Frequently Asked Questions
How much do you charge?
You’ll find some guide prices under “Prices & Packages” (see main menu above). Depending on how far away your event is, there may be a surcharge for travel. There may also be an additional charge if you book any extra options, such as a DJ, or if you’d like me to learn additional songs.
If you’d like to get a firm quote for your event – and check my availability – then I’ll need to know the date and time, and the location so I can work out how far I’d need to travel.
Please fill in the contact form below, and my booking agent will get back to you with a firm quote.
Do you have any public performances where I can come and see you play?
I normally put details of any upcoming public shows on my homepage, but if you can’t see anything suitable there then please send me a message using the contact form below, and I’ll let you know as soon as something comes up.
How far are you prepared to travel?
I offer free travel within a 40 mile radius of Leicester (which is where I’m based) – this includes all of Leicestershire, Nottingham, Birmingham and large parts of the East & West Midlands.
Beyond a 40 mile radius, there will usually be some additional travel costs. I don’t have an absolute limit on how far I’m prepared to travel (I’ve played at events in Sussex, Dorset and even Scotland before). However, it will depend on how late your event finishes, and how many hours it would take me to drive home!
If you’d like a quote that includes travel expenses, please tell me the details of your event via the contact form below.
Songs / Repertoire
Can I have a list of the songs you play?
Yes – you’ll find a copy of my current song list here.
Can I request a song that isn’t on your playlist?
Yes. With some deals such as my Full Day Wedding Packages, I’ll learn a number of extra songs free of charge.
You can also request additional songs for me to learn, for an extra fee.
Please try to get any song requests to me at least 2 weeks before your booking. This will make sure that I have plenty of time to learn them. Of course, I’ll always try to learn a song at shorter notice if I can – but there may be occasions (if I’m away on holiday, for example) when this isn’t possible.
Will my guests be able to request songs on the night?
Yes – if I know a song, I’ll be happy to play it.
However, all of my repertoire is played from memory (I don’t use song books or sheet music during the performance) so if I don’t already know the song, I’ll have to politely refuse!
Can I request a “do not play” song?
Yes, of course – it’s your event, so if there are any songs on my list that you don’t want to hear, just let me know and I’ll make sure I don’t play it.
I’d like some music that’s just guitar and no singing – can you do that?
If it’s just one or two songs – for example, in your wedding ceremony – then yes, I’ll be happy to learn an instrumental version of the song(s) for you.
However, if you’re looking for a guitarist to play e.g. a whole hour of music without singing, this isn’t really my area of expertise. Similarly, if you’re looking for a guitarist to play a piece of classical music (such as Pachebel’s Canon) in your wedding ceremony, you should look elsewhere.
(If that’s the kind of thing you’re looking for, my booking agents DG Music have some excellent classical and jazz guitarists on their books.)
Setting Up Equipment
How much time do you need to set up?
If I’m just providing live music then I’ll bring my standard small sound system: this should only take 10-15 minutes, or up to 20 minutes if it’s an evening booking and I’m also bringing some stage lighting.
If you’re hiring me to DJ as well as providing live music, I’ll be bringing a larger sound system and extra lighting along with me. If this is the case, it may take up to an hour to set the equipment up.
I try to keep the noise to a minimum if I’m setting up my larger sound system. However, I’ll be putting up metal stands and lifting heavy speakers, so I can’t guarantee to be completely silent. If you’re eating your meal, it should normally be fine for me to set up behind a screen without interrupting anyone’s conversations.
However, if you’re having your speeches, you probably wouldn’t want me setting up in the same room at the same time, as this could be quite distracting.
How much space do you need?
Enough room for a person with a guitar, a microphone stand, and a small amplifier – in a location that’s out of the way of any entrances, fire exits, toilets etc.
Roughly speaking, you should allow:
- Live Music Only packages – approx 1.5m wide × 1.2m deep (6ft × 4ft)
- Live Music + DJ packages – approx 3m wide × 1.5m deep (10ft × 5ft)
Do you have any special technical requirements?
Just 1 × 13 Amp power socket that’s adjacent to the playing area.
Can you play outdoors?
Yes, I’m happy to play outdoors in the summer months, although you’ll need to provide adequate protection (or a contingency plan) in case of rain or high wind.
Also, please bear in mind that I’ll need access to a power socket for my equipment.
Performance, Arrival & Finish Times
How long do you play for?
This depends on the package that you’re booking:
- Full Day Wedding Packages include up to 3 ½ hours total performance time.
- All Other Packages include up to 2 hours total performance time.
The performances can be split up and spread out over a longer time, with breaks in-between.
What breaks do you take?
If I’m playing for a total of 2 hours, then normally I’ll split this into into 2 × hour long sets, with a break in-between.
