A wedding is a special event and the reception is a time to celebrate and create great memories with family and friends. There’s no better way to do that than with an exciting live band (avoiding the pitfalls of hiring a DJ for your big day). But since there are probably hundreds of bands for hire in Texas alone, how do you find and hire the wedding band that will make your reception a smashing success?
Picking the Perfect Band For Your Party
Here are four tips that will help you to weed out the bands that aren’t a good fit and, ultimately, choose a great band.
1. Review the Song List
When it comes to the subject of how to pick a wedding band, music is definitely important. Does the band you’re considering have a large selection of songs to choose from? Equally important, does their selection include tunes that people of all age groups will enjoy?
At wedding receptions, it’s not uncommon to have younger people such as cousins, nieces, and nephews, as well as older people such as grandparents. You want them all to have a great time so it’s best that there’s music from the 50’s onward to please everyone.
Additionally, you’ll want a band that can play a softer set with standards and slower music. What for? During dinner especially, you’ll want everyone to be able to just be able to relax, converse with ease, and enjoy their meal. A lower volume makes this much easier to achieve (and adds a bit of class to your reception too!).
The band who’s really going to rock a party with a diverse crowd of tastes should provide an extensive and versatile playlist!
2. Listen to the Band
If the song list passes inspection, it’s time to move on to the next order of business. Any professional band will have live videos that you can watch to see them in action. Watch these demos and compare them with three or four other bands to see if you like what you hear.
Goods bands will also allow you the opportunity to come see them live. If you can do this, do it! There’s no better way to find out what you may be getting than to attend an actual performance.
Bonus Tip: Here’s a little secret and something you should pay attention to if you go to see a band live before hiring. You’ll want to make sure that the drummer is playing electronic drums, which sound better and make a world of difference when it comes to the overall volume of the band.
Acoustic drums tend to be very loud, especially if the drummer is a hard hitter. This has a domino effect and can cause the rest of the band to turn up the volume to be able to hear themselves. As a result, your wedding guests will wind up with banging headaches, you’ll see the old folks running to the nearest drugstore to buy earplugs, and people may leave early. You don’t want this so don’t forget to ask about the drum kit!
3. Check Out the Vocalists
Sure, there are plenty of talented male vocalists out there. However, you’ll also want a female vocalist to cover the tunes sung by women. You know your guests are going to want to hear them so you’ll want the performances to be as authentic and enjoyable as possible. Listen to our all our vocalists do their thing in our highlight video.
4. Consider the Cost
All bands are not made equal, that’s for sure. Hiring a band is a “you get what you pay for” type of thing. Cheaper bands are usually cheaper for a reason. They aren’t as experienced, as a professional, or as entertaining as the higher-priced bands.
You want top-notch quality. You want a band that sounds just like the record, can choose the perfect songs based on crowd response and can keep the dance floor packed all night long. So, yes, it might cost a bit more, but a truly professional band will be well worth the money.
The Grooves are proof of this. Started in 1991 by Ron Ronhaar, this wedding band has been the go-to band in Texas ever since. The Grooves play 100+ receptions a year across the state and have a reputation for keeping the dance floor packed all night long with songs that people of all ages love. We’re sure you’d agree that this is the type of band worth booking!
How to Hire a Band For a Wedding
What have we learned so far? As far as how to choose a wedding band, music is key, along with the sound, makeup, and cost. Let’s say that you’ve found a great band based on that advice. Now you need to know how to book a band. What are some of the steps involved in this process?
- If your band is flexible, decide how many instruments and singers you want. For example, The Grooves can offer a 3 to 10-piece band to accommodate different budgets, venues, and other needs.
- Discuss what will be included in the cost so that there are no surprises on the day of. You’ll want to make sure that your band will be fully equipped to put on a fantastic show. Also, if you need additional equipment or services such as microphones or an MC, be sure to ask about those things. For our part, The Grooves are not only willing and able but delighted to help supply equipment needed to make your event a success!
- Choose a versatile band with a broad song list. You can probably think of at least a few songs that you, your friends, and family love. Make a list of these to see if your band can play them. Even if not, some bands may be able to DJ a playlist for you in between their sets so make sure to ask how special requests will be handled. Our band is based in Austin, the live music capital of the world, where we’ve played in dozens of bands of all types and have the song list and videos to prove our chops at a range of sounds!
- Review the contract thoroughly before signing. Make sure that all the details are just as you’ve discussed. And, of course, if you don’t understand something, ask about it before you sign.
It’s Time to Choose!
If you’ve made it this far, you’re well prepared to choose a fantastic band that will make it easy for you and your guests to have a wonderful time. Now it’s time to put in practice what you’ve learned and make your choice.
As you do, though, be sure to avoid these four common mistakes people make when booking a band.
- If you want people to dance, don’t hire an original band.
- Don’t hire a theme band.
- Don’t pick songs based on a wild guess or even your personal taste.
- Make sure the band is not too loud.
If you keep these in mind, you’ll end up with a fantastic result and a memorable reception.