Help choosing the right music

It can be difficult to know where to start when booking a live band.
Below, we've put together some information that should help to make things a little easier for you to choose.

Purpose of the music

Are you looking for something to dance to? Or perhaps something more in the background behind conversation? Below, the different available options are listed. Most of the options are suited to either background music or music for dancing - there is the possibility of some crossover with some of the jazz bopsters ensembles. Just ask for more info...

  • Background Jazz
  • This works well at a drinks reception where guests are milling about talking to each-other, or during dinner to provide a gentle boost to the atmosphere.
    Smaller ensmebles are perfectly adequate for background music but not suitable for dancefloor duties!
    We suggest:

    > Jazz Bopsters 'background jazz' option – anything from solo piano up to a jazz quartet.

  • Swing/Jazz music for dancing
  • Frank Sinatra style swing hits for dancing – perfect for any party with a dancefloor where the band are more of a focal point.
    We suggest:

    > Jazz Bopsters jazz/swing for dancing option – anything from a quartet up to the mini-big band.
    > The London City Big Band

  • Party music for dancing – Soul, Funk, Pop, Dance, R&B covers
  • This type of music is usually suitable for an evening party or reception when guests will be dancing.
    We suggest:

    > Pandora's Jukebox in any of the 3 available sizes

  • Wedding ceremony music
  • If you would like some of your favourite jazz/pop songs played at your wedding then we would recommend anything from a solo pianist up to a quartet from the Jazz Bopsters collective. Usually, this would be more of a background band but if you want an all singing all dancing party at your ceremony, then we can do that too!

    If you'd like a traditional organist and/or trumpeter to play, then please get in touch – we'll be adding more information about this to the website in due course.

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    Technical & Logistical requirements

  • Electricity
  • All bands will require the use of a safe supply of electricity from the venue or generator (if the venue is temporary or outdoors). Standard 13A plug sockets are fine - we may require up to three of these depending on the size of the band - see terms of booking.

  • Loading & Parking
  • If you book a larger band, we will have more equipment to load in and so it's important there is somewhere closeby to pull up a vehicle. If you have concerns about this, please let us know when you enquire so we can look into it. Simalarly, there needs to be parking available close-by so that the band aren't delayed getting on stage by having to park miles away from the venue!

  • Setting up times
  • Certain bands take longer than others to set up and some may be distracting if setting up in a room where the guests currently are. The larger bands will require a sound check of up to 15 minutes (unless in particularly large venues where longer may be required). Make sure you let us know if there are things happening in the room where the band is performing at the time they need to set up so we are aware and prepared!

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    Things to watch out for...

    When choosing which size band you would like - there are a few other factors to take into consideration in addition to the general purpose of the music (dancing, background etc):

  • Venue Constraints
  • One of the main things to watch out for is if the venue has a noise (decibel) limiter. These measure the level of sound in the room and - if it reaches a certain level - can cut the power to the stage.This not only can cause damage to our equipment, but it can also render a performance impossible due to the sound constantly cutting out. Generally, background jazz will work in most venues as it is low level and will not normally trigger the noise limiter. But if you're looking to go for a larger band for dancing where a PA system is used and multiple instruments, then make sure you let us know when enquiring so we can ascertain whether or not we'll be able to perform there.

  • Acoustics of the venue
  • For the safety of yours and your guests hearing, it is a good idea to consider your venue carefully if you are set on booking one of the larger bands! Big open halls with high ceilings and wooden floors are not ideal as the sound will reverberate greatly around the room and make it very difficult to control. That's not to say we can't do it – there are measures we can take to minimise this effect, but if you are serious music lovers and you have the option of a more acoustically suitable venue, we would recommend going for that.

  • Performance space
  • We have specific space requirements for the different bands which can be found in the FAQ's section.

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