Wedding DJ vs. iPod vs. Band

 In Wedding DJ's

Some people these days are leaning towards iPods, iPads, or many other “DIY” formats at their wedding instead of having a professional DJ. I know many reading this might think I’m giving a biased opinion since I make a living being a wedding DJ. I’m not at all.  I just want every bride planning their wedding to carefully consider having an iPod. Most receptions that put trust in a friend with an iPod turn into a disaster of stress.  In fact 8 out of 10 brides say instead of saving money on the music and DJ part of their wedding they would have spent more to assure a great night.

Consider the problems with iPods:

1. Pay for weak misleading programs that help you understand the flow to a great wedding reception…then take the time to read it all and try to understand it in 1-2 months when there’s a ton of other wedding planning going on when most DJs have needed 3 years experience or more to learn what to do correctly.

2. Try to find someone comfortable and confident on the microphone who can make all announcements, and get the party going with all the right things to say. DJs are trained on these things in seminars throughout the winter.

3. Try to find someone steady all night to take a request at a certain time and be able to read the crowd for the right type of song to play depending on the age group on the dance floor. An iPod playlist can’t do that.

4. Somebody wants to hear a song right now! Wait, let me take a break in the action and search through my iPod for a couple minutes with absolutely no music playing to try and find a song I might not have on there. A set playlist CAN NOT READ THE CROWD AT ANY GIVEN TIME.

5. You still have to rent sound equipment and speaker cables. Last time I checked you’re still spending $150-$250 to do this.

6. Somebody has to be around for the set up and take down of all that equipment.

7. You blow a speaker, a cable goes out, the microphone stops working.  Now What?

8. What do you do when there’s guests that want to hear an oldies song and then go from that to the YMCA. The iPod won’t ever be in the right order that people want.

9. And last but not least there are a million stresses and things to do while you are planning a wedding. Let professionals with experience handle the stress of the music. We have thousands of song titles and know HOW TO KEEP PEOPLE INVOLVED ON THE DANCE FLOOR THROUGHOUT THE NIGHT SO YOUR GUESTS DON’T GET BORED AND LEAVE.

10.  And if all this hasn’t convinced you by now then you can definitely YouTube search the many disasters out there of the people that have tried to use these and have a successful wedding.

Now for Bands.

I’m not going to sit here and slander bands.  I’ve been to weddings where they’ve been amazing, but more often then not they end up disappointing the party to some extent.  Why?  There are two main reasons:

1.  Most, and I would say 98% of all bands can only play ONE style of music.  There isn’t any variety with their sets, and after 2 hours they sound the same.  They can’t take requests, and most bands will only play up to 20 songs before needing a break.  DJ’s never take breaks and they can MC the entire night.  Most bands will not act as your MCs.

2.  People like songs they are familiar with and bands just can’t play familiar songs. This is similar to the first problem but remember you will be paying twice as much (around $2500 or more) as you would for a DJ and DJs can play ANYTHING you want.

Also remember this: Bands cancel more often then any other vendor due to the fact they have four or more members most of the time.  We were a part of a wedding in April of 2009 where the Bride and Groom hired us for the reception and a band for the cocktail hour.  The band didn’t show up because the drummer was sick.  Having to rely on that many people can be a gamble.

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Showing 2 comments
  • Laila Keirstead

    If you are planning on having a dance at your reception, you should get a DJ. I think it would make the most sense because then you have access to all the music you want. There aren’t many who do bands as much. I don’t know what I will do for my wedding, but I would like to have a lot of music.

  • Grant Harper

    I am working on getting my wedding planned, and for a while I was just thinking that I could have an iPod hooked up to play the music. However, after reading more about what problems could accompany this, it sounds to me like it would be a good idea to get a DJ. Then I would be able to have someone make announcements and also play music that will work with how the guests are feeling at the moment. This sounds like a really great idea for my wedding. Thanks for the great post!

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