Wednesday, October 7, 2009

10 Tips on What it Takes to Play at Weddings

Here are ten general tips that will help you to be a successful wedding musician. Master these, and you'll start receiving a steady flow of referrals, inquiries, and bookings:

1. Be content with taking directrions from the bride and those she appoints to oversee her wedding, no matter how stange you think her expectations of you may be. Follow instructions with a kind smile and a nod, without being argumentative. Aim to please.

2. Educate the bride about the services you have to offer. Keep the lines of communication open so that there is absoulutey no doubt in the bride's mind that she can count on you.

3. Politely stand your own ground when necessary. Be firm regarding such issues as requesting pay, seeing that you are provided with your performance requirements, and squelching impossible demands.

4. Possess a willingness to offer helpful suggestions about how to select weddings or reception music, without actually making up the bride's mind for her. In other words, if you disagree with the bride's musical taste, or you don't like playing the songs she has chosen, let her know why. If she insists, play what she wants to hear anyway. Understand that she is creating her own personal memories with the music she chsooses.

5. Accept the fact that you will be performing background music while people are talking and mingling. You are not a "diva"-You don't have to be the center of attention.

6. Perform smoothly and with confidence. Understand that if you dispaly a lack of confidence, the bride and the other wedding professionals on your team will have a lack of confidence in you too.

7. Look food, No, look GREAT! Smile. Look like you are having fun when you play, Take good care of yourself and the clothes that you wear. Take good care of your equipment, too.

8. Realize thsat you can learn from other experiences.

9. Know that a positive attitude makes you a magnet for enjoyable, high-paying wedding gigs. You'll be viewed as a calm professional. Brides will appreciate that your feathers don't get fuffled too easily. Better yet, other wedding vendors will see that you can handle
situations that come up at a wedding with ease, and they will want to work with you again. They'll refer you over and over.

10. Love what you do and success will come. Show you love of what your do with gratitiude. Thank the bride, your clients and other wedding vendors, and everyone who crosses your path.

These tips are designed to help your set parameters for what you are and to help guarantee success at future wedding gigs.

Copyright © 2008 by Anne Roos, excerpt from "The Musician's Guide to Brides: How to Make Money Playing Weddings", published by Hal Leonard Books. All rights reserved. No part of this may be reproduced in any form, without written permission, except by a reviewer who wishes to quote brief passages in connection with a review.

Hundreds of additional tips, are available for musicians (and all entrepreneurs) in my book, "The Musician's Guide to Brides" available wherever Hal Leonard Books are sold: music and bookstores, and through online retailers including,,
Sylvia Woods Harp Center catalog, and of course, at my website at

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