Live Band vs DJ: Which One Should You Choose?

A bride and groom are mid-first dance under the gold chandeliers in their rustic venue

There is no doubt that music plays a very significant role in your wedding experience.

It may be considered one thing that creates the overall feel and energy of your wedding day. Sure! The wedding decor sets the stage for and theme for your event, but the music gives your wedding life. When it comes to deciding what type of music (DJ or live music) you want to have on your special day, the decision can prove to be a tough one. So, a live band versus a DJ, which one is right for you? Here are a few things that will help you decide on hiring a DJ or live band for your wedding day. 

The ultimate goal is to design, create, and host an unforgettable wedding experience, and having the right soundtrack will play a massive part in achieving that. Consider these things when trying to choose if a DJ or live band is right for you. 



The music sets the tone for your party, so when deciding on whether a wedding DJ or a live band is right, consider the type of vibe you want to create. Will you be hosting a petite wedding or a significant lavish event. Are your friends and family party animals that love to hit the dance floor? A romantic harp or violin may be an excellent choice for a small dinner reception, whereas a high-energy band in your favorite genre will be great for all your dancers. A live band is a great way to get your wedding guests up and moving. Everyone seems to enjoy watching and hearing live music, so if entertainment is important to you, a live band may be the way to go. Even the non-dancers will enjoy watching the skills and movement of a band.


Of course, cost should always be considered when choosing any wedding vendor. But if we can offer only one essential tip, it would be this - don’t skimp on the budget for music because it sets the tone for the energy at your event. Music is a significant part of your wedding’s overall feeling, so if you hire a cheap DJ or maybe even a friend to play the music, you may be disappointed in the outcome. Make sure to evaluate the skills, personality, ability to connect with the audience, and the cost. 

A live band is generally going to cost more because there are more people, equipment, etc. If you can only allow a small amount for music and the band you love doesn’t fit in that budget, consider hiring them for just the ceremony and reception, then have a DJ spin tunes at the reception. A DJ is great if you want a variety of music and genres played at your event.  

A band can elevate the experience with unexpected twists on favorite tunes and solos. These are great things to consider when you’re thinking about the vibe of your big day. There is something so magical about live ensembles at weddings. Watching them sweep your guests off their feet while they dance your favorite pop songs or groove to the toe-tapping sounds of your favorite swing standards, the musicians in the Bellagala team have it all.


Something that you may not think about is the size of your venue. A large reception area can feel overwhelming, especially if you are hosting a petite wedding or have minimal decor. Live bands are a great solution to filling up the large wedding venue and great for the band because they will have plenty of space to spread out and entertain your guests. 

Can’t you just envision your wedding party and guests jamming to the soothing melodies of a string quartet at your cocktail hour or the swing of a big brass band? Bellagala has an array of piano players, harpists, singers, and string musicians to give your ceremony that fairy tale touch.



A live band at your wedding is sure to kick off the party and have most of your wedding guests wearing out their dancing shoes. The music at your wedding will likely be playing for 5 - 6 hours, and during that time, the DJ or musicians that you hire will need to take a break. 

If you hire a DJ, they can set a pre-selected playlist to continue while they step out. If you have hired live musicians for your Minnesota wedding, you need to speak to them before your event to understand what happens if they need to step away or take a break. This ensures that your wedding vibe and energy continues without interruption.

A string quartet in the middle of playing music and looking at their sheet music



When you have live musicians at your wedding or special event, it elevates it to an entirely new level. Not only do live musicians create a unique experience, but they also envelop them with sights and sounds that are special and unforgettable. For a truly exceptional event filled with interactive musical experience, mix up your music selections. 

We love to hear a harpist playing at the ceremony, a jazz combo at the cocktail reception, and the Bellalite Variety Band rocking the reception. There is no way your guests will have a bad time with this line up of unique musical sounds. 


These are all critical things to consider when you are trying to decide if a live band or a disc jockey is right for your wedding. Most importantly, remember always to follow your heart and choose music that matches your personality and ignites your soul. You want this to be one of the most memorable days, and the music will play a significant role. 

Your wedding is our priority and we are ready to help you get through the wedding planning process with little to no stress.

Call us today to learn more about all of our talented and professional live musicians.

Let’s make your wedding experience completely magical!