Live vs. Recorded Music for Your Wedding

Posted by on November 14, 2017

Weddings have come a long way from being a small event that involved the couple’s parents and a few direct family members, to now an extravagant affair that would entail one year of preparation. An average guest list includes 150 people, and there is increased focus on serving the best food, overflowing drinks, and keeping up with unique decorations.

Live music enhances the mood at a receptionAlong with the ceremony and reception, wedding music has come a long way, too. Before, wedding music usually equates with classical or folk music. The atmosphere should be solemn, with no room for hard partying and loud music. These days, finding classical and folk music in weddings is now harder to come by, with young couples opting for R&B, pop, or rock for their playlist.

As you notice from previous generations, live music was a given on weddings. Since this is a unique event, recordings look cheap and so, a significant portion of the event’s budget goes to the live band. It was classier to hire one rather than to have a playlist no matter how good the music choices are. It is understandable though, given that having a band for your wedding means you have to put in the effort to look for excellent musicians to liven up your event. Plus, you are giving guests the opportunity to dance through their requests.

Today, people are more accepting of having recorded music for their wedding. There are many reasons for this, and the top consideration is cost. Having a recording for your wedding instead of a live band is more cost-effective because you only have to build a playlist, then play that in the event. For a wedding entertainment & band, you have to find one that will suit your music interest; then you would have to pay through the contract already set. If you need the band to extend, you have to pay by the hour, too.

Which then should you choose for your wedding: a live band or a recording? Here are some considerations that can help you through the planning process:

1. Cost

As mentioned, this is the biggest factor as to why couples choose a recording over hiring a live band. It is way cheaper to use recorded music for your wedding; however, it is best to note that a live band will always sound better and will always have a better stage presence than just recordings.

2. Wedding location

Outdoor venues might render music recordings unstableChoosing between a live band or a recording would also depend on your wedding location. Say you have your reception on a yacht. For this, it will be best to go for a recorded music since it would be close to impossible to squeeze in a band into this small space. However, if you have your reception in a wedding hall, a live band is more appropriate since it has more of a stage presence especially in a large place like this. If the ceremony is in a garden or beachside, it depends. Does the area have sufficient connections for speakers and all other equipment? An acoustic band can be hired which can be heard better, rather than having a recording running on a battery-operated speaker which may fail you in the long run.

It is your priorities that will dictate whether you would want to go with a live band or recording. If having an excellent live band is important to you, you may have to adjust your budget on other expenses. If, however, you are not too particular with your music, then a recording would be sufficient.


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