Wedding Music Guide
A journey through the wedding day exploring how some of our previous clients have used live music to make it completely unforgettable. You’ll find useful advice & suggestions plus information on pricing and logistics in our complete wedding music guide for your special day.
Wow Entertainment: Tips for the ultimate wedding
Before arranging any musical treats for your wedding, we recommend talking with the venue to find out what their policy is on entertainment. Many listed buildings and venues within residential areas may have a sound limiter which might restrict the type of band you have on the day. They may also require performers to be set up earlier than the artist requires which could significantly add to the cost of your entertainment. It is also worth checking how much room is available for bands / singers to perform. Some venues may have to rearrange the tables after the wedding breakfast to accommodate the evening entertainment and most venues will want to see artists’ Public Liability Insurance and PAT certification for any electrical equipment prior to performance. The Book Live team can help with these arrangements and liaise with your venue and our artists to ensure a trouble-free performance.
Once your venue has confirmed everything is okay your live wedding music search begins and the Wow Team will be delighted to make suggestions from our portfolio of superb live bands and singers – we make good things happen.
The average wedding lasts nearly 10 hours so there is plenty of opportunity to add different musical flavours throughout the day so here are a few of the most popular moments to have live music
Traditional & Elegant
Classical music is a firm favourite for music at the wedding ceremony. Greet guests with some elegant music before having the regal sounds of the wedding procession played by a professional string quartet or trio. Alternatively, have the ensemble play your favourite songs by request for a really bespoke wedding.
Prices from £425 | Browse String Ensembles
Pomp & Circumstance
Enjoy the warm tones of a cool brass band playing anything from jazz, pop and show tunes to classical music. The flexibility of a brass band can be key to the success of your wedding ceremony. Being completely acoustic allows them to play outdoors as guests arrive and move inside for the service. A great option for British summers.
Prices from £660 | Browse Brass Bands
Personal & Uplifting
Hire a singer to add a really personal touch to the service with a heartfelt song or uplifting music that will make your ceremony stand out. Many brides choose a solo performance of one of their favourites songs and, subject to content, it can be ideal whether the service is at a registry office or in a church.
Prices from £400 | Browse Wedding Singers
Sophisticated, classical, refined
Harpists are very popular entertainment for the drinks reception. The music includes jazz, easy listening, show tunes. and a selection of pop / chart songs that might surprise a few of your guests. The elegance of a harpist really sets the tone for the day and is a great value live music option.
Prices from £250+ | Browse Wedding Harpists
Smooth, warm, timeless
A swing singer is an extremely popular addition to many wedding drinks receptions. The music includes hits from Sinatra, Michael Bublé, Matt Monroe and more. Your guests will be familiar with the songs and a cool swing singer adds a stylish touch to the reception – just like a Vegas show.
Prices from £500+ | Browse Swing Singers
Spicy, vibrant, different
Add an international flavour to your drinks reception with a Spanish guitarist or Latin music from one of the UK’s favourite Gypsy King Style bands. These are ideal for indoor receptions or for outdoors why not hire a Caribbean steel band or even a Bollywood themed band.
Prices from £280 | Browse World Music
Wedding Music For The Evening Party
Playing everyone’s favourite music from the last 50 years, our fabulous function bands are perfect for the evening entertainment. Choose your favourite from amazing party bands, soul, Indie, 70s & 80s music and much more. Available as trios to full blown show bands with brass. They’ll also look after the music when not performing for the perfect wedding celebration.
Prices from £780 | Browse Function Bands
Wow Entertainment has some of the UK’s best jazz & swing bands playing classic big band hits from Glen Miller, Sinatra, the Rat Pack and the golden age of swing. Fancy a jive or a boogie-woogie shuffle? Perhaps you’re celebrating with a 1920’s theme where you can dance the night away to the Charleston? Whatever you decide, swing is a great alternative to a traditional party band.
Prices from £1250 | Browse Jazz & Swing Bands
Ideal for smaller venues and budgets, our fantastic unplugged acoustic singers and bands add a great atmosphere to parties. They cover most of the same music that function bands play and perform but stripped backed or with backing tracks. As always, it’s all about the atmosphere they create and live music rocks even without a powerful sound system.
