I’ll just say it: I think an “iPod Wedding” is tacky.
Hey, I’m all about saving money. I enjoy estate sales and hand-me-downs for my kids, every week I get the Mystery Penny Item at Publix, and I’ve even been known to shop at — gasp! — Aldi.
So I can certainly appreciate why anyone would want trim their budget and cut back.
But setting up an iPod to provide the music at your wedding?
Blech. Ick. Nope. No way.
Now I know what you’re thinking:
Gee, what a surprise! You’re a wedding musician and you hate the idea of people using iPods for their wedding music. Why ever could that be?
Yeah, I know. Totally in my own self-interest, right?
So that’s why I contacted some other wedding professionals to see what they thought about it.
Because I knew you would listen to them more than you would to me.
First I spoke to Reverend Ann Fuller, Brevard Minister.
“Having officiated lots of iPod weddings,” Ann told me, “I can state without reservation that it is always clunky.”
She goes on to say that the worst parts are:
1) When the music changes between bridesmaids and bride; and
2) Once the bride reaches the front.
“Rarely is there a subtle fade out, but instead generally an abrupt noticeable switch from music to no music …. It’s majorly detectable when the couple has splurged on almost every other aspect so it looks like a formal upscale affair … except for the iPod.”
Then I decided to speak to someone more local and I contacted Atlanta wedding Officiant Reverend Meghan Gurley from Beyond I Do.
Meghan says that the biggest problem with using an iPod for the ceremony music is that the music can’t be tapered off so that there is a seamless move from the procession to the ceremony.
“Often, I’ve had to give the ‘friend with iPod’ a glare until they realize it is time to stop the music,” Meghan says. “And even then, the music stops suddenly. Not very romantic!”
Okay, so the ceremony is one thing. But what about just setting up an iPod for the reception?
Well, Atlanta wedding planner Carter Fawcett from Weddings by Carter, told me why an iPod at the wedding reception doesn’t work very well either.
“When a couple uses an iPod instead of a professional DJ or musicians,” Carter says, “they lose the emcee of their wedding. They also don’t have the proper equipment, which makes it difficult for guests to hear. Finally, they are imposing upon bridal party or family and friends to select music. Not only do their friends and family lack experience, but they would prefer to be guests celebrating at the wedding.”
And what about trying to save money by using an iPod?
This article by Jay Congdon, Chicago Wedding DJ from Fourth Estate Audio puts to rest the idea that using an iPod is a money-saver. Jay points out that renting the necessary equipment and downloading the minimum of songs you will need would run a minimum of about $500.
Okay, that tells you why other wedding professionals give an iPod wedding a thumbs down. What about me?
Well, in addition to agreeing with everything said above, I have two things to add:
1) If you use an iPod, you’re totally missing out on the visual aspect of live music. Not only does a musician sitting at a baby grand piano or a harp immediately raise the elegance factor of the entire wedding, but it also provides something pleasurable for your guests to watch, especially while they’re waiting for the ceremony to begin.
2) A wedding is such a personal event, and as such, a real, live person providing the music seems so much more appropriate than canned music.
And on that note …
If adding a personal touch to your wedding (and not just with music, but also things like your cake, centerpieces, invitations and so on) sounds like something you’d like to do, you should really read my ebook, 5 Ways to Add a Personal Touch to Your Wedding.
You can get your free copy right now!