Hotel Du Vin in Cheltenham has become a regular haunt for the CoverUps on New Year’s Eve the past few years – but this year was something slightly different! There was definitely something in the air, perhaps just the communal excitement of 2012 drawing to a close; with the Olympics and Jubilee year firmly in the memories of everyone there it was about time to see this year out in style!
The Hotel Du Vin venues are renowned for their spectacular food; and our sausage and mash this year really hit the mark! Playing primarily as a wedding band, the CoverUps enjoy some wonderful food throughout the wedding season. Each live show is fuelled by a great hot meal, often a taste of the wedding breakfast – so the band are well versed in good food… though, perhaps surprisingly, quantity remains as important as quality; and this sausage and mash hit the spot on both counts!
Lively Live Band
Enough about the food – what about the show?! New Year’s Eve is all about Midnight and as such our performances always start a bit later so we can see the new year in in full flow. The first half was from around 10-11pm – leaving enough time for the guests to finish their food (sorry, food again… perhaps I’m hungry…) and get some drinks in before dancing commenced.
We had great fun throughout the first set. The soft start we usually use for a wedding was out the window and it was party tune after party tune. The 5 piece version of the band (tonight with added keys, guitar and vocals courtesy of Matt of Push Record Studios) gave the band an added versatility, taking the weight of instrumentation from our front-man and giving added interaction to the performance.
Seeing The New Year In In Style
Hotel Du Vin in Cheltenham spare no expense in giving their guests the best party of the year each December 31st. This year not only did the guests have a great night dancing away to the live band, but they were treated to a live piper too! The band counted down to the New Year with the accuracy of the internet to aid them, at which moment the piper struck up downstairs. He blasted through a great medley of well known Scottish tunes, included an instrumental of Auld Lang Syne – which the band then joined and took the guests into a rousing rendition of the New Year’s classic.
First Party Of The New Year
From the first moments of the New Year the band took the guests through over an hour of lively party classics, from up to the minute tracks like Moves Like Jagger back to awesome night finishers like Hey Jude… via, perhaps slightly surprisingly, Enter Sandman by Metallica! A guest had requested some Metallica during the interval, and it just so happened it works as a marvellous segue from 500 miles – of all tracks! It was probably the high point of the gig – certainly for metal fan Hywel on lead guitar!
Here’s to next year, when with any luck we’ll return to the hotel for more fun! Below are some shots we took at the night!
Hotel Du Vin in Cheltenham has become a regular haunt for the CoverUps on New Year’s Eve the past few years – but this year was something slightly different! There was definitely something in the air, perhaps just the communal excitement of 2012 drawing to a close; with the Olympics […]
Despite being scarcely 5 minutes from the CoverUps Coventry HQ this was a rare – though very welcome – visit for the band to Nailcote Hall. Certainly one of Coventry, or indeed the West Midlands’ busiest wedding venues the service was slick and efficient, staff were helpful and friendly… in fact, our lives could hardly have been made easier!
The Stage Was Set
As the band arrived, deserts were being served to the wedding guests. As such, we tucked into our bar meals and made short work of a few soft drinks before getting set up. The load in was straight forward (if a little dark at this time of year!) and we were playing on a great stage at one end of the marquee.
We have mixed feeling about stages at weddings. Sometimes it acts to raise the band and take attention from the couple; sometimes, as tonight, it serves to bring everyone together with a common focus. Tonight we couldn’t have been happier on that stage, with a great view over a packed dance floor right through the night!
Lively Wedding Reception
The atmosphere was lively even as we arrived and once the music kicked in through the in house PA there was no stopping this wedding from a party long into the night! As we arrived for the first set – unusually around an hour after the first dance – the dance floor was already bustling with excitable wedding guests. It’s no surprise then that the whole night we were looking out on a sea of smiling faces and celebrating friends of the happy couple!
Hard To Pick Highlights
It’s always hard to pick favourite moments from a set that’s so well received start to finish! We particularly enjoyed songs like Parklife and Just Dance, with our little musical quotes catching the audience by surprise. Other than that Hey Ya was particularly fun – the audience really getting on board with the call and response section.
