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(Slate)   Wedding bands suck, and wedding DJs are just as bad. So what's the alternative? It's more obvious than you think   (slate.com) divider line 135
    More: Spiffy, Mazel, jazz age, OMD  
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11910 clicks; posted to Main » on 19 Jun 2014 at 3:57 PM (1 year ago)   |  Favorite    |   share:  Share on Twitter share via Email Share on Facebook   more»



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2014-06-19 02:22:16 PM  
The only thing that matters at a wedding reception, and I do mean the only thing, is a well-stocked and open bar. The music, the cake, the food, the decorations -- all completely irrelevant. Have a well-stocked, open bar, and people will enjoy themselves regardless of what else is there. They'll even forgive you for making them sit through a long ceremony. Yes, even you Catholics. But shirk on the bar, either in what's supplied or how long it's open? That's one of the few sins in this world from which there is no repentance.
 
2014-06-19 02:39:52 PM  
We had a great wedding band. My mom is a teacher and the music teacher at her school does weddings as a side gig, so we got a good deal. They sounded great and had people up and dancing the whole time.

Wedding DJs make me cringe 9 out of 10 times.
 
2014-06-19 02:45:45 PM  
Never getting married or going to weddings?
 
2014-06-19 03:22:54 PM  
Group sex?
 
2014-06-19 03:35:24 PM  
I had a laptop and a simply create management program.

I then asked for requests of what they'd like to here and put together a play list.

Add in one borrowed sound system and it all worked very well.

That was 10 years ago.  I was ahead of the curve.
 
2014-06-19 03:50:06 PM  
31.media.tumblr.com
 
2014-06-19 03:59:01 PM  

So what's the alternative? It's more obvious than you think


Elope?
 
2014-06-19 03:59:25 PM  
I keep telling my wife that my wedding band sucks but she won't let me quit wearing it.
 
2014-06-19 03:59:49 PM  
A magician?
 
2014-06-19 04:00:07 PM  
My husband did the wedding mix for our wedding. Classical transitioning into funk, with some electronic thrown in... and some music from the Best of Godzilla album and the Doctor Who theme song, in order to pay homage to my family background.
 
2014-06-19 04:00:35 PM  

Englebert Slaptyback: So what's the alternative? It's more obvious than you think


Elope?


Barbershop quartets?
 
2014-06-19 04:00:42 PM  
Clowns?
 
2014-06-19 04:01:23 PM  
That's basically what we did for our wedding. We burned a mix CD for the ceremony and another set for the reception and called it a day.
 
2014-06-19 04:01:33 PM  
I went to a wedding where the groom spun vinyl, it was ok.  The most fun weddings I've been to have had bands I think.  And I don't care what you say, Don't Stop Believin' will never get old as long as my BAC is over .12

I also thought wedding bands pretty much play what you want them to?

/an iPod and a jawbone seems kinda lame
 
2014-06-19 04:02:12 PM  
I call foul on that.  We had a 7- or 8-piece band at our wedding and they were awesome.  We had so many compliments on them.  They rocked the reception.
 
2014-06-19 04:02:43 PM  
If you're looking for practical, rational and economic solutions to problems then wedding planning is not a good place to start.
 
2014-06-19 04:04:03 PM  

Pocket Ninja: The only thing that matters at a wedding reception, and I do mean the only thing, is a well-stocked and open bar. The music, the cake, the food, the decorations -- all completely irrelevant. Have a well-stocked, open bar, and people will enjoy themselves regardless of what else is there. They'll even forgive you for making them sit through a long ceremony. Yes, even you Catholics. But shirk on the bar, either in what's supplied or how long it's open? That's one of the few sins in this world from which there is no repentance.


The open bar at my Catholic wedding was hailed by many, remembered by few.
 
2014-06-19 04:04:20 PM  
Karaoke!!!

/not really.
//Unless you include a dunk tank
 
2014-06-19 04:04:53 PM  
Keep the wedding small. I'm starting to plan mine. Fewer than 30 people going out to a restaurant then back to my parent's place for drinks afterwards. Don't know what we'll do for a ceremony but it won't last more than ten minutes.
 
2014-06-19 04:06:41 PM  
The article writer's an idiot.  A great band makes a huge difference (although PN's dead on about the bar, that's the crux).  Our band was awesome, in the literal "filling you with awe" manner in which they brought a huge range of musical styles, learned the song we wanted for our first dance (and nailed it), varied the energy level appropriately throughout the evening, and generally made it that everyone had a great time.  The dance floor was packed the whole evening (although we had a pretty great group of guests as well).

So yeah, your run of the mill band/DJ may not add much, but a great band adds a huge amount to the event.
 
2014-06-19 04:06:50 PM  
We had a string quartet for the wedding and the first half of the reception and a piano soloist for the rest of the time.
 
