5 Things you need to know before booking a band for your event

Organising an event is exciting.

It could be a corporate event, an anniversary, a birthday party, or even a wedding.

No matter what the occasion is, or how classy or trashy you want to make it, the main objective is to make it super fun for everybody.

And nothing brings the party-energy up like good music. From a string quartet, to a rock band, each performing group has its role to play.

Some events need more than one band.

A traditional Cyprus wedding, for example, often has a duo of lutes and violins separately playing for the bride and groom as they “get dressed” at home (stolisma), all the while playing traditional songs about future marital bliss.

Later, after the ceremony, it’s common for there to be a jazz trio or classical quartet to keep guests entertained during the cocktail reception.

And finally, during the after party, there will be a full-on party band or DJ keeping the guests on the dance floor late into the night!

So, if you are looking for some live entertainment, you can easily book your band through bandster.me.

Nevertheless, here are 5 things that you should know when you are booking a live music band:

1. What you pay for

What you pay, is not just the 1-2 hours of live music that you will enjoy on the day.

For the band to be able to perform to your event, it means that the band members:

  • Have built up a skill over the years that allows them to perform for you

  • Have spent hours of personal study to create a 1 to 2-hour long setlist

  • Have spent hours and travel time on group rehearsals

  • Have spent thousands on equipment to make sure they sound good on stage

  • Not only that, it is common for them to turn up 3 to 6 hours (or more) beforehand to set up their equipment, sound-check and be out-of-sight long before the first guests arrive.

Here's a tip: asking a band to play a shorter time just to drop the budget will usually not get you the result that you are expecting.

Playing for just 20 minutes will still require the full set-up and sound-check, and the band being at the venue for several hours.

Also, on the day of the performance, the band has:

  • To take care of travel expenses to get to the venue

  • To do manual work by carrying equipment to and from the event

  • To work hours ahead of the performance to set up the stage and sound-check

If the event is big and a sound and lights company is hired, that company will usually set up the stage and carry the equipment. The larger stages normally require longer setup times, so the musicians may carry less but the days are long.

The sound system is commonly an additional fee (unless specified).

Whether the band will bring its own system or hire a company, sound equipment is an extra cost.

Consider it part of your overall entertainment budget, as it’s necessary. If the event needs a sound engineer that’s another salary.

Many companies combine the sound engineer's’ fee with the equipment hire.

If you are someone who is organising a private event, whether a cultural or a corporate event, a wedding or an anniversary party, you will most likely agree a flat fee with a band, ahead of time.

Many bands will ask for a deposit in advance (sometimes up to 50%) and some of them, will have a contract ready for you.

Don’t let that scare you. The clearer the terms and price are, the better for you, too.

It's also a good idea to make sure the musicians are fed. It's smart to agree on food and drink beforehand, as expectations sometimes differ.

If the event will incorporate food and drinks, it’s common to offer 1 or 2 meals to the musicians, depending on how many hours they will spend, in total, at the venue setting up and performing.

In Cyprus, it’s very common to offer their alcoholic and non-alcoholic drinks them for free too. Make sure there’s plenty of water for them!

2. You usually get what you pay for

Quality is subjective, what one person likes in music differs from another’s.

A good band, though, will always lift the energy of your guests, no matter what they play!