The Bride & Groom Quick Live Music Guide.
Most wedding live music bands have played 100’s of weddings over the year, from London to right across the UK. We find that it is the part where the groom can feel more involved and feels fully involved. The music and entertainment! Ensuring everyone is having a good old knees up at the penultimate or maybe even end of the evening before the DJ shouts last orders.
‘What is the last impression we will be leaving on our guests minds before walking home with suitably tired feet or full tummys from the classic hog roast’… THE WEDDING BAND!
Here are some tips for ensuring that you pick the right band for your magical day.
1) Close Your Eyes & Get Creative!
What do you both want? This is your big day. Write a list of all the things you may need from a band & how you ideally want this day to go;
* Everyone up dancing
* Don’t play any Lady Gaga!
* Finish at XXX time
* We need music in between your sets
* We love XXX style of music.
Once you’ve found your band(s) you have in mind, quite simply ask these questions. If you can, GET WHAT YOU WANT! Entertainment bands should be honest and know what they can/ cannot do. They may even adhere to a special request just for you!
Some ‘extras’ may cost more, but if it is within your budget & possible then those are 2 very large steps to making it happen!
Tip: BE FAIR! Most bands are specialists in there field. If they can do it, go for it but if they cannot, maybe try and find someone else who can or find a compromise.
First impressions count. Speak to the band leader or Management. This should give you an idea of the run up to your big day. Good detailed communication is key!
Lets be honest, a wedding band is not (or shouldn’t be), the cheapest part of your evening! You should be able to speak to them and communicate the musical element of your evening and it should make sense.
Though we are the professionals, what we will be doing should be able to be translated in a way that makes complete sense to you. You should not be confused by anything.
Have you seen videos of the band? Can you see them live? Does the main singer have charisma or do they blend into the background. Do you feel, hand on heart that this band, can keep your guests on the dance-floor. You should be confident that they can be left to do there jobs while you party away with your guests who are having an unforgettable day.
Tip: Follow your heart. You should be able to speak to the band leader/ management team about anything. Its your big day and you want it perfect (& so should they!)
Speak To The Venue About Restrictions.
This is so important. Now you may get the band of your dreams but how will they sound in the venue of your dreams. A good quality sound engineer will be able to help with a lot of acoustics and obstacles but a lot of venues have sound limiters now. The worst thing is hearing the start of what could have been a great song if it was in a different venue! An honest band should not want you to be disappointed or waste your money.
Tip; Check if the venue has any sound restrictions, check if the band can be down or up sized. There are ways around everything. If your stuck, see if the band leader can speak to the venue to get all the answers needed.
Do I Want The Band To Play My 1s Dance?
Now any band can play the same songs they play day in and out for years but can the band you have chosen, deliver your 1st dance as Mr & Mrs to the standard you expect in front of everyone you hold close to your heart. Don’t be afraid to ask! ” Can you play the 1st dance live?”. If you have given them enough time (more than 3 weeks for a busy band) this shouldn’t be a problem unless your asking a pop band to play an obscure symphony known only to the exclusively elite gentry! A popular song should be more than enough for a wedding band to be able to deliver.
Tip: Give the band more than enough time to practice your 1st dance and get it right.
Can I Choose Songs From The Playlist?
This is a tricky one. The fact is, it is your wedding day & (with hope), your only one! Why shouldn’t you have a few songs that you want & show off to your guests that you know how to be a live music DJ too? Why does the band have to play ‘Brown Eyed Girl’, when you hate that song?
The fact is, a good wedding band, should have a talk with you about what type of live music you like and don’t like as well as help you find the songs that you and your guests love.
Don’t be afraid to say “Please do NOT play XXX” & if they say, ” We only play XXX’ and it is not what you want, this sounds like there may be a problem. On the other hand, with a professional band that have been doing it for years, we know the surprising songs that get the dance-floor pumping (the classic walking dance from chair to dance-floor. We’ve all done it!), which can sometimes be as much of a shock to the client as it was for us the 1st time we performed it!
Tip: Pick a few songs to give the band an idea of your preference but trust the band and allow them to use there professional judgement.
Communication With Wedding Event & Wedding Organisers
This may seam like a given, but I hear time and time again when speaking to event organisers and wedding planners that the band can sometimes be the hardest people to pin down and at times giving the most vague information. This should not be the case. In my experience, our job as the band is to make your life easier in the entertainment department where most of our clients are not professionals. Our job is to know the information, send it to you with ease and if not, we can let you know (usually within 48 hours max)
It should not be difficult to get clear answers & for the band to communicate with the DJ, Event Organiser, Wedding Organiser, Venue Manager or you.
We should know about the the stage size we need, our insurance for the venue, an idea of the songs were going to play and for how long and our objectives for how we see the evening.
Tip: Make your questions really clear so there is no confusion on the day.
Do They Suit Your Cool?
Now excuse me for being superficial and I am in now way implying that the music is not the most important thing but your wedding band needs to fit you! If your have gone for a certain theme for your day, do the entertainment match up with that? Let them know what you want to create and get some ideas on how they can ensure they will fit in with that.
Do you want the classic all black suited wedding band or a band with a bit more flare? Will jeans and a crinkled shirt be suffice while the band muddle through Mustang Sally or a well polished band that work as the additional icing on your cake!
At S.H.E!, we pride ourselves in being on trend and enjoy our attire being part of our performance. Its just who we are. For some, this is not important but we like to also represent who we are and our clientele. The classy, quirky professional from London.
We are often asked about our outfits dependant on the event and this is never a problem (in fact we love it!)
In conclusion, go with your heart. Write down what you want and ensure everyone knows there role with enough notice. Your job on your wedding day is to enjoy it, soak it all in and leave the worrying to the professionals!