Unless you’ve been responsible for booking live entertainment before, it’s likely that you wouldn’t have a clue where to start looking for something suitable for your special day.
Gill Mallon, from York band agency Electrifying Promotions, has years of experience in the business and has some sound suggestions to help make sure you hit all the right notes with your musical choices and don’t end up with an empty dance floor.
Asking the right questions
Planning a major event such as a wedding can be overwhelming, and it’s understandable you’d want all the help you can get. Booking a DJ or a live band can be daunting, it’s not easy to know the right questions to ask or where you stand with negotiating the price when it comes to music.
Agents like Electrifying Promotions can offer a cost-effective and convenient way to take some of the pressure off your shoulders. We can save you hours of research by listening to your needs and narrowing down your options based on your preferences and budget, without you having to spend ages looking through pages of information. We will deal with the musicians on your behalf and handle the payment so you’re not digging around for cash at the end of your special day.
Get the party started
Here at Electrifying Promotions we currently have 30 bands on our books, covering a broad range of styles from rock and funk, pop and disco, soul and Motown, to opera and swing. Whatever your tastes, you can pretty much guarantee we’ll have something to suit you!
Choosing a musical style is usually the main priority (and you may need to think about your guests or audience too, not just your personal taste) but there are also practicalities to consider relating to the venue – how big is the area where the band will be? Is it large enough to accommodate a five-piece band with drum kit and amps or would you be better off looking at an acoustic duo? Does the venue have any noise restrictions such as a sound limiter? A sound limiter is a devious bit of kit that will cut off the power supply to the band if they get louder than the maximum decibels, which is a major party pooper.
It’s a good idea to think about not just your evening reception where most couples like to see all their friends and loved ones having a good knees up, but also other parts of the day where you might enjoy musical accompaniment, perhaps an operatic aria in church or some gentle guitar strumming at the wedding breakfast.
Bands on Electrifying Promotion’s books tend to do two 45-minute sets, but something else to consider is the ‘inbetween’ times – options include having a DJ to cover this, or loading up an iPod with background played over the band’s amp. Some bands might be able to cover these periods themselves with more low-key sounds.
I’d also recommend looking after the band members – the musicians need time to set up and pack away so they are often there from 6pm to gone midnight. They do work hard and really appreciate being fed and watered.
Can I pick the playlist?
Most bands prefer that you select the songs from their playlist which you definitely do and don’t want, then leave them to structure your choices into a workable order. People sometimes make the mistake of thinking they need to work out exactly which songs they want, but really you just need to establish the style of music you want and the sort of atmosphere you’d like to create, the band will do the rest.
It’s important to choose the right act for your music choices, there’s no point expecting an act to play a song that’s totally removed from their musical style. The band will need to consider a number of variables in order to ensure their sets flow well and they will know which songs within their repertoire are dance floor fillers. Feel free to make an input but let the band bring their experience to bear when finalising the actual playlist.
Finally, plan ahead! Please don’t leave your booking too late, sometimes we can pull things together in three weeks but it’s much safer to book up to a year in advance.
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