On this hot summer’s day we arrived in Somerset for Rhian and Tom’s wedding. For their reception venue, the bride and groom hired a marquee and placed it in their gorgeous, tree-lined grounds overlooking rolling Bristolian farms and fields. The sun was warm, drinks were bubbling and there was a tangible feeling of love and happiness in the air.
As we began the set-up, the band noticed we weren’t the only live musicians playing this afternoon. A Carribean Steel band had made their way down the length of the M5 and M6 from Manchester to bring a bit of that relaxed equatorial vibe to the archetypally English country garden.
To the sound of the steel drums, we set our equipment up, and once done, made ourselves scarce during the wedding breakfast. In the stunning house, where we were residing before the performance, we had a lovely chat with a nanny who was providing child care during the course of the wedding. It’s an excellent idea if you’ve got the resources, especially if many of your friends already have children, to provide something for the kids to do. Interestingly, many of the parent’s felt more relaxed just knowing it was there – sending the kids out much later than they’d expected!
Just Gets Better
We returned for the first dance, Tom Baxter’s Better. It’s a lovely, unassuming song, and one we’ve performed a number of times over the years. From there the set transitioned through the decades, with the poppy section at the start of set 2 proving a real hit. From Uptown Funk all the ways back to Billie Jean the combination of hits and cooler summer evening air made for a bustling dance floor.
With the happy couple being at their own home already, they even saw us off the site. It was lovely to see them so relaxed and happy after such a successful and joyful wedding day! Congratulation to you both!
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It was a new location for The CoverUps and we couldn’t have been more prepared to start the night with their first dance request, Better by Tom Baxter.
On this hot summer’s day we arrived in Somerset for Rhian and Tom’s wedding. For their reception venue, the bride and groom hired a marquee and placed it in their gorgeous, tree-lined grounds overlooking rolling Bristolian farms and fields. The sun was warm, drinks were bubbling and there was a […]
A 2 and half hour drive led The CoverUps to The Wellbeing Farm in Bolton last Saturday. What a fantastic venue it turned out to be! The Wellbeing Farm is not only a fully functioning farm. It is a host to various business events and vintage tea parties as well as a cookery school AND is also used for barn and tipi weddings! We don’t know how they do it, but they do it well!
A Humanist Wedding Ceremony
As a live band, we most often arrive well after the formalities are finished. So this was a rare treat with our singer arriving before the ceremony itself to set up for an acoustic set. As you can see from the photos below, the ceremony was a fairly relaxed affair, with the couple saying their own vows that they had written themselves. With the common religious texts off the cards, the couple chose song lyrics and poems that had significance to the pair of them. And as the ceremony came to a close, the congregation were asked, as they usually are, if they would support the couple in building their life together: a rousing ‘we will’ was the response!
The acoustic set over the drinks reception was well appreciated, with on and off showers bringing people back inside. It’s always fun playing more relaxed live music over the afternoon drinks, and tracks like Newton Faulkner’s Dream Catch Me set a lovely tone.
Treading Their Own Path
We’d always recommend putting your own stamp on your wedding day, and this couple did so in spades. From the ceremony which reflected their own beliefs, to the first dance which, well, was something unusual! 99 Problems, Hugo’s cover of the Jay Z track was their choice. We never did quite get to the bottom of the joke ourselves, but it seemed to be well appreciated by the friends gathered around!
With requests aplenty in the set, we ploughed on through the night with lively responses right through the night. With the Wellbeing Farm being itself fairly new to weddings, we’re hoping to be back there soon – until then, Congratulations Andy and Jess, and here’s to the next visit to the Wellbeing Farm!
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A 2 and half hour drive led The CoverUps to The Wellbeing Farm in Bolton last Saturday. What a fantastic venue it turned out to be! The Wellbeing Farm is not only a fully functioning farm. It is a host to various business events and vintage tea parties as well as a […]
This weekend the band were gifted the experience of performing live at “The most picturesque wedding venue in Worcestershire” – Birtsmorton Court. Located between Malvern Wells and Tewkesbury, Gloucestershire, Birtsmorton Court stands alone as a fortified, medieval, moated manor house. It was our first time at this stunning wedding venue and we simply could not wait to get inside and set up for Adam and Jen’s wedding reception!
Thinking Out Loud
It’s always fun when the band arrive at the venue and the thoughts and ideas of the happy couple come to fruition. This wedding was no exception, with singing waiters striking up as we arrived.
With the speeches taking place in the next room, the band were left to set up in silence – something we’re always happy to do. With the speeches done and drinks being served, a quick live sound check was all that was needed to finish the set up.
From there it was an early first dance, with one of 2015’s biggest first dance tracks, Thinking Out Loud by Ed Sheeran. It’s a gorgeous choice for a live band, and with Steve on guitar the crunchy guitar tone was thick and tasty, and the bride and groom danced a lovely dance before being joined by their friends and family on the star lit dance floor.
Packed Dance Floor
From there on out it was a packed dance floor right through the night. The audience were as happy dancing to retro classics like Dancing On The Ceiling as modern hits like Happy by Pharell Williams. A wonderful night culminating in a rousing rendition of The Beatles’ Hey Jude – great fun. Congratulations Adam and Jenny! We’re looking forward to returning to Birtsmorton Court soon. Check out the photos of the packed dance floor below, which sadly missed the crowd surfing ushers!
