Why hire a professional DJ for your wedding!
Written by VCI Audio for The Idaho Wedding Magazine a publication of Idaho Free Press for The Idaho Wedding Show
I’ve consistently heard one word from couples when asked to describe their own wedding reception: Party!
Regardless of the decor, the location, the number of guests, or their budget, brides and grooms want their family and friends to have a great time at their reception. The best things you take away from your wedding day are the memories. “Best wedding ever!” is what people want to remember when looking back at those memories.
81% of guests say the thing they remember most about a wedding is the entertainment.
During wedding planning, most brides say that entertainment is among the least of their priorities. However, after their wedding, most brides admit that they would have spent more time choosing, and more of their budget on the entertainment.
You may have several choices when it comes to entertainment:
Use an iPod
Have a friend or relative take care of the music
Hire a band
Hire a professional DJ service
Let’s review each of these options:
Using an iPod or Smart Phone as your music source, may be the least expensive option to have music at your wedding. However, spending hours putting together your perfect 4 hour playlist, the week before your wedding may be more of a challenge than you think when your to-do list is a mile long. It’s also impossible to judge the correct sequence and timing for songs prior to the event.
In addition, you need to consider the technical aspects (renting equipment, connecting to the house system, sound quality and volume, etc.). You will need to assign a friend or family member the job of setting up and monitoring the play list throughout the night. Press play for the ceremony and each of the formal dances. Can you imagine coming down the aisle or cuing the wrong song for your first dance? Or do you really think Grandma is going to love hearing “Hotline Bling” during dinner or have “Hello” come on when everyone is on the dance floor?
Friend / Relative
All of us have a friend who has dabbled in music. They may have sang karaoke, or DJ’d in a bar. This may seem to be an attractive way to save money since they are usually willing to do it for much less than a professional.
They may have good taste in the type of songs they personally listen to, however their music collection may not include songs your guests are familiar with, and they may have a difficult time reading the crowd and adjusting the playlist accordingly. Most assuredly, they are usually unfamiliar with wedding etiquette, the flow of formalities and making announcements.
Technical difficulties can also occur due to unfamiliar equipment and can result in poor quality sound or no sound at all.
Finally, be cautious with these “buddies” as no contractual obligation may lead to a last-minute no-show.
There are many fantastic bands and musicians in the Northwest! I am a huge fan of live music! But you should decide if you love the band enough to listen to them at your wedding, and find out if they fit into your budget.
One challenge with hiring a band is their limited repertoire of music. Most bands know a limited number of songs, and most specialize in a particular genre of music - Rock, Country, etc. If you hire a band, their goal is to perform their music and hope you and your guests like it enough to dance. They do not change their song list or style of music to accommodate your guests’ musical tastes.
The one thing a band can do exceptionally well is “perform”. Nothing beats the energy of a half-dozen musicians on stage. Not all bands do this, but the ones who do are exceptionally enjoyable to watch, listen, and dance to!
All bands take breaks and because most bands are used to playing in clubs, they are often poor at being the MC and making announcements. If you do choose to hire a band, you should consider hiring a professional MC and/or wedding coordinator.
It takes more than just a computer, speakers and a microphone to be a professional DJ and the most crucial qualities are invisible to the naked eye. A truly great DJ, just for a moment, can make a whole room fall in love. Because DJ’ing is not just about choosing a few tunes. It’s about generating shared moods; it’s about understanding the feelings of a group of people and directing them to a better place.
A professional DJ service is has a registered business, is insured, and will have a contract that outlines your agreement. They will own and know how to operate professional sound and lighting equipment and have staff that is properly trained and devoted to the success of your wedding.
A professional DJ will meet with you prior to the wedding to understand your vision, and make recommendations of how to bring that vision to life. He will be familiar with your wedding location and recommend proper equipment usage and placement. His experience and knowledge will help with the planning process, and his creativity will help make your wedding day unique and fun. He will also find out what type of music you and your guests will enjoy, and any specific song choices you’ve made.
On your wedding day, the DJ will arrive early to setup and handle any challenges that may arise. Appropriate music is played (think Sinatra and Buble’ during dinner and Michael Jackson and Pitbull later in the night). Clear announcements are made throughout the night and the transitions between formalities are smooth and seamless. The positive energy in the room will gradually increase and as dancing begins and keeps the dance floor full all night! Different kinds of songs are played to satisfy every musical taste.
You wanted your wedding reception to be a party and you and your guests to have fond memories of your wedding day. Mission Accomplished!