2014-06-19 04:07:00 PM  
Let's visit the couple at Table 11: "The band's great, isn't it?" she says. "Yep, it's great," says he. We're all agreed. Everything is great.

There's only one problem.  This conversation is happening at a table.


I....I don't get it.  Why is this so terrible?
 
2014-06-19 04:07:22 PM  
37.media.tumblr.com
 
2014-06-19 04:07:37 PM  
I've been to so many weddings where the DJ is just terrible! Best one was my sister in-law's where the DJ had to go the ER at the last minute because she grabbed the hot end of a curling iron. She sent her ex-husband instead who showed up in ripped jeans and a Slayer t-shirt. He didn't have the play list and starting playing Kenny G at random intervals.
 
2014-06-19 04:08:16 PM  
My wedding DJ was awesome. She met with us for an hour to get a feel for our musical tastes, and pretty much played anything we asked of her once the ceremony was going on. Late in the evening, one of my friends asked me what song I wanted to hear, and I jokingly mentioned "Like a Fool", a slowish Superchunk song. When he went to request it from the DJ, she didn't have it, so she went to the Merge Records website and downloaded the whole album onto her laptop, then played the song while my wife and I slow danced.

Sure, I could have spent weeks winnowing down my music collection to a six-seven hour playlist, but it was nice to have a human there who could read the mood of the room and switch things up if people were drifting away from the dance floor too much, or keep pushing the energy if people were having a good time.

Also, what PN said about the booze. Drunk people will dance to anything. Even slow Superchunk songs.
 
2014-06-19 04:08:38 PM  
LOL, our DJ had us fill out these forms that asked the obvious- what we want the wedding party to enter to, what we want the first dances to be, etc. It also asked what our favorite music is, which bands we like, etc., so he could get a feel for the setlist to create for us.

The day before the wedding our DJ called and said he didn't have the songs we wanted to use. I had to find them myself. Now, I understand him not having the opening title from Conan the Barbarian (which the wedding party entered to), but the first dances were Peter Cetera, the Beatles, and something else popular (I forget what my wife and her dad danced to-something country). How do you not have, or how can you not acquire with 4 weeks to work with, the songs we specifically requested?

He also obviously didn't even look at what we listed as our favorites, because he clearly just played the same setlist that EVERYONE has at their wedding.

Oh, and he showed up to the reception hung over.
 
2014-06-19 04:08:48 PM  
A friend of mine had a four person traditional band that played square dance music. The caller started out slow showing everyone what to do. It's very hard when you're drunk. It gets everyone dancing and it's pretty fun.
 
2014-06-19 04:09:53 PM  
I'd hire this band for a wedding - http://www.rickkandtheallnighters.com/
 
2014-06-19 04:10:26 PM  
We did this. It worked out just great. The mix was exactly what we wanted it to be, and we set up playlists that could be easily started for each portion of the day.
 
2014-06-19 04:11:05 PM  
we burned a CD, or actually used a CD my wife burned for me when we first started going out, Save a few $$$ weddings are expensive.
 
2014-06-19 04:13:36 PM  
Collect several hours of your favorite dance songs on an MP3 player, say the popular over-the-counter brand known as iPod.

WTF is this?  A Joke?  Is this an Apple joke?  Because I don't get it.  And I don't buy Apple.
 
2014-06-19 04:15:06 PM  
Solution: hire this guy.
 
2014-06-19 04:15:31 PM  

Chariset: Let's visit the couple at Table 11: "The band's great, isn't it?" she says. "Yep, it's great," says he. We're all agreed. Everything is great.

There's only one problem.  This conversation is happening at a table.

I....I don't get it.  Why is this so terrible?


I guess they should be dancing?
 
2014-06-19 04:17:34 PM  
We did this and it was mostly a disaster.  The sound set-up was good, and I spent a  verylong time selecting the music.  The problem was that the music I chose was not to most people's tastes.  The younger people were dancing for New Order's 'Bizarre Love Triangle' but a lot of the stuff I chose cleared out the dance floor pretty quick.

Then someone took over the setup and started playing 60s and 70s dance hits and all was well.
 
2014-06-19 04:17:41 PM  

Chariset: Let's visit the couple at Table 11: "The band's great, isn't it?" she says. "Yep, it's great," says he. We're all agreed. Everything is great.

There's only one problem.  This conversation is happening at a table.

I....I don't get it.  Why is this so terrible?


I think the implication is that the people are sitting down talking to other guests instead of dancing or standing in front of the stage pumping their fists at the band. Because everyone should be always dancing, instead of spending 10 minutes to catch up with people they maybe haven't seen in a while.
 
2014-06-19 04:18:48 PM  
ts1.mm.bing.net
 
2014-06-19 04:18:49 PM  
I've DJ'd a couple of weddings. The key is a) be good at it, b) don't succumb to the three people that still think "YMCA" and "Macarena" are neato, and c) see a). If you can't pull tunes to get people dancing without playing stupid lame shiat, then you shouldn't even be DJ'ing your empty living room.

