Open Menu
Close Menu

Covid Weddings: We Have To Do Better

Disclaimer: The BWB team thinks Covid-19 is real. We think the mismanagement of the US response to the pandemic is criminally negligent. We believe in science.

Been a tough run, folks; For our world, country, and the entertainment industry as a whole. International festivals are postponed indefinitely. NY’s Broadway remains shutdown until 2021. And local live performance venues have been decimated. We could go on and on about the communities affected by Covid-19 and the many lives that were forever altered. Sadly, it is far from over.

As for the wedding industry, we’re in a weird place. While most of 2020 rescheduled to 2021, we’ve seen vendors and couples try to find a way to forge forward. The results and outcomes vary. It’s like the Wild West out there…

Some venues and couples genuinely respect regulations and honestly care about the safety of their community. Others have thrown caution to the wind. We’re disappointed to have heard more stories of reckless behavior than responsible. Let’s break it down:

Traditionally, it’s the venues’ responsibility to create a safe and sufficient environment for all. But when state restrictions are confusing, continually changing, and unenforceable, corners will be cut. Let’s face it, many businesses are looking for ways to simply survive! 

The geographical reality doesn’t make things easier, either. New England is a region comprising six states: Maine, Vermont, New Hampshire, Massachusetts, Rhode Island, and Connecticut. Each has different metrics and different guidelines. We’ve seen couples try to move their wedding from one state to another, seeking more favorable conditions. Ironic though. Epidemiologists predict that states who boast lax regulations soon become states that necessitate more strict regulations. We already see evidence of this.

State guidelines can also be vague and are, therefore, open to interpretation. Take Rhode Island, for example, which stated that in-door gatherings in performance venues could not allow the presence of “dance-floors.” But by banning dance-floors and not dancing, it allowed for varying interpretations of the rule. We eventually received confirmation from the Rhode Island Department of Business Affairs. They said that, in fact, this meant “dancing” was not allowed. But many venues didn’t get the message.

Then you have clients, some of whom are covid-deniers, covid-detractors, or simply want what they want. The opportunity exists for them to take advantage of businesses in need. Add it all up, and what do you get? The potential for a super spreader event. Why is this bad? Because it will prolong the regulations, shutdowns, and potentially result in loss of life.

Imagine what it would be like to go to a wedding, deemed an “outdoor” event, and find the following:

  • 100+ wedding guests in attendance, none of whom are wearing masks


  • Guests congregating closely and dancing together while drinking (defying state restrictions)


  • Venue staff who is unable or unwilling to enforce state regulations


  • The reception location, or “tent,” which was deemed an “outdoor facility” by the board of health, is actually an enclosed structure, with no open sides, creating a poorly ventilated indoor gathering.


Yeah. It’s happening. The above isn’t hyperbole. Situations like this (and worse) are occurring. The Maine wedding in August linked to an outbreak and 7 deaths is a sober reminder of the risks.

What’s the answer? We have to do better; all of us. From the top-down, from state and federal government to the brides and grooms, We have to do better. We must continue making sacrifices and behaving responsibly, even when it’s painful to do so. 

Point blank: Can you have a wedding and stay safe? Perhaps. We’ve seen several outdoor tented events that felt responsible. The key ingredients were as follows:

  • It has to start with the Bride and Groom. If the couple doesn’t wear masks, their guests don’t wear masks. It’s that simple.


  • The venue has to be serious about enforcing state regulations to the best of their ability. This will permeate down through the other vendors who set foot in the door.

In a viral pandemic, a community can only fight back when everyone works together. If we don’t, we’ll lose more than just our industry.

Thanks as always for stopping by. Hang in there and stay well.

-The BWB Team

The #coronacouples Are Coming

Too soon? Fair enough. COVID-19 is no laughing matter. But everyone handles tragedy differently, and for us, we use levity as a form of healing.

