So you want the best wedding singer that money can buy? Awesome. Here are some things you need to consider when you are talking to different bands, especially in relation to the venue you have booked. Any oversight in these items could alter your wedding budget or cause conflicts in your wedding day timeline. All of these things should be in band contracts but their importance is often lost on couples that haven’t done this before. That’s okay, I’m here to help with that.
SPACE- Each band requires a certain amount of stage space. Some even require a band stand (which is the safest thing regardless). Will your desired band actually fit in your venue with the number of tables you will need? What about a dancefloor? Another thing with space is that a lot of bands require shelter if outside and need to be in the shade. And lastly, with space, most bands need a green room. They have so much stuff, they need to change clothes, warm up, take breaks, eat and so on. Can your venue accommodate this and if not, make sure your band is willing to compromise on this.
TIME- Make sure you understand the hours it takes for setting up and breaking down. Do you have your venue booked for the right number of hours to accommodate the length of party you desire to have + the set up and breakdown time? And if you have a stage, remember that it has to be set up before the band takes over and taken down after the band removes their things at the end of the night, another layer to the timeline.
BREAKS- Understand the plan for band breaks and music during those breaks. Will they DJ, do you need to bring an iPod, can you just tell them a genre, do you have to create a playlist? Who will emcee during the breaks?
MUSIC- When interviewing bands, ask about their repertoire. If you already have a ‘first dance’ song in mind, see if they know it upfront. Bands are happy to learn new songs and some include one song in their contract while others charge for learning anything new.
CEREMONY- Does your band have a pianist? Can they play guitar for you? Can they mic the officiant and readers? Also, back to venue space, if your cocktail hour, dinner and reception spaces are not all in the same area, you’ll need to have an additional music plan for those that are outside of the reception space as well.
PARKING AND MEALS- Band members arrive separately so you’ll need to factor in the number of cars / trailers and meals to be paid for with a band. You should be paying for parking and meals for all vendors, either way. If you don’t, they will have to leave to feed meters or find food and it takes away from time serving you. Most vendor contracts require this so it should not be a deal breaker but just don’t forget this line item in your budget spreadsheet.
Now that you have all of the information at your fingertips, hit up those bars and find that band. Austin is so full of talent, it’s hard to go wrong.