Band vs. DJ–it’s a common dilemma for couples planning their wedding. And which one you choose can set the tone for your reception, so think carefully before making your final decision. Here are seven tips to help you out.
1. Choose your vibe. While DJs have definitely come a long way since the days of handing out glow sticks and leading the dance line, hiring one usually creates more of a “party” atmosphere, while bands are looked at as more sophisticated (but still fun).
2. Set your budget. When it comes to cost, DJs are definitely better for your budget. Live music will always cost more (unless you’re booking a celebrity DJ) and the more musicians and pieces you have at the wedding, the more it’s going to cost.
3. Consider your space. If you’re getting married in a very small space, you have to determine if you have room for the DJ and all of his equipment. On the same note, a cozy venue will also factor into how many musicians you can have playing the reception.
4. Think about the range of music. A DJ usually has a wider range of music genres on hand to entertain a wide range of guests, while a band might only be comfortable performing certain types of music. The best way to find out is to see any of your potential entertainers in person to see how diverse their repertoire is.
5. Look at your guest list. If the majority of your guests are on the younger side, you’re probably better off going the DJ route; while older family members and your parents’ friends will appreciate live music more.
6. Get to know their personalities. The DJ or the band’s leader will be the emcee for the night, introducing the bridal party, first dance and keeping guests entertained. So you’ll want to meet both to see who’s personality best meets your needs.
7. Hire both? If your budget allows, think about hiring both. You might want small group of live musicians for the ceremony or cocktail hour, then switch to a DJ for the reception.
For more wedding tips, check out mistakes couples make when planning a city wedding and things to consider before having a destination wedding.