5 Ways to Save Money on the Music for Your Wedding Reception

Your wedding day is probably the most important day of your life, and one instance where you want to spare no expense. It’s the biggest party you’ll ever throw for yourself, and you want it to both represent your love for each other and act as a true celebration of the new family you have created.

Yet reality won’t let you get completely lost in the fantasy, and there will always be a budget. Once you decide on the venue, the cost of food, alcohol and lodging will basically be locked in.

Music for the win!

But you will always be able to adjust the entertainment at your reception. The quality of the music plays a huge role in the success of the affair, so skimping on this line item is a dangerous gamble. But there are ways to make a more affordable choice. Here are five tips to help you save money on the music for your wedding reception.

5 Ways to Save Money on the Music for Your Wedding Reception

There’s nothing like the feeling a live band brings to a party. But live music is many times more expensive than a DJ. There’s more people to contend with, and you’re obviously paying for decades of practice at a complicated craft. One way to save a bit and still enjoy the feeling of a live band is to split your party.

Live band for the first half!

Start out with the live band for the first half, so you’ll enjoy it for the formal dances and the first set of party music, and then switch over to a DJ for the remainder of the night. As the affair moves on and the libations are flowing people tend to forget about the music anyway. You’ll get the most bang for your buck while cutting down on the band’s billable hours.

If you simply cannot go without a live band for the duration of the night, consider a band with fewer members. Some big bands that play wedding receptions have entire horn sections, backup singers, and even roadies. When all is said and done you’ve got fifteen people to pay and feed!

Rock ‘n’ Roll

This is incredibly expensive and could destroy your overall wedding budget. Limit the size of the band as your compromise. Go with a rock n’ roll setup that has a maximum of five members, and as long as they are talented it will still be fantastic. Or if you want something a little more highbrow, hire a quartet of classical musicians instead.

For this next tip, break out your Rolodex or hop on your social networks and do a bit of searching. If you have friends or family members that play in a band, consider hiring them to perform instead of the professionals. First of all, having people who love you and know your new spouse personally sing and play at the reception is much more heartfelt, and could lead to some truly memorable moments.


It will also be a bit more relaxed and welcoming, which could fit a small reception very well. Some lucky newlyweds might even find talented friends who are willing to write and perform an original song just for their first dance!

You can sacrifice the live sound and still have an amazing party with the right DJ. Just remember that it isn’t just about playing music, but really knowing how to keep a party moving.

Digital turntable DJ

A high-end DJ who actually mixes off of digital turntables will always be less expensive than a live band but could be just as good if you’ve got a young party that wants to dance all night long. Even a DJ who just plays music could be enough to make the party great, as long as they know what they’re doing.

Finally, don’t be bashful if you can’t afford the DJ. There are other things worth spending your money on than an appearance by the band one direction, such as your honeymoon! Sit down with your significant other and map out a playlist you can pipe through the reception hall’s PA system.

Set up tracks for dinner and tracks for dancing and just let the iPod roll. You’re certain to find one or two musically inclined friends who will hop on and change it up for you at some point. And in the end, hearing your favorite songs and enjoying the night might be all that’s really important to you. Here’s an article on tips from a Wedding Co-ordinator.