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If music be the food of love. Bands, DJ’s, singers, string quartets.

If music be the food of love. Bands, DJ’s, singers, string quartets.

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If music be the food of love…

It can be quite intimidating the first time you go online and type in “wedding music Ireland” into the internet search bar. Bands, DJ’s, singers, string quartets and uilleann pipers. Which one do you choose, where do you start, and what on earth are uilleann pipers?

A lot of what you choose will depend on the type of wedding you want to have. A traditional wedding, a rustic country wedding or an urban hipster wedding will all require a different approach to the music, but there are a few standard boxes to tick before you decide.

Generally speaking, if you are choosing a band, DJ or a singer, the one quality that will far outweigh any other consideration is experience. A wedding band or DJ that has been playing weddings for ten years will know which songs work, when to take it down a notch or when to get the party started. They will know the most requested songs, they will know what equipment they will need and they will have a good idea what to do when it comes to handling a crisis.

Your cousin Jimmy, who calls himself DJ Brain and started his wedding music career last week is not going to know that he needs to have Galway Girl within arm’s reach at all times and that no-one at your wedding is going to enjoy his 15-minute extended dance mix of Ibiza anthems.

The second checkbox you need to tick is the price. Susan at your work who knows a really cheap wedding band may have the best of intentions, but professionals who know what they are doing, and are good at it, know what they are worth and charge accordingly. If someone is quoting you way below everyone else, there will be a reason for that, and don’t wait for your wedding day to find out what the nasty surprise is.

Third tick box is availability. People who have good reputations are going to be booked far in advance, so don’t leave this to the last minute. You need to book a wedding band at least nine months to a year in advance, and a DJ at least six to nine months in advance if you are going for quality and reliability. Someone who is available at a weeks’ notice should set off alarm bells.

The fourth indicator is that a good wedding band or DJ will ask you for a list of songs you would like, and will make recommendations based on their experience. They may ask you for additional information. The age range of your guests will have a big influence, a young crowd will want a very different music set than a traditional wedding crowd. The nationality of your guests is also a factor, if one or both of the guest families is foreign, say French or Polish, then adding in a few songs in that language will be an appreciated touch.  

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