We've put together some frequently asked questions which will hopefully help explain certain aspects of booking live entertainment for your event along with exclusive advice from some of the UK's premier wedding planners.
If you are thinking of booking a band for your event, you will understandably want the very best entertainment for your special occasion, below are some answers to questions we are most frequently asked:-
Once you have made your final selection, just fill in the enquiry form and we’ll do the rest with confirmation of availability and fees for your chosen acts.
The quickest option and sometimes the best if you have a budget in mind, which is fine, in the centre of the home page is our quick search, simply fill in your details for your event and see what comes up.
You can pay the balance as follows:
1. Advance payment to Charm Music 7 days prior to your event
2. Cash on the night
3. Advance payment 7 days prior to your event, payable to the band
A. All bookings are subject to a 15% + vat on deposit. This is payable at the time of booking.
All future payment direct to us are subjuct to VAT.
A. Once you have seen the artist you like, just click on their calendar within their profile page, if they are showing available, GREAT!!!! now just give our team a call to discuss your requirements in details or email them to us, we’ll double check their availability (just incase the artist has not updated their calendar that morning/evening) and fees with the information you’re given us.
We will then contact you to confirm and you can make your decision.
When checking the availability of an artist you are under no obligation to book them.
A. The majority of bands play a minimum of 2 x 45 minute sets,. Many function/wedding bands play for longer, usually 2 x 60 or 3 x 40 minute sets any time between 8pm till midnight. Any longer than this may run the risk of damaging the lead singer's voice. Some tribute bands, specialist acts and classical artists play to suit the occasion and this will be discussed at the time of booking.
A. This varies from band to band, however, most bands who play at weddings, private functions and corporate events usually provide pre-recorded compilation party music before between and after until midnight to ensure that the party music is non-stop to keep the dance floor full while the band take a short break. Some bands can also offer a separate Professional DJ's service at an additional fee if required. Alternatively, you may wish to make up your own compilation or special songs on your own MP3 player or iPod which can be played through the band's PA system.
A. Most bands will perform at a level suitable for the room/event. Please bear in mind that the room can also be a factor in the how the band sounds.
In our experience, we recognise that for most parties, you need the band to be loud enough on the dance floor to create an atmosphere without deafening the rest of the room.
In marquees and venues with carpeted floors and soft furnishings this is easy to achieve due to the 'dead acoustic'. In rooms and halls with high ceilings, wooden/stone floors and lots of windows the echo of the acoustic makes the volume much harder to control.
Noise-Limiters or Venue Sound-Control
An increasing number of venues now use noise-limiters, which are not much fun especially for live bands when trying to work within venue’s volume levels if set unworkable low, if you are aware that your venue has a sound limiter it’s best to find out before booking your band what dB (DECIBEL) level they have it set at, as some bands maybe unable to work within their restraints if set unrealistically low, other bands will just not work where limiters are installed, as some will cut power supply to their equipment, this can cause damage to the performers expensive PA and amplifiers.
Noise Limiters are usually installed for one of two reasons,
Environmental:- Where venues are near residential properties, they have a duty to keep any noise (usually measured at a residential property's boundary) to a reasonable level.
Health and Safety:- There isn't yet any legal requirement to protect customers or party guests - who are there voluntarily - from loud noises, but there is a requirement for employers to protect employees and contractors
Different noise limiters work in different ways but essentially they are in the venue to limit excessive volume levels. A noise limiter will be enforced either by the local council or the venue management & each noise limiter can be set to cut off the sound when it reaches it’s limit. The effect of a noise limiter can be anything from the duty manager telling the band its too loud & to play quieter through to a cut off switch cutting power to the stage.
The problem is, it all depends upon what DB level the noise limiter is set at. A reasonably set DB level shouldn’t cause any problems at all but too often the venue has set a limiter at a level impossible for a band to perform at. this only causes a lot of stress for everyone on the night, especially if it results in power being cut.
What level are they usually set to?
