like most about working in the wedding industry?

The people – without a doubt.  I love working with all the wonderful couples as well as all the great wedding vendors. It’s kind of cool that after working at many of the same venues and with the same vendors weekend after weekend, year after year… we have formed this kind of “family”!  We are working all weekend, away from our families when most everyone else is hanging out at a picnic, a lake or at the racetrack!   But I wouldn’t trade it for anything, I really love working and building friendships with so many great folks in the wedding industry.   I believe that we are blessed to live in an area with so many talented professionals — the makeup and hair artists, banquet managers, servers, cooks, bartenders, florists, bands, DJ’s and especially the photographers.  I’ve always been a photographer “wannabe” and I just am in awe of the talent here in the Capital District area.

 Share a story of the most memorable thing you’ve witnessed during a wedding reception.

 There have been so many crazy things I have seen over the past 25 years.  Usually when we are eating dinner with the other vendors we talk about writing a book when we retire.

I really can’t think of just one thing.  I have had a couple of weddings where someone has had a medical issue during dinner and the paramedics come in wheeling a stretcher right across the dance floor.  Try getting people to get up and dance after that!  Luckily they were ok afterward.

What inspires you?

I am inspired by music. I love all types of music:  classic rock, alternative, jazz, and lately I’m enjoying country music too.

I love meeting people and getting to know them.  As I said before, I really enjoy the people that work in this industry.  There are a lot of really good, talented and hard working folks in the local wedding industry.  It is a hard and sometimes thankless job, but we all take pride in doing our very best to make each event the best it can be, then we break it all down and get ready to do it again the next day.

I guess the other thing that inspires me is the trust that each couple puts in me to make their event great.  Hopefully you only get married once and you want everything to be perfect.  It is something I never take lightly and I am always prepared for anything.

Find, follow, and contact Hollister Entertainment

Website: Hollister Entertainment

FB: DJ Chris Hollister

Instagram: @chrshollister

Twitter:  @chrshollister

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Specializing in Wedding & Lifestyle Photography in New York's Capital Region & Beyond