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  • Cocktail Hour

    These are easily my best gigs. I started doing them a few years ago and I get more of them each wedding season. I will not play entire weddings- there's too much BS involved. 

    I have 4 cocktail hour weddings lined up though this summer beginning this Saturday. I literally play 60 minutes for $200 and I'm out. If the wedding and reception are at the same place I'll gladly play a song or two for their ceremony.

    Anyone else?

    <div class="signaturecontainer"><a href="http://www.justdarrell.com" target="_blank">Just Darrell Web Site</a></div>

  • #2

    Yes, I've done a few, but I also started DJing weddings about 7 years ago. Playing guitar during cocktails, dinner or ceremony is something I do that most DJs can't. I had a ceremony two years ago that paid $200 and all I needed to bring was guitar, music stand, and lyrics sheets. No PA needed!

     

    I have a wedding coming up in May where I'll be playing guitar during the ceremony. That's all so far for this summer.

    Last year I did a couple of ceremonies and a Jazz guitar cocktail hour.

    Winner of best guitarist in the house. (my house)!

    Comment


    • steve mac
      steve mac commented
      Editing a comment
      The wedding market is amazingly lucrative. For a few years I made a living exclusively as a wedding photographer and decided early on to charge the most in the area and the bookings started flowing in, then I became the most expensive in the district and got even more bookings, it was mental, the more I charged the more bookings I got. I think the reason was I ended up with almost no competition in my price range. And folk want to pay a lot for weddings. No reason it shouldn't work for musicians.
      Cheers Steve

  • #3

    That's genius.

     

    What do you wear?

    Do you play the same stuff you usually do or do you play american songbook standards and dinner music?

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    Comment


    • Potts
      Potts commented
      Editing a comment

      J.Paul wrote:

      That's genius.

       

      What do you wear?

      Do you play the same stuff you usually do or do you play american songbook standards and dinner music?


       

      I play EXACTLY what I normally play. I always tell them that I'm not much of a "wedding guy" but I can always do MY show. I let them request a bunch of tunes off my setlist a couple weeks before or I just feel out the room and do what we do.  I don't think I've normally  used my tracks though. It's a more of an up close and personal type of gig.

      As far as dress goes I try to look like the cool musician dude and not the wedding party guy, photographer or DJ. A crisp white shirt, vest or jacket, black pants or something. A tux and all that is silly in that type of situation. I really want people walking away thinking that it was cool that the bride and groom got the solo guitar player dude and not some stuffy musician that was hired through a corporate agent. I know it sounds silly but it's really my little marketing thing and music persona.

       


  • #4
    We will offer a cocktail set in various formats for an extra fee. (Why let Potts have the gig if I can get it .

    We've done them as a full band, solo piano, solo guitar, piano and one or two singers, etc. usually super easy because virtually no one is ever paying attention at that point

    And, FWIW, while those videos are funny and based in truth, the horror stories about weddings are greatly over exaggerated. Like anything else, do the prep work ahead of time and you'll keep the surprises and the bull**************** to a minimum.
    _________________________________________________
    band websites:
    http://www.JumpStartYourParty.com
    https://www.gigmasters.com/Rock/Jump-Start
    https://www.facebook.com/JumpStartYourParty
    http://www.weddingwire.com/biz/jumps...587fe5f12.html

    Comment


    • daddymack
      daddymack commented
      Editing a comment

      guido61 wrote:

      And, FWIW, while those videos are funny and based in truth, the horror stories about weddings are greatly over exaggerated.


      yes, intentionally over-the-top, but I posted them as a 'cautionary', because there are still more idiots out there.....png" alt=":smileysad:" title="Smiley Sad" />


    • Shaster
      Shaster commented
      Editing a comment

      guido61 wrote:
      We will offer a cocktail set in various formats for an extra fee. (Why let Potts have the gig if I can get it .

      We've done them as a full band, solo piano, solo guitar, piano and one or two singers, etc. usually super easy because virtually no one is ever paying attention at that point

      And, FWIW, while those videos are funny and based in truth, the horror stories about weddings are greatly over exaggerated. Like anything else, do the prep work ahead of time and you'll keep the surprises and the bull**************** to a minimum.

      I often have a pretty good time doing weddings, and have worked for some brides who were real people. But some of those videos are too close to the truth. I did a band gig for a wedding where there was too much money in the family. The bride lived in Europe and every time she flew into town she wanted to have a meeting with me (and the hotel) and rake us over the coals for some deed we would undoubtedly do in the future.

      The wedding was a bit of a nightmare with the bride riding the band all night - and it was a good band. One she had hand picked after seeing us at a club. Anyway in the end she stopped pouting because one of her wedding gifts was a Lamborghini. Talk about high maintenance - the bride not the car!

      Even as a "wall paper guy" at cocktail hour I've had a few crazy times, but those parts of the evening do seem to be much less stressful. Just make sure you enter through the kitchen


  • #5
    Oh no doubt there's truth in all of those. I've shared all that stuff and laughed many times before. But the reality, in my experience anyway, is there aren't really any more difficult brides or wedding coordinators out there than there are club owners. You just have to make sure you take care of yourself and your obligations. Weddings definately are they're own beast and the first few any band does are going to seem ridiculous because its just not the same stuff you're used to dealing with. But once you learn the ropes they can be as easy and enjoyable as any other sort of gig if not more so.

    Having said all that, this thread is about doing solo work for cocktail sets and ceremonies and that stuff is usually a breeze and easy good money. Like I said, we're usually just wallpaper at those things anyway and end up playing whatever we want. They're pretty boring, most often, but easy money.
    _________________________________________________
    band websites:
    http://www.JumpStartYourParty.com
    https://www.gigmasters.com/Rock/Jump-Start
    https://www.facebook.com/JumpStartYourParty
    http://www.weddingwire.com/biz/jumps...587fe5f12.html

    Comment


    • daddymack
      daddymack commented
      Editing a comment

      We (the band) actually started referring to those as 'wallpaper gigs' when we were doing a lot of cocktail/dinner/after dinner dancing hotel gigs.The few solo gigs I've done of late have been wallpaper gigs, one customer even preferred I didn't 'sing too many songs'...fine by me...


      As a soloist I have done a few weddings over the years, but usually only the ceremony itself, not the reception. Weddings are often best left to [dare I say] DJs and the professional wedding bands (I used to sub in a well known Big Band style one here in L.A. back in the 90s); the leader started to like me because I could pull off newer requests and do a quick and dirty explanation to the band (he didn't like me originally because I would show up with my Stratocaster), and I could sing...got the occassional 'bonus' at the end of the gig for pulling those out.

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