Like many industries, the arts, events, and entertainment community are detrimentally impacted by COVID-19. After the initial wave of cancellations, wedding couples scrambled to reschedule. At present, the postponement trend still leans towards fall-winter 2020 weddings. But we’ve also seen a dramatic trend towards 2021 postponements.

Don’t get us wrong, we’re not suggesting anyone move their wedding to 2021. But can you blame the inclination? With so much uncertainty, who knows what 2020’s “new normal” may look like??

Slowly, but surely, more and more couples are eyeballing 2021, rather than 2020, as prime-time for rescheduling.

What’s this mean? Depends on your vantage point:

Wedding Vendors

Short term, it’s terrifying. These folks spent years crafting a service worthy of filling a 2020 schedule. Every date they reschedule from Spring of 2020 to Fall of 2020 is a potential loss they can never recoup. And now, they begin seeing a trend towards 2021? Ouch.

Long term, there’s no doubt 2021 has the potential to be absolute gangbusters for wedding vendors who whether the storm.

The Saturdays are filling up faster, and the typically less populated Fridays and Sundays will become desirable options for clients left without available Saturdays. 

Prospective Couples/Clients

The #covidcouples Are Coming for your dates! Seriously. The wedding industries’ booking cycle just got a 5-month jump start. Couples who would typically be planning their 2021 weddings in the Summer-Fall of 2020 are finalizing their plans now. We have friends across the industry reporting sold-out dates for 2021 Saturdays that they would generally have open through the fall of 2020.

It’s crazy. Needless to say, if you are eyeballing 2021 for either a newly scheduled wedding, or a COVID-19 related reschedule, it’s time to GiddyUp.

That’s it for now. In the meantime, check out our last blog which outlines options for current couples facing challenges with their wedding date being compromised by Covid-19. It’ll provide further perspective in the planning of your 2021 wedding. And remember, at the end of the day, we’re in this together, and this too shall pass.

Weddings & Covid-19; What Are My Options?

With the world in limbo or lockdown, we’ve encountered much uncertainty in our daily lives, let alone wedding planning. There is no doubt that countless wedding couples will face tough decisions with Covid-19 looming large. Our hearts go out to all of you.

With that in mind, we have some suggestions as to how to process your options…


Communication with your event planner, venue, and all vendors is vital to making this work. Inquire about all available dates remaining in 2020. We’ve even seen “google-form-savy-couples” use these free tools to create tracking methods for multi-vendor availability:


With so many unknowns, now isn’t the time to be “married” to specifics (pun intended).

* While a Saturday may have been your first choice, consider Fridays, Sundays, and even Thursdays. Such changes may be necessary to line-up all your vendors.

* Discuss a 2021 postponement

* If you’re working with a company like an entertainment agency or photographer collective, they may have other available, comparable alternatives.


Vendors understand the gravity of the moment and are open to discussing changes in their policies. After all, this is an “act of God.”

Inquire into how they are handling the transfer of deposits, options for changing services, and cancellations. It’s likely your vendor has already developed policies related to Covid-19, you need only ask.

Additionally, ask your invitation designer/printer on any options they might be offering should you need a re-print for a new date.

Remember, we’re all in this together; not only to get through this as a community but to make your special day come to life.


Tips on how to navigate a showcase event to ensure you pick the right band for you. 

Ok, so you’ve searched the entirety of the google, watched countless videos, and have narrowed down your favorites. Now it’s time to focus on attending a live band showcase. While showcases don’t always line up with your preferred bands or time frame, you should still take advantage of viewing opportunities when possible. Aside from the music itself, Boston Wedding Band Showcases are a unique window into the identity of a company or artist. It’s also an excellent opportunity to put a face with a name and have your questions answered. Below are a few strategies you can use to navigate this process:

• Inquire Into Availability

 You’d be surprised how many people attend a showcase without knowing whether the bands they’re seeing are actually available! Make sure you inquire into availability before attending. PS- even if the groups performing aren’t available (or aren’t on your preferred list), it is still beneficial to participate. You can learn a lot about what you do and don’t like from seeing bands.

