One reason there aren’t many wedding bands around is that the bands’ songlists have to be versatile enough to handle all of the age groups at a typical wedding– from 10 years old to 90+ years old. Bands tend to specialize in one or two genres of music, but that often isn’t enough to make for a successful wedding band: A rock band is too loud and half of the people want to two-step, or a country band is too low key when half of the people want to rock. Weddings are by far the most demanding gig for a band but “Ray and the Road” have the wedding mastered! The band has been doing weddings for 15 years and every angle is covered. The job of the band is to ensure that a good night has been had by all.
One mistake that many younger bands make is to believe that the crowd is there for the band– the band is there for the people! This point has several implications: First, the band needs to play the songs that the people want to hear, not what the band necessarily likes to play. Second, if the band is too loud then TURN DOWN THE VOLUME! Remember– the band is there as an element of the night, the band is not the whole night. People like to converse with one another during the night– especially at a wedding. It is not an insult to the band if someone asks them to turn down. On the other hand, I’ve had people ask us to turn up the volume– that’s an easier predicament because people aren’t already aggravated by a blaring volume!
“Ray and the Road” is here to make your wedding wonderful. Basically, when you book a wedding then you get a sound person for speakers, a dj, and a band. Typically, in house speaker systems are terrible so I am there throughout the day or early evening to be a soundman for speakers and to hookup AV equipment (powerpoints) through the band’s gear.
Songs that can’t be played by the band (i.e. elctronic dance music) will be played in between sets on an iPod. You can tell me which songs you want before the wedding and I’ll play them OR I'll just play the songs as you want on-the-fly. Booking a band means you get a DJ as well!
I can also play wedding songs for the first dance, either solo or with the band, that I already know or that I have to learn for the occasion. Arrangements can also be made for a song or two to be played solo at another venue–church ceremony before the dance.
Here are a few tips in planning for a band at the wedding:
- Pay attention to seating. The band is not there to make one’s ears bleed, but the people sitting too near the band’s speaker system will get an earful no matter how you look at it. Typically place the older people back from the speakers or separate the tables from the speakers altogether via a dance floor.
- It’s not an insult to ask the band to turn the volume down or up– the sound on stage can be alot different than the sound over the floor. Remember– you’re the boss!
- If the band is providing the sound system for speeches then it is important to realize that a person speaking into a microphone from further than around 6 inches will probably get feedback. Those who are speaking need to get close to the microphone so that I can provide a clear sound.
- Local wedding (band only): $1500-1600
- Local wedding (out-of-town): $1600-1800
- If you need a soundman throughout the day (cocktail hour, etc.) then add $200
- If you need songs to be played live (solo) at a ceremony then add $200
A popular (and more cost-effective) alternative to hiring the band is to hire Ray as an acoustic solo act. This option is perfect for anniversaries, birthdays, retirement parties, family get togethers, etc. Pricing for the solo act option is typically $500-600 in-town (Moose Jaw) and $700-1000 for out-of-town locations. Ray uses a premium Bose tower system which is perfect for background pre-show music at the start of a night, to a full party sound later on. This solo alternative accounts for around 85% of Ray's gigs!
We realize that weddings come with different budgets depending on your placement in life! We play for everyone and if you cannot afford the pricing then contact me and we’ll see what we can do! Every wedding deserves a band!