More Weddings At Nailcote Hall?
With Nailcote Hall hosting upwards of 150 weddings a year, as well as corporate events and parties, we all hope that it won’t be quite so long before we return! For the time being we’ll just have to enjoy our memories in the form of (slightly blurry – sorry!) photos below…
Despite being scarcely 5 minutes from the CoverUps Coventry HQ this was a rare – though very welcome – visit for the band to Nailcote Hall. Certainly one of Coventry, or indeed the West Midlands’ busiest wedding venues the service was slick and efficient, staff were helpful and friendly… in fact, our […]
Coombe Abbey as a wedding venue could hardly be more perfect; an authentic 12th Century Coventry monastery set in acres of woodland and all the heritage and tradition that that brings. It’s simply a wonderful place… Not to mention, it’s only 20mins from the CoverUps home just the other side of Coventry!
Wedding Band And DJ
With the resident DJ at the wedding too the band were left without the responsibility of music between the sets. This came as something of a blessing with the bride being a particular fan of house music – not something we’ve got a great deal of at hand (though we’d be happy to get hold of it if required!). The party was due to go long into the night with the band finishing at midnight.
Ellie Goulding First Dance
A popular choice, Ellie Goulding’s rendition of Your Song (originally a hit for Elton John) was the first dance. It’s a lovely song with great themes that any couple in love can relate to. Ellie’s version is somewhat softer than the original and lends itself to a good shuffle round the dance floor – we’ve even seen choreographed first dances to the song, so it’s definitely got something to it!
At The Bride’s Request!
The bride herself was a massive music lover. She had very definite designs on the music for her wedding day – and rightly so! As we all know, it’s very hard to please all the people all the time and on a wedding day it’s easy for the enjoyment of the guests to edge out the bride and groom’s own enjoyment. Toward the end of the night we decided it was time for the bride to take centre stage again and we asked her to select the songs for the band’s finale. She chose the excellent Mr Brightside and Moves Like Jagger; the guests on the dance floor, bridesmaids and friends gathered round her as she took centre stage once more!
That Flat Feeling As the Band Travelled Home
It’s often a funny sort of a journey home after such an eventful night… and Gaz’s car definitely got that flat feeling: a puncture only 5 minutes from the venue! The musicians all in convoy all set to work to get him back on the road and they were homeward bound in under 15 minutes… it’s not exactly an F1 pitstop, but not bad for professional musicians!
Coombe Abbey as a wedding venue could hardly be more perfect; an authentic 12th Century Coventry monastery set in acres of woodland and all the heritage and tradition that that brings. It’s simply a wonderful place… Not to mention, it’s only 20mins from the CoverUps home just the other side of […]
Tonight saw the band take a trip to Derbyshire with a wedding at Horsley Lodge. The intimate wedding venue was suitably attired with tasteful festive decorations; beautiful without being over the top.
The band arrived in plenty of time to get food in before the guests had finished wedding breakfast and the room became available. Load in is great at Horsley Lodge, so set up was quick and efficient.
We kicked off with a rendition of Take That’s Rule the World (from the Stardust sound track) as first dance. It’s a beautiful and rousing song; a lovely choice for a first dance. We enjoyed playing it, with all the harmonies kicking in for a crescendo to the song’s finale. Our bride and groom this evening took the ‘shuffle’ option – but didn’t seem bashful about being at the centre of attention, which was great.
For us, the set highlights certainly included the first dance. Also recent rarities for us were Use Somebody by the Kings of Leon and America by Razorlight. They’re both great fun to play, and roused a fantastic reaction from the guests and bride and groom who had requested those songs in particular.
Return To Horsley Lodge
We had a great night working alongside the staff at Horsley Lodge – and being only a short trip up the motorway (or A38 – take your pick!) into Derbyshire I really hope we get to return to the venue for a wedding again soon! Until then, here are a few photos from the night.
Tonight saw the band take a trip to Derbyshire with a wedding at Horsley Lodge. The intimate wedding venue was suitably attired with tasteful festive decorations; beautiful without being over the top. First Dance The band arrived in plenty of time to get food in before the guests had finished wedding breakfast […]