What Is Continuous Music? Do I Want That At My Wedding?

Wedding bands offer lots of add-ons to go along with the baseline service of performing dance music during a reception.  One of those add-ons is the option of ‘continuous music’, which probably means different things to different people, but in the context of the wedding band world, it means that the band will always be on stage performing, aside from stopping for speeches and toasts (admittedly, there are probably many Best Man speeches out there that could use mood music for sentimental moments and cymbal crashes to go along with bad jokes, but coordinating that kind of synchronization sounds unnecessarily complicated).

While the idea of constant live music might sound appealing – making a classy wedding even classier by never using pre-recorded or piped-in music – it actually detracts from the overall trajectory of the wedding.  The best example of this is when the band starts their first dance set, after speeches and dinner.  They pack the dance floor and everything’s great, but after an hour or so, people start to get tired, or wander off to have conversations with friends where they can actually hear each other, or head to the bar to grab drinks.  If the band keeps going, then sure, some people will keep dancing, but eventually, the crowd-that-was will lose its energy and dissipate, and then you’ve got a band on stage playing to nobody.  Not fun for the band, and serving no purpose for the guests.

Instead, try this: the band stops after that first killer hour of dance music and takes a short breather, leaving the crowd wanting more.  Guests step off the dance floor to chat, grab drinks, and take a breather themselves, and when the band returns after 10 or 15 minutes, everybody is fresh, energized, and ready to go.  In addition, the band will have made sure to play recorded music during that break, just so there’s no dead air and to keep the general party vibe going.

If the band never breaks, it’s unclear when the crowd should break.  The dance floor stays minimally populated for a large chunk of the night, and often times, it only builds back up to being packed for the last few songs.  If the band breaks before that last rocking set, the crowd immediately returns to the dance floor when the music starts back up, and it stays packed for that entire final hour of live music.  And behind the scenes, the musicians will finish the gig feeling happy and proud of the job they’ve done, instead of absolutely exhausted after not having left the stage for four hours straight.

While alluring, continuous music isn’t all that it’s cracked up to be.  Yes, it’s a bit counterintuitive, especially when marketed as a great way to elevate your wedding, but keeping the band on stage all night is likely to do more harm than good.  So don’t pay any extra money for it!  Give your band a break, give the crowd a break, and watch the wedding run like clockwork and the dance floor explode with energy for every set.