It will require time, thought, and effort on your part, but it could save you a couple thousand dollars if you B.Y.O.M. (bring your own music, of course)! You save money on hiring a DJ or band, and you can control every song that’s played at your wedding, from your walk down the isle to the dinner music to the last crazy dance.
“But like everything else, if you want to pull it off and not drive yourself nuts, there are rules,” says The Broke Ass Bride. Here she lays down the laws of iPod-ing your wedding music:
1. Check with your venue about their sound system, what kind of equipment they have to attach speakers to, and whether you can get the speakers from them, or if you have to rent them.
2. Test the speaker system, leaving plenty of time to make changes if you have to (not at the rehearsal dinner).
3. Figure out the logistics, including moving the system from the ceremony to the cocktail hour to the reception. Bring extension cords if necessary.
4. Pick someone to monitor the music, because YOU will be a little too busy during the the wedding to deal with it. Give them a list of all the songs in your playlist(s), and review it to make sure they’re all on there.
5. Make a separate playlist for each segment of your wedding – ceremony, cocktail hour, dinner, first dance, cake cutting, bouquet throw, open dance floor, etc. Put them all in order.
6. The ceremony: Decide who is going to walk down and whether they will walk in to the same music. Use cross-fading so you’re not being jolted from one song to another.
7. Cocktail hour: You need about 18-20 songs, depending on the length, to fill an hour. It’s a good idea to throw a few extra songs, just in case you’re not feeling whatever’s playing at the time.
8. Dinner: Create a good mix of fast, medium, and slow songs. You don’t want music that will put your guests to sleep, but you want them to enjoy their dinner in peace, too. Decide if you want to play straight through or shuffle your playlist. (Broke Ass Bride notes that her ipod and itunes playlists tend to shuffle in the same order. Anyone else notice that?)
9. Reception events: In case the timing is off, it’s good to keep each in a different playlist, instead of throwing them all together.
10. Open dance floor: Its party time! You want to get everyone on the dance floor, so think about your crowd and what will get them out of their seats. Hip hop? Country? Sinatra and the Rat Pack? Show tunes? Throw in a little somethin’ for everyone!
And here’s link to $3 in MP3s on Amazon.com that we’ll pass along from The Broke Ass Bride. They download directly into itunes for you. Now check out the rest of her blog for more bold and original approaches to wedding planning and healthy budgeting.