That said, get a band. So much better.
 
2014-06-19 04:20:09 PM  
A Civil ceremony, a quick poke in the pickup truck and then back to work?

/honeymoon
 
2014-06-19 04:21:10 PM  
I fired up Grooveshark and let it run.  Everybody was happy.
If I was to do it over I'd fire up Spotify and let it run.  Everybody would be happy.
 
2014-06-19 04:21:20 PM  
 
2014-06-19 04:22:56 PM  
neat, my solution was a Stereo VHS tape with 8 hours of music (starting general, waltzes and tangos, ending with NiN and the like).  the list was broken up into 4 song groups, with counters for each level.  I had the list and remote in my pocket.

It was quite fun.

This was, mind you, quite sometime ago.

\\ no onions in my belt.
\ it was in my cummerbund
 
2014-06-19 04:23:04 PM  

Trainspotr: Chariset: Let's visit the couple at Table 11: "The band's great, isn't it?" she says. "Yep, it's great," says he. We're all agreed. Everything is great.

There's only one problem.  This conversation is happening at a table.

I....I don't get it.  Why is this so terrible?

I think the implication is that the people are sitting down talking to other guests instead of dancing or standing in front of the stage pumping their fists at the band. Because everyone should be always dancing, instead of spending 10 minutes to catch up with people they maybe haven't seen in a while.


That was 90% of my wedding. My wife and I spent most of the wedding talking to people. All my extended family spread out through the country, so this was literally the one time I'd get all my family and friends in the same place at the same time.
 
2014-06-19 04:26:18 PM  
Got married last Saturday. We had an iPad wedding reception. Paid 9.99 for 3 months of Spotify premium and built a Playlist of vitamin String Quartet for the cocktail hour and a playlist of songs we got several compliments on for dance time. Everybody had a good time. No drama

/had a cash bar
//wedding was at 11:30am
///we paid for the whole thing. People can get day drunk on their own dime
 
2014-06-19 04:27:58 PM  

trappedspirit: Collect several hours of your favorite dance songs on an MP3 player, say the popular over-the-counter brand known as iPod.

WTF is this?  A Joke?  Is this an Apple joke?  Because I don't get it.  And I don't buy Apple.


(no1curr.gif)

Go back to the geek tab fanboy.
 
2014-06-19 04:32:22 PM  
1. Collect several hours of your favorite dance songs on an MP3 player, say the popular over-the-counter brand known as iPod.
2. Play them at your wedding.


3. Get sued for $1k per song for unlawful public performance by the RIAA.

/mazel tov
 
2014-06-19 04:34:03 PM  
Overly long column is overly long.
 
2014-06-19 04:34:10 PM  
Went to a wedding on Saturday that was pretty much as the article described. DJ. Wouldn't take requests. The one request he actually did take (made by the bride) was cut off halfway through, which rightfully upset her and her friends, as they were all out on the dance floor doing this kinda-synchronized thing.

When the farking people who are paying you to play music request something, and you manage to fark that up, you should re-think that career choice.
 
2014-06-19 04:35:10 PM  
Our wedding DJ was awesome and well worth the money.  He had a lower going rate than other DJs, yet he promoted himself well and offered a lot of included perks (a text messaging system so people could text their well wishes/comments during the reception and have it projected, free special lighting), and he listened to our song requests.  We also sent him some obscure songs he didn't have and played them at the right times.  It's hard finding a good DJ, but we lucked out.  We probably would have done the DIY option if we couldn't find someone decent.  At first we were going with a DJ our family knew, but after he kept going AWOL on us with just a few months before the wedding, we ditched him and found this guy.  We were damn lucky he was available on relatively short notice.

/DJ Ra Mu if you're in the New England area
//no farking clue if it's still in the business, this was over 4 years ago, no I'm not looking him up again
 
2014-06-19 04:36:42 PM  

Orgasmatron138: Trainspotr: Chariset: Let's visit the couple at Table 11: "The band's great, isn't it?" she says. "Yep, it's great," says he. We're all agreed. Everything is great.

There's only one problem.  This conversation is happening at a table.

I....I don't get it.  Why is this so terrible?

I think the implication is that the people are sitting down talking to other guests instead of dancing or standing in front of the stage pumping their fists at the band. Because everyone should be always dancing, instead of spending 10 minutes to catch up with people they maybe haven't seen in a while.

That was 90% of my wedding. My wife and I spent most of the wedding talking to people. All my extended family spread out through the country, so this was literally the one time I'd get all my family and friends in the same place at the same time.


I would think that this is fine, and maybe the issue is that there's no need to pay for a live band when everyone wants to get together and see family for most of the night anyway. The band isn't the draw, it's not why people are there.
 
2014-06-19 04:38:36 PM  
Stay single?
 
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