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Use iTunes to DJ your own weddingCNET's Donald Bell shows you how you can save money by using iTunes to DJ your wedding.
Planning a wedding takes a lot of work and unless you are getting hitched in a Vegas drive-thru chapel, it also takes a lot of money. When my wife and I got married, we were broke and we had to get creative with the budget and one of the things we cut was the wedding DJ. Instead, we ran music off my computer. Now, I have a full run-down on what you'll need to provide the music for your own wedding over on CNET's How To blog. Read it and you'll learn that with a rented sound system, a small mixer and a computer, you can make this happen. Having a pro is a lot less work but if that's not an option, here you go. The core of this particular set-up is Apple's iTunes software. So make sure you have it installed and fill the library with music you think you'll need. Since you're on a budget, borrow what you can, rip CDs and also know that you could buy songs directly from iTunes if you need to. Next, you need to make some very specific playlist for every event in the wedding that may need some music. This could be background music for when people are arriving, the processional music, your first dance. Also give every playlist a similar prefix so that they group together in iTunes then number them in the order that you want. Now, drag and drop the music you want for each individual playlist. In some cases, you may want a one-song playlist to ensure the a particular song will play and then stop when it's finished. If that's the case, make sure that the loop feature is switched off or you could build a fill safe in by putting a track of sounds right after it. For a longer list, you'll see a total time for the playlist down here at the bottom. That's useful if you know that you need to fill an hour. Remember that for any background music you can use the loop and shuffle controls over here. You may also wanna peak into the iTunes playback settings and enable a sound check to prevent songs from playing in different volumes. Also, the cross-fade setting up here can be useful for keeping the party music going without any breaks in between. With all of your playlist filled out and organized the way you want them, your wedding music is now plotted out step-by-step and you could give it a trial run to make sure that it sounds right. Also, since this is in iTunes already, be sure to synch all of the playlist to any iPod, iPhone or iPad that you might already have just in case the computer gets a glass of champagne unintentionally. Finally, if iTunes is gonna be playing you down the aisle, find someone you trust to handle the queues. It's not a tough gig but you'll want someone who's not gonna be an emotional wreck and also someone who can pace themselves on the old liquor. It's a fun job though and for someone who has done this for other people, I can say personally that it feels pretty good to play this small but important role in the ceremony. So that's the jist of using iTunes to DJ your own wedding. Don't miss my full write-up on CNET's How To blog and enjoy the honeymoon.