How to Incorporate Live Music Into Your Wedding Reception

Q. I’d like to incorporate live music into my reception, but I don’t know where to start. Any tips?

A. Most bands now post videos online, so you can get a feel for groups that fit your taste from the comfort of your home.

Once you’ve made your short list, contact the bands to check availability and pricing. Space considerations or restrictions of your venue might also narrow your choices. For instance, an 11-piece band might max out the space at your local country club.

In order to avoid any surprises, make sure you watch whatever band you’re interested in actually perform at an event before you sign the contract.

To save time and lots of phone calls, consider booking through an entertainment agency. Years of experience with weddings help agencies select the bands that will work with your unique needs and help anticipate and navigate any issues with your venue.

“We can narrow down our huge list of bands to three to five that might work best for you,” says Matt Anton of ACA Music & Entertainment in Brookfield.

The agency also will handle the contract and help communicate your song list and other preferences once you’ve chosen your band, says Anton.

Above all, Anton advises brides to look for a band that is helpful and responsive. “Especially for weddings, customer service is a big deal. You don’t want a band that says, ‘This is what we do, period. Deal with it.’ We work with bands that go out of their way to offer good service for weddings specifically.”


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