Frequently Asked Questions

I will make this as comprehensive and as honest as I can, but if you still need to know anything, please ask - I am more than happy to answer as many questions as you can throw at me.
- Kevin McCarthy (manager), February 2011.

Do you have public liability insurance?

Yes, we have worldwide Public Liability Insurance for £10,000,000, arranged through Hencilla Canworth Ltd, via Norwich Union. The policy number is 50 CME 1758227.

I want to book you! What happens now?

Just ask me to prepare a simple contract and I'll send (or email) 2 copies to you. Now sign both copies of the contract and return them with your deposit. I will then sign both copies and return one to you. Hey presto, we're booked! A contract is important for both you and the band - you need to be absolutely certain that we won't cancel (and, believe me, we won't), and we need to know that we can confidently turn down other offers of work on your date.

Can I reserve the band without confirming the booking with a deposit?

For a short while, yes. We can't turn down other prospective clients for long though.

Do I need to pay a deposit to book you for a wedding or birthday party?

Yes, about 30%. I will calculate this and put it on the contract.

What payment methods can I use for my deposit?

You can pay your booking deposit to the band in either of the following ways:

What payment methods can I use to pay the final balance?

You can pay the balance in advance or on the night:

We do generally like to sort out the money either before we play or during our 1st break - at the end of your event the last thing you'll want to do is remember to run around paying everyone! If your event is a wedding, then perhaps this could be another job for the Best Man?

Can I go to see a band before I decide to book them?

In some circumstances this may be possible. It probably won't be though, as virtually all of our shows are either closed events (weddings, corporate events, private parties, etc) or too far away (we work all over the country and abroad). Please feel free to ask. Mind you, if we were the kind of band who play lots of small gigs in local pubs, maybe we wouldn't be the right band for an important event like yours...?

Will the band provide music before, in-between and after the live sets?

Lost In Music have lots of their own custom-made compilation CDs which they play before, in-between and after their live sets. They're really very good. You wouldn't want us playing the latest chart compilation CD - it might be rap, heavy metal & other music inappropriate to a high quality event like yours. So we make our own with all great songs which people recognise and want to dance to (or eat dinner to, depending on when they're played), all mixed like a DJ so there are no embarrassing 5-second gaps between each song. Please ask if you would like to see track listings of these compilations. Given enough time, it may be possible to make a custom compilation for you. If you would prefer to provide your own music that's fine - and I certainly won't charge extra for the privilege and we'll even bring a lead to plug your iPod into our system. However, and here's the thing, the Lost In Music CD player doesn't take requests, doesn't talk to the guests or give dedications, and it doesn't have much presence. So you might consider hiring our DJ service....read on....

I'd prefer a live DJ rather than your compilation CDs, but they're so expensive....

If you would prefer to have a proper DJ at your event, you've come to the right place! Malachi, our singer, is also a proper professional DJ. He turns up with around 20,000 songs and is extremely knowledgeable about music, so has no problem at all taking requests. Crucially, he will also 'read' the audience and play songs which they will enjoy. For example, perhaps he'll play a 1980s soul track which the guests love. Well, he could probably follow that with another 1980s soul track, and it would give him a great idea of what other songs to play instead of guessing. Because Malachi is already there at the venue, it's much less expensive to hire him to DJ, than to hire a separate DJ. He plays through Lost In Music's PA system, so there are not two lots of equipment clogging up the place untidily, and he also knows what songs the band are playing live, so won't play them. Malachi is not just an afterthought, a 'let's invent a DJ service' - he really is a top DJ! Even if, heavens above, you decide not to have Lost In Music for your event....well, you can have him on his own. Just ask me for a quote and I'll be happy to oblige.

Why does the band need a changing room?

Because the band will be working on site for many hours, it's nice for them to have somewhere to rest, get changed, discuss the songs they'll be performing and keep their personal belongings. There needs to be somewhere to sit down and some lighting in there. Access to a mirror would be useful too.

Why does the band charge extra for turning up early or playing after midnight?

Because a working day for a professional musician and sound engineer is already very long. However, it's no problem at all for us to have the equipment set up before your guests arrive, or play until whatever time you like, but we do have to charge a little extra for our time. If the event is running hugely late and you would like the band to finish their sets after the agreed time, or if you just love the music and don't want us to stop, you can usually negotiate on the spot for us to keep playing.

Why does a band need to be fed?

