When newly engaged couples sit down to create their wedding checklist, entertainment is usually a decision as big as nailing down a date and finding the perfect venue. In the quest for finding musical entertainment for your wedding, most couples’ goals are the same: to find somebody who can make your wedding an absolutely unforgettable experience from the ceremony to last call. When it comes to wedding music, what have you always wanted or envisioned for your night?
Keep reading for some insight from today’s contributor, Adam of Adam Smith Music Services.
You can also see some more DJs and bands in my 22 Best Wedding Vendors in DC post!
One question all couples face in the decision-making process is a question as old as time: ‘Do we want a DJ or do we want a band?’. It establishes the vibe of the entire event and in many cases is the key differentiator between an exceptional night or just-another-wedding. And, as it is with almost all wedding considerations, budget is king… but budget doesn’t necessarily mean sacrifice. Finding somebody who can fit the bill without breaking the bank is the ultimate win-win.
So, DJ or band? Which one do we want, which one will suit our wedding best? Well, I have an answer that is so simple, you might not expect it. When it comes to choosing between a band or a DJ, you actually want both. Hear me out on this one. What you want, regardless of turntables or trumpets, is somebody who will build your wedding around you and your guests.
What you want is a musician. A musician chooses the songs and artists you love and stays away from the ones that Grandma definitely doesn’t want to hear. A musician is a consummate professional who takes the time to understand the vibe you’re going for, learn your musical tastes, and plays exactly what you want from start to finish. A musician wants to connect with your guests and keep the dance floor packed all night. A musician cares about making your experience unforgettable, not just slapping together a playlist and sticking with it for the sake of sticking with it.
A musician’s goal is to have your guests raving about when they shimmied to Motown or how they lost their minds when that Calvin Harris song dropped. They want your family and friends talking about your big night long after your ‘Thank Yous’ are signed, sealed and delivered. And really, what’s better than your Mom remembering how sore her feet were the next day or your college crew reminiscing on how much fun they had jumping up and down, singing at the top of their lungs? Those are stories that never, ever get old.
Above all, musicians live to create a lasting feeling. Music, to them, is an expression of loving, living and feeling free. Bringing these feelings to their audience(s) and spreading joy through music is what makes them good at what they do and what makes them love what they do. And, as we all know by now, when you love what you do, it’s not hard work. In fact, they take pleasure and pride in creating a lasting, positive experience for you and each and every one of your guests.
So, when it comes to that pivotal decision of “DJ or band?”, I invite you to think a little more creatively. Considering between a DJ or band might be a good starting point when you begin your search, but make sure that you come to them with a checklist of your goals for the evening and see if they feel more like a vendor or more like a partner. Remember that a musician will always want to provide you with whatever you want, but that they’ll make recommendations and give you gut-checks based on their experience and their expertise. In a world of non-traditional weddings, ask the non-traditional questions. You may be surprised that when you ask for exactly what you’ve always envisioned, you’ll get it.
Adam Smith is a wedding and private events DJ who is a full-service DJ and alto saxophonist in the DC area.