Financial advice for newlyweds

May 20, 2019

financial advice for newlywedsFinancial stress can rip a marriage to shreds. It’s the second leading cause of divorce according to marriage.com. Although finances aren’t sexy, you can turn them into your marriage’s ally by following some sound advice.

Set a budget

You and your spouse may have different spending and investing habits. If not addressed, they can lead to friction points in your marriage. A budget creates discipline and predictability for your household. You’ll manage critical monthly costs, such as housing, groceries, utilities, and transportation, more efficiently while building a good credit score. Just as important, a jointly conceived budget allows you to spend discretionary funds more intentionally and with respect for your spouse. Lay the foundation for a sound marriage by creating a budget.

You’ll find some free or inexpensive budgeting apps online. Here is a good resource.

Set some goals

What do you want to do with your money? Your marriage works better when you work together as a team towards your jointly conceived financial goals. For most of us, resources are limited. But for goal-oriented couples operating on a budget, home ownership, retirement, and vacation dreams are within reach.

Financial planners typically advise you to save 15% of your income towards retirement. For some couples, that isn’t enough. For others with school loans and credit card debt, maybe that’s too aggressive.

The point is: set some goals. You have a tremendous financial advantage over your single peers, according to debt.com. Only 29% of singles say they feel financially secure compared to 43% of married couples. According to debt.com, married couples enjoy economies of scale that make a buck go farther. So don’t squander this wonderful benefit of marriage. Discuss your goals and create a budget.

Create a will

In the case of the death of one of the spouses, a will can simplify the grieving process by removing one key stressor. According to fidelity.com  it can also reduce your tax exposure:

“Estate laws vary from state to state, but in the absence of a will, surviving spouses without children typically retain only between one-third and one-half of the deceased’s estate. You and your spouse should contact your attorney for more information, and create wills as soon as possible. Be sure to review them every three to five years to make sure they address your changing circumstances.”

DJ Brian Anderson loves weddings and loves to blog on fun wedding topics. Today’s blog may not be as fun as planning your wedding entertainment, but it offers practical advice for a prosperous future.

Congratulations on your new life together.

Don’t let your wedding gown budget get out of control

By Brian Anderson | March 11, 2019

Get ready for 100 years of wedding fashions in one-hundred and eighty seconds! This video is really fun for future brides shopping for a wedding gown. As you watch, be aware that it’s easy for your wedding gown budget to get out of control:

Here’s the deal when it comes to selecting your wedding gown:  take some advice from brides who’ve already done it. Brides.com reported on a survey of brides and grooms conducted by the online wedding registry company, zola.com, AFTER their wedding had come and gone.

Here’s where wedding couples wish they’d spent less:

In other words, these couples had spent their budget, and the bills had come due. When asked what they wish they had spent LESS money on, wedding day attire came in #4 on the list, along with:

  1. Flowers & Decor (22% wish they had spent less)
  2. Hair & Makeup (20% wish they had spent less)
  3. Catering (19% wish they had spent less)
  4. Day-of Wedding Attire (19% wish they had spent less)
  5. Invitations (17% wish they had spent less)

This doesn’t mean the gown isn’t important. It is. After all, when these same newlyweds were asked what wedding elements actually made their wedding unforgettable, day-of-wedding attire was #4 on the list (behind the DJ, which was #3 on the list!).

Simply use common sense.  Don’t blow your wad on the gown. According to The Knot, the average bride spent $1509 on her wedding gown budget in 2017. Be sure to save budget for your entertainment.  When these couples were asked for the top five wedding elements that they wish they had spent MORE on, the DJ made the list:

  1. Videographer (25% wish they had spent more)
  2. Photographer (22% wish they had spent more)
  3. Wedding Planner/Coordinator (20% wish they had spent more)
  4. Flowers & Decor (12% wish they had spent more)
  5. DJ/Band (10% wish they had spent more)

Couples just like you say that DJ entertainment actually made their wedding more unforgettable than their gown.

