What makes a good event?
The answers differ depending on who you ask, but we guarantee live music is a top answer. When the tunes flow, your guests can take to the dance floor, show their best moves, and break the ice without awkward small talk. After all, music is the universal language.
But before you fast forward to the big night, you need to secure your party band booking. Don’t stress. This process is actually much easier than expected — and we’re here to provide expert help.
In this blog, we’re outlining the key steps you need to know. From your initial party band research to signing the contract, this guide is here to make event planning simple. Bookmark this page now so you can come back later.
Let’s get started. Find the booking guide below.
Understanding Your Needs
The first step for any event planning is to review your party’s and, more importantly, your guests’ needs!
No event is the same. Some are big, and some are small. Some require soft orchestral melodies, and others need a loud rock band. It’s best to spend at least ten minutes considering your event’s style to ensure you don’t book a bad fit.
- Key areas to consider include:
- Event size
- Fitting genres
- Guest preferences
For example, smaller venues will need a smaller party band. Best to know your limits so you’re not trying to fit an 11-piece band onto a minuscule stage!
Don’t forget to consider your guests’ tastes. For instance, a pop band will delight guests with a love for cutting-edge tunes. However, if you’re event planning for a group of indie-lovers, you might want to explore more appropriate genres.
You should also consider your budget. Hiring a live band in the UK costs around £1,000. This price can go up or down depending on the event specifics, but it’s a good benchmark to have in mind when planning.
The more you fine-tune your needs, the more successful your party band booking will be.
Once you’re clear on your party band requirements, it’s time to get out there and search for the right fit. But where can you actually find professional musicians?
The best way to meet your musical match is through online platforms (like Encore Musicians). Thanks to the internet, you can take the fuss out of event planning and search for bands from the comfort of your home.
When reviewing band profiles online, take time to read them thoroughly. No skimming here! This will give you a quick snapshot of what you can expect; some even have demo tracks and videos to provide a visual preview.
Alternatively, you can also find party bands via the old-fashioned method — asking friends and family for personal recommendations. This also provides you with genuine reviews and local musicians, so don’t knock it until you’ve tried it.
If you’re feeling lost, the best way to find the right musicians for you is to watch old performances! Dim the lights and enjoy some live music on YouTube or via artists’ previews, and make a note of what you do and don’t enjoy. If only all research could be this fun.
After finding a band that fits your party needs, it’s time to move in and make contact.
Typically, you’ll be reaching out to a band member or manager. However, if you’re using an online booking site, you can check availability with the band before starting a conversation.
Be ready with specific details of your event before you reach out. This way, you can provide your potential band with the need-to-know info, making booking easier for everyone involved.
Details you need to have ready include:
- Event date and time
- Venue location
- Preferred music style
While you must present your event clearly to the party band, you should also prepare a few questions to see whether they fit you.
For example, “How long do you play for?”, “What are your band’s meal/break requirements?” or “Do you provide microphone equipment for toasts?” Professional musicians can answer these questions without issues, so don’t hesitate to ask.
Quotes and Contracts
When you’ve contacted a party band, they’ll review your request and return with a quote.
Live music quotes aren’t a reservation. They’re a preview of what you’d pay for the services needed. So, you can contact various bands for quotes without committing — perfect if you want to shop around before making a final decision.
When comparing quotes, don’t only focus on the final price. Of course, this is important. But some musicians might offer extras, such as free song requests, a wireless microphone for speeches, or longer playing hours.
The next step is agreeing to the quote and signing a contract before the event. Contracts sound serious, but they’re crucial to ensure everyone’s on the same page.
Common clauses in party band booking contracts cover the following:
- Payment terms
- Performance details
- Cancellation policies
- Insurance & liability details
All involved parties must sign the contract before the event. Otherwise, you might not be protected. In most scenarios, the performance continues without a hitch. But you want to be prepared for anything!
Not a lawyer? No issue here. Encore Musicians handles the time-consuming contract details for you.
While cancellations are extremely rare, Encore Musicians offers basic protection which entitles you to a full refund if there’s a cancellation. With this cover you’ll need to submit a new enquiry on Encore to find a replacement.
However, you can also opt for Encore Cover for a small fee. This provides:
- Out of hours support
- Personalised replacement searches
- Encore covers the cost if your replacement is more expensive
Alternatively, Encore Cover also provides an enhanced refund if there’s no replacements available. This includes a full refund plus £100 cashback.
Ease and accessibility are at the forefront of our services. Read more about our booking terms here.
Preparation and Communication
When you reach this step, you’re well on the way to planning an incredible event.
Don’t stop communicating with your party band, though! Clear communication is necessary to keep your band in the loop with the event details. Keep the musicians aware of any changes. If you message at the last minute, they might be unable to accommodate the changes.
You should also confirm the final preparations before the event to double-check that all the details are in place. This includes any setlist discussions, the event timings, and details about equipment needed or provided by the venue. Never assume the band knows what’s changed. They’ll be relying on you for the information.
When your band is in the know, the live music will be smoother, and the dance floor busier. Yippee!
Whether this is your first time making a party band booking or not, we hope this booking guide has helped you visualize your plan.
So make a cuppa and settle in for some research. Spend time imagining your perfect event, and base your research on your guests’ needs. Create an overview and prepare some questions when it’s time to contact the band. And then don’t speed through the quote stage — comparison is key!
After you’ve found a party band that stands out, ensure you have a contract (or work with a booking service) to guarantee all the specifics are in order. Finally, stay in contact with the band and feed necessary information to them regularly.
And that’s it! Event planning and booking a party band is as easy as pie, especially with experts on your side.
Explore over 350 unique UK party bands in one place with Encore Musicians. We’re here to bring the best pop hits and high-energy performances to your event without worrying about unreliable booking. Start your protected booking journey now.