Phoenix Live Bands Guide

How to Book the Right Wedding Band in Arizona

Phoenix is known for its spiritual edge, as well as some of the most scenic sunsets this side of the galaxy. Not as many people know about its musical roots, even though diverse artists like Stevie Nicks and Wayne Newton emerged from these parts. For your wedding day, you can have an up-and-coming band or something classy. Since finding the right music is a matter of knowing what to look for, read on for hot tips.

Your Phoenix wedding band search should begin about 8 months’ prior to your wedding, and after you’ve picked the site. Great bands are booked early on, so don’t wait until the last minute. When searching, ask friends and relatives, check out clubs, and talk to other vendors. The price of wedding bands varies tremendously, depending on numerous factors. Expect to pay anywhere from $5,000 to $15,000. Always get references, and contact the Better Business Bureau for complaints.

When interviewing Phoenix wedding bands, ask for sample DVDs and CDs, and be sure to catch a live performance (but never crash someone else’s wedding). Talk to the band leader about hosting duties, as they work like D.J.s: introducing dances, cake-cutting, etc. A great band can “work” the crowd with the right music, but you still need to go over favorite songs, as well as tunes you don’t want played. Make sure the band has a list of all wedding sections. If you’ve hired a Phoenix D.J. as well, the two need to coordinate their performance schedules.

When you’re ready to get serious about music, visit the Phoenix Local Vendor Section for a great list of top-rated wedding bands in the Phoenix area.

If the band you hire knows your site, they will already have an idea about where equipment can be set up, where the dance floor is, and any electrical challenges that might occur—some halls have back-up generators for wedding bands. If the band you hire doesn’t know the site, take them on a guided tour to avoid last-minute surprises.

Wedding bands usually have a day rate, as well as overtime fees. If you are also hiring a D.J., find out if the band can work a fewer number of hours. The band generally takes two breaks, and they should be served a meal. Live wedding bands are generally tipped 20%, provided the service is exceptional. The contract should cover all fees, names of band members, and names of substitute players, should there be a last-minute emergency.

-David Toussaint

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