Swing music is great entertainment, and many clients have the image of a swing band providing a sophisticated atmosphere for their event. However unless your event has a purely swing theme, e.g. a rat pack evening, then in many cases there will be a requirement for a more “party time” part of the evening later on. Although swing music is great to dance and jive to, there’s only so much you can do with “Mack the knife” and similar songs to really get an audience to “boogie on down”!
My point is, that many people, in search of something different and sophisticated, think they want a swing band. But what they really need is a band that can play swing music well, reminiscent of Sinatra, Bobby Darin, the Rat Pack and so on, but then also have the ability and flexibility to play other styles more towards the “pop” genre that appeals to a wider audience.
Not all musicians play more than one style well. Indeed, to play swing music from big band style musical charts requires professionally trained jazz musicians. Not all jazz musicians are naturals at playing pop, however depending on the style of song they will be more likely to be able to turn their hand to other genres, whereas (untrained) pop musicians won’t be able to play swing chart arrangements.
What this all means is that if you book a swing band and you want them to really carry the evenings entertainment, then it’s worth spending some time scrutinising how well they play other styles and whether those other styles will really keep your dance floor busy. Playing the latest Buble song is not the same as a Stevie wonder dance floor hit, and after one and a half hours of swing it’s important to be able to work the crowd and please as many people as possible and keep the energy flowing.
I find that in many cases one of a bride’s key concerns is whether or not the band can keep the evening moving. In our case I can confirm that’s why (6 years ago) we expanded the repertoire to cover soul, Motown and classic pop, genres that blend naturally with swing and rat Pack.
Whether its a Swing Band in Manchester, London, Scotland or Singapore, it means that clients can be reassured that their swing band is also a party band.