There are so many options out there for wedding live music, at the same time, everybody says that they are the best. If you are not careful, you could end up paying $15,000 for a "luxury performance" that you could've paid $7,000 for!
So it's important to know if your wedding band is priced too high? Are you getting ripped off? Here's what you need to know in order to judge if the price is right...
Many factors go into deciding a price when bringing any product to market. A band is no different. Having a sound that is polished and tight comes at a cost.
Although some prodigy musicians smuggled instruments into the womb and got a head start over the competition, most musicians endure many years of performing and/or teaching, and many have earned music degrees. As such, these highly qualified professionals don't come cheap.
You’re reading this because you want to know how much a band should cost, so lets break it down. Let’s assume the musicians in your band are worth what any skilled tradesperson in North America is worth these days...at least $25-50 per hour.
We have produced this chart as per our 9-piece band specifications, but you can adjust the numbers for any given band size by tweaking BOLDED items that are band size-specific:
|Description||Total Hours||Flat Cost|
|Preparation of sheet music for special requests||3|
|Organizing a rehearsal||2|
|9 Band members rehearsing for 3 hours||3hr x 9|
|Client communication and meetings||2|
|Preparation of set lists||1|
|Pickup and drop off all rental sound and light equipment||3|
|Day of event: sound and light technicians setup, operate and tear down all production. Usually a 12pm-2am call time for two technicians.||14hr x 2|
|Lighting and sound equipment rental costs||$500~|
|Day of event: Musicians for setup & sound check||2.5hr x 9|
|Day of event: 9 musicians for a 4 hour gig call||4hr x 9|
|Bookkeeping and accounting||1|
|Cost of business: Insurance, Tax, CC processing fees||$200|
|Total hours / Costs||126.5 hr||$700|
|Total cost at $25/hr||$3,862.50|
|Total cost at $50/hr||$7,025.00|
So there you have it. There are probably a few things on that list that you hadn’t thought would factor into a band’s pricing.
Albeit fairly comprehensive, that list still leaves out a few expenses like having a website, producing a promo video, business licenses, filing corporate income taxes and so on. A professional band is a business just like any other.
Hopefully this information sheds some light on fair pricing for bands. You can expect Vancouver's Top 6 Wedding Dance Bands to all be within this range.
If you are hiring a band for your wedding, play around with the numbers above and plug in the right amount of band members for your situation.
If the musicians in the band you'd like to hire are working for less than $25/hr, they’re probably not professional. They can afford to charge lower rates because they may have day jobs to make up extra income which comes at the cost of them not getting as much practice time.
If your band is asking far more than $50/hr, perhaps you’re hiring Michael Bublé or Bruno Mars. Hey, if you’ve got the budget, go for it!
Searching for and finding the right wedding band for your big day should be a fun and easy process. If your curious as to how to book a wedding music band, you might want to check out this post:
Also note that many wedding bands can also provide services like wedding ceremony music, wedding ceremony sound systems and live dinner entertainment. Bundling your services and getting them all from one band can save you hundreds!