Dance Floor Dilemma: Bands vs. DJs

For every step in wedding planning, there are big decisions to be made – Do you need a videographer? How many bridesmaids is too many? Do you need a veil or should you go without? And the list goes on and on…

Choosing the means for enjoying music throughout your reception is no different, and the question becomes: Which is better – a DJ or a live band?

Don’t worry, though. As always, we’re breaking everything down for you so you can be confident with whichever you decide! 

Team Band

Before getting into the details of whether you should have a band perform at your reception, first make sure that your venue has the space for a band. If not, you saved yourself some time and already know your answer!

If your venue does have the space for a live band, your next step is going to be determining if your budget allows for a band. 

Bands are usually a bit more expensive than a DJ since you’re paying for each of the performers’ time. That includes their time at the reception as well as setting up, transporting their instruments to and from the venue, etc. 

If there are a few bands you would like to have perform at your reception, make sure to look up their websites or contact them for their prices so you know you are estimating properly. 

If hiring a band is within your budget, you’ll want to be sure that they’re going to fit into how you picture your wedding reception looking, so here are a few questions to ask yourself before you finalize your decision to go with a band: 

Are you looking for a high-energy dance floor experience, similar to that of a live concert? 

Bands are perfect for creating a memorable experience for your guests as they can change or even mashup songs to fit your wedding! 

Remember though, that just like at concerts, the performers will require a break or two throughout the night to hydrate and recharge. During those breaks, recorded songs are likely to play during so the energy on the dance floor doesn’t die down. 

Does your taste in music align with the band you are thinking of hiring?

Bands typically have a set list of songs and a specific genre that they will play for weddings. While they may be open to learning a specific song or two for your wedding specifically, their music selection is going to be pretty set before you hire them. So if you’re looking for a more customized experience, hiring a band may not be the choice for you. 

Is your guest list approaching the maximum for your venue?

A band will take up more space than a DJ, so if your guest list is already looking pretty full, you may not have enough space to fit a band and all of your guests comfortably. Make sure to talk to your venue because they may be able to offer some options of how to fit everyone! 

Lastly, have you seen the band you’re considering hiring play live before?

Our absolute biggest tip is going to see the band you’re considering before you hire them. This will give you a good indication of what you can expect if they were to play for your big day! 

Still unsure if a band is the right fit for you? We’ve got you covered.  

Team DJ

Similarly to bands, DJs have their pros and cons but can absolutely be the right fit for you depending on what you are envisioning. 

Since DJs usually have much less equipment and set up involved than live bands, they are typically much more budget-friendly!

DJs can also provide you with a wider range of music selection since they have access to thousands of songs in their libraries and can change genres with the touch of a button. 

This also means that you can more easily customize the specific music played throughout your reception and can even provide the DJ with a list of songs that absolutely must be played throughout the night or songs that you would prefer not to hear at all. 

DJs also take up less space – meaning there is more room for dancing or other decor you may want to include in your reception venue!

The biggest aspect to consider when making the decision is whether your guests are going to pack the dance floor or are more likely to sit back and enjoy entertainment. 

If your family and friends are the kind to boogie the night away, a DJ may be the perfect fit. On the other hand, a band typically helps entertain each and every guest, even those who aren’t wearing their dancing shoes that night. 

Whichever you decide, there is no wrong answer. No matter what, we know you’ll be dancing the night away! 

We’ll be back soon with more, but for now, visit for more information on how we can make your dream wedding a reality!

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