28 Apr 2021 Admin

How to Hire a Band in Scotland

Looking for a live wedding band in Scotland but don't know where to start?  Music For Scotland are here to help.

It’s the most special day of your life - you want everything to be perfect; the dress, the venue, the celebratory atmosphere. All of these elements come together to create unforgettable memories that last a lifetime. The last thing you want after months of planning every detail of your wedding is for the mood at the reception to be a bit… well, flat. This is why it’s difficult to beat live music at a wedding. And while you can find some superb DJs out there, the energy, excitement and romance generated by a live wedding band are unparalleled. Live music engages an audience in a way that pre-recorded music can’t. Just imagine walking up the aisle to a string quartet or organ music and dancing your first dance to your favourite song, sung by a talented artist - how can pre-recorded music compare?

That being said, all bands are not created equal and some are best avoided so how do you go about choosing your perfect, live entertainment for your wedding? We’ve got the definitive guide right here.

1. Think about your budget


Yes, live wedding bands are more expensive than a DJ, but they’re worth it. With a band, you are paying for several musical professionals rather than just one so you need to consider your purchasing power before you decide on the band you want to book. Like everything wedding-related, the cost varies, depending on a number of factors.

The average cost of a wedding band in the UK is around £1500 - this can go up or down based on the number of hours you want your band to play, the number of musicians in the band, your venue and your wedding date. Choose a 3-piece band, for an off-season wedding in a central (easily accessible) location and the price goes down: getting married on a remote Scottish island, in peak wedding season and opting for a 10 piece band will obviously cost you a lot more.

Make sure you're not overpaying for a live wedding band or any of your other wedding suppliers for that matter.  If you have a wedding planner, then they will be able to tell whether the price you have been quoted - for any of your suppliers, not just your wedding entertainment - is reasonable.  If you're planning your wedding yourself, however, you'll need to carry out some due diligence. Aviva Samuels from Destination Wedding & Event Planning agency Kiss The Planner advises couples to do some research before agreeing on a price with a supplier; "Look at what other businesses are charging for the same product or service in your area and verify that the quote you've been given is fair and not inflated."  Read the reviews, look at their previous work and don't be scared to negotiate.

Think about your budget and go from there - the sky's the limit.

 2. Use a Music Agency


When it comes to actually finding a band, it is far better to go through a reputable music agency rather than with a standalone group. The reasons for this are numerous. First of all wedding agencies make the process of booking a band far simpler. Google “Wedding Bands” and you will have thousands of results come up. You’ll have no idea whether the bands in your search results are any good, if they’re reliable, insured or even available on your wedding day.

Wedding agencies, on the other hand, tend to curate the best talent out there to include on their roster, so you know that the bands you’re looking at on their website will provide quality entertainment. They also have the experience to give you advice on the band that will best match your musical preferences and the know-how to organise every part of the process that will get you from booking your band to hearing them play your first dance song on your big day. Believe it or not, there are a lot of logistics involved in making that happen. Some quality agents will organise a free, live wedding band showcase where you can go and see their bands perform, helping you to make an informed shortlist of your favourite musicians. Alternatively, as agencies have a bit more money to play with, they will invest in HD videos of their bands which you can view from the comfort of your own home.

Secondly, wedding band agencies offer you peace of mind that this particular element of the day will go off without a hitch. Not only are music agencies insured against any disasters that may happen on the day, but they are also contractually obligated to provide you with a band, come hell or high water. So if the lead singer of your band suddenly comes down with the flu, a replacement singer (or whole band) will be provided for you - seamlessly, without you having to panic or lift a finger. The same can’t necessarily be said about an individual band you find online.

Ultimately, hiring a live band through an agency will offer you a more stress-free experience and when you’re trying to make sure that all of the elements of your big day go to plan, that reassurance is invaluable.


3. Book early


After your wedding venue, the entertainment should be next on your wedding planning checklist. Wedding bands - the good ones at least - book up years in advance. It’s therefore important to start thinking about the style of band you want as early as possible so that you can secure them for your big day. Factor in seeing them live if possible - seeing a band on stage will get you a sense of how they interact with their audience and whether or not they can energise a room. If your wedding band/agency doesn’t do live showcases, try and see a few videos of them in action and find unbiased reviews online to see how they performed at other weddings and whether or not the bridal party and their guests were wowed or underwhelmed by the experience. Once you’re sure you’ve found the one, put down that deposit to avoid them being bagged by another couple.

4. Communicate!


Above all, you must ensure that you talk to your wedding band and make them aware of anything and everything they may need to know in advance of your big day. Share your favourite songs with them and see if they can include them on their setlist; tell them as much as you can about your venue (especially if they haven’t played there before) so that they can be prepared and organised on the day, to allow the musicians to set up without getting in your way or vice versa; if the venue has stipulated restrictions that affect your wedding entertainment communicate these to your band - some venues, especially hotels, have sound limiters so as not to disturb their other clients and some require music to be turned off by a certain time. None of these limitations are good news when your live wedding band finds out about them on the day. Talk to your band/agency and you’re guaranteed to have a successful partnership.

Live bands are difficult to beat when it comes to making your wedding day truly special. Make sure you’re sticking to your budget and book early to avoid disappointment. Use a wedding band agency for complete peace of mind and make sure to keep the lines of communication open to make sure your wedding entertainers are prepared for anything. Then dance the night away to your favourite music, assured in the knowledge that you and your guests are going to remember this day for the rest of your lives.

Music For Scotland are the leading suppliers of live wedding bands in Glasgow, Edinburgh and across Scotland.  Enquire now to find your perfect wedding entertainment.