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How to plan a wedding gig

Discussion in 'Bass Humor & Gig Stories [BG]' started by sleeplessknight, Apr 6, 2005.


  1. sleeplessknight

    sleeplessknight Supporting Member

    Mar 8, 2002
    Seattle
    So, my band is probably gonna get hired to do a wedding in several months' time. We're bringing in a vocalist to do various jazz standards, as well as a few "mainstream" soft-rock tunes. What are some "standard" wedding songs that we should brush up on as well? I know we gotta do "here comes the bride" and somesuch like that, but what are the "usual" wedding tunes? Also, I've been asked to Emcee the event. *** does THAT entail? :p I've subbed a grand total of TWICE for weddings, and all I had to do was show up in a tux and read charts for four hours. I didn't really pay attention to the "inner workings", so any help all you experienced GB'ers can give would be MUCHLY appreciated!
     
  2. fraublugher

    fraublugher

    Nov 19, 2004
    ottawa, ontario, canada
    music school retailer
    practice saying " get ready for a cha-cha " in your sexiest bedroom
    voice.

    touch yourself.


    purr.


    roll around in the cake and your done. :eyebrow:
     
  3. That turn around song from Old School, the name escapes me atm :cool:
     
  4. sleeplessknight

    sleeplessknight Supporting Member

    Mar 8, 2002
    Seattle
    Alright buddy, you owe me a new keyboard and monitor! That was some truely funny and unexpected shiat! :D
     
  5. bmc

    bmc

    Nov 15, 2003
    Switzerland
    Schleppy Lionel Ritchie stuff like Once, Twice, Three times a lady. Celebrate Good times. I Knew the Bride when She used to Rock and Roll (Nick Lowe).

    A few suggestions.
     
  6. wulf

    wulf

    Apr 11, 2002
    Oxford, UK
    Last time I did a wedding gig with the 'Jones, it was more about weeding out the unsuitable songs from our list. For example, we often play Love the One You're With but "if you can't be with the one you love, love the one you're with" didn't seem quite right for the evening! :D

    Wulf
     
  7. leanne

    leanne

    May 29, 2002
    Rochester, NY
    Well what do the people hiring you want from the band?
     
  8. bmc

    bmc

    Nov 15, 2003
    Switzerland
    Call up a DJ that does weddings and ask for the most requested songs. Slow dancing numbers are needed. If it is a trad wedding, there's the opening dance with the couple, the father and the bride, the best man and the bride, the rugby team and the bride. Ok I digress.

    Keep in mind the age of the crowd. Modern current stuff for the couple. Find out there ages: 20's? 30's? 40's?

    Age of the relatives, parents and their friends, whihc could be a good percentage of the crowd.

    Ethnic background: Jewish weddings are fun. Their are some trad dances there. Greek weddings, Russian weddings, etc. Peopl of different cultures have expectations of what they will or want to hear.

    Arrange a meeting with the bride and groom and ask for their input and how they would like you to pace the evening. Perhaps quiet jazz during dinner. (Perhaps Quiet Riot if they're bikers).

    In the end, you want the couple happy, the crowd happy and people commenting on how great the music was. That translates into repeat business and good $$$.

    I have wedding outside of Zurich in a month. Long hours, from 6pm till around 3-4 in the morning. Three piece band. Pays $1,000 per guy plus a hotel. I have another wedding in July. Four piece band, pays $400 a guy, but it's local.

    It's a good gig to get, money wise. That said, I still prefer to play a kick ass rock with my three piece in a biker bar. These are the same band that's doing the first wedding mentioned.

    The trick to all of the gigs, in my view, is a wide repertoire, understanding your audience's expectations, and gauging the mood of the room. I prefer to go without a set list and having a band leader make the call. That way, you fish the crowd for the music that gets them up, and then you can keep them their with the right music.

    Have fun.
     
  9. GSPLBASSDC

    GSPLBASSDC

    Jan 25, 2005
    Phoenix, AZ
    Great advice, bmc!!! This also works well with casuals (corporate events, etc). Money's great and if you get a reputation for being one of the better prepared bands, you become TOMA (top of mind awareness), which is a REALLy good thing dollar-wise.
     
