How to Choose Between a Wedding Band or DJ

Your reception entertainment sets the tone for much for your wedding, so it's paramount that your vendor is a great fit. Weigh the pros and cons of wedding bands and wedding DJs to help you choose between the two.

Wedding Band or Wedding DJ?

To help organize your conflicted thoughts, here’s a quick rundown of the major pros and cons of both wedding bands and wedding DJs.

Pros and Cons of a Live Wedding Band

  • Pro: Unique and memorable. Live bands provide one-of-a-kind experiences. Musicians can exercise spontaneity (lyric changes, solos, mash-ups) to make their performance particularly special for your wedding.

  • Pro: Great for themes. A live band adds a special touch that makes your reception feel truly authentic and enhances your wedding style

  • Pro: Live musicians are skilled at gauging a crowd and knowing when and how to amp up their performance.

  • Con: Less variety. Most bands have a limited repertoire, especially if they’re a cover band or stick to a single style (jazz band).

  • Con: Require more space. It’s a lot of people and a lot of equipment.

  • Con: More expensive. Again, it’s a lot of people and a lot of equipment.

  • Con: Bands require more substantial breaks. This can cause lulls in your reception energy.

​Pros and Cons of a Wedding DJ

  • Pro: DJs can provide much more variety. They simply have access to more music and the ability to change genres quite fluidly.

  • Pro: Less spacious. A single DJ and booth require far less space than a band and instruments.

  • Pro: Fewer breaks needed. If and when a DJ takes a breather, they can keep the energy high by simply lining up a few songs.

  • Pro: Less expensive. By nature, wedding DJs are less expensive than wedding bands thanks to less equipment and fewer people.

  • Con: For those who aren’t interested in dancing, DJs might not be as entertaining and enjoyable.

  • Con: Less personal. Beyond talking into a mic, a DJ can’t alter or personalize their music for the couple.

Ultimately, your reception entertainment is up to you. As you scout options, be sure to ask for live performance viewings, if possible. Go see a potential band play and ask a potential DJ for any recordings of his/her sets. Whether it's a Philadelphia wedding band or Los Angeles wedding DJ, live-action can make all the difference.