Get On The 


Wedding receptions wouldn’t be the lively celebrations they are without one vital ingredient – music. What better way is there to enjoy the twirling melodies and booming beats of your favourite songs than through a live band? Kirrily Ireland chats with Hayley Barberis, manager and musician of Baker Boys Band, to discuss how bands can bolster the entertainment potential of your wedding day.

Image courtesy of Baker Boys Band

Baker Boys Band

Live music is like no other; hearing the instruments and vocals up-close and personal while the band members get into the spirit and engage the audience can certainly make any event a more invigorating experience. With an incredible energy and atmosphere cultivated by a band, it’s no wonder why so many couples lean towards this option. Here, Melbourne Wedding & Bride discovers how you can make this a reality for your special day.

A Creative Curation

Your wedding should be all about you and your spouse-to-be, from the colour scheme to the decorations, the food and, of course, the music. Everyone has their own unique tastes and favourite artists, including the songs that hold special meanings for them as individuals and symbolise memories from their relationship. While hiring a DJ to whom you can provide your flawless, personally curated playlist may seem like the logical choice, a wedding band can be just as flexible, ensuring all the important songs are performed while providing the added atmospheric perks of live music.

For couples, the process of arranging your special requests and communicating these with the band is fairly straightforward. “You can enter your special requests in our Event Planning Dashboard,” Barberis explains, “we have a sample wedding schedule that can be edited to your needs, including where special requests need to be played.”

When it comes to curating the complete setlist for the night, generally both the band and couple have input. “We have a solid repertoire of songs that will get all of your guests on the dancefloor, from your six-year-old niece to your grandfather,” the musician says. “It’s always important to have some freedom to read the room of the night; but our number one priority is pleasing you.” It’s always good to have a bit of guidance from a professional, experienced musician – which is particularly helpful for those less sure of what music they want at their wedding – but if you’re

 keen on a particular setlist, style or even a specific song for a specific moment, rest assured you’re in control.

There are no limits to the kinds of tunes your wedding band can play, either. “We can play just about any genre,” Barberis says. “From Top 40, classic rock, Motown, and throwbacks, to classical and jazz, we play a wide variety of music to fit anyone’s style and for every part of the day from the ceremony to cocktail hour, and the reception party … Most couples want a variety of styles played and we really recommend that. While there are some classics and current hits that get everyone on the dance floor, each guest has their own taste in music, so we try to play something for everyone.”

A Seamless Set-Up

Hiring a live band to play at your wedding, whether it is for the whole day or just the reception, won’t cause you any extra stress on the day. The self-sufficient experts will be able to set up without any assistance from you or your wedding party, who will all be fairly preoccupied. “We’ve played at so many styles of venues,” Barberis says. “Load-in is different at each, but we always make it work. And that’s definitely not something the couple needs to worry about – we’ll sort it out with the venue. All we need to play is a power point to plug our equipment into and a covered space on a flat, hard, dry surface, especially in case of rain. We can also perform acoustically for a ceremony if that’s part of your booking.”

“A typical wedding day for the band usually starts with setting up before the guests have arrived,” Barberis explains, “there’s something quite special about seeing the ceremony and reception spaces before the ceremony starts, there’s usually a hum of activity, florists working their magic, people setting tables, venue staff running around organising drink stations, et cetera. Eventually everything becomes very quiet and still, and we know that’s our cue to start. Guests arrive for the ceremony and our musicians set the vibe.”

And We’re Live!

After spending months arduously planning your wedding, once the day finally arrives, it’s time to relax and settle in for the party you’ve worked so hard to organise. “Each ceremony is unique. We play the songs the couple have requested and then the musicians – [whether it’s a] string quartet, jazz trio, acoustic duo, you name it! – continues on as canapes come past and guests mingle, while the couple often sneak away for photos. Then it’s time to move into the reception. It makes such a great impact, when the doors open and the full band is in full swing as guests move in and take their seats. After that it’s time for dinner and speeches, then it’s time to fill the dance floor!”

The industry standard for wedding bands is to play four 45-minute sets over a five-hour event, “with intermittent breaks, to be spread throughout the night as you feel best”. “With speeches and other formalities, you’ll find this is usually the perfect amount of time to have the band playing,” Barberis explains. “If you require a longer event and more sets, we are happy to discuss adding extra hours at little cost.”

With the pumping tunes and great vibes, plus a stress-free experience, there’s no doubt that live wedding bands are the way to go, allowing you to dance the special night away to the music you love – alongside the ones you love most.