Want your wedding to be hip and up to date? Of course, you do! Gone are the days when a standard jazz band, string quartet or rock and pop covers band were your only options – there’s a whole world of weird and wonderful wedding music out there just itching to show your guests a good time. Read on to find out the hottest musical trends that wedding planners are following in 2018!
10 Folk Pop/Mumford & Sons
Everyone felt the ripples of the folk explosion, which was detonated by Mumford & Sons back in ‘09 and engulfed artists from Ed Sheeran and Passenger to Bastille and Ben Howard. Suddenly, banjos were cool again, and the ‘less-is-more’ approach to production again became something to be admired. The best thing about this is, when you hire a folk-pop band to play at your wedding, minimal set up is required – the band will be predominantly acoustic, so the worst thing that could happen is a broken string. Expect rich harmonies and a rustic vibe, which will be mostly down to waistcoats and impressive beards.
9 Sax, DJ, and Percussion
This unlikely combo is surprisingly effective! Focussing mainly on club anthems, the DJ pumps up the volume while the percussionist adds their own irresistible rhythm and the saxophonist toots out those oh-so-catchy hooks. You’ll soon have a full dance floor on your hands once your wedding guests hear the sax, DJ and percussion posse drop anthems like ‘Insomnia’, ‘Sandstorm’ and ‘Zombie Nation’ – especially once the saxophonist starts invading the crowd!
The ever-popular sound of Motor City never strays far from the public ear. The lovelorn lyrics, the soaring melodies, and the thumping bass lines amount to an uplifting musical experience made only better by the enthusiastic singers and dancers who bring it to us. From girl groups like the Ronettes and the Supremes sporting beehive hairdos and sequined dresses to male-lead groups dressed in super sharp suits, a retro Motown wedding celebrates a simpler time when all that mattered was love, music and looking fantastic.
7 Acoustic Loopers
Bands of any kind seemed like a thing of the past once Ed Sheeran was seen taking on Glastonbury single-handedly! Loopers had become massively popular before even then – all you need is a loop pedal with enough memory, an acoustic guitar, and your voice – and you can create an entire soundscape, complete with percussion! Not only does this take up far less space and time to set up than an actual band, but also an acoustic looper will turn a few heads and invite a few bewildered guests to ask ‘where’s the rest of them?’
6 Band/DJ Hybrid
The age-old feud between wedding band and wedding DJ looks like it might be coming to an end – now you can hire both in one handy and affordable package! Often, one or more of the band members will double up as your designated disc jockey, which means that while the rest of the band are on a break, they can hop right up to the decks and keep the music flowing. In some cases, you’ll come across DJs who use recorded samples or vocals and have a live band or vocalist playing along with them. This creates some highly danceable and entertaining crossovers of funk, RnB, hip-hop, soul, house, drum & bass and everything in between.
5 Party Bands
On a day with so much focus on looking forward, it seems fitting to look back too. Party bands will take you right back to the 80s and 90s, bringing the biggest chart hits of each year of the decade to life with a larger-than-life performance. You’ll need plenty of room to accommodate the backing dancers, keyboard and sampler players, backup vocalists and everyone else coming to the pop party – plus plenty of room for your guests to get down to the Backstreet Boys, Britney Spears, the Spice Girls and more!
4 Roaming Bands
Static bands are a thing of the past! Now you can hire a fully mobile, fully entertaining wedding band to wander around the tables bringing much music and merriment to your wedding guests. Whether your roaming band is fully acoustic (which would usually feature acoustic guitars, mandolins, ukuleles and some portable percussion) or takes advantage of wireless technology to power their keyboards and electric guitars, your guests will love the novelty of a musician waltzing up to them singing at the top of their voice. Folk bands, Mariachi bands, and steel drum bands all occasionally fall into this category.
3 Solo Cellist
The expressive way the cello resonates has caused many to declare it the closest instrument in tone to the human voice, which can be haunting yet extremely romantic. This is perhaps why it was the choice of musical entertainment for Prince Harry and Meghan Markle’s royal wedding earlier this year – cellist Sheku Kanneh-Mason had the honor of playing for the happy couple. And, judging by the rapid increase in demand for solo cellists for the weddings this year, the millions of people watching the wedding loved his performance.
2 The nineties and Noughties Nostalgia
It’s almost a rite of passage to become embarrassed by the music your parents were into – and now the tables have turned! Grunge, Britpop, pop-punk, boy bands and girl bands are no longer reigning over the charts (unless there’s a reunion in the pipeline) but they’re still reigning over our hearts. Nostalgia bands, which often follow the typical cover band format of a vocalist, a guitarist and bassist, a drummer and sometimes a keyboardist, know exactly how to tap into that teen spirit and get your guests partying like it’s 1999.
And coming in first place…
1 Jazz/Pop Crossover
Ever since Postmodern Jukebox’s awe-inspiring covers went viral, the jazz/pop crossover genre has experienced an almighty boom. Typically taking a pop or rock favorite and giving it the big band treatment, this is a great way to appeal to a wide age range. Your grandparents will love the lilting swing and the chorus of brass instruments, and you teenaged cousins will be intrigued to hear songs they are familiar with in a style they are not. To top it all off, there won’t be a person in your reception room who won’t be blown away by the astonishing jazz vocalist.
Those are our picks for 2018! We hope they help you get started on your journey to the ideal modern wedding.