Whether your tastes are classical or jazz, big band or rock ‘n’ roll, Motown or hip hop, choosing the right musicians for your wedding is an important decision. You’ll want folks with a lot of versatility, patience, talent and sensitivity. The musicians will set the mood. We’ve done a bit of research and picked our favorite wedding musicians and resources around the Bay.
Typically, musicians will negotiate a price based upon the particulars of your wedding, and the cost can vary a great deal. Most bands will make adjustments in the number of musicians or the number of hours in order to accommodate a wide range of budgets. For a highly professional, full dance band, expect to spend from $3,000 to $5,000 for three to four hours of live performance, including breaks.
An agency is a good place to start your search, and Rudolfi Artists has been representing Bay Area musicians for 30-plus years. This agency can provide just about any type of music and has an excellent reputation and a stellar client list. Even if you decide not to go through an agent, the website provides many sound bites that will help you narrow in on what type of band will suit you best. The time you spend listening to samples won’t be wasted.
Pamela Rose is one of the leading jazz singers in the Bay Area. She has performed at some of San Francisco’s leading clubs such as the Rrazz Room and Biscuits and Blues. Her band Sidepocket is available for private parties and weddings. They perform a full range of dance music in all styles and are admired by professional music critics and clients alike. The San Francisco Examiner has called Pamela Rose, “one of the city’s greatest jazz vocalists.” If jazz is your passion, Pamela and her band will be certain to send chills up your spine.
For something truly upscale, you can’t aim higher than Ron Alan’s band, The Swing Kings, who have been leaders in the field for the past 30 years. This band of versatile musicians includes personnel who have played with some of the great acts in showbiz including Ray Charles and Count Basie. This nationally known band can handle just about anything you ask for. Get ready to swing, lindy hop and maybe even Charleston.
Perhaps the bride has a brogue? Would you be wanting some celtic music then? Celtic Sands offers acoustic music with harp, flute and fiddle that’ll bring a rustic charm to your ceremony. Afterwards, the group can rock out with a drummer and get the folks dancing. Erin go bragh!
The Joe Sharino Band
Maybe the groom is a little bit country, and the bride a little bit rock ‘n’ roll? The Joe Sharino Band does it all. This group boasts no fewer than 17 best band awards in Northern California, and no wonder, as its personnel happens to include a former member of Santana as well as a songwriter for Earth, Wind and Fire. Among the group’s many impressive credits is a season as the San Francisco 49ers’ official house band and an appearance at the US Festival in Southern California. For the US Fesitval, the band performed before an audience of 250,000, so these musicians can handle all of those cousins.
Charles Kruger is well known in the Bay area as “The Storming Bohemian” ever since he entered the Bay Area cultural scene in the summer of 2009, attending 90 cultural events in 90 days and blogging about it. This project was successful enough to warrant a mention in The New York Times. His coverage of Bay area theatre can be found at Examiner.com.