• RSVP to the event:

Your RSVP will allow the company to 1) keep you current on the latest showcase details, 2) provide availability, and 3) have your information readily available.

• Stay Up To Date On Social

Staying up to date with the company you’re considering on social media will keep you informed of showcase related news, lineups, and even extra content.

• Arrive Early

Showcases are generally held in ballrooms which fill up quickly. Arriving when doors open is the best way to secure your ideal seating. Bonus Tip: you’ll also be able to introduce yourself to the consultants before the performance to address any questions or concerns.

• Be Engaged,

And we’re not just talking about that ring on your finger:

Truth is, showcases can be a little awkward! People attend weddings to experience joy. Whereas people attend showcases to soberly evaluate performers. This is a rather unusual experience for the artists… so have fun, be engaged, and don’t be shy about singing and dancing along. The more energy you give, the more the performers will be able to show a glimpse into what your wedding day will look like.

• Introduce Yourself to the Band

After the performance, there is always an opportunity to say hello to the band personnel.

• Submit Your Booking Request ASAP 

 If you’ve done all of the above and fallen in love with a band, what’s next? Submit your request ASAP! Groups are booked on a first-come-first-serve basis. If you have a hot date, chances are you won’t be the only one in the room that night with the same date. The sooner you submit your booking request, the higher the chance of securing your Boston Wedding Band.


This one is obvious, but you’d be surprised how many people show up stressed about the process. Music should be one of the most fun aspects of planning your wedding. Enjoy yourselves and forget about the checklist for the night. Live in the moment, go with your gut, and you’ll know just what band is right for you.

Ceremony PA System Q&A: Why You Need More Than “Just A Microphone”

“How will people hear us during our ceremony?”

Most of us imagine a microphone being the “thing” that makes our voice louder. But for a microphone to broadcast your voice through speakers, it must work in conjunction with sophisticated equipment known as a “PA.” A sound engineer will orchestrate this set-up including speakers, stands, mixing console, wireless receivers, and the number of microphones you require. This engineer will monitor the PA throughout its use. The labor involved is roughly 2 hours in terms of additional time for arrival, set-up, and execution.

Let’s do a little question & answer on this critical subject:

Q: Will people hear my officiant? My vows? My readers? Do I need a microphone?

A: Perhaps. It depends on the location, number of guests and your own comfort level.

Amplifying the voices in your wedding ceremony is especially worth considering for outdoor receptions. Sound travels poorly outside. And the greater your guest count, the further sound needs to travel. At some point, your venue, event planner or family is probably going to recommend a Ceremony PA System.

The next most logical question would be:

Q: How much does this cost?

A: More than you think!

… Just kidding, a typical ceremony pa system is more like the following:

Typical microphone arrangements include the following:

1) Clip-On Lapel Mic for the officiant. This works with a small battery pack attached to the belt. Your officiant will be familiar with this.

2) Omni Directional Mic on a straight stand set at waist level for vows. At waist level, the microphone will not interfere with chest-up photos, does not require you to use a belt pack, and will amplify your voices sufficiently.

3) Wireless hand-held mic for readers, which can be passed amongst readers.

Access to Electrical Power is necessary.

Q: Enough already, what should I expect to spend?

A: $400-$600….if you want it done right.

We’ve heard quotes from wedding venues that even exceed 1K. But asking your band to provide this service is usually the most cost effective and reliable route.

I know, I know …it’s a costly service. You’ll definitely find less expensive quotes in the $150-$250 range for a “speaker and microphone.” But buyer beware; low-cost dental surgery isn’t a good thing, and neither is a bargain on a PA for your wedding ceremony.

We suggest you take the ceremony amplification as seriously as everything else in your wedding. It’s not just a microphone and a speaker. It’s arguably the most sensitive and memorable part of your celebration.