So when it is time to select a DJ company for your upcoming wedding celebration, go with the company that gives you a lot of entertainment for the value: DJ Brian Anderson, the wedding entertainment specialist. Make sure you leave enough in your budget for decor lighting and photo booth!

More wedding trivia for curious couples

By Brian Anderson | March 4, 2019

wedding triviaWeddings are fascinating. Traditions and spending habits vary by culture, geography, and religion. We had tremendous feedback when we published a previous blog on wedding trivia, so we’re going to mine the rich trove of wedding trivia with even more wedding trivia for recently engaged couples.

Answers appear at the bottom of this blogpost:

How much does an average guest spend on a wedding gift?

  • $78
  • $88 
  • $98
  • $108

Who started the Western tradition of wearing a white wedding gown?

  • Queen Victoria 
  • Marie Antoinette
  • Mary, Queen of Scots
  • Mary Pickford

On average, how much will members of the wedding party spend on attire?

  • $160
  • $180
  • $200
  • $220

What is the national average catering cost per person at weddings?

  • $40
  • $50
  • $60
  • $70

What does the phrase “tying the knot” signify?

  • That lives become intertwined in a new, knotty relationship at marriage
  • That emotional grooms need to wear a necktie to control the knot they feel in their throat at the moment they speak their wedding vows
  • The unbreakable pledge between two persons in love that cannot be unraveled

How much does the average wedding spend on a band for the reception?

  • $1247
  • $2247
  • $3247
  • $4247 

What percentage of couples hire a DJ instead of a band for their wedding reception?

  • 46%
  • 56%
  • 66% 
  • 76%

Queen Victoria got married on February 10th, 1840, an illustrious union with Prince Albert.  How much did their wedding cake weigh?

  • 25 pounds
  • 50 pounds
  • 100 pounds
  • 300 pounds 

How much does an average, modern couple spend on their wedding cake?

  • $228
  • $328
  • $428
  • $528 

Ready for the answers?

How good is your wedding knowledge? Let’s find out! Here are the answers:

How much does an average guest spend on a wedding gift?

  • $88

Who started the Western tradition of wearing a white wedding gown?

  • Queen Victoria

On average, how much will members of the wedding party spend on attire?

  • $160 (plus $64 on accessories)

What is the national average catering cost per person at weddings?

  • $70

What does the phrase “tying the knot” signify?

  • The unbreakable pledge between two persons in love that cannot be unraveled

How much does the average wedding spend on a band for the reception?

  • $4247

What percentage of couples hire a DJ instead of a band for their wedding reception?

  • 66%

Queen Victoria got married on February 10th, 1840, an illustrious union with Prince Albert.  How much did their wedding cake weigh?

  • 300 pounds (it was 14 inches tall and 10 feet in circumference!)

How much does an average modern couple spend on their wedding cake?

  • $528

Here’s more wedding trivia for you: if you want to pack the dance floor at YOUR wedding celebration, simply call DJ Brian Anderson, the wedding specialist.

The celebrity wedding crasher epidemic continues!

By Brian Anderson | February 25, 2019

Will it never end! The celebrity wedding crasher epidemic has reached a fevered pitch. Former presidents, country singers, actors, and comedians continue to barge into the wedding celebrations of unsuspecting couples.

Will you be next?

Tim McGraw seems like a nice, sensible country western singer. And yet watch how he sneaks onto the stage at this couple’s wedding to sing, “My Little Girl.”

Really, Tim! Does a guy with ten number one country albums really need the lime light that bad?

And what about Kevin Hart and Josh Gad? These hotshot actors waltzed right into an unsuspecting couples wedding celebration and took over. Watch:

It’s not as if they’ve never been in the spotlight before!

Even former president, Barack Obama, got in the act at a country club wedding!

Even one of the warmest, fuzziest singers around, Ed Sheeran, got into the act! In Ed’s defense, though, he was invited by a radio station who bought the deserving couple a nice wedding celebration.

