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  • Clothing advice for corporate gig

    Hello esteemed musicians and band members -- I need your help.

    So we are a bar band of 30- and 40-somethings that is aiming to move to corporate and wedding gigs. To that end, we have landed a gig for a company's annual meeting next month. It's a sales training company, and many if not most of the people will be coming from out of town. Abouto 75 are expected, most in their 30s with some a bit younger and some a bit older, I'm told. They will have a dinner and an awards ceremony, and we are to provide the music for afterwards -- 9 to midnight on a Saturday night at a pretty nice downtown hotel. We are playing mostly danceable music from 60s through modern (Dusty Springfield and Beatles to Elvis Costello to Adele and Pink).

    Normally we wear whatever combination of jeans, skirts, dresses and jackets (we are two women and four men) that we happen to come up with. So my question is: What should we wear for this kind of gig?

    My instinct is to go black/dark colors, no jeans (or nice jeans) and no t-shirts -- rather, cocktail-y dresses for the ladies and jacket-and-nice-jeans kind of thing for guys. Should we be more formal than that? Coordinate colors?

    Thanks for your thoughts,






  • #2
    Matchy matchy looks good!!
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    • #3

      Fab4ever wrote:


      My instinct is to go black/dark colors, no jeans (or nice jeans) and no t-shirts -- rather, cocktail-y dresses for the ladies and jacket-and-nice-jeans kind of thing for guys. Should we be more formal than that? Coordinate colors?

      No need to dress more formal unless the client specifically requests it.  I'm a big fan of cooridinate colors because I think it really helps to pull otherwise-disparate outfits together.without everyone being totally matchy-matchy.

      Here we were for a corporate event very similar to what you're describing a couple of weeks ago.  The color was, obviously, teal.



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      • Fab4ever
        Fab4ever commented
        Editing a comment

        Thanks to you both for the replies.


        Guido, I really like the look. I will discuss with the band tonight. I like the idea of coordinated, but not identical matching outfits.


    • #4
      No jeans for sure. Shirts with collars. Look like you belong there. Coordinate if possible. With corporates appearance is very important.


      • guido61
        guido61 commented
        Editing a comment

        Ask if they are dressing formal. If they are, then you should as well. If not, then black jeans should be fine, but make sure they are black, not blue and not faded.  Because it's mostly a younger crowd, you'll probably be fine without formal suits, but you should definately ask what the crowd will be wearing.

        I've found that if they are hiring a 'rock' band, they are often fine with--and often prefer--the band to have a 'rock' look. But it needs to be dressed-up and classy 'rock'. Not t shirts and blue jeans for sure.

        But the best bet if that if you're not sure if what you're wearing is OK?---then err on the side of caution.  You'll never get dinged for OVERdressing for such an event.  But UNDERdressing could kill you.

    • #5

      Personally, I don't think you can go wrong by simply asking how they want the band to dress.  Your point of contact most likely has a "vision" for the event.  Be prepared to to offer them several "versions" of how you can dress (we typically tell 'em we can go "Tux Gig" (tuxedos for the men, cocktail dresses for the women), "snappy casual" (dress pants, collared "casual" shirts, leather shoes for the men, pants or dresses for the women), "casual" (jeans, collared "casual" shirts (no t-shirts) for the men).   We try to match accent colors as well....

      I find it easier to just ask our client ... and go with that.  It takes the guesswork out of it.

      The SpaceNorman


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      • Fab4ever
        Fab4ever commented
        Editing a comment

        Great thoughts all -thanks again. I will definitely ask my contact if he prefers a particular style.

      • Austincowbell
        Austincowbell commented
        Editing a comment
        Personally I prefer to tell them how we plan to dress and ask if it's ok. We don't like playing in suits because....well... they are boring. We try to "Rock Star" it up for gigs including weddings an that's always been received well. Not that we're in the same universe but imagine booking U2 to play your wedding and they come out wearing tuxes... it would be silly.

    • #6

      Nothing wrong with color coordination, especially if your band has a strong visual/show element to begin with.  That said, my guidelines for corporate gigs are:

      1) When in doubt, ask.  No sense showing up in a suit for a themed beach party or costume event.

      2) Shoot for the top 10%.  Be among the best dressed in the room. 

      3) Even if you're told "casual," have a tie in the car just in case.

      4) A spare shirt is good insurance, especially in the summer time (and places where they just painted the %^*!@& loading dock).

      5) Dress your stage as well.  Find a way to control/mask cable clutter.  Get cases, bags, coats, etc. in a spare room or back in the van.   Presentation.

      The Homebrews!http://home.bellsouth.net/p/PWP-rupertamp

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      • jeff42
        jeff42 commented
        Editing a comment

        RupertB wrote:

         Get cases, bags, coats, etc. in a spare room or back in the van.   Presentation.

        I like to do this as much as possible at bar gigs too.