DJ vs Live Music – Which is Best for Your Las Vegas Wedding Reception?

Reception Music at Lakeside Weddings and Events - DJ vs Live Band

When planning a gorgeous Las Vegas wedding, there are so many options to choose from in every aspect. One of the most important things that will set the tone for your wedding is the music that is played throughout the day. A question that brides and grooms often ask is: should we have a DJ vs live music at our wedding? This post will help break down all of the pros and cons of both options so that you can decide if a DJ or live music will be right for your perfect Las Vegas wedding.

Pros of Choosing a DJ for Your Las Vegas Wedding Music

The following is a list of the best reasons to go with a DJ for your wedding. DJs have unique benefits that may better fit what you’re looking for depending on the mood you have in mind for your Las Vegas wedding. Here are some things to consider when deciding between a DJ or live music for your big day:

Using a DJ at Your Reception Provides You with an Extensive Song Repertoire

When trying to decide between a DJ or live music, remember that DJs have access to almost every song imaginable. If you want a mixture of different genres for your big day, a DJ will be able to deliver this. Having a DJ for your wedding keeps the dancing during the reception going, and is a favorite for many wedding guests. If you want a slow classical song to be immediately followed by your favorite pop song, a DJ will be able to deliver that and everything in between.

A Las Vegas Wedding DJ is Usually Less Expensive than a Live Band

Looking to save a bit of change during the wedding planning process? Opt for a DJ instead of a live band. A DJ offers all of the song options that a live band offers, for a fraction of the price. This is one area of wedding planning that can save you a decent amount of money if you’re trying to cut costs and stay within a fixed wedding budget.

Experienced DJs Know the Best Hits to Play at Your Wedding Reception

There’s nothing better than a dance floor full of guests who, song after song, don’t want to leave. The right DJ can make this happen, and make a night that you and your guests will always remember. The dancing is often guests’ favorite part of your big day, and dancing the night away to classic favorites is a great way to end your wedding. A good DJ knows the most current hits as well as the classics from the past. They will work with you to curate a perfect playlist for your reception.

A Wedding DJ Keeps the Party Going with Great Song Transitions

The best wedding DJs know how to transition seamlessly between songs so that there is no awkward waiting time. They know which songs transition into each other best, and they know when they’ll need to let the guests know that the tempo is about to change. They can usher the guests into a slow dance seamlessly, and they also know when to get the party started with fast songs that get people on their feet. This makes a huge difference in the flow of your reception, and a good DJ knows how to keep it flowing.

Cons of Choosing a DJ for Your Las Vegas Wedding Music

Having the right music at your wedding can make-or-break your reception. When choosing between a DJ or live music, make sure that you’re aware of the following points:

A Wedding DJ Can Make or Break the Reception

If a DJ is inexperienced, it can mean the difference between a lively dance floor and an empty one. Here are a few things that you may want to keep an eye out for when looking through their reviews:

    • When a DJ doesn’t have good transitions, moments between songs can be choppy and awkward.
    • If they don’t know the best hits, they may not pick songs that guests feel like dancing to.
    • They might try to talk into the mic too much and break up the dancing.
    • An inexperienced DJ may not know how to properly coordinate the wedding party announcements as they enter the room.

All this to say, make sure that you know your DJ has lots of happy clients before you hire them for your Las Vegas wedding reception. One of the best ways to determine if the DJ you are considering will do an outstanding job, is seeking out references and online reviews.

A Wedding DJ May Take Requests That Your Not Fond of

A DJ’s job is to make you and your guests happy. If a guest comes up and requests something that may not be your style, your DJ can’t exactly stop to ask you if it’s okay. An inexperienced DJ may not be able to field through the requests to decide what they think you will like or dislike. Make sure to go over your “no list” with your DJ so that they’re aware of any songs that you do not want to play on your big day.

Pros of Choosing Live Music for your Las Vegas Wedding Reception

Depending on the vibe that you’re looking to create at your Las Vegas wedding, a live band may be exactly what you need. A live band creates a specific atmosphere that may be absolutely perfect for your wedding. Here are some pros of a live wedding band to consider when choosing between a DJ or live music:

Easily Create an Upscale Atmosphere for Your Reception with a Live Band

Having a live band at your wedding can create a level of elegance and excitement that is unique to live music. Something about having an actual band serenading you and your guests is just magical and can make your wedding all the more memorable. A live band can create the perfect mood for your wedding throughout the entire event.

A Live Las Vegas Wedding Band is Perfect for Creating a Theme

If you have a specific mood or theme in mind for your big day, a live band is excellent for accompanying that theme. Want a certain era of jazz to be the mood for your setlist? A live band can adjust the songs you’ve picked accordingly. Looking for a great salsa band to keep your guests dancing on and on? There are plenty of fantastic salsa bands to play at your wedding. Having a live band to create the ideal mood is unique and exciting to guests.