Watch Ed in action:

As we’ve written before, everyone would love to have a celebrity show up at their wedding. It just seems to happen a lot!

In case a celebrity doesn’t show up at your wedding, DJ Brian Anderson can compensate by playing your favorite music by your favorite artist on ridiculously high-end equipment with clear, controlled sound.

Speaking of Ed Sheeran, he covered one of Elvis’ best wedding songs, “Can’t Help Falling in Love With You.” An earlier blogpost highlighted some of the versions around. What do you think of Ed’s take on this classic?

Who sang it better, Ellie, Sir Elton, or Lady Gaga?

By Brian Anderson | February 18, 2019

Your Song is on The Knot’s list of the 50 best first dance songs. This was Elton John’s first big hit, and to this day, it is still considered one of his best.

Sir Elton recorded it when his vocal chops were at their best, as you can hear below in this remastered recording:

Elton’s tender melody is a perfect match for Bernie Taupin’s lyrics, which includes this classic line:

“I hope you don’t mind, I hope you don’t mind that I put down in words,

how wonderful life is while you’re in this world.”

Imagine dancing your first wedding dance to this incredible song. Ah … but the question is, to whom’s version of this song should you dance?

As with any classic song, other great artists flock to it with their own unique interpretations.

Remember our earlier blogpost, “Fabulous Cover Songs that Blew Away the Original?” Sometimes the upstarts exceed their masters.

For example, the English singer, Ellie Goulding, knocks Your Song out of the park with this haunting rendition:

Ms. Goulding reharmonizes the verses to give her own, unique stamp of approval to Sir Elton’s and Bernie’s masterpiece.

One of rock’s biggest super stars, Lady Gaga, takes it in a different direction with her husky vocals:

Millennials with a penchant for classic rock may find themselves drawn to Three Dog Night’s 1970s cover of Your Song.

Not to be outdone, movie director, Baz Luhrmann, incorporated Your Song into the movie, Moulin Rouge, with over-the-top audacity, as you can see below:

You just can’t look away as Ewan McGregor woos Nicole Kidman in this vibrant cover of a classic song.

Which version is best? That’s your call, because this is your wedding. DJ Brian Anderson can play any version you prefer. We offer the flexibility, the professional flair, and the state-of-the-art technology to create a magic moment that declares, “this is your song.”

Marriage reduces stress

By Brian Anderson | February 11, 2019

marriage reduces stressAmericans are stressed, according to the American Psychological Association. The good news is that marriage reduces stress by helping us cope better in tense situations.

This is interesting stuff. Researchers in the Comparative Human Development department at the University of Chicago conducted a study on stress.

Researchers tasked graduate students with playing a series of computer games. The games tested economic behaviors.

Here’s where it gets interesting: they analyzed the saliva of participants before and after they completed the games.

Saliva contains cortisol, which is known as the “stress hormone.”

To make sure the students were stressed, researchers told them that these computer games were actually tests and a course requirement that could have a major impact on their future employment opportunities. Talk about ratcheting up the stress!

As expected, cortisol levels shot up in all participants, and interestingly, females experienced higher levels of increases than men.

The lead researcher, Dario Maestripieri, observed something even more amazing:

“We found that unpaired individuals of both sexes had higher cortisol levels than married individuals. What we found is that marriage has a dampening effect on cortisol responses to psychological stress, and that is very new.”

Another reason to get married!

If you’re planning your wedding, be sure to check us out. The sheer excellence of our entertainment, attention-to-detail, and extraordinary planning tools is sure to lower your cortisol levels! Spend less time worrying and more time celebrating with DJ Brian Anderson!

Read this only if you have two left feet

By Brian Anderson | February 4, 2019

There are two types of people in the world: those with natural rhythm, and those without. Those without sometimes THINK they are God’s gift to the dance floor when they … are … NOT. They desperately need the box step.

