FAQs

Frequently Asked Questions, Help and Advice

Feel free to look though our answers to the most common questions we get asked here at Music HQ. If you’d prefer to drop us a line direct, contact info@musichq.co.uk

Who are Music HQ?

We are an award-winning live music agency with a team of trusted entertainment specialists dedicated to providing you with something truly exceptional for your wedding or event.

The Music HQ team is comprised of entertainment specialists with first-hand industry experience. We believe our flawless track record and extensive wealth of knowledge makes us the ultimate choice for top-notch music entertainment.

Every single artist on this website has been selected because they meet our incredibly high standard of live music entertainment. When you book one of our acts you are guaranteed the highest level of professionalism and reliability, a high-end look and sound, and most importantly, an electrifying performance.

Music HQ are the proud winners of a Welsh Wedding Award for Best New Business in 2016.

How do I book with Music HQ?

Once you’ve decided which act you’re interested in, click the ENQUIRE button at the bottom of their page, complete the form and click SUBMIT. Alternatively, if you are unsure which entertainment to book, head to our CONTACT page and make a general enquiry. List as many acts as you want and give us as much information about your event as possible so that we can help you find a suitable match.

Upon booking you will receive a detailed but easy-to-understand agreement and we will ask for a small deposit to secure that act for your date.

The remaining balance can be paid in the lead-up to your event or, in some cases, paid directly to the band on the day.

What payment methods do you accept?

We can accept payment by bank transfer or cheque. If you’d prefer to make a payment using a debit or credit card we can arrange this via PayPal.

How long does a band take to set up and how much space will they require?

A typical rock/pop function band can set up and sound check within 60-90 minutes providing there is easy access to the performance area and nearby parking. Obstacles such as stairs, lifts and guests can add significant time to this.

Music HQ will send you a specific setup time for your chosen act to help you plan the timings of your day.

Once the band have access to the room they will:

  • Carry all the equipment in from their vehicles
  • Unpack the equipment
  • Do a sound check to make sure all of the instruments and vocals can be heard clearly in the mix and ensure the overall volume is appropriate for that specific room
  • Pack away the empty cases somewhere near the stage area or, if space is limited, return them to their vehicles
  • Get changed into suitable clothing

During a sound check the band will have to make a little bit of noise so it’s usually best to redirect guests away from the room until after this bit is done.

It is important to note that if your event is running late (e.g. your wedding speeches overrun) then the act you have booked will still require the same amount of time to get ready. This is because the whole setup process and sound check cannot physically happen any faster. Nagging a band to set up faster will only add extra pressure to an already tight schedule so it is important to let them do their thing. Above all, don‘t worry; they know what they are doing and will settle for nothing less than a perfect sound for your party.

Most bands will require a performance area with at least 2-3 metres of depth and roughly the following stage diameter:

3-piece band = 3 metres

4-piece band = 4 metres

5 or 6 piece band = 5 metres

7-piece and larger bands = 6-7 metres width, ideally with an extra metre of depth

Most venues will be able to tell you the maximum space available for bands so if in doubt speak to the person coordinating your event. For most bands it is the drum kit, which occupies the largest space, so imagine one of these in the middle and then add your musicians either side of it.

At what point during the day does the band set up?

Ordinarily, if the band are performing in the same room as your wedding breakfast, they will wait until you have finished your speeches and then load in whilst the staff “turn the room around” for your evening party.

For corporate events it is important that you provide us with a timetable of your day so that the band can arrange a suitable time to arrive, set up and sound check.

Early setups are possible if that fits better with your plans e.g. if you need the band set up before guests arrive. Please let us know if this is something you are interested in and we can incorporate it into your quote. There is always an additional cost for early setups to pay acts for the extra time involved.

Do I need to provide anything for the band on the day?

The musicians will need a room or secure area at the venue to get changed, relax in-between sets and store their personal belongings. Most musicians will change into smarter clothing once all the hard work of setting up is completed.

Daytime musicians will usually arrive wearing smart clothing but may still require a secure area to leave their bags and relax in-between performances.

We request kindly that you do not ask our artists to get changed in a toilet cubicle or behind their cars. If there is no changing room at the venue then you must inform us beforehand so that the musicians can make alternative arrangements.

Unless arranged beforehand, you are under no obligation to provide daytime musicians with any wedding food; however, they will always appreciate the offer of some water or a cup of coffee to keep them going.

