New York Wedding Music and Bands FAQ

New York Wedding Music

New York Wedding Music

Q. What are the prices of IGMC bands for Weddings or other events ?

  • Prices vary depending on which band you choose (IE: Their credentials and level of experience, expertise and fame etc…) The size of the band (the number of musicians that you hire)
  • The number of hours (most weddings and galas are a four hour reception, some dinners are for five hours and even some for six hours)
  • How far the band has to travel – IE point of origin of the musicians you choose, to the destination (your event facility.) We give the first 50 miles of travel for free, then, depending on the band, there are gas, tolls, possible air fare etc travel expenses plus possible travel fees ranging from $20 per musician to $500 per day. In some bands, some of the musicians sing as well as play instruments, and in some bands some musicians play more than one instrument so you may find multiple variables depending on which band you choose.
  • In general, the average price of events entertainment bands range from $600 per musician to $2000 per musician, depending on which band, which musicians, and their various credentials, level of experience, number of fans and followers, and how many jobs they have on the calendar.
  • ALSO – please note that the prices of the bands will vary depending on the season, the date, the day of the week and other industry variables that can dramatically alter the prices of the bands. For example, a $10,000 band on a prime June or Sept/Oct Saturday might perform at a wedding on a February Friday night for $5-$6000 depending on the band! So there could be a lot of flexibility depending on a wide variety of variables.

Q. What are the sizes of IGMC Bands?

  • IGMC bands range in size from solo musician, duos, trios, quartets and five piece ensembles, orchestras and bands up to 12-18 piece rock’n bands with 4-6 vocalists and 4-6 horns, percussion, strolling strings and more…
  • IGMC also features a full symphony orchestra, several swing big bands ranging from 14-21 musicians and the symphony orchestras range from the simple 14 piece string orchestra to the full delux film recording symphony orchestra of 165 musicians including a synthesizer section!
  • IGMC also features a very special mini-orchestra for wedding ceremonies and deluxe elegant high end dinners that want something special, unique and unusual and extremely special – the mini orchestra features 2 harps, flute, oboe, string quartet. That 8 piece mini-orchestra can also be expanded adding more strings, woodwinds or horns, depending on the music chosen, the taste of the purchaser and the budget, and size of the facility. In our video the size of the band is seven pieces. We can easily expand (ex. add a larger horn section) or we can make the band more compact for smaller budgets. Any combination will be a huge success!

Q. How much room will my band need? My facility says I have limited room for musicians.

  • The room needed for a 5 piece band is almost identical to the room needed for a 10 piece band. Why is that? Because all the equipment and space guzzling instruments, speakers, mixing board, drums, guitar am, keyboards, keyboard amplifier, base guitar amplifier and the accompanying musical instruments combined with a sound engineer and all his gear, the amplifiers, speakers, sound monitors (speakers that face back at the band so they can hear themselves) – all of that equipment takes up a huge amount of room. So the five piece band takes up all the room needed. Average amount of space needed for a 5 piece band with a mixing board and sound engineer is an area of 8 feet deep by 10 feet wide. IE 80-100 square feet is plenty of room.
  • AMAZING NEWS! We fit a 10 piece band comfortably in an area that is 8 feet deep by 16 feet wide (We can squeeze into 8×12 if needed!) so you see, the difference between the space needed for five musicians and 10 musicians is really 28-48 feet more!) The preferred amount of space is 10 x 24 – then musicians can spread out = 240 square feet for 10 piece band.
  • Space required for 12 piece band is 160-300 square feet. The preferred amount of space is 12 x 24 = 288-320
  • Space required for 16 piece orchestra is 300-400 square feet etc… 10×30 or 12 x 28 etc something like that.

Q. Will the musicians I see be the same musicians that show up at my event?

  • All IGMC bands are set rehearsed bands with the exact same musicians every single time.
  • Exceptions to this rule, are the exceptions that apply to any and all human beings. A band is not a table or a car. Human beings can get sick, have accidents, a singer can lose their voice, a drummer could have a kid rushed to the hospital, any type of emergency or illness can attack human beings.
  • The insurance that you have, and the security that you have with a company like IGMC that has a huge pool of high quality rehearsed and experienced possible stand-ins for emergencies or extraordinary circumstances, like a pregnant female vocalist going into early labor or having complications with a pregnancy, or who knows, it could be anything.
  • Any band that promises beyond a shadow of a doubt that every single human being will be able to commit beyond a shadow of a doubt is simply lying through their teeth. Human beings are breathing living entities and stuff can happen, and it sometimes does. You need to pick a company that has good insurances on how they handle an emergency if it comes up, who might be stepping in to “sub” if there is an emergency and so on and so forth.
  • The bottom line is that musicians are in these bands because they want to perform and they want to work. They audition, make video demos, they rehearse and put in a lot of work so that they can perform at your wedding or event. They do not wish to “cancel” or “not-show-up” at your event, they need the money and they want to perform.
  • It is only in extreme emergencies that a replacement would need to be made, and this applies to every single band on planet earth that is composed of human beings. EVERY SINGLE ONE!
  • At best, the most security you can get, is to work with a company that has loads of “equivalent and highly talented spare parts” so that if there is any sort of emergency, accident, illness, or un-resolved conflict within a group of musicians (that can happen too!) that you have someone in charge (like at IGMC you have Iris Gillon) who can solve the issue together with the band leader and insure that you have a great event and the “show goes on!”

