How on earth do I book a band?

For most people, booking a band is a one off experience. It might be for your wedding (most, but not all people, tend not to have weddings too often) and if it's for your 40th birthday, well it can be guaranteed that you will only have one of those (unless you are a time traveler!). So finding a band that really appeals to you for your event can be time consuming, frustrating and fraught with pitfalls. But there are easier ways.

At Midsummer Music, we have done the donkey work for you! We have hundreds of bands and ensembles for you to chose from, in the categories of Classical, Jazz, Pop and Ceili / Barn Dance, many local to you. We handle the booking process, including the contract with the band so that you can be confident that they will arrive at the right place at the right time. We have been doing this for many years with thousands and thousands of successful events under our belt, so we know how to do it.

For most people this will be the first, and perhaps the only time they will book a band, or if they have hired a band on a previous occasion, it may have been several years earlier. Whatever your situation it will probably seem to be an extremely difficult and time consuming task. Firstly you have to somehow track down the right style of band. If you find them in a magazine advert or hear of them by word of mouth, you won't have heard their music, so you have to discover where they are giving publically accessible performances. It needs to be a public performance so you can get entry [you can't just bust in on someone's wedding]. It may be a long way to where they are performing, so a right hassle for you, then if you don't like what you hear you have to start your search again. Surely there is a simpler way of doing this? 

Search on Google or Bing it of course!

If you did a search for covers bands for hire in Google you would have 1,580,000 results to trawl through , and that would take you ages, with no guarantee that they will be in the right part of the country even. Perhaps you can listen to a demo track on their website and trying comparing one band with another on different websites is mindboggling. Perhaps the band has a website, and not all bands do, it's likely that the only way of making contact with them is by a mobile phone number that always off when you try phoning, and when you leave a message asking for a call back, you never get one. Perhaps they give an email address?

It only gets worse when you try and contact several bands. They all come back to you at different times [if at all] all with different information in different formats. Do you get a contract with them, or do they just say "send us a deposit and we'll turn up on the day, promise". What are the terms of any contract they may offer? They will all be different. If sorting out bands to contact was mindboggling, it was easy compared with trying to get prices and make a booking.

The easiest, fastest and safest way to hire a band is via an established music agency such as Midsummer Music, who are specialists in the whole band booking process and have spent years collating information on bands across the UK and presenting it to you in an easily digestible format.

Weddings and parties are enormous undertakings to organise, with so many things to do. Save yourself worry and hassle by browsing a large range of properly presented bands on the website of an establishe online music agency like Midsummer Music. You can find the kind of ensemble that you are looking for, all ones that are local or relatively local to you, with an indication of price and music samples, photos and other information so you can brows on line. We only give a price range on our website, because if it is a price for a county, a country is a big place and we don't know exactly where your venue is. Many bands offer prices for long or short performances, plus there are many more details that have to be taken into consideration by our experience team in offering the best bands at the best prices for your event.

Then, send us an enquiry, either for specific bands you've seen and like, or a general enquiry letting us know the kind of music you are looking for. We email you a quotation for bands that are still available on your date, by the next working day, with prices that accurately takes account of any travel costs to your actual venue, often for a range of performance times so that you can toss around ideas of how and when you will get the band to perform. We give you lots of useful information to refer to, or you can ask us specific questions if your unsure of anything. If you are thinking of perhaps a string quartet for your wedding ceremony, a jazz trio for your wedding breakfast and a covers band for the evening wedding celebration party, brows each section of our website and send us an enquiry for each type of band, or send us just one saying all the things you are thinking of.

Once you've made up your mind, you get one easy to understand online booking process no matter which band you book. Simple, worry free.

Choosing the band. Can you ask for a recommendation?

We never recommend bands, as what I like may not be what you like. I don't like all the bands that are on our site. That's not because they're not superb bands, just that I don't like their style of music. You may well love them. That is why you can see and hear the bands on our website, so that you can chose what appeals to you.

The IMPORTANT thing is for you to listen to the music, look at the photos and choose what YOU like.

Consider your venue

Hiring a band more than just thinking about the music that you like. You need to think whether it is appropriate for the event, venue and people that will be attending. It's no good hiring a string quartet and expecting them to play rock music to dance to with disco lighting (Yes, we have been asked!)

What about the venue. For example, a four piece function band will fit OK on the stage or floor of a smaller wedding marquee or hotel room, whereas an eight piece funk band would look (and sound) better in a larger hall. For a ceilidh or barn dance band, more space is needed for the dancing than if the audience were jigging to a pop band, so think about clearing most of the tables out of the room before the barn dance begins.