I originally thought I won’t have a DJ and just have a playlist going that a friend volunteered to control throughout the reception. I also have a friend that plays the harp that said she’d play it for the ceremony. But now I’m worried it’ll be too boring without a DJ. I haven’t been to a lot of weddings and don’t know what a DJ really brings to the table? It’s a good chunk of money. Is it worth it? Thanks!
We ultimately decided on a DJ and luckily found one for a really great price on thumbtack. I find myself still questioning it because a lot of our guests are older and won’t necessarily be breaking down on the dance floor lol. But I really wanted it to be like a super fun party for everyone and I feel like a DJ is essential to create that environment!
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Completely agree with this. If you want to party, definitely have a DJ. If they're good, they know how to mix up the songs to keep everyone on the dance floor. Plus they MC throughout the night which is helpful and more fun.
Hi! So we had similar thoughts when we were deciding as well. I think what a DJ brings to the table is not only that they MC and make introductions as well as let guests know when it’s time for certain things like toasts, cake cutting, etc but they can keep the party going .. we ultimately decided to go with one after we talked with our bc he’s there to read the room, say we have a slow song come on and people are in an upbeat dancing kind of mood then most people will clear the floor. A dj is there to read the room, and can mix into a new song if they feel the current one isn’t of interest to people in the moment. I also like the idea he will mix the songs so ultimately we can get more songs out of the night rather than letting each one play out till the end.
It's your wedding, so whatever you think will be best for your venue, guest count, and personal taste. Due to covid, we had 14 guests so we didn't have a DJ just because it was very low-key. My husband LOVES music and really enjoyed making a playlist of wedding-related songs from the 70s, 80s, 90s, and also played more current songs. You can make a few different playlists if you want: preceremony classical music, dinner music, and dancing music for after the food. When it came time for certain events, I just spoke up and told everyone it was time for us to cut the cake or have the Father/Daughter Dance. But I think the bigger the wedding, the more people expect a DJ.
It depends on the kind of reception you are having. Just a dinner party? Maybe just go with a playlist. But if you're planning on having dances, formalities, etc. then a DJ is invaluable.
I haven't been to a wedding without a DJ. But I have been to more than one wedding without a professional DJ ("my friend is going to DJ!") and I have honestly never seen it work out well. There is much more to wedding DJing than just playing music. There is a performance/entertainer aspect to it. And I have watched many a "DJ friend" clam up and awkwardly sputter through announcements and formalities, or just not even announce anything at all so everyone just stood around weirdly.
Of course, there is also the consideration of equipment. A professional will typically have good equipment, and typically better than what the average person has available to them.
Again, this depends entirely on your reception style.
We won't be having a DJ, but there were quite a few things that went into that decision.
1. It's just really not in the budget, so it honestly wasn't an option on the table to begin with. But also...
2. Our venue/event coordinator is also our MC, so we didn't need a DJ for that aspect of it.
3. I DJ for many of our local dance scenes (lindy hop, blues dancing, line dancing, ballroom, salsa, west coast swing, etc.) and have been doing so for about 10 years now. I can pretty easily make a playlist for every single one of those venues that will allow me to just press play and then I can go out and dance as well with the floor staying packed. Obviously every night is different and a change needs to be made here and there, but those times are honestly the exception.
4. Most of our guests who will dance at all fall into one of two distinct dance categories: 1) Throw on something they can line dance/west coast swing/salsa/blues dance to and they will immediately get their butts to the dance floor, or 2) Play pretty much anything you typically hear at either a wedding or a club and they'll get their butts on the dance floor. Everyone who won't go dance falls into the 3rd category: People I wouldn't ever expect to see dancing anyway. That makes the whole "making a playlist" thing super easy for me.
5. There are a few songs I absolutely don't want to hear at my wedding, and making a playlist means I don't have to worry about anyone fielding song requests that I don't care for. You super super want to hear WAP? Sorry bro, playlist is made and that's not on it.
6. The venue isn't super huge, and this means that we won't have extra space taken up by a DJ. I just have to plug whatever into their sound system and press play.
7. That's one less vendor I have to coordinate things with.
And so on and so forth... BUT! If you don't have that background of having been a DJ and really want to get people out on the dance floor or don't have an MC or whatever, hiring a DJ can definitely take a load of stress off. If you're not having dancing or that's not a huge focus and you're more just looking for some background music, I'd say save the money and make a playlist.
We hired a DJ to keep the flow of the evening moving. We wanted to make sure there was someone to play particular songs for certain moments, take requests from guests that are dancing, and to let people know when it was time to move from the ceremony patio, to inside the house for cocktail hour, and then into the reception tent for dinner/dancing and then to let people know that the evening is over! Our DJ also says he reads the room and picks up on the vibe to change the music if people are wanting chill music to eat dinner to and then more upbeat music when drinks are flowing and people are wanting to dance.