Sound limiters are quite often set to between 80-95 decibels (db). Most live amplified rock & pop bands can register at between 100 and 115db. This is not throughout the whole evening but when the band peaks at the loudest parts of a particular song and can also be dependent on a number of factors, such as how the limiter is set up with its frequency to cut off say the drums or bass (which is what carries the furthest) or Brass instruments.
Both the above can be overcome with a good experienced live band with a few options:-
The limiter usually has a traffic light warning system of 10 - 20 seconds giving the band time to ‘bring the music down’ they would have practiced this in their set-up.
Some bands can offer the the option of using an electric drum-kit, which means the sound is fully controllable with volume or the drummer can use Hot-Rod drum sticks which will lower their volume.
The Brass section is not so easy, it maybe worth considering exchanging a brass section for keyboards who will be able to replicate the brass sounds.
A. Bands are always happy to take a few requests from their current repertoire and will try to include a number your favourite songs from their list, however please bear in mind that all of our bands are experienced in performing at events and have tried and tested set lists that will work for your audience. So, ultimately it is best to let them write the set list!
A. Most musicians and entertainers supply all the equipment they require to perform their act, this is what is meant by ‘fully self-contained’ For example, in the case of a band they will provide all instruments, PA, lighting, and in the case of a magician they would provide any props required.There maybe instances where a band or artist is performing at a large venue, especially at corporate events where the artist will request that the PA is supplied for them as theres will not suffice!
A. Yes, in almost all cases an act will have everything they need to perform at your event. Bands will include the PA, Speakers, Lighting, Instruments, etc. magicians will provide any props and caricaturists all the materials they need too. On certain occasions, for example, large corporate events or venue / club events, there may be sound equipment and engineers already provided. In these cases the acts will still provide their backline equipment (the equipment they require to perform their act), and the front of house equipment (large PA, lighting rigs etc.) will be in-house (provided by the venue). When this is the case the band or entertainer will provide a technical specification list outlining what they will be bringing with them so that the in-house team are able to cater for them. When an event is taking place in a foreign location it may be the case that the backline equipment will also need to be provided (for example, guitar amps, drum kit etc.).
A. public address system (PA system) is an electronic sound amplification and distribution system with a microphone, amplifier and loudspeakers. For example, when a person is giving a speech, a band is playing at a concert or event or a DJ playing pre-recorded music.
A. One very important clause in the Terms and Conditions refers to additional extras that the band or entertainer you want to book will require. For example, parking at your venue is essential because often an entertainer has heavy or awkward equipment to carry.
Soft drinks will be required for the duration of all acts during their stay, food refreshments (where an act will be at your event for more than 3 hours)
Evening entertainment can be away from home anything from 10 - 16 hours taking into account traveling to and from your event. it’s worth remembering a well fed band is a happy band! this doesn't mean they need a 3 course meal but also a few sandwiches may not sustain the band throughout the night when they are expected to give you and your guests a fantastic performance.
Please ensure that arrangements are made for plenty of soft drinks to be made available for your entertainment (you are not required to supply alcohol) and are free during the evening.
A secure changing area. Somewhere comfortable would be appreciated with a mirror, chairs and electricity supply so that the artist is able to change and prepare for their performance. With a lockable room the artist will be able to store any personal items and use as a quite area between their sets.
These requirements are simply to ensure that the band or entertainer you have hired will be able to perform at their absolute best at all times.
A. This is an extremely rare occurrence that an act is unable to attend or cancels, our artists pride themselves on reliability in their profession, however, if this is due for reasons other than ‘Force Majeure’ then the artist will be in breach of the contract, you will then be within your rights to sue the artist for damages.
If the act has cancelled and the reasons fall within ‘Force Majeure’ then their liability is negated.
If either of the above situations should arise, you can be reassured that Charm Music will do their very upmost to resolve the situation and find a suitable replacement as we have a large roster of acts, this puts you in a much more secure position than if you book an act direct.
