Advice: Live Band vs. DJ {Never an iPod}

DJ your own wedding with your iPod? Usually not a good idea. Don’t get us wrong, we are all for using DIY components to save money and show off your creative side! But when it comes to your wedding day, there are certain aspects you don’t want to go wrong – like your music because music can make or break your wedding celebration!

When thinking about your ceremony, music is often used to fill in the gaps and to add background secondary to the ceremony itself. However, having a good audio setup with mics, lapels, speakers, etc. is needed to actually hear the ceremony – a professional DJ or Band can provide all of this. On the other hand, when discussing your reception music – there are no limits! You can have as much or as little music as you like. Because of this flexibility many brides-to-be consider DJ-ing their own ceremony and reception with an iPod. Seems easy right? In concept yes, but there are too many opportunities for it to go wrong and it’s not worth the risk.

Just imagine – you made the perfect spotify playlist but now at your wedding you press play and the song cuts in and out because of a weak wifi signal, or your speaker system isn’t actually loud enough to allow a good dance party! You could have these simple technical difficulties that a hired DJ or Musician would be prepared for, ultimately what it comes down to is experience. A professional will know how to prepare, what to bring, how loud it should be, will have backup plans, and will even allow you to make last minute song requests! Sacramento Artist Ryan Hernandez said it best: “You pay for what you get. I love DIY projects but you can’t fake someone who has spent years of time, energy and money into their craft.” Sacramento’s DJ Rufio adds that “There is a lot more to DJing than just their song choices, a big difference between a DJ and a playlist is knowing which songs to play and when.”


{Photographer: Carmen Salazar Photography}

Now the real question – Band or DJ? Don’t dismiss either option because you think a band will automatically be out of your budget or a DJ will be cheesy. There is a perfect option for everyone!

A DJ with a stage presence can really keep your dance party going and help set the mood you want for your wedding! What’s great about a DJ is they can literally play anything you want, any genre, any vibe – just tell them what you envision and they’ll work their magic! Sacramento’s own DJ Rufio has proven to us time and time again that a talented DJ can take a reception to the next level by making song choices in response to the guest’s reactions. When DJ Rufio can tell that a certain song or era of music gets a strong response from the crowd, he tailors his next song choices to their liking, keeping the dance party going strong all night long! DJ Rufio: “ I love sitting down with clients to talk about their musical tastes and songs that are important to them, and I like to make sure that the music on their big day reflects them as a couple, and not just go the safe/cheesy route of the YMCA, Chicken Dance, Macarena and other songs you’ve already heard a million times at other weddings.” In addition to their music, DJs work with your wedding coordinator to keep your event moving and on time. DJ Rufio demonstrates his love of DJing and Weddings by truly getting to know the Bride + Groom, so that by their wedding day it’s like he’s celebrating with old friends with “a front row seat to so many magical moments like a bride’s entrance to the ceremony, hilarious and heartfelt speeches/toasts, and a couple’s first dance as husband + wife.” DJ Rufio’s craft lets you cut loose and rock out on the dance floor – it’s a party and celebration after all!



{Photographer: Gary Sexton}

When thinking about having a live band or musician at your wedding it’s exciting because it’s, well, live! Having great live music will foster energy in your guests – especially if they are interactive with the bridal party and the crowd. You can find a cover band, or one that performs originals, either way be sure that you hear them play before the wedding and that you communicate your wedding vibe. Be sure that you have enough space for a band at your venue and that you stick to your budget because live artists are generally more expensive than a DJ, but not always! After deciding on a Band or Solo Musician be sure to find out all equipment and accessories they need from the venue so you’re not left in a pinch on your wedding day. A huge benefit to hiring a coordinator is that we will communicate to your musicians, to all of your vendors, and to your venue to ensure that everyone has everything they need and are on the same page.


{Photographer: Carmen Salazar Photography}

With live music there are so many options from a full band to a solo musician. After working with Sacramento’s acoustic artist Ryan Hernandez for Maggie + Kyle’s intimate boho-fiesta celebration it was so clear that a live musician can take the event to another level. Getting to hear someone singing just for you emotionally and visually elevates the event! After seeing Ryan in action we could tell that he is really there to make people’s special day something they will remember forever.


{Photographer: LUMI Photography}

If your venue has the space, making a stage for your band is such a fun idea! At Christine + Matt’s wedding JumpStart performed atop a semi truck bed and it was pure magic! Between calling the bridal party up for fun songs and playing all time favorites the night was truly one for the books.


{Photographer: Carmen Salazar Photography}

We know when it comes to music on your wedding day there are so many options, but don’t worry – we will help you every step of the way!

{Design + Coordination: Events By Rebecca}

{DJ: DJ Rufio}

{Acoustic Guitarist: Ryan Hernandez}

{Live Band: JumpStart}

{Article written with love by Events By Rebecca Blogger: Monica Nelson}

{Venue: Beatnik Studios}

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