Prices from £360 | Browse Acoustic Bands
Wedding Music On A Budget
Sometimes our budget won’t stretch to having our dream wedding full of great live music. Here are a few ideas to keep costs down:
- Avoid the peak days. The majority of couples tie the knot on a Saturday between May and September. You can save £££’s by getting married on any other day and if your celebrations are not in the peak-season you may find discounts on all your wedding suppliers
- Hiring local bands / singers to save money on travel expenses / overnight accommodation
- Avoiding early set up fees. Most bands / singers can set up in under an hour. They will usually charge extra if you need them to set up several hours before their performance
- Hiring 1x act that can provide the music for different parts of the day. Many artists can perform jazz, soul, party music and may also be able to provide a DJ service as well
- Let the venue help with recorded music. It isn’t essential to have live music for the whole day. Your venue may be able to play CD’s or background music during the drinks reception or meal. Decide what you want the highlight of your wedding day to be and allocate the budget specifically for that rather than splitting a small budget between 2 x or more acts
- Let your guests contribute towards the evening entertainment. Add the band to your wedding gift list – a novel way to have a memorable night plus all your guests benefit
- Book early. Hiring a live band 12-18 months in advance can save you around 10% on the total cost and it will also avoid any problems with availability
- Use a respected Wedding Music Agency as they will likely have secured discounted rates for their artists and their contracts mean your entertainment will be secure for your big day without any hassles
We don’t recommend:
- Using a friend’s band. This can often lead to disappointment because they will be missing out on a paid gig plus they won’t be able to enjoy your wedding as much because they are ‘working’. This is the second most common reason that brides contact us after being let down. (The first being that an un-contracted band has cancelled)
- Leaving it until the last minute. It’s rare that bands will offer last minute discounts as they will be more in demand as availability dries up for other artists
- Hiring the cheapest act you can find. It is always better to have a DJ than hire an awful singer or band. No-one wants to listen to bad live music
What does a live band need to perform?
Most live bands have a requirement list for performances – this is called a ryder. A typical ryder is:
- Access to a power supply. They will usually need 2 or 3 x standard power sockets and they will bring suitable cables / connectors to power their equipment
- A suitable performance area. A 4 piece band will need approx 4 x 3metres; a 6-8 piece live band will need approx 6 x 4metres
- 30 minutes to set up for acoustic artists to set up; Up to 45 minutes for a solo singer to set up; 60-90 minutes to set up. Bands don’t want to disturb your event but
- they would also rather not sit around for hours ahead of a performance so they usually arrive at a suitable time to set up around 2 hours ahead of the party.
- Hot food for each band member and soft drinks. You will get the best out of the band if you look after them whilst they are with you.
- A changing / chill-out area where they can also leave their valuables.
- Parking spaces to be provided or paid for.
Can I go and see the band before I book?
Some bands do have public performances but most don’t as these gigs are usually in pubs and clubs and most of the bands we represent prefer not to do these. We’ve included as many live videos of the bands on their pages so you can see them as well as listen to their audio samples. Remember, too, if a band does have a public performance, they may get booked for your date by the time you get to see them. We are unable to arrange for any prospective client to go and see a band at someone else’s wedding or private party.
How does payment work?
A deposit is due at the point of booking. Wow Entertainment can accept payments by Cheque or Bank Transfer.
Balance payments should be settled directly with the band leader either 2 weeks in advance or in cash on the night so they can pay all the band members promptly.
Why Hire Wedding Music With Wow Entertainment?
Wow Entertainment is one of the UK’s most respected entertainment agents supplying superb live bands and singers for weddings, parties and corporate events. We have worked with customers at the highest level and we offer a completely impartial service. Most agencies have a house band that they are trying to sell and the rest of their portfolio may not get a look-in. We have pre-vetted all of our artists and offer a Peace of mind guarantee:
- All of our artists have been selected for their professionalism, musicianship and performance, so we know that every event will be special for all the right reasons.
- The Book Live team regularly go and see our acts perform so we know what clients can expect before they book.
- Public Liability Insurance and PAT certification can be provided on request for any performances.
- All bookings are secured by contract with both the client and the artist for complete peace of mind.
- We provide a 24/7 emergency number should you need to talk with us.
- Our artists all have regular deputy musicians so an event will never be compromised. In addition, Wow Entertainment can provide replacements for our singers in the unlikely event that something unexpected happens [subject to availability].
What else do I need to know?
We hope we have covered all bases. If you have a question then please get in touch and we will do our best to answer it.