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Band or DJ?

Marcus Rollins (left) with wedding guest
Marcus Rollins (left) with wedding guest
Hilary LiDestri/ Visual Image Photography

When the wedding planning process begins, most couples know what they desire for music at the reception.  Marcus Rollins of Marcus Rollins Entertainment and Lighting offered some advice. "When you are considering entertainment, a number of factors can influence your decision between a band and a DJ. Budget, space and variety of music are key issues."
"A professional DJ in Dallas will run between two and three thousand dollars for a Saturday evening," Marcus notes. He is careful to add that a DJ who acts as a Master of Ceremonies is an entirely different price bracket- generally booking at between three and five thousand dollars.
"Some couples enjoy a wider variety of music than any one band can offer, or they prefer to hear the music exactly as it was recorded," Marcus says. While variety bands are called such because they offer a wide repertoire, there is still a limit to what they can play. "Guests feel engaged when they can make requests. I did an event at the Stoneleigh Hotel a few years ago. The event was cut up into many different rooms on multiple levels- in that case, half the guests would be denied the opportunity to watch a band. I was able to spread speakers through out all the rooms utilized and then I gave the guests my cell phone number so they could text me requests. It was absolutely fantastic and I was able to do dedications and deliver messages to the bride and groom from their guests."
It's important to take into consideration the age range of your guests. "A skilled DJ knows how to read the crowd and can efficiently shift gears if the crowd doesn't appear to be enjoying a certain song or mood. I love to engage the guests- make them part of the celebration and that includes getting out on the dance floor and enjoying themselves."
While bands take breaks, DJs offer continuous music through the event. An emerging trend is to hire a DJ to play during the band breaks. This is one way to keep the momentum going in the event you chose a band for your entertainment. "There are some fantastic bands and DJs in Dallas, but there are also a huge number of amateurs," Marcus cautions. He advises brides to see the bands live, ask for referrals and call them. Talk to people who attended the event where they played. Try to go to a wedding where the DJ you are considering is working.
"Entertainment can make or break a reception. Do your research. Trust your venue referrals and ask around. Just because a DJ plays in a club you go to or a band plays on Thursday night at your favorite restaurant does not mean they are educated or experienced enough to handle the entertainment on the most important day of your life." For more information about Marcus Rollins check out his website or call 469-688-4478
If you are looking for Clever planning tips go to It's the site for Clever Couples.


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