Provide a Performance for Your Wedding Reception Guests with a Live Band

Some guests just don’t want to dance, no matter what songs are playing. Others may have been dancing the night away, and need to take a breath. Having a live band means dinner and a show. Your guests can sit down and watch the magic of live music unfold in front of them, whether they’re eating, taking a break, or just enjoying the atmosphere. A live band creates a performance that your guests will be wrapped up in, whether they’re dancing or not.

A Live Wedding Band is More Interactive During Your Las Vegas Reception

Musicians and vocalists are comfortable onstage, and this can make a huge difference in how the flow of the evening progresses. They know how to organically interact with the crowd, making it easy for them to announce the couple, transition between different reception events, and talk to the guests. Some of the most magical, fun, and exciting moments can happen when a live band is creating music for the people in the room, and guests can sense this excitement.

Cons of Choosing Live Music for Your Las Vegas Wedding Reception

There are certain drawbacks to having live music at your wedding. If any of the following issues are a big deal to you, live music may not be the right option for your Las Vegas wedding:

A Live Wedding Band Will Not Have as Much Song Variety

Even if your band is versatile and can play a lot of different genres, they will not be able to match the song repertoire of a DJ. A DJ can pull from hundreds of thousands of songs, while a band will only be able to play the songs they know and have rehearsed. If you are a bride or groom who has an eclectic taste in music spanning multiple genres, a live band may not be able to deliver your perfect playlist.

Setting Up a Live Band at a Las Vegas Wedding Venue Requires a Lot of Space

Depending on your Las Vegas venue, a live wedding band may not work for your wedding if there’s not enough space. A full band takes up a lot of room with all of the equipment they need to play, and some locations simply cannot accommodate this. The setup itself is also something to consider, as it can take a lot of time. If you only have access to your venue for a small portion of the day, your band may not be able to get set up and perform a soundcheck in time.

Your Wedding Costs Can be Higher with a Live Band

The cost of a live band for your Las Vegas wedding is typically higher than the cost of a DJ. Each member of the band has to be paid, and transport and setup/teardown of equipment is factored into the price as well. All of this can combine to be a lot steeper than a DJ, depending on the band. The cost of your Las Vegas wedding may end up costing you more with a live band than a DJ.

More Things To Consider When Choosing a DJ vs Live Music for Your Vegas Wedding:

Here are some additional things to think about when deciding between a live wedding band or a DJ for your Las Vegas wedding:

  • Live bands may fill large spaces better than DJs, and DJs may be better for smaller wedding venues. This is common with large weddings that include big venues.
  • Live wedding bands need regular breaks throughout the night, while a DJ usually doesn’t need a break.
  • Both live bands and DJs should be able to sense the room. They should know when to adjust the tempo according to your guests during your wedding reception.
  • Make sure to see your wedding band live before you hire them so that you can get a feel for how they perform.
  • DJs will be able to play your favorite songs by the original artists. Live bands may play in a slightly different style than the original, giving them a unique sound.
  • Different wedding reception venues have different volume limitations. It’s always a good idea to check with your location before you decide on a DJ vs live music for your Las Vegas wedding.

Common Questions About Choosing Between a DJ vs Live Music for You Las Vegas Wedding

Since you most likely don’t have any experience with this topic, it can be confusing as to which would be best for your wedding reception. With this in mind, to give you more insight into the subject of choosing music for your Las Vegas wedding, here are a few questions that couples often ask:

1. Will my DJ/live band be the emcee for my reception?

Most of the time, your DJ or live band will be the emcee for your reception. You provide an order of service ahead of time, and they’re aware of when to give their cues. They’ll announce the bridal party and newlyweds to guests, excuse tables to get dinner, and make general announcements throughout the night. They’ll also announce the father-daughter dance, mother-son dance, the couple’s first dance, etc.

2. How much does a wedding DJ cost?

DJ pricing can vary depending on experience, equipment, and time booked. A wedding DJ usually costs around $700-$1,500, with more expensive options available. Working with a venue that already has a list of DJs that they trust is a good place to start. Venues sometimes offer competitive rates for working within their choices of wedding staffing. At Lakeside Weddings & Events, for example, they have experienced DJs that are part of their Las Vegas wedding packages.

3. How much does a live wedding band cost?

A live band will usually be quite a bit more expensive than a DJ. The cost of live music depends on how big of a band you’re looking to hire for your wedding. There are smaller bands that can run about $3,000, while larger bands and more sought-after bands can be up to $10,000. This can be a significant increase in wedding pricing if you’re working with a limited budget.

Las Vegas Wedding Resources and Tips

When it comes to planning a Las Vegas wedding, most brides and grooms will agree that they will accept all the help they can get! With that in mind, here are a few resources that can place you on the path to planning the perfect wedding day:

Let Us Help You Plan Your Las Vegas Dream Wedding!

At Lakeside Weddings & Events, we understand how stressful and complicated planning a wedding can be. Our goal is to help you narrow down your options, and figure out what’s right for your big day. We hope this post simplified choosing whether to use a DJ vs live music for your Las Vegas dream wedding. We’d love to help make every decision as easy as this one so you can focus on the fun stuff. Check out our wedding packages to find bundles that take care of everything!

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