Q. IF my event is outdoors (or indoors too) how much electrical power will my band or DJ need? How much power for my lighting requirements as well?

  • The standard 5-10 piece band with electric guitar, electric base, a sound system with mixing board, speakers and PA, electric keyboard will need a minimum of 2 x 20 amp lines for their power. However that is the very bare minimum, and we usually ask for 2x 20 amp lines just to be safe in case of electrical surges etc…
  • If you add lighting or huge amplifiers for a big field or outdoor event, then each job must be specified individually to account for electrical power needed.
  • If you have an outdoor ceremony or cocktail hour and it is not adjacent to a building with outdoor outlets, then we would need 1x 20 amp line for the standard small amplifier for a keyboard or microphone for a singer or guitar amp, even if an accoustic guitar amp, or acoustic string trio, still a microphone with a small amplifier will need electricity.
  • For very small weddings or outdoor events then you can go 100% acoustic and not use any electricity outdoors.

Q. Does your band play standards or quieter oldies type music for our parents, grand-parents and elderly invited?

  • IGMC bands are required to play a huge selection of songs from 1940 till the music of today so we have music for everyone! From your 12 year old teen to your 99 year old grand-ma, we have music and we have treats for all ages.

Q. Will you learn our first dance ? We didn’t see it on your list.

  • Yes of-course we will! IGMC bands are required to learn up to three songs they do not know for any event they are contracted for.

Q. What do your bands wear?

  • We have a choice of three outfits for an event: They areWe design a look specially for your event!
    • a) Formal Attire (IE Tuxedos and Full Length Gowns),
    • b) Semi-Formal Attire (IE Suits, Tie, White Shirts, Dress Slacks, Vests, Dress Shoes and cocktail dresses), or
    • c) Dress-Casual by design – or Theme.

Q. What time do your musicians arrive to our event?

  • Our sound man will arrive between 2-3 hours before start time to load-in and plug in the sound equipment and mixing board.
  • Musicians with equipment will be arriving about 1.5 hours before start time (15 minutes to load in, 15 minutes to set up), and singers and musicians without equipment arrive 40-60 minutes before start time.

Q. When and how do we prepare the music together with you or our band leader for our party?

  • IGMC will supply you with paperwork to fill out upon booking which we call our “MUSIC PREP FORM.” We want those completely filled out 3 months prior to the wedding so that we have plenty of time to learn any special requests that you have and rehearse the songs well before your special day.
  • The latest you can submit songs for us to learn in advance of your day is 2 months prior so that we have the ample lead time to prepare, and set up rehearsals that are needed to “get it right!”

Q. Do IGMC Bands play continuous music?

  • Most of IGMC play 100% continuous music by having one or two musicians stay on during “quiet times” (when people eat and talk) and play ballads or background music.
  • In some bands, like the MIRACLE BAND or The PHENOMENON BAND or The FREEDOM Band, they have special, really special “break music” that is part of their namesakes – good idea to ask Iris to show you some video of just how special those break music sections can be!
  • The FREEDOM band actually has their three piece horn section play a fabulous jazz and big band set during dinner with backing tracks, sounds like a full orchestra, with the live horns, and it is really special indeed.
  • Some of IGMC Bands will play continuous music for a small extra charge, and some bands will included it. You need to ask Iris about how each band handles their continuous music requests.

Q. Does your song list show all the songs that you know?

  • IGMC Bands learn up to 3 songs for every wedding. We only add songs to their song list that they feel will help the weddings be better, as not all couples chose songs that other couples will want or like.
  • If you don’t see it on our list, you can always ask! All IGMC Bands come as a “Band-Dj” Combo wherein if the band cannot physically play the song live, we can always download the song off the Internet and play the original of your choice at your event, if we have maxed out learning new songs for you.
  • We can also play your own “DJ Mixes” off your ipod or iphone at your request.

Q. How long does the band play at my event or reception?

  • The standard band booking is for a four hour event. Any band breaks are customized according to the caterer’s requirements and when at the facility, we need to follow orders given to us at the events venue by the person in charge of your event.
  • A fifth hour would go into overtime and there are standard musician’s rates for overtime in the entertainment industry ranging from $125-$250 per musician per hour depending on the band.