However, I’m happy to be flexible with timings to suit your event. For example, people occasionally prefer if I take a longer break (e.g. an hour) so they can have some food in the interval. If you want to spread the music out over a longer time, another possible option is to split the music up into 3 × 40 minute sets with 2 × 30 minute intervals.
Can I pay you extra to play for longer?
Yes – although 2 hours of live music usually works well for most events, sometimes people just want more!
If you’d like me to send you a quote that includes an extra 30 minutes (or even an hour) of live music, just let me know.
Can you play for a shorter time?
Yes. If you only want e.g. 1 hour of live music instead of the usual 2, that’s fine, although the price will be the same.
What time would you normally arrive?
Normally, I’ll aim to arrive 30-45mins before my performance starts, although this can be flexible to suit your event.
Can you come and set your equipment up earlier in the day?
For afternoon bookings, this can normally be arranged at no extra charge.
For evening bookings, there will normally be an hourly charge for arrival before 6pm. If you’d like a quote that includes an early arrival option, just let me know.
Please note that early arrivals are subject to availability. For example, if I already have another booking earlier in the day, this may prevent me from arriving early at your event. Because of this, it’s best to discuss any early arrival requests at the earliest possible opportunity – ideally before confirming your booking.
Can you come and set your equipment up the day before?
No, sorry, this isn’t possible.
(As well as preventing me from taking another booking on the evening before yours, my insurance doesn’t cover leaving my equipment unattended)
What time will you finish?
With evening events, my standard price includes a finish any time up until midnight.
If your venue allows loud music after midnight, and you’d like to arrange a later finish (e.g. 1am) let me know and I’ll send you a quote that includes this.
For daytime events, we can arrange a finish time that suits you. Unless otherwise stated, the prices I quote for daytime events are based on a 5pm finish, as this leaves me free to take on other work in the evening.
Sound System & Lighting
Can you play music from a laptop / iPod during your breaks?
Yes. I have my own laptop with some party playlists already set up. I’ve set up these playlists to make sure that they don’t duplicate any of the songs that I play in my live set.
Alternatively, you’re welcome to bring your own playlist on a laptop, iPod, iPad, phone etc. As long as the device you’re using has a standard headphone socket, I’ll have the right lead to connect it to my system.
CDs: unfortunately my DJ laptop doesn’t have a CD drive, so if you want to provide your own music on CD, you will also need to provide a CD player (I have the leads to plug this into my sound system).
How powerful is your sound system?
I have a small (but powerful) amplifier that’s ideal for acoustic music – it has a lovely clear sound, and takes hardly any time to set up. I’ve used this small system at a wide range of events from quiet drinks receptions to busy bars, and it’s always been more than loud enough.
If I’m DJ-ing, I’ll bring a larger sound system with more powerful bass speakers. This will be powerful enough for all but the very largest venues. We’ve used it in indoor spaces and marquees with up to 250 guests, and it’s been more than adequate.
For small outdoor events such as a garden party, this system will be more than powerful enough to annoy the neighbours (if that’s what you want!). For larger outdoor events such as a small festival, where the audience may be at some distance from the stage area, we’d need a more powerful sound system. If you like, we can look into this for you – let me know and I’ll send you a quote that includes this.
What lighting do you provide?
For evening events (and daytime events too if requested) I’ll normally bring some lights to illuminate the stage while I’m playing.
If I’m DJ-ing, I’ll also bring some dance floor lighting. Please not that the larger sound system and the lighting stands do take up extra space, so it may not be possible to set up all of my lights if I’m playing in a small room.
All of my lighting uses LEDs and low-powered lasers, which are safer and use less energy than traditional lighting.
My friend / relative wants to play a few songs too –
could they share your equipment?
I will sometimes allow another musician to use my amplifier / sound system, but only if this has been agreed in advance. They must have their own Public Liability Insurance, as my insurance doesn’t cover the use of my equipment by other people.
Please note: even if this has been agreed in advance, I reserve the right to refuse to let somebody use my equipment on the night if I feel there’s any risk of my equipment being damaged (for example if the person is acting drunk or aggressively).
Food & Drink
Do I need to provide you with food / drinks?
I mostly drink tap water when I’m performing, although it’s helpful if you are able to provide me with a couple of soft drinks, or a small bar tab that will cover this.
For evening bookings or full day packages, you will need to provide me with a hot meal. If it’s not practical for you to do this, please let me know so I can make alternative arrangements.
Health & Safety
Do you have public liability insurance?
Yes. Your venue may ask to see a copy of the certificate – if so, just ask my booking agent DG Music who can email a copy to you.
Has your equipment been PAT tested?
Yes. As with the public liability certificate, if your venue asks to see a copy then booking agent DG Music can email a copy to you (or straight to the venue if it’s easier).
Payment & Refund Policy
Payments, Refunds and Cancellations
All of my bookings and contracts are now handled by DG Music agency. DG Music will be happy to discuss any queries you have regarding their terms and conditions