How much does it cost to hire a band in 2021?

How much does a band cost in 2021?

Very simply, it depends on a few factors listed below:

  • The date of your event (week days Sun-Thur are cheaper than Fridays and Saturdays)
  • Your location further out of town the more it is likely to cost. Be aware locations in city centres can cost more too!
  • Type of event - weddings naturally cost more
  • Point during the year. Summer months are peak wedding season, so there is more compeition hence higher prices
  • Number of band members needed
  • Time you want the band to play for
  • Addon services you request

So how much does it cost to hire a live band in 2021?

The following starting prices are pretty typical:

  • Large live band (6 musicians+) e.g. wedding band: £1,500
  • Small live band (4-5 musicians): £1,000
  • Duo & Trios: £450
  • Soloists: £170

You should also be prepared to pay a little bit more depending on your location. Hiring a band in London can increase the cost due to factors such as congestion charges.

If you book your band through an agency you can expect to pay an extra 20% on these rates as a service charge.

How much does wedding entertainment cost?

Wedding entertainment can cost a little bit more as there is more at stake, it's your special day after all. You can expect to pay anything from £200-1,000 more for a wedding and if your wedding is on a public holiday (New Years Eve) expect to pay even more on top of that!

Is the cost of live music fair?

Yes. Think about it this way. You hire a 4 piece band to perform at your wedding. It takes 30 minutes for them to get there. 1 hour for them to set up. Perform for 3 hours. 1 hour to set down and 30 minutes to get home. In total that's 6 hours. Each musician get paid £150 for the gig, that's £25 /hour. Now that may sound a lot, but don't forget they had to drive to the gig, pay for the equipment and instrument, rehearse and work unsociable hours.

If you're ever shocked by how much it costs for live music hire a plumber at 9pm on a Saturday night to fix a leaking toilet. I bet most musicians will work for half the piece they quote... (no disrespect to plumbers of course!)

If you're interested in a more detailed breakdown of calculating how much you should charge for a gig, check out our article on "How Much Should I Charge to Play at a Wedding in the UK".

This article was last update 19 August 2021.

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