  10. bmc

    bmc

    Nov 15, 2003
    Switzerland
    There are standard set dances, as I mentioned. I should remember them because I'm married, but that was 18 years ago, and being a guy, these things are just SO IMPORTANT.

    Talk to the couple. Ask if they have any 8 year olds that want to play bass and show you up. :D They're out there and you want to know in advance if some little Jaco is coming.

    Also, is the Master of Ceremony for the whole wedding, or for the dancing afterwards? If for the whole wedding, there are speeches to line up and sequence.

    I hope you're getting something out of this, like good money, or a hot date with the bride's sister, cuz it sounds like you're in deep brother. :D
     
  11. sleeplessknight

    sleeplessknight Supporting Member

    Mar 8, 2002
    Seattle
    Well, the people hiring us posted an ad for "a group that can play a wide-range of music, from jazz standards (At Last is a requirement) to swing to ballads to old-fashion rock-&-roll to R&B to modern pop. [Their] ideal band would have horns." I emailed 'em telling them that we were primarily a jazz band, but if they wanted a pop song or four that we could work it out because there's about five months between now and the wedding. I asked them specifically what they wanted as far as pop/R&B, and they said that all we "had" to do was At Last and a Bette Midler song. I have a feeling if we threw in one or two more easy listening-type rock songs a la Brown Eyed Girl, they'd be pleased.
     
  12. bmc

    bmc

    Nov 15, 2003
    Switzerland

    Here are some suggestions for R&R tunes. Some old, some way old, but they work well. Easy to learn.

    All Shook Up
    Bad Moon Rising
    Blue Suede Shoes
    Bohemian Like You
    Born To Be Wild
    Brown Eyed Girl
    Brown Sugar
    Can’t Buy Me Love
    Celebration
    Day Tripper
    Dizzy Miss Lizzy
    Get Back
    Good Golly Miss Molly
    Great Balls of Fire
    Honky Tonk Woman
    I Feel Good
    I Saw Her Standing There
    I Shot the Sheriff
    I'm a Believer
    Jailhouse Rock
    Johnny B. Goode
    Jumpin Jack Flash
    Kansas City
    Keep Your Hands to Yourself
    La Bamba
    Light my Fire
    Little Bitty
    Living La Vida Loca
    Long Tall Sally
    Long Train Running
    Money For Nothing
    Moondance
    Mustang Sally
    Please Please Me
    Proud Mary
    Rock Around the Clock
    Roll Over Beethoven
    Roof Garden
    Satisfaction
    Save Tonight
    Should I Stay or Should I Go
    Smooth
    Soul Man
    Stand By Me
    Stuck in the Middle With You
    Summertime Blues
    Superstition
    Surfing U.S.A.
    Suzy Q
    Sweet Home Alabama
    Sweet Home Chicago
    That’ll Be the Day
    The Joker
    The Wanderer
    The Way
    Traveling Band
    Unchain My Heart
     
  13. bmc

    bmc

    Nov 15, 2003
    Switzerland
    More tunes from a different list. Therte may be some duplication. It's old stuff, but people move to this stuff. If you need artist names for the songs, pm me.

    Brian

    HONKY TONK WOMAN
    I'M A BELIVER
    JUMPING JACK FLASH
    KNOCKING ON HEAVENS DOOR
    PRETTY WOMAN
    PAINT IT BLACK
    PLEASE PLEASE ME
    SATISFACTION
    SAW HER STANDING THERE
    BROWN EYED GIRL
    DESPERADO
    FIRE & RAIN
    MARGARITAVILLE
    MOON DANCE
    OYE COMO VA
    PROUD MARY
    STIR IT UP
    STUCK IN THE MIDDLE
    SWEET HOME ALABAMA
    SUSPICIOUS MINDS
    THE JOKER
    BROWN EYED GIRL
    MARGARITAVILLE
    GLORY DAYS
    HEAVAN
    HUNGRY HEART
    LAND DOWN UNDER
    LIVING ON A PRAYER
    LOOSING MY RELIGION
    PINK HOUSES
    SUMMER OF 69
     
  14. every wedding i've been to, everyone always requests either ain't to proud to beg, or old time rock and roll.
     
