So What Do Wedding Bands Actually Do?

It’s fair to say that first and foremost we are a wedding band. Around 70% of our performances are at weddings, and we have been lucky enough to play at celebrations of every shape and size – each one is unique. But there’s one thing that links every wedding we have ever played at – the bride and groom had never booked a band before.

In all honesty, it’s not really something that crops up in every day life. Which means many of our clients aren’t always sure what to expect, or how a live band will fit into their big day. Indeed, if you’re reading this blog right now you might be considering booking a live band for your wedding but maybe you’re not quite sure what you’re going to get for your money.

So, what does a wedding band actually do? Well, typically it falls into two stages – prior to the wedding and then the big day itself.

Before your wedding

Just like you, prior to your big day your wedding band will be making preparations to ensure things go without a hitch. This should include contacting your venue or wedding planner to check any specific details relating to your wedding or the venue itself, such as access, noise restrictions etc.

If your wedding band is learning and performing a specific song for you then they will also be busy arranging and rehearsing this.

And, of course, they will be communicating with you to agree the details of their performance such as set times and lengths. Don’t worry if you’re not sure about any of this, most bands are happy to share their experience and make recommendations for you.

On your wedding day

Once your big day rolls around, the action usually breaks down into a few separate stages.

1. Arrival and set up. It’s rare that a wedding venue has sound and lighting equipment suitable for a band, so this means that they’ll be bringing, and setting up, PA and lights. This usually takes 60-90 minutes depending on the size of the band.

2. Soundcheck. To ensure the volume and balance between instruments is right the band will need soundcheck. This will mean them playing at show volume whilst they do. However, a good wedding band will be experienced enough to keep this bit as short as possible.

3. After soundcheck AKA ‘the waiting around’. Once set up, and as the evening guests arrive, the band will either play background music over their PA or hand over to the DJ if you have one.

4. Show time!! Whether your band are performing your first dance or not, this is what they are here to do. An experienced wedding band will be able to read the room and adjust their song choice and volume to reflect the audience. Their job is to ensure every has a good time!


To give you an idea of how all this might fit together, here’s the running time from a recent wedding we performed at for around 150 guests at a country house hotel.

  • 5.45pm – Arrive and load in the equipment.
  • 6pm – Set up and sound check.
  • 7pm – Reception begins – background music via iPad.
  • 8.30pm – First dance and band’s first set.
  • 9.30pm – Bride & Grooms personalised playlist via iPad.
  • 10.30pm – Band’s second set.
  • 11.30pm – Bride & Grooms personalised playlist via iPad.
  • Midnight – Finish and start packing down

So there you are. If you’re thinking of booking a band for your wedding we hope this helps. If you want to know more about what we do and what we could offer your wedding, please get in touch.

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