Post # 1
Fiance and I have hired a live band to play our reception, starting after dinner and the first dances, and we are so excited. We’re going with an Irish-American punk/rock band. So they’ll start playing around 8:15 and go until 11:30. That’s about 3-4 sets, so a max of 3 breaks (probably up to 15 minutes each).
We’re going to hire a DJ to do the ceremony, cocktail hour, and dinner and first dances. Finding someone willing to do this is not an issue, and we’ve already received a few quotes.
Our question is this: If this were your wedding, would you pay for the DJ to stay and play the band’s breaks? Or would you just plug in a playlist for the breaks? (Our band has confirmed we can go with either option.) To have a DJ hanging around an extra 3-3.5 hours is going to cost us at least another $400-$600 on top of their price for the ceremony and early reception hours. Frankly I’m not sure it’s worth it to pay that amount for what’s going to amount to an additional 45 minutes of DJ-ing (the MC aspect is also not a huge deal to me, as by the time the band starts up the only announcements left will be cake cutting and bouquet toss, and there are ways to make those announcements that don’t cost $400).
The argument on the other side is, a DJ could “keep the party going.” This, of course, is the comment typically made by DJ’s who want me to book them for more hours. But it’s a valid point. However, we’re not really going for the typical wedding dance club vibe, so a big part of me is very “meh” about this. I sort of like the idea that the band will play, take a break, and everyone can get another drink and chill out and mingle until the next set starts. More pub than club, I guess.
But I’d love to hear opinions from people other than myself/FI and prospective DJ’s. How would you feel about these alternatives as a wedding guest? Have any of you hired a live band, and what is you do for the breaks? What worked and what didn’t?
Post # 2
I’d just do a playlist- I love live music so I actually like having a lower key break- you can run to the washroom, grab a drink, cool off, etc, without feeling like you’re missing the party.
Post # 3
Definitely just plug in an iPod, and make sure you have a “bouncer” friend nearby to make sure no one tries to change the song! All you need when the band takes a break is a little bit of background noise; no need to hire a DJ to keep partying. People will probably appreciate the break.
Post # 4
We had a live band and DJ.
The band performed 45 minute sets and went on breaks for 15 minutes…which was when the DJ came on.
We had the band from 5pm – 12am and the DJ took over afterwards. They came from the same production company and were both part of our package.
Post # 5
“Irish-American punk/rock band”
Can I come?
Post # 6
ClaudiaKishi : heyoh : I feel you guys are on a similar wavelength as me! I’m someone who appreciates the breaks, too. I’m glad to know others feel the same way. And there are plenty of people who really don’t like to dance at weddings, so I also dislike the idea that there needs to be this pressure to keep everyone dancing at all times or your wedding will just be a huge drag.
Souzie : That’s great you were able to get them through the same company!
hhamilton : Heck yeah! 😉
Post # 7
- Wedding: The Retreat at Bradley\'s Pond
I would check with the band first, but usually they have their own “house music” they play for in between sets… therefore you wouldn’t need a DJ/iPod for that reason. Usually…but not always! It’s worth asking.
I’d skip the DJ in it’s entirety as you’ve already spelled out that you don’t need a master of ceremonies- just someone to announce it’s cake time, etc.
And like others… can I come? SOunds like fun!
Post # 8
- Wedding: August 2016 - Galleria Marchetti
We also had a DJ in addition to our band, but she was part of the band. She took her breaks while the band was playing and then vice versa. She really didn’t play that much as it was really only while people were eating that the band took their breaks. We did a NY style reception with dancing between courses. So the evening was broken up a little bit.
For your situation I think an iPod will be fine for the breaks, especially if you are eating. If you are hoping to be dancing while they are taking their breaks then you might want to consider the DJ. I think it has more to do with your timeline than anything else.
Post # 9
tallahasseelassie : Good point about the house music, I’ll check! And I see what you mean about skipping a DJ entirely. We did consider that – just putting together playlists ourselves for the ceremony and cocktail/dinner hours, but for a couple reasons decided to pursue a DJ for those parts. First, the venue doesn’t have a sound system, so we’d have to get one somewhere, and don’t want to ask the band to set up like 4 hours before they’re actually going to play. And then there’s just the peace of mind aspect, knowing someone professional is manning the music. But the nice thing is, since our DJ needs are pretty low-maintenance, we can get someone really cheap, not spend $1000-$2000 on the “best” DJ who can “read the crowd” and whatever reasons they cost so damn much. 😄
mrsblanco827 : That’s cool your band and DJ came together! I talked to one DJ here who also had a band and does something like that.
Thanks for the input, everyone!
Post # 10
We’re having a band who blew the budget so are having to use their preloaded playlists in between the two sets and for the last hour. Sure it’ll be fine but I’m a bit disappointed there won’t be adaptability and I really want 2 songs played last on the night so I’m worried if the timings are off I won’t get them! Haven’t spoken to them yet about this though so may all be fine!
Post # 11
I recommend that you download Serato Pyro on a IOS Phone or Ipad it will sync up with your Spotify Premium account and it will beat mix and transition your playlist nicely for you. The only possible cost you would have by doing this is for paying the small fee for Spotify premium.
Post # 12
eventheadproductionsllc : Oh, cool! Thanks for the tip. I don’t have Spotify but will look into it!