Evening musicians at wedding receptions must be provided with food as specified in the booking terms and conditions. A typical evening performance requires the band to be at the venue from 6pm until 1am, as well as travel time either side of this. We appreciate that wedding food is expensive and you are by no means required to provide the band with the same food your guests are eating, but at some point during the evening they will have to eat. A simple sandwich or plate of chips will suffice but most clients are usually happy for the band to help themselves to the evening buffet. You will always get a better performance from a group of happy, well-fed musicians!

If you are unable to provide food or refreshments at your event then you must let us know beforehand so that the musicians can make other arrangements.

Can I make amendments to my booking after I have paid a deposit?

Yes. Simply contact Music HQ as soon as you can and let us know what changes you need to make.

Any changes made to your booking will require a new agreement to be issued through Music HQ prior to the performance. This could be a change in venue or the addition of an extra set from the band if you need them to perform for longer.

Please note that early arrival at a venue, extra travelling and extra performance time will incur additional charges. These will need to be reflected in your new agreement.

What happens if I need to cancel or reschedule my booking?

We understand that situations can arise in which a client may have to cancel their booking with Music HQ. The circumstances surrounding cancellations can often be very upsetting and of course we deeply sympathise with anyone who has to call off their big day. We will always do our best to handle these situations tactfully and with the greatest respect.

To cancel your booking, please contact us as soon as possible in order to minimise complications later on. The longer you leave it to inform us of the cancellation, the harder it will be to secure alternative work for the act you have booked and you will be liable to pay a cancellation fee. This is because the majority of professional function bands secure their bookings up to a year in advance and it is often difficult to find alternative bookings at the last minute.

If you need to reschedule your booking and the band are unavailable on your new event date then this is classed as a cancellation. Most bands won’t charge a cancellation fee if they are free to perform on your new date so it is vitally important you get in touch with us straight away to avoid disappointment.

It is crucial that you take the time to read your booking terms and conditions thoroughly to ensure you understand the consequences of cancelling your booking.

What happens if the act I’ve booked cancels on us?

This is extremely rare but in the unlikely event that it does, Music HQ will always offer you an appropriate alternative.

There is always the risk of something unforeseen happening to anyone in this world, but the great thing about booking with a reputable agency like Music HQ is that we have a pool of extremely professional musicians at our beck & call who all share the same aim: to make your event 100% perfect.

Unlike semi-pro or hobby bands, all of the acts on our site are full-time professionals who perform music for a living and, unless something very serious happens, it is not in their best interest to pull out of a contracted booking.

There are so many great bands on this website! How do I choose the right one?

We are more than happy to help you find the perfect entertainment for your wedding or event. Just get in touch using our CONTACT page and we will do everything we can to guide you to the right choice.

Can I come and watch a band playing before I book them?

Unfortunately this is very hard to arrange, as professional function bands tend to perform more private bookings than public gigs.

Most of the bands on Music HQ have great promotional videos and music samples that accurately reflect their live performances and hopefully these will give you an idea of what they are all about.

In the future, Music HQ may organise or participate in showcase and charity events. The best way to stay in the loop about these sorts of performances is to follow us on our social media pages (see the links on our Main Menu above).

Isn’t it better to book an artist I’ve actually seen at a public gig?

Weddings and large corporate events require a significant amount of etiquette; they are high-pressure work environments with very little room for sub-standard behaviour, sloppiness or mistakes. An experienced function band will sound highly polished and “appropriate” for the occasion.

There are many incredible part-time bands out there, but the sad truth is that Music HQ gets several enquiries every week from people let down last-minute by pub bands pulling out of their event.

We would never tell people not to book a friend’s band for their big day, but when you book a professional full-time band you are hiring musicians who perform to a high standard for a living and expect to be paid for doing a good job. Hobby bands do it for fun or a bit of pocket money and are more likely to pull out or split up, plus many of them will not sound as pleasing to the ears for guests who are unaccustomed to live music because their setup may be tailored more for louder club and pub performances.

Always bear in mind that if a band is offering to play your event at a suspiciously cheap price – a price that sounds too good to be true – then the likelihood is they will sound just as cheap. Also beware of bands that ramp up their prices as soon as you mention the word “wedding”.

After you book through Music HQ you will receive our booking terms and conditions to give you peace of mind, plus if you have any questions in the lead up to your event you can contact a member of our team at any time. All of our bands have passed a strict quality control process and use top quality equipment to ensure your expectations are met. Hobby bands only answer to themselves and therefore come with added risks. Music HQ have removed this risk by screening all the bands on this website for you.

Will I get to meet the artists or speak to them directly beforehand?

