Ask Kevin- DJ or Band?

May 29, 2013

Ask Kevin

Hello Kevin,

I am having a hard time deciding between a DJ or band. There are so many things to consider! Do you have any insight on the topic?


Kelly from Walnut Creek, California

Hi Kelly!

That’s a great question! There are few things you want to think about when you’re hiring the music for your wedding. The first item on everyone’s mind is usually cost, so let’s break down the numbers. A good party band will cost you anywhere between $6,000-$12,000 while a DJ would start at $1,150. You have to consider that a DJ is just one person, while a band consists of multiple members, and each band member needs to get paid. Also, you need to remember that each member of the band needs to be included in the vendor meal headcount, which is more money out the door.

If cost is not an issue, think about your venue. DJs take up much less space than a full band will, as a band needs space for all of their instruments, equipment, and band members. If your venue is small, a band may not fit, or they will make the space seem cramped. Another thing to consider when it comes to your venue is how much electricity it is able to accommodate. A DJ system uses much less electricity than a full band, so it’s important to keep in mind the constraints of your venue when deciding between a live band or a DJ.


The next thing to consider is the atmosphere you are trying to create at your wedding. There’s nothing like a live band to pump up your guests! ¬†However, a band can’t match the variety that a DJ can bring. Feel like listening to some Diana Ross, Britney Spears, and Garth Brooks? A DJ can play any artist you desire and the songs will sound exactly like you know them. .

There is also going to be a little bit more uncertainty when booking a band. To really get an idea of how a band interacts with it’s audience, you have to see them perform live, because simply listening to audio tracks won’t give you any idea of how they would behave at a live show. However, the same is not true with a DJ. While it is important to see how a live band will interact with a crowd, it’s more important when it comes to DJs to know how they interact with you on a personal level. Here at Fantasy Sound, our philosophy is that it’s more important to find a DJ that connects with you on a personal level. That is why we host monthly DJ Meet and Greets to give our couples a chance to meet all of our DJs to give them a sense of which DJ they mesh the best with.


Finally, the last thing you need to think about is that most bands don’t play weddings full time. However, there are many DJs that do wedding exclusively and have years of experience. You’re not only able to have them play music at your wedding, but you’re also able to utilize their MC services and benefit from their past experiences (and mistakes) for everything from music selection to keeping your bridal party on track on your wedding day.

My personal preference is to hire a DJ. They’re much more cost efficient, more likely to be able to work at your venue, and a good wedding DJ can actually help you in your wedding planning process, as opposed to adding to your already long to-do list.

Thanks so much for your question Kelly!