Bet You Never Knew…
Student Spotlight: Ashley Blanks ‘11
By Katie Reilly ’11
Ashley Blanks is known on campus for her roles as Captain of the Varsity Soccer team, volleyball newcomer and piano player in the jazz band, but very few people know about her double-life as an Assistant Deejay. Now, the Govs Blog is shedding light on her unique interest and her insight into the world of music.
Govs Blog: How did you become a deejay?
Ashley Blanks: My piano teacher is my boss and when I was in 8th grade, he offered me a job to work as one of his assistants.
GB: What do you do as a deejay?
AB: I help unload the equipment, set it up, play the music, take requests. But usually I man the CD player and I play the music for the dancing and the formalities, like the father-daughter dance at weddings. Sometimes, I also play the piano for a little while during the cocktail hour.
GB: What’s your favorite type of music to play on the piano?
AB: I like Michael Bublé.
GB: What’s your favorite part about your job?
AB: I get to listen to music all night, which is pretty fun. I like that I can experience different cultures and traditions. (There was once a belly dancer at a Persian wedding.)
I also get to eat really nice meals and take home flower arrangements sometimes.
GB: What types of events do you deejay for?
Weddings, anniversary parties, Bat Mitzvahs, office parties, birthday parties, etc…
GB: How often do you work?
AB: Once or twice a month. It depends on the season. Winter is a quiet season, but there are lots of weddings in the spring and summer.
GB: Do you have any particularly memorable moments?
AB: There was a surprise wedding in Leominster at an Apple Farm. The bride and groom knew they were getting married, but they told the guests that it was an engagement party. The guests were seated at their tables. Then, we started playing the wedding march and the bride started walking to the front of the room in her wedding dress. Everyone was surprised.
Ashley’s insight into song choices at weddings:
During the cake cutting ceremony, 95% of weddings play “How Sweet it is (To Be Loved by you)” by James Taylor
The most common parent-child dance at weddings: “What a Wonderful World” by Louis Armstrong
Now you know.