Should You Have a Live Band or DJ For My Wedding?

Everyone knows that the music for a wedding or event reception can make or break the celebration. Obviously your choices are either a band or a DJ, but which option is best for your event? When starting the entertainment search for your wedding reception, ask your self a couple of questions such as which suits your personal taste, budget and space allowance. Here are some things to consider when choosing the right entertainment package for your wedding reception.

What To Consider

Vibe – The type of music you pick can set the tone for the entire wedding and solidify a theme if you so choose to have one and its usually the thing most guests remember from your wedding. Think about your personal taste in music and what inspires the ambiance you want to make for your special night. Also consider the way the music is delivered either by a live band or played by a DJ can also affect the atmosphere of your event.

Variety – Regardless of what you choose, be sure that the entertainer has a variety of different songs to use through out the night. Fast and slow songs, new tunes and old to make sure the dance floor is always occupied.

Budget – Price is probably the number one factor that goes into deciding what type of musical entertainment you decide to go with. Typically DJ’s cost less because there are less members and equipment but wedding bands bring something to the table that DJ’s just don’t have and that is musicianship with instruments. It’s something they pride themselves with and make sure will be provided at every event. Band prices vary by the number of musicians, amount of time played, the day of the week and the time of the year. So be sure to discuss this with the band leader when first meeting them.

Space – Once you start looking around for bands for your wedding, be sure to keep in mind of the restrictions your picked venue may have. Some venues have limits on the number of musicians as well as the number of equipment that can be allowed to bring in. In addition, make sure your venue has electrical supply or noise limitations.

Wedding Bands

There is nothing like a live wedding band to get a crowd motivated to dance the night away and create an amazing atmosphere. A good professional band will play master of ceremonies at your reception, interact with the crowd during performances and pays attention to the feel of the room to make sure that each song is played at the right moment. With this interaction, the band is letting everyone at the ceremony feel apart of the performance which will overall enhance the feeling of the night. Anything can happen when you hire a wedding band to keep the night exciting from harmonizing melodies to soulful solo’s in songs, the options are limitless.

Wedding DJ’s

DJ’s are a good option if you are using a limited budget and have little space to use. They typically have less equipment to carry around which is great for saving on venue costs. The advantage with a DJ is the amount of songs that can be played since there are no musicians to learn the songs or parts. Plus the songs will sound exactly as you remember them when you first hear them or on the radio. However, buyer beware when considering a DJ. Many DJ’s like to incorporate improvisations to their acts, but if timed incorrectly could ruin the mood of the night and get people off of the dance floor. If you do decide to go with a DJ make sure you find one with a stellar personality that you will feel comfortable with knowing they will control the mood of the night.


No matter if you choose a wedding band or a wedding DJ, you will want to do a couple of things before ultimately choosing. Make sure you see the DJ or band in question live so you get a feel of how a performance from them will go. How they dress to perform, how they play the music, how they interact with the crowd, everything. Be sure that, for band, when you see a performance or watch a video that you will be getting the exact musicians for your wedding. For both options at entertainment, make sure you ask for referrals from the last few weddings they performed at so you can get a real account of how things really are during a performance. Before you ultimately sign a DJ or band, be sure to negotiate everything with the leader so they know your list of request songs, what not to play as well as any terms the performer(s) may have. That way everything runs as smoothly as possible.

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