Undoubtedly, the artist turning down alternate enquiries and work opportunities will result in lost income, Therefore, if they are unable to refill the date they will be losing income.
As soon as you are aware you need to cancel your event please contact us immediately in writing, we will instruct your artist of the cancellation.
Charm Music Agency terms and conditions outline the cancellation charges based on the date of the cancellation in line with date of your event.
If you cancel an act for a reason falling outside of ‘Force Majeure’ then you will more than likely be liable for a cancellation fee.
Unforgettable days don’t just happen - they are planned.
Your wedding day will be one of the most unforgettable days of your lives. It could also be one of the most expensive and time consuming occasions of your lives.
Did you know that the average bride spends 275 hours organising her wedding - that's equal to 7 full-time working weeks!
Do you have that time to spare?
Are you able to visit suppliers during office hours?
If your answer is No, then a Wedding Planner could help you, not only with saving you valuable time but to help you achieve your dreams within your set budget.
If it’s a religious wedding you wish for, getting married in the Church of England (or Church in Wales) is almost as simple as going to the register office because the Church of England is still the state recognised church in the UK.
Your first step is to contact the vicar of the church is which you wish to be wed to arrange an appointment to meet.
One of you will need to be a member of the Church of England and should live in the parish where you want to be married.
The church doesn't allow remarriage in church of people who have been divorced, but individual priests may agree to it.
Most priests will agree to give a blessing to a couple where one or both are divorced and have remarried in a civil ceremony.
There is some flexibility on this and the best way to find out what to do is to talk to the vicar at your local church or the vicar of the church where you'd like to be married.
The usual proof of your name, age, marital status, address, occupation and nationality is required.
Civil wedding venues - The advantage of a civil ceremony is that it can be completely tailor-made to suit your taste and personality.
The only issue is that there is a lot of choice, so you'll need to be more organised than if you were simply getting married in your local church.
There are many reasons why you might choose a civil wedding. Perhaps you have no religious beliefs, maybe you're getting married for the second time -- or maybe you just want to get married somewhere a bit different.
Wherever it is held, a civil ceremony:
• Will contain no religious elements.
• Is conducted by the superintendent registrar or deputy and registered by the registrar.
• Can take place in a register office or a licensed venue after 8am and before 6pm, subject to staffing arrangements.
• The service can last from between 10 and 30 minutes.
The Civil Partnership Act 2004 finally came into force in December 2005, paving the way for thousands of same-sex couples to begin planning for, what is increasingly becoming known as a gay wedding.
A civil partnership can be formed in England and Wales at a register office or at any other approved venue, including hotels, stately homes and other places of interest.
To form a civil partnership you must first give notice of your intention to become civil partners. This means that you are legally required go to your nearest register office and inform them of your wish to register your civil partnership.
Your details are then made public by the registration authority for a period of fifteen days. Your notice is valid for 12 months from that date and you can arrange your ceremony or simply sign the registration schedule anytime during that year.
The civil partnership notice states the following details for each person:
Name and surname, date of birth, condition (marital or civil partnership status), occupation nationality and place of formation.
Renewal of Vows
Any married couple, of any age and married for any length of time can arrange a Renewal of Marriage Vows Ceremony.
There is no restriction with regards to area and it does not matter if you do not live in the area where you would like to hold your ceremony.
It could be that after many years of happy marriage, you may wish to recreate the intense emotion of your wedding day or, perhaps, that first ceremony was a quick visit to the Register office and you now wish to celebrate in a grander style.
Whatever your reasons, renewing your vows can strengthen your marriage, bring back happy memories and gives you the perfect excuse for a wonderful party!
For a religious ceremony, the Church offers a 'Service of Blessing'. This can be very simple, or a grand affair, complete with bridal gown, attendants and wedding bells.
There is a choice of wording and, if the vicar is willing, the service can be very similar to a wedding.
Of course there are many local authorities who will perform renewal ceremonies in their register offices or approved venues in which you can have a civil wedding.