First Dance Songs 2019

Picking the perfect song for you and your future spouse’s first dance can be anxiety inducing… to say the least. It can be hard to pin point a song that captures a lifetime of memories, past, present and future, into a single moment. We all know the classics. You know which ones I’m talking about. Who hasn’t been to a wedding where the first dance was “At Last” by the late-great Etta James. Or heard countless renditions of Al Greens classic “Let’s Stay Together.” To help on your search for a more modern and current first dance song, we’ve compiled a list of TEN songs on our radar for the 2019 wedding season. At the very least, maybe these songs will spark some inspiration as you make the final touches on your special day.

1. Dan + Shay – “Speechless”

This follow-up hit from country duo Dan & Shay was literally made for weddings. No. Literally. Check out the video featuring footage from both of their weddings to the special women in their lives.

2. Leon Bridges – “Beyond”

Recalling the magic of classic soul and Motown, “Beyond” stands out as an unexpectedly obvious choice for the couple who wants to stick to that classic sounds while also catering to the modern crowd.

3. Lady Gaga – “Always Remember Us This Way”

The movie A STAR IS BORN was an absolute smash with the soundtrack’s lead single, “Shallow,” topping the billboard charts after it’s Oscar win. But it is the more subtle “Always Remember Us This Way” that gets us in our feels for wedding season.

4. Florence + The Machine – “The End Of Love”

An unconventional choice for the unconventional couple. Dealing with love from a different angle, it’s not an expected first dance song but will move everyone just the same.

5. Jason Aldean – “You Make It Easy”

Quintessential and reliable. This Jason Aldean #1 country song will most definitely join the ranks of Rascal Flatts “My Wish” and even Edwin McCain’s “I’ll Be.”

6. James Bay – “Us”

Equal parts soul and early 2000s Coldplay. The build of this power ballad is perfect for the bride and groom who wants to milk the drama of the moment.

7. Calum Scott & Leona Lewis – “You Are The Reason”

Originally released early 2018, this duet holds up as a stunning first moment between the newlyweds.

8. Kacey Musgraves – “Butterflies”

What would be more 2019 than a romantic country ballad as a first dance sung by a female star? (A GRAMMY winning female star at that)

9. Kelly Clarkson – “Move You”

This stunning cut from Clarkson’s latest album, Meaning Of Life, successfully marries old with new and country with pop without being cliché.

10. Mariah Carey – “With You”

Known for painting pictures of unrequited love, Mariah’s “With You” is the perfect twist on a romance meant to be.

Band Turnover; What Are My Options?

We’ll let you in on a not so little secret:

The band industry is rife with turnover!

We live in a society that is continually moving and changing, as are it’s people. Many performers will move on to opportunities with original artists, record deals or writing positions, while others will re-locate in pursuit of their own dreams. As such, no band or company can guarantee the appearance of any one performer or vocalist at your event. Anyone who tells you otherwise is being disingenuous.

Nonetheless, there are steps you can take to protect your interests…

1) Ask about a band’s policy regarding member changes, specifically, vocal turnover. What you want to hear is:

A) you will be notified in the event of a vocal change and

B) you will have the option to opt out with a refund in the event you are unhappy with the changes.

2) Consider the band or company’s ability to maintain the integrity and success of their bands, over time. Think about it; if a provider has been successful for 15+ years, they didn’t get there by using the same personnel for 15+ years! This would suggest they have the juice and network to recruit, train and place top-tier talent. Here we find another instance where tenure really matters.

3) Go in with your eyes open. You are not buying a person or persons, but instead, an experience; the guarantee of an incredible party. This can be achieved with different personnel, if necessary. And if you are emotionally prepared for the possibility of turnover, it will help you make a more informed, less emotional decision as to whether the band is still right for you.

Lastly, there is also the possibility for performers to experience physical or personal emergencies. It should be the responsibility of any provider to ensure a substitute of equal or greater talent in the event of an emergency.

