Get the soundtrack to your wedding sorted

You’ve tied the knot, blushed at the best man’s speech and enjoyed a few glasses of bubbly, so now it’s time to celebrate. Everyone loves a party with a happy atmosphere, so whether you’re hiring a live band, disco or DJ, here’s our guide to make sure the soundtrack to your wedding goes with a swing…

From classical quartets and ceilidh bands to jazz singers or salsa beats, the first question you need to ask is what style will set the right tone for your event? As well as being music to your ears, think about what dance-floor fillers will keep your guests on their feet too. We’re not saying you should resort to the funky chicken or the conga, but motivating music everyone can tune into will keep the party’s pulse going strong all night. If you can’t settle on one genre, then why not hire a variety band or DJ who specialise in crowd-pleasing sounds to satisfy everyone instead? (image above: Mirrorbox Photography, opposite: GB Photography)

Don’t get stuck with a last-minute musician. Keep your ear to the ground for a good band and pay attention to personal recommendations from experts in the wedding industry or family and friends. Try to see the act perform before you make any decisions – not only should they be skilled musicians, but be able to read the mood of the crowd as well. If you can’t see them in person, then at the very least ask for a demo CD and references from other couples as assurance.

If you’re having entertainment immediately after the ceremony then double-check that the church, civil venue or registry office is able to
accommodate musicians. Before
hiring your acts, ask if they’ve played at your wedding venue before and if its acoustics are sympathetic to their sound. If you’re tight on space, then remember a big band ensemble isn’t practical. On the night, check the act’s volume is loud enough to create atmosphere without guests having to shout at each other to be heard. Think romantic celebration, not rowdy summer festival.

Don’t be scared to suggest some significant songs which you’d like to hear on the day – but make sure you give the act advance warning to help them prepare. They may also accept special requests from your guests, although you may want to blacklist any tacky tunes. After all, are your guests really ready for a performance of your uncle’s Macarena moves?

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