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This weekend the band were gifted the experience of performing live at “The most picturesque wedding venue in Worcestershire” – Birtsmorton Court. Located between Malvern Wells and Tewkesbury, Gloucestershire, Birtsmorton Court stands alone as a fortified, medieval, moated manor house. It was our first time at this stunning wedding venue […]
A brand new venue we had the joy of being amongst the first live bands to play, Shustoke Farm Barns is a beautiful, ornate yet modern setting for a wedding. As you can see in the photos (thanks to Simon Brettell Photography for these) below, it’s perfectly set out for a live band like The CoverUps.
It’s The Little – Or Big – Things!
Wedding days are typically steeped in gorgeous little details – centre pieces, button holes, favours to mention but a few. For any live band with tons of equipment to carry having doors directly onto the stage is one of those little things! On the other hand – these doors were fantastic old wooden doors which made a wonderful backdrop for the band!
Here Comes The Sun
In our years of playing, we hadn’t yet been given the opportunity to roll out this Beatles classic. A marvellous choice, Here Comes The Sun really speaks of the wedding day being the start of an amazing journey into life together. The gentle double guitar arrangement gave the couple a great setting for their first dance, and as you can see below, it really was a picture perfect moment!
A Rocking Party
The night rocked on with classics played to a teeming dancefloor. Livin’ On A Prayer gave the crowd a chance to show us the best of their vocal muscles – Bon Jovi would have been proud! For now, enjoy the photos, and we’ll see you next time!
A brand new venue we had the joy of being amongst the first live bands to play, Shustoke Farm Barns is a beautiful, ornate yet modern setting for a wedding. As you can see in the photos (thanks to Simon Brettell Photography for these) below, it’s perfectly set out for […]
Kelmarsh Hall is a spectacular location for an occasion, not least an awesome wedding! Being only just down the road from our Coventry HQ, it was surprising that the band had never played live at Kelmarsh Hall before… It just goes to show there’s an amazing abundance of wonderful wedding venues even here in the Midlands!
We always love it when a couple really put their own stamp on their wedding day, and this night had creativity in spades – right the way through! New ideas, it seemed, were presenting themselves even as the evening went on. The first dance, Hungry Eyes from the Dirty Dancing soundtrack, was a quirky choice in itself (though it was great fun to play!) but only minutes before we went on we learnt of a plan to do a first dance false start. An usher was tasked with playing a much more typical first dance from a laptop, and, just as people started to resolve that they’d gone for the safe option, the band would kick in with the real song! Well, you don’t earn a living from playing weddings for more than a decade without being able to take such things in our stride, and off we rocked!
From there the bride and her father danced to a recorded track for the second dance, after which the dancing really took off with the band kicking in. The night turned into something of an 80s dance party – at the couple’s request! Tracks from Aha, Huey Lewis And The News and Dexy’s Midnight Runners all had the packed dance floor jumping.
A Sparkling End
Another surprise to us in the band – though not to the ushers fortunately – was to for the happy couple to exit through a sparkler tunnel. As our last song drew to a close the band sent the audience out to the venue’s front steps, where the men of honour were handing out sparklers. Minutes later the steps were lined with a glorious sight – which we’ve captured rather amateurishly below (we’re a wedding band, not wedding photographers!).
A wonderful night had by all at Kelmarsh Hall – and as one of their new recommended suppliers, we hope to be back soon!
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Kelmarsh Hall is a spectacular location for an occasion, not least an awesome wedding! Being only just down the road from our Coventry HQ, it was surprising that the band had never played live at Kelmarsh Hall before… It just goes to show there’s an amazing abundance of wonderful wedding […]
Our good friend and fantastic wedding photographer, Hannah, wrote a blog recently on how to decide between a band or a DJ for your evening wedding reception. We thought she made some excellent points on both sides so we wanted to share it on the blog today!
Hannah made a great point that hiring a DJ for your wedding reception could be a lot cheaper than hiring a full live band, “If you’re planning a wedding on a budget and you’re just looking for something to dance to, you might book a DJ based solely on the fact that they will be cheaper than a full band…” This is very true and here’s why…
1. Hiring a professional band means you are paying for every musician’s livelihood. Hiring a DJ means you are paying for that single artist’s livelihood. It’s a simple matter of numbers when it comes down to it.
2. To a professional musician or DJ, your wedding day is not on the same level as a pub gig and it will not be treated like such. Every professional musician, including DJs, put a great amount of time and effort into honing their instrument and excelling in their talent.
So, in our experience, we recommend that you choose whichever suits your budget. Whatever fits the bill, literally. And we suggest that you give your money to whichever will best give you a professional service at the rate you can comfortably afford!
A few great pros to booking a wedding band…
Live music! Music that is live, not recorded, has a personal edge and feel that doesn’t come from a playlist. You get real musicians, giving you a real live performance and are fully present in the room with you. They engage in the atmosphere, mood of the guests and flow of the evening.
Because a live band is personally engaged, you’re likely to get a better turn out on the dance floor. If the band is up there rocking out, dancing and having a good time, you’re going to want to join in and do the same!
This is what we love about our job! What more could we ask for than to rock out and get people dancing for a living?! A band are more than just musicians playing songs on a stage. We get the party going and enjoy the night just as much as you do!
What is going to make your night the night you will always remember? Like Hannah said,“At the end of the day, it’s about having fun and celebrating your marriage with your family and closest friends in the best way possible.”
Read Hannah’s full blog post here for more helpful tips on choosing between a band and a DJ! – http://hannahkphotography.co.uk/how-to-decide-band-or-dj/
Thanks, Hannah K. Photography!
Our good friend and fantastic wedding photographer, Hannah, wrote a blog recently on how to decide between a band or a DJ for your evening wedding reception. We thought she made some excellent points on both sides so we wanted to share it on the blog today! Hannah made a great […]