Former Tie the Knot Tuesday couple, Camille and Uchenna, know how to get the party started!

Think about the last great wedding you went to. Though most brides wouldn’t want to hear it, but I’m guessing it wasn’t the lovely centerpieces, or the couple’s custom wedding logo that you remember. You know it was the abundance of delicious cocktails and all the good times on the dance floor that stayed on your mind days following. Everyone loves a good party! Sure, a wedding is really all about the couple who’s making it official, but why invite a bunch of people to help celebrate if you’re not going to party like it’s 1999?

Gibran and I appreciate a good party, and we both love music. Whether one of us is singing in the shower, playing it while we cook, or bragging about a new playlist, we live for a good tune. So when we were assigning money to each category for our wedding we knew we’d want to spend the biggest bucks on making sure the entertainment was top notch. We were certain that we wanted the music of the evening to tell our love story and reflect our tastes, without being too expected or overdone.

We chose to go with a romantic and soulful wedding ceremony, so we hired a live R&B duet to perform for an hour. Since our ceremony is only going to be thirty minutes, we asked the singers to perform for guests as they arrive. We don’t plan to start late, but if we’re running behind at least we’ll know that our friends and family will be entertained.

The whole band vs. deejay argument came up right away, and the truth is we couldn’t pick between the two. Live music would feel more intimate but cost more cash. A deejay would be guaranteed to get the party started right, but would our guests feel more like they were at the club after awhile? Luckily one of the deejay companies we met with had a fusion package that let us combine both for a good price. We were able to book a deejay to spin party tunes after dinner, and a live drummer to play along with him to add that concert-feel. The company offered hourly bookings for solo freelance musicians too, so to really upgrade the evening we added a strolling saxophonist for dinner and an MC to keep everyone on their feet. By piecing up the fun we were able to book more entertainment for our money. I’m looking forward to seeing the looks on our guests’ faces as the entertainment evolves with the mood throughout the night.

If you’re on the hunt for great entertainment on a budget, you should do what we did and start calling in a few favors. You probably know a great musician or singer who might just be willing to perform at your big day for free. A friend of my father’s has a jazz-band and when we told him we were big fans getting ready for our big day the group offered to perform for free at our cocktail hour. They’re calling it our wedding gift. Work those connections, ladies! Grab your BlackBerry and get to it. Just beware of venues that don’t allow amateur vendors who don’t have their own liability insurance. This can put a serious damper on your friend-of-a-friend performance plans.

What type of entertainment did you book for your wedding?

For more on Camille and Uchenna’s lively wedding, click here.