Well, change your date!!! Just kidding! A couple pieces of advice we always give to anyone throwing a wedding:
-The ‘Four B’s’ make for a great party: a great Band, plenty of Booze, a Big room, and stay within your Budget.
-Whatever band you’re thinking of hiring you must go see them play live!!! I can’t stress this enough. It’s the only way to ensure that your band is a good fit. There are a number of bands out there who look and sound great on their website, but not live.
Blind Date can perform in a number of different formats. The 7 piece group is recommended, although we can certainly add musicians if you'd like. We can also break down into a 5 piece group (no horn section, for events that are almost exclusively current dance music). Music for your cocktail hour as a jazz quartet (sax, trumpet, bass, guitar, with or without vocals) or solo piano or guitar are also popular options.
The band follows the Austin Federation of Musicians’ guidelines of 1 (15 minute) break per hour (three breaks in a 4 hour show). However, we hate to leave people on the dance floor! We are flexible and can work with the client to select break times that work best for their schedule of events. For weddings, our breaks are perfect times for the bride/groom to cut the cake and make toasts.
We’ve never not been able to perform for a client, and we intend to keep it that way. However, very rarely we come across some situations that we have to adjust slightly to ensure everyone’s safety. Any kind of water, whether it’s from inclement weather or filled vases next to/on stage are an absolute no-go, as is anything lit (candles, etc). If we’re outside and uncovered from the elements, we cannot wait for rain to start packing in our gear. If there’s a hint of precipitation we won’t be able to setup, and we’ll have to pack up any gear already set. For outdoor events, please make sure to have some covering on standby or an alternate indoor site in case of inclement weather.
Parking for us is rarely ever an issue, as the group travels together in one vehicle with the equipment. However, there are a very few venues that may need to plan ahead to provide parking for a passenger van with cargo trailer.
We give ourselves two and a half hours to get our equipment into the venue, setup, and sound check. We rarely ever need more than one hour, but we give ourselves the extra time in case it’s needed.
Generally the men in the band wear black suits with black shirts, and Chelsea will wear a tasteful cocktail dress. Most clients find that tuxedos are too formal for a band that’s going to be playing a fair amount of modern music, and ‘club wear’ a little too informal for most private events. However, we aim to please, so if you have a particular vision in mind, just let us know!
Once the dancing begins, it’s always best to bring down the lighting around the dance floor area. Your guests will feel much more comfortable (and less inhibited!) to let loose and dance. Make sure the lighting in the room is adjustable. Also, there are a couple of videographers out there who use a light mounted on a stand to light up an entire area of the dance floor while they shoot. You may want to talk to your videographer about what they plan to use, and if they’re one of the very few who need a stand light, hopefully they can minimize the amount of time it’s on.
We have a very efficient p.a. and lighting system that needs just three 20 amp dedicated circuits near the stage (if you don’t know what that means, don’t worry. You can just forward the information to the venue). We have plenty of extension cords in case we need to run elsewhere to get power, but we hate to do that in a decorated room for aesthetic reasons. It is imperative that there is no room lighting plugged into these outlets, or anything else drawing power from them.
Blind Date can work in just about any space that you provide. Having said that, we highly recommend the venue provide a stage so that your guests can see us! The larger the better (of course…) but we’ve found that a 16′ deep X 24′ wide stage works very well. 12′ X 16′ wide is a bare minimum to fit the band and our gear, although we won’t have much room to move. In addition, we need 3′ on both sides of the stage for amps and speakers. In other words, with a 16′ deep X 24′ wide stage, we’ll take up a total of 16′ deep X 30′ wide.
Bear in mind that our stage lights shine across the stage, so you may not want to have guests seated to the sides of us.
We operate on a strictly first come/first serve basis, but we will ‘hold’ a date for a potential client under certain circumstances. Generally speaking, we’ll hold a date if you know you want to book us, but just need a few days to get squared away before signing a contract and sending in your deposit. A date is officially booked with a signed contract and 50% deposit.
We LOVE to get your guests on stage with us to dance and sing along as much as we love to jump down onto the dance floor (or up on tables…) to rock out ! To get guests up and down safely it’s best if there’s nothing in front of the stage (planter boxes, etc.).
No! One of the benefits of Blind Date’s sophisticated audio system is that our sound board is controlled wirelessly via a laptop computer. Our sound engineer (dressed in a suit) moves inconspicuously throughout the room and blends into the crowd, which not only means he’ll be relatively undetected, but his mobility allows him to optimize the sound quality for every part of the room.
We are able to play at extremely low volumes if necessary. During dinner, the band typically is asked to play a Sinatra/jazz set and we keep the volume at a level where guests can talk comfortably. Blind Date has played everything from small rooms to large outdoor venues and our sound equipment can easily accommodate either.
We’re more than happy to be your emcee for the evening! We also provide a wireless microphone for you and your guests to use to make toasts.
If you have a song in mind that is not on our song list, we’re more than happy to learn it for a small fee. We need at least a few weeks notice to make charts and sequences and schedule rehearsal time. Alternatively you’re more than welcome to bring an iPod/phone/mp3 player and we’ll play them for you.
We provide background music to be played during our breaks. If you have something particular you would like played please feel free to bring an iPod/phone/mp3 player and we’ll play them for you.
Our song list online is always kept up to date, and at last count includes over 200 songs! Having such a large and diverse list enables us to cater the music exactly to your event. We’ll work with you on what music you do and don’t want played, and gather information about your guests, as well as what ‘vibe’ you’re looking for. With that in mind, we call out each song on stage based on what we think your crowd will like to hear next. We don’t make a ‘set list’ before the event. Every event we play is different to maximize your and your guests’ enjoyment.