Q. We are worried about volume at our event. How do you reassure us your music will not be too loud?

  • All IGMC bands travel with a professional sound engineer who is in charge of monitoring sound levels and sound mixing for the entire evening. Our sound engineers can work with you and your family and the catering hall to make sure that the volume levels are the way you want them within the ability of the room acoustics and technical equipment on the site.
  • If you have elderly guests with hearing aids, it is better to seat them as far away from the band as possible so that their hearing aids don’t pick up electronic feedback and other issues like that. Their hearing aids might be turned up and need to be turned down during the dance music sections.
  • IGMC bands are instructed to play quietly during food service and while people are eating dinner and trying to have conversations, we always bring the music down to accommodate the flow of your reception.

Q. Do we need to feed your musicians and crew?

  • It is a standard in the entertainment, events and weddings industry to feed all the vendors (IE band, DJ, Photographers etc) at your reception when the party is at a quiet time. Musicians that are performing the continuous music will trade up half way through the dinner break so that all musicians get a chance to eat.
  • Your venue should have a specially reduced rate for meals provided to the vendors that is only one course. There needs to be water provided for the musicians near the band stand at all times, either a pitcher on a small table with glasses, or bottled water near the stage. Musicians giving a high energy performance will need to stay properly hydrated in order to stay at a high energy level for four hours to five hours of high energy performance time.

Q. How much deposit do you need in order to hold a date?

  • The details of IGMC contracts will depend on which entertainers you are hiring. Most of the bands will take a date off the market for a 50%deposit with the balance coming at the wedding or paid 30 days prior, which ever is more comfortable to you.
  • Some bands will take a payment plan of 3 or 4 equal payments as well.
  • Ask Iris about the band you are interested in and how that band has made arrangements to be paid.

Q. Do IGMC Bands Carry liability insurance that is required at most venues?

  • All IGMC bands are required to carry the standard requirement which is $1,000,000.00 of liability insurance. A certificate of insurance can be provided to your facility, upon request and each facility can be named as additionally insured when requested.

Q. Do you have live showcases where we can see the bands perform in a live environment?

  • Some of IGMC Bands showcase regularly, and some showcase upon special request. A special forum that IGMC provides for some of their bands is tons and tons of live party and wedding footage where you can see the bands actually performing live at an event to get a feel other than their professionally made videos!
  • For example, check out the ESSENCE website and see over 60 videos including many live performances, on TV, at birthday parties, at weddings and more! Same with the ATTITUDE Band, The RESPEKT Band, the MIRACLE Band and the FREEDOM band etc… Just ask! If we don’t have a live show, we might have a video of a recent live performance!

Q. Can your musicians play at the cocktail hour or ceremony if we need it?

  • IGMC Bands each have musicians that can break out and come early to perform for your ceremony and/or your cocktail hour. Each band is different, some bands offer up their keyboard player with the saxophonist playing flute, some bands offer up their guitarist, each band is different. IGMC also offers up separate specialty groups that are available like string trios and quartets, woodwind duos, trios and quartets, a special mini orchestra with two harps, oboe, flute and string quartet and more. Just ask!

Q. How many breaks does the band take?

  • A standard wedding reception or corporate dinner event is usually four hours long not including the cocktail hour. Most IGMC bands will play a minimum of three hours with the breaks scheduled around the dinner service.
  • Some of the IGMC bands offer up live continuous music with some of the musicians rotating and performing ballads, and special songs during meal service and some prefer to use an ipod or cd during the breaks. It is different for each band. Some of IGMC bands include the continuous music option in the price, and some charge a small fee extra for that service.
  • Either way, there is continuous music all night long.

Q. Do you travel out of state?

  • IGMC Bands are mobile bands and we travel out of state and we also travel out of country. Travel charges may apply.

Q. How many bands do you have at IGMC?

  • IGMC actively promotes twelve bands and has a pool of twenty-eight “set” and “well-rehearsed” bands to draw upon when all the dates are booked up! We also have a pool of classical and jazz musicians, ensembles, orchestras and small groups not included in that above quote.

Q. What is a “set” band?

  • An IGMC “set” band is a group of musicians, instrumentalists and vocalists who both rehearse together and perform together with the same musicians on a regular basis.

Q. Can you provide specialty or ethnic musicians?

  • IGMC is a very deep and multi-cultural enterprise and has musicians of many cultures on their roster, from Klezmer, Hebrew and Jewish Bands, to Russian, Itallian, Irish, Greek, Arabic, and Belly Dancers, Bagpipes to Marriachi, and more… just ask!

