Aside from choosing your wedding venue and selecting stylish décor, picking the right music for your wedding completely sets the tone for your reception. Are you and your hubby-to-be party animals? You'll want a DJ to bust out his or her best jams and keep every up out of their seats. Looking to throw a low-key, intimate sit down dinner? A great band crooning smooth tunes is just the ticket. Here, two wedding planners point out the pros of both options.
Book a DJ:
The great thing about hiring a DJ is that they're versatile—you can switch the tone and song list throughout the night. "Book a DJ if you want Sinatra during dinner and Top 40 for dancing—and to save a lot of money," says Lauren Geissler of Downey Street Events. "Pick a DJ who meshes with your style. Is he an energetic emcee or the silent type? Can he build a playlist from a few suggestions, or does he need a full handpicked list?" DJs are also known to bring party favors, such as playful lights and accessories, so make sure you're okay with a club-like vibe on the dance floor.
Go for a band:
"If your main priority is a jam-packed dance floor, nothing gets the crowd energized like live musicians," says Calder Clark of Calder Clark Designs. "If you're on a tight budget, hire a local act, like a bluegrass band, and limit the reception to four hours—that will give you a strong three-hour dance set." Also consider, if you do hire a wedding band, will they rally the crowd as much as your favorite DJ would? And while a more budget-conscious band might not be as versatile, some songs do sound best in their original form ("Livin' on a Prayer" live? Yes, please!).
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