After you’ve made a booking we are happy to put you in touch with the artist. This will give you an opportunity to finalise some of the finer details of the performance such as your first dance and any special arrangements.

It is unlikely you will get to meet the artist in person beforehand. As much as the band cannot wait to meet you, it is not in their best interest to give up a day to meet you in person to discuss what could easily be arranged via email or over the phone. We understand that occasionally a very unique or unusual set of circumstances will arise that requires a visit to the venue beforehand, in which case there will be a fee to cover travel and expenses.

To make an appointment with a member of our Music HQ team please get in touch. Our head office is located at The Beacon Centre in Llanelli (see our CONTACT page for details).

Can I choose the band’s setlist?

All of our acts encourage you to choose a few of your favourite songs and most will welcome a request if it’s something you really want, but there is no need to select every single song on their setlist.

These bands perform week-in week-out and have a pretty good idea of what works and what doesn’t. Don’t forget, just because you are a massive Oasis fan, it doesn’t mean all of your guests will appreciate a set comprised of their entire back catalogue. The best function bands will select a nice mix of songs to satisfy everybody.

Music HQ offers a wide variety of bands, some with a wide mix of musical styles, others with a more specific flavour such as funk or soul. Watch the videos on their profile pages and check out their repertoire to see if they are a compatible match to your tastes.

Can the band perform my first dance?

Most of the bands on Music HQ are happy to offer this service.  Some will gladly learn any song you can think of whereas some have an extensive list for you to choose from.

If a song request is impossible or inappropriate for a live band to perform then they will tell you. Some bands utilise backing tracks as part of their setup so you may be surprised what is possible! Just ask.

We highly recommend letting the band know about your first dance at the earliest possible stage. This will give the musicians time to learn and rehearse the song to a perfect standard.

If you have learned an intricate dance routine for your first dance, where tempo and song structure are crucial, consider using the original recording to minimise stress.

We frequently get asked if our bands can record versions of first dances to send out beforehand. Unfortunately, unless the band has already recorded a demo of your particular song choice, it is not possible for them to record your first dance and send it to you before your big day. Booking studio time is an expensive and time-consuming process, often costing as much as the performance itself.

How do I make a complaint?

As all of the acts on Music HQ operate at such a high standard, it is very rare that we receive any complaints. If however something goes seriously wrong and you wish to make a complaint about any of our musicians, please contact a member of our Music HQ team immediately and they will mediate between you and the artist to resolve any issues.

It is in the best interest of all our acts to be on best behaviour at all times in order to minimise stress for all our clients and their guests. Here at Music HQ we have a zero tolerance for sub-standard conduct and only sign up acts that share our friendly and professional ethos.

How loud is a live band?

This is a completely subjective question; if you are an avid gig-goer then you will be familiar with having to raise your voice to hear yourself over a live band, but to the unaccustomed it can be quite a shock how loud a live drum kit is.

All of the acts on Music HQ are equipped with the knowledge and technology to achieve an appropriate sound level for any venue and they will always do their best to ensure the band is at a reasonable volume; loud enough to create a party atmosphere but not so loud that it leaves your ears ringing.

My venue has a sound limiter. Can I still book a live band?

Before booking any live entertainment it is important to check whether your venue has a sound limiter.

A sound limiter is an electronic device fitted inside a building that warns bands if their volume is “too high”. If the volume exceeds a set limit for too long the limiter cuts power to the stage. All too frequently, these devices tend to be installed right next to where the band sets up and have an upper limit that is very difficult for most live bands to stay within (often in the range of a vacuum cleaner or crying baby).

There isn’t really a work-around for this as a band can only be as quiet as its live percussive instruments. Some acts can offer an electronic drum kit as an alternative, though this will never sound quite the same as the real thing.

If you want to book a lively rock or pop band for your event it is best to choose a venue without a sound limiter.

What are the advantages of booking musicians through an agency?

Our straightforward booking process and legally binding agreement provides you with added security and all of our acts come with Public Liability Insurance and PAT test certificates which can be presented upon request.

We provide all our clients with an emergency contact for extra peace of mind and have a dedicated office in Llanelli where our team are on hand to answer any questions you might have and make your booking a simple, easy and enjoyable process.

Music HQ will act as a coordinator between you (the client), the band, and the venue to ensure everything runs according to your plans.

Are you happy to deal in Welsh? A ydych yn hapus I ddelio yn Gymraeg?

It would be our pleasure to deal with your booking in Welsh.

Byddai’n ein bleser i ddelio â’ch archeb yn Gymraeg.