Q. How far in advance do I need to book the entertainment for my event?

  • IGMC Bands can book as far as two years in advance. It is kind of a hit or miss bit of luck. You simply need to call and ask to see if the band or orchestra you want is available for your date. The sooner you call, the better.
  • Since out-of-the-city events book a year to two years in advance and in-the-city events book four to six months in advance, there are frequently open dates for very popular NYC bands as close as four months out.
  • Some prime dates, however, really need to be booked for the popular bands at least one year to eighteen months in advance.
  • This does not apply to corporate weekday events which sometimes can book as close as the week before the event, if the talent is open.

Q Is IGMC also full service? IE do you do anything else for the event?

  • IGMC can be a one-stop shop for those that need help in a variety of products and services. IGMC is a party planning company and can help with finding the venue FREE HELP with that!!! Can provide full decorations services including intelligent and ambient lighting for your venue both indoors and outdoors. IGMC has their own full TV Broadcast quality video filming studio and can film and photograph your wedding and event and offer up very competitive special packages when you also book the entertainment with IGMC.

Q What are IGMC’s office hours?

  • IGMC is open from 10am – 10pm seven days and when we have events going on, we have full cellular phone availability for events customers that might need something last minute!

Q: What should someone look for when choosing a band for their wedding reception?

  • IGMC offers in depth hand holding to each customer that approaches our company. Every party is different and Iris Gillon – the CEO of IGMC is an experienced musician and music producer and also a very seasoned event planner and can quickly interview you as per your musical tastes, your ethnic background, and help you figure out what might be important to YOU and YOUR GUESTS!
  • Each customer is different and each party has unique musical demands and needs. In general you should look for some of the following qualities: a) Talent b) Chemistry c) Professionalism d) Management (A solo band with no management can often disappear into the wind…) e) Marketing Team (A band without a marketing team behind them, can often disappear into the wind…) A band that cannot provide enough work for their musicians, will have musicians leaving and looking for greener pastures. f) Reliability – Number of years a company has been in business, a minimum should be five years, or that could be your choice. g) Loads of videos on Utube.
  • If you can’t find them there, they are either mis-managed, or don’t really exist. Who doesn’t have YouTube videos!?! Especially videos of the band at a live engagement similar to the one you are having. What can beat that? See what you will be getting! h) References are always a good thing to have.

Q: What is the main advantage of a live band instead of a DJ?

  • The main advantage of having a live band over a DJ is that you have live performers. If the performers are talented, it is the difference of perhaps one talented DJ/MC over 6-10 talented people all entertaining you at once. Multiply the talent and get the advantage. IGMC offers a combination of DJ with live musicians and all IGMC bands come fully equipped with “DJ Capabilities” so you ALWAYS can get the best of both worlds.

Q: Can we give the band a “DO NOT PLAY” list?

  • IGMC has, in their “MUSIC PREP FORM” a special area where the bride and groom, or corporate customer, can both request songs they like, and also songs that they want the band to NOT perform at their event.

Q: What sort of experience should a wedding band have?

  • IGMC bands all have a minimum of three years of experience performing weddings before being allowed into a “paid performance” via IGMC.

Q: What size band should I consider hiring?

  • The size of the band you select will often depend on the size of your venue, the size of your guest list, the size of your budget and your particular musical tastes. IGMC can hold your hand and help you wade through all these complicated issues regarding how much to spend and how to decide really how many musicians are “needed” or how many are just a “luxury” that maybe you can have a great party without.

Q. What should a bride defer to the reception site catering manager with regard to the setup and directions to the band on when, where and how to play?

  • IGMC always directs the customer to get the venue’s time line and procedures and policies because sometimes a customer will coordinate matters separately with the reception site and the band and then end up with confusion.
  • On the day of your event, all musicians must obey the commands of the catering director or your event planner so if you plan something other than what the catering person in charge has in mind, the band’s plan will not hold up.
  • The facility will decide where the band should play and set-up in a room, the band has no choice in that, but the customer might have some pull if they want the band to be set up differently.
  • The facility will always be in charge of the time line as the entire event often revolves around the timing in the kitchen and food service. Frequently there is a time change on the spot at the event if there is a delay in the kitchen, the band is the one to pick up the slack and keep guests on the dance floor so that they are not sitting around and waiting for food.

Q. Does it matter if the band I want has ever performed at my venue before?

  • IGMC Bands are very experienced bands and have played in all sorts of venues, all sizes, all shapes, all styles and every extreme in acoustical variables. When a band is experienced, there is no need to have seen or been in a room before. Only inexperienced bands need to “try a room out” before they play in it. An experienced band will call ahead and get acoustic “sound dimensions” and know how to prepare for the room that they will be performing in. This is standard practice for professional musicians traveling with professional sound engineers.

New York Wedding Music