Choosing a wedding band can be tough – there are so many options! Take a look at our guide on how to choose a wedding band for some handy tips: http://groovemanuva.co.uk/blog/8-things-to-consider-when-hiring-a-band-for-your-wedding-party-or-event/
Once you have a band booked, there are things which you need to do to make sure that the band can provide the best service to you. Bands WANT to be able to give you a great service and the more you can do to help them out, the easier it will be for them to ensure that you and your guests have the time of your lives!
1. Your band should take the lead
A good party band will have done an event like yours many times before. They know what works and they know what needs to be arranged to make sure they can give you the best service possible. Let them know exactly what you want and then listen to them to work out how best to achieve it. Your band should give you very clear details about the service they provide along with their quote. They should communicate with you as the booking firms up – this is the mark of professionals!
2. Ideal arrival/set up times
Bands need time to set up. They will have lots of equipment to bring in to the venue, connect everything up, troubleshoot any issues with the venue and spend time getting the sound system sounding its best.
Speak to your wedding organiser at the earliest opportunity to make sure that they are aware that a band is booked.
Usually the wedding band will be more than happy to discuss logistics with the venue leaving you free to focus on other things.
If you do get involved in the logistics, the ideal situation is that the band will be playing in a separate room to where your guests will be in the afternoon. This allows them time to set up without getting in your way or interrupting other things that you have going on at that time. Normally a band will need 1-2 hours to get set up depending on the number of members.
Here is an example of a typical set-up schedule:
Band arrival – 5.30pm
Finish setting up – 7.30pm
Guests arrive – 8pm
First dance – 8.30pm
3. Less than ideal set-up arrangements
Often the band will be playing in the same room that you and your guests will be occupying in the afternoon. If this is the case then again, it would be a good idea to speak to your wedding planner about how this will work. Maybe it’s possible to arrange for people to move outside for a period of time? If that is not possible then the band will be able to set up with your guests around. However, this is not ideal and may be distracting for people trying to have conversations whilst a drummer keeps hitting his snare drum!
4. Song Lists
The band should have given you a list of the songs that they play – that is how you decided you wanted to book them! Some will have given you a list as long as the function you have booked them for (maybe 2 hours) and some will give you a list containing maybe 4 hours of music. This is the music they will be able to play for you.
Let the band run the night – they know how to work the crowd and re-order songs on the fly depending on what is happening.
You will probably be able to make requests for songs (see the next point) but generally you should feel that you can trust the band to deliver the entertainment you will have experienced when you saw their promo.
5. Requesting songs
Most function bands will have no problem learning a first dance or an extra song of your choice. Just let them know in plenty of time so they have chance to rehearse it! It’s also worth thinking about the type of song you want them to play. For example, you will probably get a better result choosing a commitments song than one by lady gaga..
6. Noise Limiters
These things are literally an event organiser’s worst nightmare! When sound goes above a certain level, the power to the room cuts out and the music stops. Do you want something like this spoiling your wedding?!
If the venue has a noise limiter then it needs to be disabled.
If it can’t then most (if not all) bands will not be able to play there. It will wreck your evening as well as the band’s equipment. You have been warned!
7. Food and Drink
Your musicians will have likely travelled for up to 3 hours to get to you. They will have shifted heavy speakers and been worrying if the logistics of the venue will allow them to a put on a good show for you. Normally there will be food available at your event so you need to make sure there is a little extra available for the band.
You don’t need to provide alcoholic drinks but soft drinks and tea/coffee should be available also.
8. Speak to your band!
These people don’t have this job because the income is lucrative (it’s not!). They do it because they genuinely love to entertain people. They WANT you to have a great time so why not harness this enthusiasm? They will want to speak to you and make sure things are going well for you.
Go and speak to your band on the night (they will love it), and discuss how things are going.
At weddings and events the real magic happens when your guests and the band really get on and the sparks fly! They just want to be treated well. Do that and you have a recipe for the best night of your life!
• Give your wedding organiser the details of your band nice and early (a few months before at least).
• Get the logistics sorted out in terms of arrival times and times you want certain things to happen during your event.
• Tell the band in plenty of time about any specific things you want them to do and make sure they have all the details about the venue where they will be playing.
• On the day make sure there is some food and chat with them about the event so they know what to expect.
Do all that and your band should be able to make sure you all have a cracking time!