Playing two weddings in one day means a lot of preparation on my part. I'm not the kind of person who thinks of everything in the few days leading up to the event. It takes me 2-3 weeks of meticulous planning just to make sure I turn up in the right clothes.
Part of my regular service is rewriting and re-arranging songs to fit a wedding ceremony and learning new songs by request. Every wedding ceremony is different and I always prefer to meet my clients in person when possible to make sure I provide the right style and ambience. In this occasion, the second wedding was an evening gig with the function band.
The first wedding of the day, a ceremony + drinks reception booking at Marriott Hotel, Swansea was booked by a lovely couple I had the pleasure to meet several times at various wedding fayres. Kelly and Lee took the time to meet me, hear me play live and arrange a consultation to discuss they're preferred song choices which consisted of various artists, but mainly.... Take That.
I can't say that I'm a Take That fan but I always enjoy having some creative freedom to re-interpret a song myself. After the initial consultation I took some time to work all their chosen songs into solo guitar versions and sent them some samples.
After a few meetings at wedding fayres etc the final song choices were made and confirmed for the day.
Images above - Marriott Hotel, Swansea Ceremony layout and set up.
Always arrive early!
I always arrive stupidly early to wedding ceremonies to give myself time to set up and warm up before the groom and guests start arriving. It's a good job I was 2 hours early on this occasion. While unloading my equipment, I cut my thumb. Now I don't want to over dramatise the situation but it was like a shark bite.... Blood everywhere.
After a quick visit to the front desk of the hotel, I was bandaged up with a bright blue plaster usually reserved for kitchen accidents and ready to go. (Another win for early arrival.... More in this to come in future blogs).
I finished setting up, arranged my song list ready to play for the ceremony and started to limber up.
I was delighted to find that Michelle Huggleston (Photography) was the photographer for the day. They made a good choice by booking Michelle, we've bumped into each other a few times while working weddings in the past and she goes above and beyond whats expected of a photographer and her clients only have good things to say.
After the standard ritual of the registrars having their coffee, like some sort of sacrificial demon offering, the wedding ceremony went ahead and it was beautiful.
After the ceremony, I played some chilled music for the guests during the drinks reception, I congratulated the bride and groom, packed up and hit the road for wedding number two.
"Wow, Scott is a first class guitarist who made our wedding day even more special. We booked him as a surprise for our guests and as well as playing our ceremony, he also entertained our guests during the photographs. He even took on a few new songs we requested and added to the ambiance of an amazing event. He is a great guy, a talented musician and his contribution to our wedding was a highlight of the day! Thank you Scott" - Mr and Mrs Cambule
Wedding number two
The next venue was Glyn Clydach Hotel. The clients booked the three piece party band, Vivaland, for their evening party.
This was booked through an agency which usually means that I get sent any requests by third party email along with first dance choice and schedule etc. On this occasion, the couple tracked me down and visited me at one of my solo gigs to meet and have a chat (and get a taste for what was in store for their wedding night!). Karen and Huw had a great time and from then on we corresponded by email to arrange extra song requests and the schedule for the night.
Enter - Jumbrotron
Our usual bassist was booked out with someone else so we had a good friend of mine from a sister band to dep with us. Shaun Pursey AKA Jumbrotron. I always get extra excited when playing with Jumbo and these days its quite rare that we do with him being as busy as he is.
Image left - Shaun Pursey, professional Bassist and groove magician.
Image right - Jumbotron off the clock, taken just after someone tried to slap the moron out of him.... Maybe they'll come back for the other half.
He loves what he does and is extremely talented. I've got a lot of fond memories with Jumbo, buried deep inside my psyche hopefully never to resurface.
The holy grail
As we were unloading and setting up our equipment, we noticed a Photo Booth. As a band, we take a lot of pleasure in the little things. Buffet food, free cake, wearing giant glasses and necking each other for photo opportunities.....
As you can imagine, the sight of a Photo Booth is like the holy grail to us and we never turn down an opportunity like this. Here is the result -
Thank you Gary from Starlit Events. You were magnificent. Find out more here - Starlitevents.co.uk
Get the party started
After setting up and collaborating with the DJ to arrange our set times, we kicked off the night with some modern dance floor fillers, then older classics, some rock, funk, 80's sing alongs and a few standards. We provided the music but the crowd make the party and atmosphere. They were great! There was the obligatory dance off circle, the old 'arm hook' barn dance and standard bloated uncle with his tie around his head.
We had an absolute ball that night. Thank you Karen and Huw for bringing such a wonderful crowd.
"Well what can I say we both had the best time ever and everyone was saying how amazing you guys were. Thank you so much for everything lovely to meet you guys. We'll defo come and see you singing again soon.
Looking forward to our honeymoon now to have time to chill.
Kind regards, take care." Mr & Mrs Jones
Thankfully, everything went relatively smoothly throughout the day and night, thanks to a lot of preparation. I hope all my future bookings go just as well.
Thank you for reading.
I think I'll pull through....