We’ve heard the question before, “How do I DJ my own wedding?”
Maybe you don’t go with a big DJ company like EPIC Charleston. You want to do it yourself and save some cash. Maybe you’d like your budget to go towards other things like the venue and the catering.
If that’s your style, that’s great. But you may have some questions…
We’ll go over how to do it and you can decide if that may be something that is best for you.
First, get permission from the venue
Just a heads up, a lot of venues require you to have a business license or be insured as an entertainment company. Churches have very detailed audio requirements. Some areas may have specific noise ordinances.
You are going to need some equipment
You’ll need a sound system. Enough speakers and sound for 100-150 guests is a good estimate. You’ll need 2 main speakers. You can rent these at any audio rental company.
(Though most people that DJ their own weddings have smaller crowds.)
For a little bit of a cheaper route, you can also use a wireless bluetooth speaker, such as a Bose speaker. These can connect to your android phone, iPhone or laptop/tablet.
A third option would be to use a boom box speaker. Some great ones are made by ION and can be found at Costco or Walmart. These are a little bit of a bigger speaker, usually 8 or 10 inches.
You will need to build your music
A lot of people can simply put together a Spotify playlist. It will just auto transition through a bunch of songs. There are also a lot of wedding playlists out on Spotify.
SoundCloud is another good place to look for music playlists.
So you’ve got your speakers set up. Laptop is set up. Everything is hooked up and usually a friend is DJing and playing your playlist. This is all pretty low tech.
Maybe add a little more without hiring a DJ
You want to upgrade it. Say your budget is $500.
It would be good to invest in a nicer, wireless Bluetooth speaker, one you can find for $200. You’ll need a Bluetooth that has an RCA or headphone input. This will allow you to connect your microphone.
There is also a nice UHF wireless microphone set that you can buy at Guitar Center for just $49. This is our plan C, our backup, backup. We’ve been very impressed with this and used it in the past. A lot of nice microphones are at least $100 to rent. This microphone will work just fine as long as you are within a close distance of about 15 feet. Then it may contain some static. Whoever uses the microphone will need to move this around the venue. It is wireless, but the antennae need to see the microphone.
You can go to an audio rental company and rent a Public Address system (PA) style speaker. It’s made to just give you the voice and nothing else, no bass. This speaker is not designed to play music, but is good to use for your microphone.
Maybe you have a good friend who is helping you to plan your wedding. You may have another friend who has an interest in music. The two will need to collaborate and work together a bit to make sure there is some kind of timeline.
Your friend who is playing DJ will be keeping up with Spotify and playing the music, have the cable plugged into the mixer, have the bluetooth speaker going on and the wireless microphones are plugged in.
More on the playlist…
Check out Pinterest and YouTube for some great playlist ideas.
If you are a regular user to Spotify or Pandora, those playlists sometimes pull from the artists and genres you listen to regularly. Just be aware of your guests. Make sure music is appropriate for the older and younger crowd that may be present. Your favorites are good, but it’s best to curate different atmospheres throughout the evening. You want some variety.
Some cons to not having a Professional DJ
Crowd is not dancing. Every crowd is a dancing crowd. If no one is really dancing, your playlist may not be working.
Awkwardness. Long moments of silence. Awkward transitions. 30 secs feels like 30 mins. When DJing your own wedding, you need to be mindful of the energy. Timing can easily be off, but you need a fluid production.
We hope this helps if you are considering to DJ your own wedding. You can always email us with any questions you may have.