November 22, 2021  •  5min read

Should You Hire a Wedding DJ or Live Band for Your Wedding?

wedding dj or live band

Imagine watching a climax of a movie without any sound, the music is what drives our emotions and without it, everything seems empty! Music helps us deliver the things we see into our hearts. Your wedding should feel like a movie, and the music you choose should take you and your guests into a magical place and feeling.

As music choices are infinite, every person’s wedding soundtrack should sound a little different, each expressing their personality. This is why you should list down what sound you really want at your wedding and determine whether you should choose a party DJ or a wedding band for your wedding.

Live Wedding Band or Wedding DJ?

Whether it’s a live wedding band or a wedding DJ, some choose one over the other, while some even include both. But others are still unsure. Let’s look at the pros and cons of live bands and a DJ.

The Cost and feel

DJs generally cost less than a full live band, but stay away from live bands or DJs that are so cheap that it makes you wonder what’s missing. Keep in mind that DJs feel clubbier, while a live band expresses a more classy feel.

  • The average cost of a wedding DJ starts from US$600 to US$1000
  • The average cost of a wedding band starts from US$1500 to US$2000

Keep in mind that the location of your venue can also affect the price. We can see that DJs are obviously cheaper, but looking at how much you get with a 4-member wedding band, DJs aren’t that much of a bargain. But then again, you don’t have to book four pro musicians to put a show in your wedding with their spectacular live music. DJs usually have a more expansive list of songs, while a band’s music will feel more home-grown organic.

Looking for a Wedding DJ for Your Big Day?

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If you have a stricter wedding budget, then DJ’s is the best choice for you. They are indeed the best for affordable entertainment while bringing quality music to your wedding.

What tools do they use?

DJs’ tools consist of song selection and combinations of layer two or more songs mashed up on top of each other. While live bands’ tools include:

  • Instrumental choice
  • Song selection
  • Note choice
  • Improvisation
  •  Live mashups
  • Verbal and non-verbal interaction with your guest
  • Visible and audible emotions they bring to live performances

What energy tools do they use?

DJ music relies on previous recordings, so their energy mainly comes from the volume as DJs love to pump up the bass through loud sounds so people will react to the airwaves in their chest. On the other hand, a band plays music for you right on the spot, so their energy comes from the combination of sounds they make. This includes the live sensation of the volume. People go to see concerts because live music is exciting, and no one goes to watch pre-recorded music playing on the spot. Live bands also raise their volume to boost the energy level.


We tend to react and feel comfortable with familiar things. Although we also react to new things that catch our attention. DJs can play our favorite music the exact way it’s supposed to sound like while adding some creative aspects of their own mashups of sounds. On the other hand, bands play familiar songs, but the live members usually give their own flavor to the song. You may want the music to sound exactly how it should be, so it’s as familiar as possible, while others wish for a mesh of familiarity and fresh new sounds. You can try looking for the difference by having live instruments playing with a DJ or starting with a live band and letting a DJ take over later in the evening.

With all this in mind, can you already make a decision? Would you rather have a DJ or a live band? Or maybe a combo of the two?

What’s Your focus?

All performances have a focus. Where do you want these performers to channel their energy? You can choose either on themselves or you. If you think about it, a wedding and a piece of live music are two different events. A concert focuses entirely on music, with all the band members showing off their talent in every instrument. But many people also think music at a wedding is only an extra addition to the wedding itself, and it’s all about the guests and their experience on the dance floor. Some couples want a wedding that’s more like a “band show,” while others want a wedding more focused on friends and families. Which attitude would you choose?
There you have some of the answers to the most frequently asked questions about choosing a party DJ or a live band for your wedding. We hope that we have given a helpful explanation and can help you choose the path of the wedding music you’ve been dreaming of.

Guntur author at Bali Wedding
Guntur has been writing tips and tricks for weddings in Bali since 2020. He has written everything from preparing a pre-wedding in Bali to the best wedding dress and makeup you should choose for a wedding in paradise.

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