5 Common Myths About Hiring a Live Band for Your Wedding

Wedding bands have come a long way since your parents got married. Today, great bands conquer all genres of music, from the latest pop hits to the golden oldies. Inspired, personalized live music adds a level of excitement to your wedding that generates unforgettable moments. Unfortunately, lingering perceptions about the entertainment of yesteryear can cloud the judgment of brides making decisions in the here and now. Cutting through the misinformation can help lead to some pleasantly surprising discoveries of outstanding musical options for your own wedding.


1. Wedding bands are cheesy.

There are definitely some cheesy wedding bands out there, but there are so many others that are doing super cool stuff — you just have to do your research. Make sure to ask to check out live videos of the band's performances or reach out to see if they're performing in any showcases to try and get a good feel of what you could expect from them on your big day. To help the songs turn out more authentically, it's beneficial to have male and female vocalists who are comfortable performing the type of music that you envision for your wedding celebration, whether it's current pop, indie rock, or even soul.


2. Bands just play the songs that they know and don't offer enough variety.

When you're interviewing a potential band, ask to see their actual song list (tunes that they're playing on a regular basis), and inquire as to how much input you can have into the selections. Most reputable bands have extensive song lists and will let you have a major say in which songs get played on the big day. They may even learn a few tunes especially for you as well, as long as you give them plenty of advance notice (it can take some bands up to a couple months to learn new material). There might be additional fees for new songs, so be sure to get the pricing upfront as well!


3. Bands can't make the songs I want to hear sound good.

There are lots of wedding bands out there now, especially in large markets. My advice would be to have a firm grasp on what type of music is most important for you to hear at your wedding, and consult with your planner to find the right fit. (If you don't have a wedding planner, oftentimes the coordinator at your venue will have good insight into what bands might be right for you.) Whether you want a niche bohemian acoustic group playing Taylor Swift covers or a big 12-piece band that does everything from Beyoncé to Sinatra, if you do your due diligence, the right band for you is out there.


4. A live band would be too loud.

A common concern that I hear from clients who are having big weddings is that they're worried adding more instruments is going to make it too loud for the guests. In reality, volume really has nothing to do with the number of pieces in your band — it's a controllable variable dictated by your band's sound team, as well as your song selections. I like to use the analogy that having Green Day perform at your wedding with three pieces would be much louder than Norah Jones leading a 10-piece band. A reputable band with a capable sound team should be able to take in the acoustic considerations and constraints of your venue to produce the perfect volume for your wedding.


5. The more pieces, the better the band.

Having a 15-piece orchestra with horn and string sections can be amazing, but it really all comes down to the quality of the musicians and their ability to execute the music they're trying to play. Trust your ears and instincts when reviewing videos of the band. Once you are sold on the quality of the music, then you can focus on size and ask your band what pieces will really benefit your musical vision for the night.


—Danny Chaimson

The Bridal Guide



5 Last-Minute Tips for Planning Your Summer Wedding

If your summer celebration is only a few months away, don’t sweat it. Here are five finishing touches guaranteed to make your wedding awesome for both you and your guests.

By Jamie Miles

Tip 1: Get Backup Blooms

The boutonniere is especially fragile, since it needs to hold up against hugs and summer heat as your groom wears it throughout the day. Ask your florist to provide backup flowers and even a second boutonniere for the wedding day. There may be an additional charge, but you'll be happy to have it if his petals start to droop. It could also save the day if a boutonniere happens to go missing.

Tip 2: Cool Down the Crowd

Having your wedding outdoors in the height of summer is a no-brainer—it's sunny and gorgeous! But the lushness of June, July or August won't look quite so pretty to your guests if they're absolutely sweltering. Provide parasols, fans, large patio umbrellas or even cool towels for the ceremony. Pair fans with your ceremony programs or create program fans that work double-duty. You'll look like you thought of everything (because you did), and you won't be worried about rushing through your vows due to heat. Plus, keep the parasols around for the wedding party photos—they make a cute accessory.

Tip 3: Offer Refreshing Drinks

Consider offering guests a refreshing drink to sip on before the ceremony begins (and don't overthink it—iced teas and freshly squeezed juice over ice will do the trick). At the reception, you can serve chilly treats, like mini milk shakes, smoothies, snow cones, fresh-fruit ice pops or anything that fits your menu and theme. Don't forget to mention your ideas to your caterer so they have time to prep and serve.

Tip 4: Curb Dance Fever

The best part of any reception? The dance party, of course. It's no use pretending it won't get hot and humid on the dance floor, so plan ahead to keep your guests' temperatures under control. Along with lots of cool drinks, keep chilled washcloths on hand for a quick cool-down your guests will appreciate. Purchase enough small cloths for your attendees (plus a few more, to be safe) and notify the venue that you'd like the servers to pass them out at the party. If you're not having servers, ask to place piles of napkins around the reception space so guests have easy access to heat relief.

Tip 5: Fortify Against Bugs

Nobody likes a wedding crasher, and the worst offenders are mosquitos. If there's even a chance your venue could get buggy, you'll want to have a game plan, especially as the sun begins to set, which is when mosquitos and insects are at their worst. Stock up and add bug spray to hospitality baskets for guests at the venue. Light citronella candles or even tiki torches if there's space and your venue will allow it. Your guests will thank you when you send them home with favors—not bites.