Top Ten Questions to Ask When Choosing a Band
for Your Wedding Reception

by Robert Frascotti, BM, MM

1. Does the band have a good quality demo tape that I can receive by mail?
You should not have to traipse all over town trying to duck into someone else's reception in order to see a band perform.

2. Are there written comments on file from customers who have used the band in the past, that I will be allowed to examine?
Your best assurance that a band will do a good job at your reception, is a documented "track record" showing that the band has satisfied its previous customers.

3. Does the band have experience performing specifically at wedding receptions?
Providing the entertainment for a wedding reception requires a unique set of skills that are acquired by a band only through plenty of actual experience. These include emceeing, pacing, protocol, modes of behavior and dress, and much more. A band that usually performs in bars or lounges will have little or no such experience.

4. Does the band wear black tuxedos when they perform?
Formal black tuxes for men, and dressy gowns for ladies are the standard attire that you should expect from your reception band.

5. Are the band's promo materials neat, attractive, well-organized?
Nice materials indicate an organized, experienced band. Messy materials warn of sloppy habits and probably music. No materials means—losers.

6. Does the band play the styles of music I am expecting?
You should be provided with a sample song list, which will reflect the kinds of music the band normally plays.

7. Has the band been recommended by a reputable entertainment agency?
The best bands will have been noticed by companies such as Paragon Music & Entertainment, (740) 548-5250. Their recommendation means that the band has been auditioned and selected by music professionals who are trained to evaluate musical talent and who understand the requirements of wedding receptions. It should carry a lot of weight in your decision-making process.

8. Does the band specify their instrumentation, or do they offer to "put something together?"
The phrase, "Sure, we can put something together for you" should turn you off immediately. The speaker is suggesting that you accept an "ad hoc" group of musicians who will likely be playing together for the first time at your reception! Not a good idea.

9. Will the band leader call me the week of my wedding, to "touch base" with me about my entertainment?
You have a right to expect this personal touch, and the opportunity to fine-tune your entertainment agenda.

10. Once I choose, will I receive a written contract from a responsible entertainment agency to guarantee the band's appearance?
This is a must. A company such as Paragon Music & Entertainment will provide this to you.

 

2000 Rhonda Frascotti

Robert Frascotti, President of Paragon Music & Entertainent, Ltd., holds music degrees from the Indiana University School of Music and from The Eastman School of Music. He has served on the Board of Trustees of the International Special Events Society, on the music faculty of Indiana University and of Capital University. He is the co-author of the acclaimed music text, The Orchestral Saxophonist. As a noted jazz saxophonist, Mr. Frascotti has appeared with such music legends as Liza Minelli, Ella Fitzgerald, Leslie Uggams, and Sarah Vaughan.