  15. captainbeardo

    captainbeardo

    Mar 11, 2005
    "I F'n need you more than ever!"

    I'm totally getting that played at my wedding.
     
  16. You've got a lot of work cut out for you, go into it with a positive attitude. Make sure you're in conctact with the coordinator and MAKE SURE you have everyone ready, photographer/videographer/banquet captain, etc... for special moments, nothing worse than going with the cake cutting or first dance with no pic's or video...you can't do a second take of a grand entrance. Get a time line from somebody before the wedding date and DON'T trust it, check on the day of the wedding to make sure everything is going to go as scheduled. GOOD LUCK!!!!!
    By the way: The actual performance is only about 25% of the gig, the other 75% is making sure the bride and groom are happy!!!!
     
  17. Here's an axample of a songlist:
    50’s thru 80’s
    AMERICAN GIRL- Tom Petty
    BAD GIRLS- Donna Summer
    BAD MAMMA JAMMA-Carl Carlton
    BEAST OF BURDEN- Rolling Stones
    BEST FRIENDS GIRLFRIEND- Cars
    BEST OF MY LOVE- The Emotions
    BOOGIE OOGIE - Taste of Honey BOYS ARE BACK IN TOWN- Thin Lizzy
    BRASS IN POCKET- The Pretenders
    BRICKHOUSE- The Commodores
    BROWN EYED GIRL- Van Morrison
    CALL ME- Blondie
    CAN’T GET ENOUGH OF YOUR - LOVE BABE- Barry White
    CAR WASH- Rose Royce
    CELEBRATION- Kool and the Gang
    CENTERFOLD- J.Geils Band
    DANCING QUEEN- Abba
    DANCIN’ W/MYSELF- Billy Idol
    DISCO INFERNO- The Tramps
    DON’T YOU FORGET ABOUT ME- Simple Minds
    DON’T STOP ‘TIL YOU GET ENOUGH- Michael Jackson
    DON”T CHANGE-INXS
    FIRE- The Pointer Sisters
    GET DOWN ON IT- Kool & the Gang
    GET WHAT YOU GIVE-The New Radicals
    GIVE IT TO ME BABY- Rick James
    GOT TO BE REAL- Cheryl Lynn
    HARD DAYS NIGHT-The Beatles
    HEART OF GLASS- Blondie
    HIT ME W/YOUR BEST SHOT-
    Pat Benatar
    HOLIDAY- Madonna
    I FEEL FOR YOU- Chaka Khan
    IF I CAN’T HAVE YOU- Yvonne Elliman
    IF YOU LEAVE- OMD
    I LOVE ROCK N ROLL- Joan Jett
    I MELT WITH YOU- Modern English
    I WANT YOU BACK- Jackson 5
    I WANT YOU TO WANT ME- Cheap Trick
    I WILL SURVIVE- Gloria Gaynor
    I WISH- Stevie Wonder
    JESSE’S GIRL- Rick Springfield JIVE TALKING- Bee Gees
    JOHNNY B. GOODE-Chuck Berry
    THE JOKER-Steve Miller
    JUNGLE BOOGIE- Kool and the Gang
    JUST WHAT I NEEDED- Cars
    LA BAMBA- Ritchie Valens
    LADIES NIGHT- Kool and the Gang
    LAST DANCE- Donna Summer
    LE FREAK- Chic
    LET’S GROOVE- Earth Wind and Fire
    LET’S STAY TOGETHER- Al Greene
    LOVE SHACK- The B52’s
    LITTLE WING-Hebdrix/Sting
    MUSTANG SALLY- Wilson Pickett
    MY GIRL- Temptations
    MILLION MILES AWAY-The Plimsouls
    ONE WAY OR ANOTHER- Blondie
    PLAY THAT FUNKY MUSIC- Wild Cherry
    PROUD MARY- Tina Turner
    RESPECT- Aretha Franklin ROCK
    LOBSTER- B52s
    ROCK THIS TOWN- Stray Cats
    ROCK WITH YOU- Michael Jackson
    SATISFACTION- Rolling Stones
    SEPTEMBER- Earth Wind and Fire
    SEX MACHINE- James Brown
    SHINING STAR- Earth Wind and Fire
    STRAY CAT STRUT- Stray Cats
    SURRENDER-Cheap Trick
    SWEET HOME ALABAMA- Leonard Skynard
    TAKE IT EASY- The Eagles
    TEQUILA- The Champs
    TURNING JAPANESE-The Vapors
    WE ARE FAMILY- Sister Sledge
    WHAT I LIKE ABOUT YOU-The Romantics
    WHAT’S GOIN’ ON- Marvin Gaye
    WIPEOUT- The Surfari’s YMCA- Village People
    WONDERFUL TONIGHT-Eric Clapton
    YOU CAN’T HURRY LOVE- Supremes

