Planning a wedding can be overwhelming at times and can take up to the best part of a year to organise. Choosing and booking your wedding musicians requires careful deliberation, and it is important to get this right.
You are probably deliberating which wedding musicians you should hire, so we are going to provide you with some options for the ceremony, afternoon drinks reception and the evening’s entertainment.
We will take you through the booking guide and throw in some tips along the way.
1. The wedding ceremony
2. The drinks reception
3. The evening entertainment
4. Booking your wedding musicians
5. Final thoughts
The Wedding Ceremony
Live musicians for the ceremony are a great option and would bring a touch of elegance and charm to the occasion. Three of the most popular choices are:
These string instruments sound exceptionally heavenly when performed in a church or venue with similar acoustics.
What could be lovelier than a solo musician like a harpist, violinist, or a string quartet performing while your guests are waiting for the ceremony to begin? They don’t take long to set up, and would usually play for around 20 minutes or so. Make sure you let them know any special songs you require, and they will make sure it is added to the list.
Wedding musicians are not just restricted to performing before the ceremony but also for:
1. The arrival of the bride
2. Performing while singing hymns
3. Signing of the register
4. Leaving the ceremony
Eleanor is available for wedding ceremonies and drinks reception and has a wide range of repertoire from classical to popular covers. She can play with or without backing tracks and is happy to take a special song request you may have.
The Drinks Reception
The reception is an opportunity for your guests to mingle and have conversations with family and friends and distant cousins they haven’t seen for a while. This is a great time to have some background music and a string quartet would be ideal.
A string quartet comprises four musicians who play a variety of string instruments, consisting of a cello, viola, and two violins. The violinists provide a song’s melody; the viola supports the mid-range harmonies; the cellist plays the bassline. They play together to create a harmonious piece of music perfect for a wedding. These wedding musicians not only play classical music but more popular chart songs everyone will know, rock and pop have you have never heard before.
Popular music played with classical instruments is surging in popularity, and you could even have your acoustic quartet perform as an electric string quartet providing a bit more energy to the event.
All you need would be 4 chairs with no armrests allowing them to play freely.
Classic & Electric Strings are one of the North West’s leading string ensembles. They are available for hire throughout the UK as a leading classical or electric string quartet. They will provide the perfect musical experience to enhance your memorable day.
Other options for a drink's reception could be acoustic roaming bands which would be perfect if your reception is outdoors on a sunny afternoon. These roaming musicians will mix and mingle with your guests providing a more upbeat drinks reception.
Bella Acoustic is a roaming band based in London consisting of 4 amazing musicians with 4 stunning voices. Playing songs from every era & genre, the girls bring infectious energy & charm to your wedding day.
You could hire a jazz band and have them play in the background during your reception, it will be cool. You’ll be ensuring that you and your guests have lots of conversations, fun, and laughter. Jazz bands come in all shapes and sizes, but for an afternoon reception, a 3 or 4 pieces would be ideal.
Another favourite option for couples is acoustic duos consisting of a vocalist and acoustic guitarist. The reason these are a great option is their versatility. They can perform at the ceremony and for your drinks reception they can play chilled background songs or can up the tempo with your favourite toe-tapping pop favourites. They can then comfortably provide an evening’s entertainment that would keep the dance floor busy.
The Bandits are a high-energy wedding acoustic duo bringing you the best in popular music. Katharina and Mike are professional musicians who work together to bring innovative sounds to songs both old and new. Katharina brings a unique and stunning vocal performance accompanied by Mike on acoustic guitar including a looping pedal.
Other wedding musicians could be a pianist, bagpiper and of course the saxophonist. A sax player will have a large repertoire of tunes to pick from and can easily tailor their performance to your specific tastes and requirements.
The Evening Entertainment
In most cases, this is where your entertainment will become livelier, and you will want to create an atmosphere and an evening everyone will enjoy and remember for a long time.
There are endless choices here, if you don’t use any of the type of musicians we have previously discussed for the evening’s entertainment, you are more than likely considering the option to hire a band.
There are so many options for band hire covering many genres and styles. You need to select a band that not only you and your partner will enjoy but one that your family and friends are going to like, and will keep the dance floor full.
Here are a few ideas:
Funk & Soul Band
Indie Rock Band
Vintage Swing Band
Electro Swing Band
All these bands you will find on our website, or you could go for a function band that will cover different genres, thus providing music from various decades.
A professional band will usually perform 2 x 60 minute sets with a short break and many also offer a DJ service.
All bands will bring a PA system and some stage lighting.
They will also take the time to learn your special song for the first dance.
Booking Your Wedding Musicians
Booking a wedding musician is easy through Music8, a deposit will be required to secure your musicians and then a contract will be drawn up for you and the artist. Final payment of the outstanding balance will be required the week of the wedding.
Will they learn a song?
Yes, if you want to have your special song for the first dance for example then your musicians will always take the time to learn this for you.
Can I speak to the musicians before booking?
The simple answer is yes, we think it is a good idea to do this just to put your mind at ease and know you have booked the right musicians for you.
Do I Need to Provide Anything?
A supply of soft drinks and a buffet-style meal would be very much appreciated especially if they are booked for 2 or 3 stages of your wedding day.
Check that they can park as close to the venue as possible to save time unloading their equipment.
If you are holding an event outdoors your wedding musicians will need some cover like a gazebo and electrical supply.
Always check if the venue has a sound limiter in place.
With so many wedding musicians to choose from we hope you found this guide useful in your search. It is always a good idea once you have a date in place for your wedding to book early, especially if it falls between the months of May-October which is the main wedding season.
Prices will vary depending on how many musicians, the distance they have to travel, and in some cases, accommodation may be required.
It is always a good idea to create a budget and stick to it, and if you want music throughout the day then you can save money by utilising some musicians we have discussed by performing for 2 or even all 3 phases of your wedding day.
If any songs that are on your musicians repertoire that you don’t want to be played make sure you let them know.
Please feel free to get in touch for a no-obligation free quote for any musician or band.
If you require any information at all please do get in touch we are always happy to help.