Planning your dream wedding involves many decisions, and choosing the right live entertainment can set the tone for an unforgettable celebration. As you embark on this exciting journey, it's crucial to ask the right questions to ensure the perfect harmony on your special day. In this guide, we'll explore the key questions to ask when considering live entertainment for your wedding, helping you navigate availability, musical preferences, logistics, and more. Let's make sure your wedding is headlined by the party you deserve.
Availability and Booking:
Are you available on our wedding date?
Hopefully. Head to our website, fill out a few details about your event here and we will get back to you as soon as possible.
How far in advance do we need to book our live wedding band?
When it comes to wedding suppliers. There is no such thing as too early to book. Especially in peak months and Saturday dates are like hot cakes and can be sold out two or even three years in advance. If you have a dream supplier, lock them down as soon as you possibly can.
What is your booking process, and what is required to secure our date?
To secure a date a small deposit is required. This is usually around 20-25% of the overall fee.
What is your musical/style specialty?
We play most genres, Pop, Rock, Soul, Blues, Funk among others. As a three guitar based band however most songs have a rockier edge to them. If pushed on our favourite genres though we would probably say Pop Punk, Indie and Rock.
Can you provide samples of your previous live performances or references from past UK weddings?
We are constantly updating our YouTube channel, Social media and website with our performances at real weddings. We have numerous reviews you can check out too on our Facebook page and business listing on Google. Finally as it is hard to see us live in person almost exclusively only playing private events we organize and perform our own event each year. Tickets to 'SouthWestBand - Live in Leeds 2024' can be found here
Are you open to incorporating specific songs or genres into your performance?
Yes, we do often take requests. Both before the event and even during the night. Incorporating requests makes your event more bespoke and a more personal experience than playing the same set every event.
How much space and set-up time do you require?
Depending on the load in and logistics of the stage at your venue we generally need between 60 and 80 minutes. This usually matches up with the time your venue will need to turn the room round from wedding breakfast to evening reception. In terms of space we generally need a 6x4m area to perform at our max.
Do you have any specific technical requirements, such as power outlets or sound equipment?
In terms of power we require two to four standard household style plug sockets. When a marquee or Tipi is involved this requires a generator too but we can use the same as the rest of the suppliers and use extensions.
Can you perform in both indoor and outdoor settings?
Yes we are equally at home in traditional indoor venues or outdoor weddings like marquees and Tipis. We can also play 'open air' but this is dependent on British weather. We're not waterproof and cant play in gloves in winter.
Repertoire and Customization:
Can we request specific songs for key moments (e.g., first dance, entrance)?
Yes. We often learn and perform first dances for our couples, this is included in our price.
Do you take song requests from guests during the event?
Yes we can take requests. We probably won't play the macarena live but generally we can give most songs a go. If not we can play it during our DJ sets.
Are you open to learning new songs that are not in your current repertoire?
Each wedding has a bespoke rehearsal. Often this is to learn and rehearse your first dance, but if you've chosen to not have a first dance or use the original recording the time can be allocated to learning a song of your choosing.
Duration and Breaks:
How long is your typical performance set, and how many sets do you usually play?
Generally at around 80% of weddings and events we will play two sets. One 40 minute set after your first dance or cake cutting as a 'taster'. We will play some feel goo tunes, classics for your older guests as well as a couple of throwbacks or special requests. This is a little warmup and gets people in the mood while they loosen up for the evening. The second set is longer and 'rockier'. As well as playing more classics all your guests can get down to we will drop some indie throwbacks and pop punk bangers for all you millennials before bringing it back round to some singalong classics to round off the night.
Do you take breaks, and if so, how long are they?
We will usually take an hour or so break between performances. This is usually to make room for evening food. Dancing and food don't normally mix, especially if you have opted for a sit down buffet.
Is there an option to extend the performance if needed?
Yes we can always stay for longer whether that be extending our live band or DJ sets. This comes with an additional fee per half hour extra.
Costs and Packages:
What is your pricing structure, and what does it include (e.g., travel, equipment)?
Along with our performance our prices include full lighting and sound equipment hire. travel/accommodation to and from the event and all prices are inclusive of VAT.
Are there any additional fees we should be aware of?
No hidden fees. The price we quote is the final price.
Can you provide a detailed contract outlining all costs and terms?
Yes. Upon booking we will email out a contract with full breakdown of fees and services provided.
Experience and Professionalism:
How many weddings have you performed at?
We have performed well over 1000 events during our time as SouthWestBand. We average between 80-100 weddings per year.
Do you have insurance, and are you a member of any professional music associations?
Yes we are fully insured and have PLI to cover all events we perform at.
What is your approach to handling unexpected issues or changes during the event?
Our ethos is to be as prepared as possible prior to the event. On the day however this switches to be as flexible as possible. We understand there are many moving parts to a wedding and a significant percentage do run behind. This means we can adapt on the fly and make up time wherever we can, move timings round to accommodate or adjust set durations.
What happens if a band member is unable to perform on the day of the wedding?
SouthWestBand is more than just a band. We are a collective of twelve musicians that have played together over a decade and in the event of one of your band members we have plenty of cover we can call upon.
Do you have a backup plan in case of equipment failure or other unforeseen circumstances?
Yes, with over a decade of experience it is fair to say we have seen our fair share of unforeseen circumstances. We pride ourselves on our adaptability however and will work tirelessly to make sure the show goes on.
How do you prefer to communicate in the lead-up to the wedding?
We will communicate with you however you prefer in the lead up to your big day. Whether that be email, phone, text or DM. All contracts will be sent via email and our initial conversation after enquiring will most likely to be a chat on the phone to give you as much information and answer as many questions as you need.
Can we meet in person or have a video call to discuss details and preferences?
Were based in Wakefield so if you would like to meet up and grab a coffee or swing by the office you're more than welcome. We can also chat via Zoom or Facetime if you prefer. Were also cool if you just want to keep it to DMs on messenger or Instagram.
Contract and Payments:
Can you provide a written contract with all the details discussed?
Yes we will email out a quote with a full breakdown of services costs and services provided after you have enquired.
What is your payment schedule, and when is the final payment due?
We ask for a small deposit on booking to secure the date. The remainder is due 6 months before your big day.
Your wedding day deserves a soundtrack that reflects your own uniqueness and creates lasting memories for you and your guests. As you explore live entertainment options, don't hesitate to delve into the details. From checking availability and understanding performance styles to discussing logistics and customization, these questions will guide you towards choosing the perfect musical accompaniment to your celebration. With careful planning and communication, you'll ensure that your wedding band resonates perfectly with your special day. Cheers to the party you deserve, filled with love, laughter, and the perfect entertainment!
image by www.hamishirvine.com