When it comes to decisions facing a couple planning a wedding, deciding on live music for your ceremony and/or cocktail hour versus recorded music is one of the most basic but also most important decisions you will make. Luckily, there is no right or wrong decision. Both have their pros and cons, but the decision is often made based on simplicity, in addition to taste and budget.
Parts of a Wedding that Use Live Music – Ceremony Music and Cocktail Hour Music
Whether you go with live music or a DJ, you can expect that the music will begin about 15 minutes before the ceremony with “prelude” music, include music for the bride’s processional, the bridesmaids’ entrance, the unity ceremony and the recessional. After the ceremony, there is usually “postlude” music that is played as your guests leave their seats and head to the cocktail hour. Music also is played for the cocktail hour to help set the mood and keep your guests entertained. And for the reception, there is often a live band or DJ.
Hiring Live Musicians is Easy
With the technology available today, hiring live musicians is not as time-consuming as you may think. Thanks to websites, email and YouTube, you can do most of your shopping for live music without even having to go hear their performances in person. We suggest that you start by reviewing several musicians’ websites. Having a well-designed site with active links is a must, as it shows the ensemble is professional and pays attention to detail. While on the website, listen to as many demo recordings as they have available. Be sure to listen to music from all the styles the group offers, especially the styles you are interested in having played at your wedding ceremony or cocktail hour. Do they have the cocktail hour songs you’d like to hear at your wedding?
Live Traditional Wedding Music
If you’re looking for traditional wedding music, listen to those samples and make sure they sound like what you have in mind. Also, take the time to watch the groups’ videos as they will give you an idea of how the ensemble presents themselves during performances. As you listen and watch, imagine how the ensembles will sound at your wedding ceremony and cocktail hour. Will they help set the mood you want to have at your wedding?
Is it Worth Hiring Live Musicians for Your Wedding Ceremony and Cocktail Hour?
Having live wedding ceremony music or cocktail hour music gives you the dynamics of a live performance that you just can’t get with a DJ. Having live music brings your wedding both a distinctive and traditional feel. If you book a small ensemble, rather than a string quartet (4 musicians) or larger band, it can give your wedding a much more personalized and intimate feeling, no matter the number of guests you have attending. And contrary to what you may think, musicians these days tend to be very versatile, so you can choose from a wide array of styles and songs. Most musicians will even arrange your favorite song for their instrumentation, so you can get a unique, memorable performance.
Instead of just having the same DJ for your ceremony, cocktail hour and reception, make your wedding a truly memorable event by hiring live musicians for part of your day!