How Much Should I Pay for a Wedding Band?

Typing ‘Manchester Wedding Band’ into Google gives you a lot of results and with these results, a lot of prices. You might see one band charge £900 but the next one is asking for £2000. Is the £2000 that much better? What makes them charge so much more? In the back of your head you’ll probably be thinking “they’re playing songs for two hours, seems like a very good business to be in!” or “They look like they’re having too much fun for it to be an actual job”. That though, is the magic of having a wedding band. It’s not just a cover of Mr Brightside by the Killers, or Perfect by Ed Sheeran (a playlist on Spotify could get you that at a fraction of the cost!), a great wedding band brings with it the emotion, energy and experience to get everyone off their bums and onto the dance floor.

To answer our question then, we first need to ask a few others;

• Do you need music at different parts of the day?
• Do you need different types of music during the day?
• Do you need just enough music to get you down the aisle?
• Do you want to blow the reception away with a line up to rival a small festival or something smaller and more intermit?

Even with answers to these questions, it’s still tricky but for the most part it comes down to four areas;

• Performance time
• Practice
• Equipment
• People
• Performance
• Time

Let’s start with performance time. It’s the thing you see, you know how long they play for at your wedding and arguably it’s the only thing that matters to you. Their performance on the night has to be perfect for you to get value for money regardless of how much you pay. If there’s only one thing you look into, look into this. Have they got good reviews? Do they have testimonials? Have they got videos of past performances? Do you get a good feeling when you speak to them? Always trust your gut in this regard and you probably won’t go far wrong. Practise You’ll never see this but it will have been longer that the performance by a significant margin. It has to be, the musicians know there’s no room for mistakes on the night. Even if one of them has played a song a thousand times before, someone else in the band may not have, and much like a football team, you can’t rely on one member you have to be all in sync and that comes with practice.

How can you make sure your wedding band put the time in together when not performing however? Well one good sign is they have pre established set lists. Whilst you’ll probably want to request a few songs, a good wedding band will have a few trusted set lists they not only know they can perform well; they know your guests will respond to them. So if your wedding band has established set lists it’s a good sign they know what they’re doing, have spent more time practising together and will deliver a better performance on the night. It’s also a sign they might cost a little more but for good reason!

Equipment - well, once a guitarist’s got one guitar that’s it right? Putting aside the guitarists who collects them like they’re Pokémon, there are actually guitars for different styles of music which all might be needed on the night, just don’t ask them to explain what they are all for, your evening won’t be long enough! Drummers have a more ‘practical’ reason for lots of equipment and it can have a big impact on your day. The sight of a full drum kit going full pelt can be great and get the room moving, however a drummer won’t always be able to bring their full setup for two reasons. One, there simply might not be room. The second being sound limiters. Many venues have these and they have the largest impact on the drummer. Vocals, guitars, bass all get hooked up to speakers and speakers have volume controls. Drum kits however, they are loud enough without help, but really struggle to be quiet. Drummers need a second set of drums in the form of an electric drum kit to cater for these kinds of venues.

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