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How to Book a Wedding Musician

If you’re thinking about getting a wedding musician, you probably have questions about the process. After all, most people don’t book a string quartet or a pianist every day. Live music can be a significant expense, and the stakes are high. It’s one thing to like the idea, another to commit to something fairly hidden and unknown.

This is the first in a serious of blog posts that will hopefully demystify the process.

What kind of musicians can play at ceremonies?

Pipe organs. Mariachis. Spanish guitarists. String quartets. Brass bands. Harpists. Bagpipe–guys–ists? Folk singers. Keyboardists.

Any kind, really. But if you sift through the musician shopping mall websites like Weddingwire or Gigmasters, you’ll find a typical selection. You may not find any pipe organs, that was a joke!

Should you hire a musician through a shopping mall website? Maybe. We’ll deal with that later.

As to what kind of musician, well, that’s up to you! Whatever stirs your heart (and doesn’t offend your parents or in-laws too much).

What do I have to do after I hire a musician?

Share the ceremony details with the musician

  • When guests are expected to arrive
  • When the ceremony starts, how many bridesmaids, how many sets of parents.
  • Who’s running the ceremony? Do you have a wedding planner? A friend?

Pick out your songs

  • What you want to walk down the aisle to (Processional)
  • What you’d like to hear when the bridesmaids and groomsmen take their places.
  • What should be played once you’ve been married and are walking past your friends and family (Recessional)

The benefit of an experienced wedding performer is that he/she will walk you through this process.

Once you’ve gone over the ceremony with the musician, and the songs are chosen, your job is over. You can check that one off your list. Whew!

What do I have to do on the day of the wedding?

Nothing! Get married! You’ve hired an experienced pro, so you can trust that the pro will take care of things.

Doesn’t sound too bad…

It really shouldn’t be too hard. Not harder than choosing a wedding dress, picking out a cake, finding a venue…

  • find someone who resonates with your vision (see: shopping mall websites)
  • check out their music, pictures, video, or live shows
  • make sure they have great reviews and experience performing for weddings
  • send them an email or call to get a feel for them
  • Ask┬áthat they’ll play the songs you want

I’ll go into more detail in further blog posts, here, here, here and here. Feel free to comment or contact me if you have any questions.




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