The more you know, the more you grow.

-The BWB Team

Wedding Music; How To Sift Through The Noise

So it’s time to get serious about vetting bands. You sit down to review a stack of band material and assume the SONG LIST is the most important, right? Meh….


Jokes aside, the song list is relevant (not to be confused with the play list, more on that below). But song lists are also one of the least helpful tools when reviewing bands. Here are the top 3 reasons you should take song lists with a grain of salt:

1) You don’t need to peruse thousands of songs to verify whether a band knows your first dance! Any legitimate band will learn several new songs for you or will have the capability to DJ music.

2) The most highly rated general business bands perform roughly the same music. Top 40, 2000s, 90’s, 80’s, Classic Rock, Country, Swing and Jazz are all genres employed by reputable Boston Wedding Bands. As such, the difference between one song list and the next isn’t earth shattering.

3) A band performs 38-44 songs max in a 4 hour dinner/dance reception. So when one band has 100 R&B songs on their list, and another has 250 R&B songs, what does it matter? If they played 10 R&B songs, that would be 1/4 of all the music at your wedding!


Play list is a term used to describe the body of songs that a band actually performs at an event. You should ask the following of any band you’re considering:

How do you manage your play list? What kind of input will I have?

With the exception of formal dances, most bands reserve the right to select the songs they perform, with your preferences in mind. They want a lot of feedback so they can accommodate you. They may play as many as 10- 15 of your specific favorites. But they also require you place trust in their ability to call songs throughout the night.

Let’s face it, when you read a review that says “ THE BAND PLAYED THE BEST MUSIC AND HAD EVERYONE DANCING ALL NIGHT”, it wasn’t because they recreated the groom’s favorite mix tape. And sometimes, bands have to play music that guests respond well to, even if it isn’t the bride’s favorite song.

And if the above doesn’t work for you, that is cool too! You just need to have an open dialogue with each band you consider to ensure they meet your needs.

NUTSHELL: what we’ve seen work best is a compromise between two parties. You trust the band, and the band promises to take your tastes into account.

– The BWB Team

Live Videos: Is Anything Actually “Live”?

The answer, no. Unless you’re watching a band with your own eyes, it isn’t live.


A long time ago in a galaxy far, far away, a band made a video that featured footage from a wedding or private event, instead of a sound stage or a performance studio. They edited text across their video that read “NON PRODUCED, NON LIP-SYNCED, LIVE VIDEO”. Thus, the age of “live” video was born.

Warnings began popping up on entertainment websites:

“Beware Of Fancy Videos!”

“Non-Produced Videos Only!”

“Luke, I am Your Father!”

…ok, maybe not the last one. But bands who didn’t have the resources or inclination to direct costly video productions devised a new tactic and drove a wedge through the industry.

In truth, “live” videos are anything but. What the warnings don’t mention is “live” videos are still recordings. And to record their music, the band brought in a recording engineer. This engineer operated a sophisticated multi track mixing system, often capturing multiple takes. Later on, they mixed the recorded music in a studio. In some cases they even overdubbed additional parts.

What’s wrong with this?

Nothing! You can’t hold it against a band for putting their best foot forward. When Corvette unveils a new hotrod, it isn’t covered in mud. And when a band attempts to capture the essence of a live performance on video, they present their best self. HOWEVER, the concept of “live” video is an illusion. Unless you’re watching a band with your own eyes, it’s not live. To say otherwise isn’t very cool. And to scare people into believing one video is legit while the other isn’t, well, that’s disingenuous.

In the end, band videos (of any kind) are simply a glance into a group’s personality; just one piece of the puzzle. Band videos must be judged in the context of referrals, reputation, reviews, customer service, tenure and many other important factors. Ultimately, if you have the chance to see a Boston wedding band in person, THAT is where the rubber meets the road. You should take every opportunity to see bands at showcases or clubs.

Over and out space travelers, may the force be with you.

-The BWB Team