Actor Kevin James unwittingly displays the pitfalls of “free form” dancing in this hilarious scene from “Hitch” with Will Smith:

If you are a person who falls into the no-rhythm category, we are going to get you fixed up in less than 500 seconds.

If you are a person who is terrified of your upcoming first dance on your wedding day, fear not. You simply need to learn a single, magnificent dance move called the box step. And it’s easy.

This timeless wonder works whether you’re dancing to a rumba, a cha cha cha or a waltz.

The video below spells it out for you in a simple step-by-step process. Watch it and practice, practice, practice.

You don’t have to look like Fred Astaire, Ginger Rogers, Michael Jackson or a Jennifer Lopez on the dance floor. Just learn the box step.  Practice until you’re confident with it.

Those born without natural rhythm can be taught to dance competently, and this video is an excellent starting point.

When it comes time for your wedding celebration, DJ Brian Anderson knows how to pack the dance floor, so even if you dance like Kevin James, no one will ever notice. Trust me. Everyone will be having too much fun!

Dancing unites the world! Get ready for the best dance of your life!

Inappropriate wedding songs

By Brian Anderson | January 28, 2019

This blog loves to write about special songs for your wedding day. There are so many of them out there! Today let’s look at some inappropriate wedding songs that aren’t really suitable for your wedding day.

“Make You Feel My Love”

Inappropriate wedding songs are typically defined by inappropriate lyrics or themes. For example, Bob Dylan wrote a song that became a big hit for multiple artists titled, “Make You Feel My Love.”

In addition to Dylan, it was covered by Garth Brooks, Billy Joel, Kelly Clarkson and others. Adele had a monster hit with it in her 2008 debut album, “19.” Take a listen …

What’s inappropriate about the song? The theme of the gut-wrenching aftermath of a break-up. Lyrics like these just aren’t a good fit for a wedding celebration:

I’d go hungry; I’d go black and blue

And I’d go crawling down the avenue

No, there’s nothing that I wouldn’t do

To make you feel my love

“Breakin’ Up is Hard to Do”

Let’s face it, breaking up is hard to do, which leads to the next song in our hit list of inappropriate wedding songs: Don’t play Neil Sedaka’s signature song, “Breakin’ Up is Hard to Do” at your wedding celebration.

Sedaka had a huge hit when it first came out in 1962. Listen to the original version which the All Music Guide characterized as “two minutes and sixteen seconds of pure pop magic:

Sedaka slowed it down in a 1975 reboot and had an even bigger hit with it in ballad format, complete with a schmaltzy key change. What a song for a slow dance, but not at a wedding!

“Stormy Weather”

Notice how Mr. Sedaka segued into another classic song towards the end of ‘Breakin’ Up?’ Make note: Stormy Weather is another no-no at weddings. You’ve heard of the ‘no-fly list,’ right? Well Stormy Weather belongs on the ‘no-wedding list.’

True, it’s a classic torch song, but torch songs about unrequited love just don’t fit into a wedding vibe which is all about REQUITED love, that is, love that is fulfilled. 

Check out Christina Aguilera’s take on this classic …

… and save it for a rainy day, but not your wedding day!

“I Will Always Love You”

This leads us to one of the most popular love songs ever, “I Will Always Love You,” written by Dolly Parton

This song is so good that it has been covered by scores of different vocal artists. 

This song is so good, that Dolly’s vocal version hit #1 on Billboard’s list of Hot Country Songs not once, but twice! Could anyone possibly top Dolly? Yes. Whitney Houston recorded one of the most electrifying songs ever with her take on this classic. She sang it in the 1992 movie, “The Bodyguard.” 

But there’s a problem with “I Will Always Love You:” it’s a break up song. Just check out these lyrics:

Bittersweet memories

That is all I’m taking with me,

So good-bye,

Please don’t cry,

We both know I’m not what you, you need.

Yes, this is an awesome song. Whitney Houston takes it over the top. And yes, the key change at the 3:10 mark is high drama. And yes, you’ll have a lump in your throat and tears in your eyes. But add it to the list of inappropriate weddings songs.