    90’s TO PRESENT
    3AM-Matchbox 20
    ALLSTAR- Smashmouth
    ALL THE SMALL THINGS- Blink 182
    BEAUTIFUL- Christina Aguilera
    BECAUSE YOU LOVED ME- Celine Dion
    BITCH- Meredith Brooks
    BLISTER IN THE SUN- Violent Femmes

    CRAZY IN LOVE- Beyonce
    CREEP-Radiohead
    FAST AS YOU- Dwight Yokham
    FIELDS OF GOLD- Sting
    FLYAWAY- Lenny Kravitz
    FLY- Sugar Ray
    FRAGILE-Sting
    GAME OF LOVE- Santana, Michelle Branch
    GET THE PARTY STARTED- Pink
    GIVE IT AWAY- Red Hot Chilli Peppers GROOVE IS IN THE HEART- DeeLite
    HELLA GOOD- No Doubt HEY YA- Outkast
    HIGHER- Creed
    HOWS IT GONNA BE- 3rd Eye Blind
    THE MIDDLE- Jimmy Eat World
    I TOUCH MYSELF- The Divinyls IT’S MY LIFE- No Doubt
    JUMP JIVE & WAIL-Brian Setzer
    JUST A GIRL- No Doubt
    LET’S GET IT STARTED- Black Eyed Peas
    LIVIN LA VIDA LOCA- Ricky Martin
    LOVE ROLLERCOASTER- Red Hot ChilPeppers
    MAN! I FEEL LIKE A WOMAN- Shania Twain
    MEET VIRGINIA-Train
    MY OWN WORST ENEMY-Lit
    NEVER LET YOU GO- 3rd Eye Blind
    OBJECTION TANGO- Shakira
    ONE HEADLIGHT- Wallflowers
    SANTERIA- Sublime
    SEMI CHARMED LIFE- 3rd Eye Blind
    SLIDE- Goo Goo Dolls
    SMOOTH- Santana
    THIS LOVE- Maroon 5
    TORN- Natalie Imbruglia TOXIC- Britney Spears
    TROUBLE- Pink
    UNDERNEATH IT ALL- No Doubt
    WALKING ON THE SUN- Smashmouth
    WHEN IT’S OVER- Sugar Ray
    WHAT I GOT- Sublime
    WHY DIDN’T YOU CALL ME- Macy Gray
    YOU & ME & THE BOTTLE MAKES 3- Big Bad Voo Doo Daddy
    YOU HAD ME- Joss Stone
    YOU OUGHTA KNOW- Alanis Morrissette

    As for standards, open the real book and see what your singer knows. Maybe some traditional songs like the Hora.
     
  18. bmc

    bmc

    Nov 15, 2003
    Switzerland
    I was listening to the radio on the way to work this morning and they mentioned the top three most requested songs at weddings:

    1. Everything I do - Bryan Adams

    2. We've only just begun - The Carpenters

    3. I will always Love you - Whitney Houston
     
  19. `ash

    `ash

    Feb 26, 2004
    Melbourne
    nutbush city limits
     
  20. sleeplessknight

    sleeplessknight Supporting Member

    Mar 8, 2002
    Seattle
    Heh heh heh. 'Ash said "nut bush".


    But really, thank you guys for all your input, it's VERY helpful! I don't think that my humble jazz quartet can learn ALL the requests by the Big Date, but we'll certainly see what we can fit under our belts by then. Any ideas on what they mean by "MCing the wedding"? What does that usually entail?