How to Hire a Band for your Wedding Reception?

You’ve already made the first step – finding a wedding venue. Now you’re on to making (what should be) the second step: hiring your wedding entertainment. And in your case, you’ve decided you want a live band for your wedding!


But to hire the best band for your wedding, there are some aspects you should consider—and it may be a bit more complicated and time-intensive than you think. Follow these simple steps and you’ll be sure to have a performance that leaves you with an unforgettable night.


Do Your Research

You already know the music sets the tone for the event. If the music is lackluster, you may struggle to get folks up on the dance floor and nobody wants this issue during their wedding. Our first and biggest piece of advice: Get started early. Plan ahead and begin to research the options.

We alluded to the importance of starting early in your quest to find the best wedding band by stating that this should be your second step – right behind finding your venue. Our reason behind this nudge? Many highly sought-after bands book up at least a year in advance, so make this a priority on your wedding planning timeline. But before you commit and start outreach, you need to answer a few questions yourself: What kind of space does the venue have for a live band? Do I want the same group for the ceremony and the reception? What’s our maximum budget?

To make the process easier, you could hire an entertainment company that does the hard work for you. They’ll get to know you and your preferences, provide a list of the best-fitting options, and work diligently to find the best band that meets your needs.  The first thing a booking agent will help you to address.

What Type of Band Do you Want?

Choose Your Style of Music

This is the fun part! Sit down with your significant other and scroll through your existing playlists. See what strikes some musical inspiration and run with it. Consider how the music will vibe with the rest of your wedding style—it’s not a deal-breaker but it might help you make concrete decisions. 

You should also consider your audience. While you and your fiancé may love bluegrass music, you may also have 100+ guests who want to hear Bruno Mars and Michael Jackson. This doesn’t mean you have to do away with your desires for your big day, but you may want to make accommodations for both you and your guests. This may come in the form of hiring a Top 40 cover band that can also play a few bluegrass songs – everybody wins!

If most of your guests like a specific band or type of music, you may want to also consider hiring a tribute band. Research different tips on how to hire a tribute band.  

Finally, it is important to work with an agency that has experience so you can trust their judgement and recommendations. Many couples have an idea of what they want when it comes to the music, but they do not have the experience to anticipate other elements that affect the flow of the music like cake cutting, band breaks, and toasts.

Attend a Showcase

Seeing bands perform live is the best way to see what will work best for your wedding reception. Consider attending a showcase to see if bands are a good fit or not. That way, you know exactly what you’re getting. If you’re lucky (and if you start earlier enough), you may be invited to an actual event to

Determine how many Instruments and Singers do you want?

The next step is to determine how many instruments or “pieces” you want to include in your band. When you work with a professional corporate band, you have the flexibility to cultivate and choose a band that fits your budget and event space. A 12-piece band, in most cases, is more expensive than a smaller 5-piece band. Take note that this is not the case ALL of the time because a band’s popularity can increase the price as well. 

Outside of price factors, the size of your band is also affected by the venue or designated “band” area. If you are having a small and intimate wedding, a large band may not work for the space, flow, or theme of your event. If you’re working with an experienced event planner, many of them have a “Preferred Vendors List” that lists the top vendors based on their experience and word of mouth. Venues can also provide recommendations for bands that have successfully performed at their venue in the past.

Once you hire a booking agent or agency, you can work with them to determine the amount of musicians for your band. A seasoned agent may have already booked bands at your venue and can offer insight on the best option for you and your significant other. They can also help you to find the balance between what you want and what you can afford. For an example, if you want a band with a horn section, instead of three horns you can have one horn player. The opportunities are endless!

Instruments and Singers

Read Reviews Online

The last step to successfully booking a wedding band is to do your own research and read the reviews on the company and/or agency you decide to use. Wedding blogs and websites like and are the most popular wedding review websites. You can also use Google Reviews as a guide to see reviews on your band and agency. 

Using these tips will ensure that you will have the right tools to make the best decision when it comes to hiring a band for your wedding ceremony and reception. Comment below on your experience!



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