Sorry. Weddings are about the beginning of a journey, not the end.

And for the beginning of your wedding planning journey, your best starting point is this website. We offer dance-floor-packing wedding entertainment and really smart online wedding planning tools for our clients.

Let’s get started today.


 

Here’s what will probably go wrong at your wedding, and how to avoid it

By Brian Anderson | January 21, 2019
flawless wedding

A flawless wedding is your goal. You want your wedding dreams realized. It probably won’t happen, and yet it is so easy to achieve. Here are the types of snafus that are common at Alabama wedding receptions:

• Vendors are disorganized
• Timing is off
• Your guests get impatient waiting for you to arrive from the church
• Your guests don’t like your reception music
• Guests either can’t hear or have their ear drums blasted out since sound isn’t balanced
• No one dances
• No one has fun
• Your guests leave early

Have any of these happened to you?

Soak in this list. You’ve most likely experienced one or more of these problems at weddings you’ve attended in recent years.

The key to avoiding this mess is to be sure to utilize a professional DJ company at your reception with several hundred wedding receptions under their belt.

Don’t cut corners in the wrong place

Too many couples try to cut corners and go with the cheapest quote from a novice DJ or use a friend to play some tunes at the wedding reception. Everything that can go wrong usually does. Revisit the list above for a partial list of problems that await you.

But with a company like DJ Brian Anderson at your reception, a flawless wedding can be realized.

For starters, we coordinate the flow of your reception with other vendors. We’ve been around the block and have established a professional rapport with leading wedding vendors.

We are more than a DJ

 DJ Brian Anderson is more than a basic button-pushing DJ, he is a talented MC with a broadcast quality voice and knows how to flawlessly announce pivotal moments at your celebration, such as introductions, toasts, cake-cutting, and formal dances.

Caterers, photographers, and wedding planners love the way we make the timing of your event so easy and so flawless.

We’ll pack the dance floor!

Unlike your friends, we know how to read your guests and engage them in the fun of your wedding reception. We can coax even shy guests to the dance floor in a fun, natural way that ensures your event rocks.

Our equipment is top-of-the-line. You and your guests will enjoy clear, balanced sound that fills your hall without drowning out conversation.

Don’t worry if your photographer takes too long

If your photographer takes a little too long taking photographs of you at the church following your ceremony, don’t worry. We can play fabulous cocktail hour music to entertain your guests until you make your grand entrance. And what an entrance it will be!

We have just the right music and MC skills to turn this opportunity into an epic moment for fun.

Entertainment makes the event, but the wrong entertainment has a knack for undoing your wedding dreams.

For an upscale, flawless wedding, contact DJ Brian Anderson. We offer beautiful packages for any budget. Get ready for packed dance floors! Get ready to have your wedding dreams fulfilled!

It had to be you

By Brian Anderson | January 14, 2019

Nine decades have passed, and DJs are still playing “It Had to be You.” That’s because it is that good of a song. The Knot puts it at #21 in their list of best songs for a first dance. It’s such a good song that Michael Bublé and Barbra Streisand sang it as a duet a few years ago. Watch a few excerpts in the video above.

The song is the perfect blend of a great melody by Isham Jones and memorable lyrics by Gus Kahn, with a great hook like this:

It had to be you, it had to be you
I wandered around and finally found, that somebody who
Could make me be true
Could make me feel blue
And even be glad just to be sad, thinking of you …

The song is so timeless that the ageless Tony Bennett cut a duet with country super star, Carrie Underwood (above), and the song works despite the age gap.

A version sung by Frank Sinatra was used in the movie “When Harry Met Sally.” Watch the scene above. It totally works.

Aging rockers like Rod Stewart (above) can’t resist recording this gem.

Let me leave you with the complete version of Michael Bublé and Barbra Streisand’s interpretation (below).

Whatever version you prefer, we’ll have it cued up ready to roll for your first dance!