Great question! And one that is far more nuanced than you might, or might not, expect! For ease of differentiation, the following guide places bands into several different categories based upon certain criteria. Not one category is necessarily “better” than another, just different.
The categories are as follows:
1) The “mate’s who can play instruments” band
These kind of last-minute jam style bands can be awesome for a wedding of close friends and family. Often a little rough around the edges which can be overlooked due to the intimate connection with the band members.
2) The “pub” band
There are some fantastic bands playing regularly on the pub circuits in Wales and across the UK. Often performing one or more specific genres of music they can be great if you (and your guests) like a cetrain style of music, for example, rock. Usually a “see you on the night” arrangement with beers & banter in full flow.
3) The “backing track” band
A plethora of bands have emerged on the wedding and function scene of late riding on the back of rapidly-developing digital technology. Often a small number of live musicians, compensated with additional instrumentation & vocals played on a backing track. Thus helping to reduce overall musician fees.
4) The “wedding & function” band
Professional function and wedding bands will have high quality audio & visual equipment along with safe & secure booking processes. All members of the band will have “deputies”, should last-minute illness occur, meaning no booking should ever be cancelled. Expect a wide range of live music & a professional service throughout.
5) The “agency” band
The “agency” band will consist of a roster of “backing track” bands and “wedding & function” bands, as discussed above. Expect a professional booking service and an additional 15-20% on top to cover administration costs. Many “agency” bands across Wales and the UK exist independently but will perform under different names to provide agent exclusivity.
6) The “show” band
Expect the band to comprise of male & female singers, dancers, costume changes & pyrotechnics. Slick production & a large number of musicians often favourable with large corporate companies.
We hope this guide has been helpful in answering the question “How much does a wedding band cost?” in Wales, and across the UK.
Here at Session Entertainment we are always happy to offer our professional advice on live music & event entertainment, whether that be a DJ, a wedding and function band or a daytime acoustic duo. Please contact us using the Contact Form for further information on any of our services.
We hope you have a fantastic wedding or event and we thank you for supporting live music!