Depending on the venue's location, the band will typically need to leave home between about midday and 4:00pm to get to a show and set up. After the hard work of carrying everything in, setting up and giving their all in their performance, they will pack up and get home usually between about 2:00am and 5:00am. It's nice for them to have some hot food and soft drinks somewhere in the middle to stop them collapsing from exhaustion! I do understand that the extra money charged by caterers can be very high; therefore we are perfectly happy to accept £11.00 per person (including our DJ if booked, and a sound engineer) in lieu. We can then make our own arrangements.

Will the band turn up on time?

We know how stressful it can be when you organise an important event. So we won't make it worse for you by turning up late.

I'm worried about the band being drunk or rude on stage.

Not us, you must be thinking of another band! We are a very experienced, well-known, professional band who get much of their work from word-of-mouth. Our behaviour will be exemplary from the moment we arrive to the moment we depart.

I'm worried about.........lots of other things to do with the organisation of my event.....help!

Fortunately, the music is something that you can cross off your list of worries. We bend over backwards to make sure that your special day is a complete success, so you can relax and enjoy yourself. Feel free to discuss any aspect of the booking in advance - Kevin is very helpful, friendly, hugely experienced, and guarantees not to bite! There is no such thing as a silly question, only an unasked one.

I want to make a speech - can I use your microphone?

Yes, of course you can. Let us know in advance though so we can set one up for you. Speak up, speak clearly and confidently, close to the microphone and try not to walk in front of the speakers.

Will the band look good?

Yes we will. We do not wear jeans, t-shirts or trainers whilst playing and we are presentable at all times. The singers are glamorous and very sexy!

How long does the band play for?

Our usual live performance is either 2 x 60 minute sets or 3 x 40 minute sets. You may find though, that your event is best served by one set of 60 to 90 minutes, or perhaps 2 x 45 minutes, it's very much down to you. Certain events have been known not to run completely to time (!) but, rest assured, we do bear this in mind and will change the sets 'on-the-fly' if necessary. You can have the last set as a special costumed theme if you like - 1970s disco, 1980s, 1950s rock 'n' roll, Classic Rock, Abba, School Disco, or even James Bond theme tunes if it's a specially themed corporate event. We can even play for 3 x 60 minute sets if you prefer, but we will charge a little extra.

Does the band need a stage?

If it's a suitable size (that is, if all the band can fit onto it comfortably - a minimum of about 5m x 3m), then a stage is useful. It's not always necessary though. Generally speaking, it's much better to have a band set up on the floor in a larger space where they can all move around and put on a better show than if they are packed tightly onto a small stage. The height of a stage is not so important.

Will the band supply their own equipment? I want it to sound great, not tinny and nasty.

Yes, the band will bring all of their instruments, a state of the art PA system (that's the big speakers, amplifiers and the enormous mixer with hundreds of knobs on) and stage lighting. Click here to see the technical specification. All of the equipment is top quality and, very importantly, completely reliable. Many of our clients have remarked that they thought a CD was playing, when it fact it was Lost In Music playing live - it sounds that good! It's all included in the price so there's nothing else for you to worry about. It is useful for me to know in advance how many guests there will be and the size of the room. If the event is on a particularly large scale (more than about 350 people) or in a very large ballroom (many of the London west end hotels are absolutely enormous), then I will re-quote taking this into account, as the band will need to bring a larger PA system. At most events, they also bring a sound engineer with them - this helps them to sound their best and is included at no extra charge.

Will the band play our first (and/or second) dance at our wedding?

Yes, almost certainly. If the band aren't able to play the song live (it may be unsuitable for any band to play) they will supply a CD or MP3 player - this will be discussed in advance. If you're running out of ideas, here is a list of first dances that the band have previously played. Please check the lyrics of your 1st dance carefully, as they may not be what they seem - many songs assumed to be love songs are, in fact, about breaking up and 'Every Breath You Take' by The Police is about a stalker! Try lyrics.com or azlyrics.com for the words. If you are supplying your own CD, please let us know what the song is so that we can bring a backup copy. We always have a Plan B.....

What if the band don't turn up to my function?

This has never happened yet so, again, you must be thinking of another band! If you are making a booking a year ahead, then you need to know that the band will still exist. Well, we've been going since 1993, quite a while by the standards of most function bands. This is also our full time professional job with a reputation to protect, so we won't be doing a runner!

But what if your guitarist is ill and can't make it?

If a member of the band is too ill to play (and, as they will be self-employed, this is most unusual!), the band can always find a 'dep' (deputy - a stand-in musician). This is usual practise with all function bands. With our band though, the 'dep' will be perfectly rehearsed. He or she will know all of the songs and you will certainly not notice any difference in performance. If the worst comes to the worst and the band just can't attend at all (I am racking my brain and can't for the life of me think of an example here!), then we know plenty of other people who will be only too grateful to take our work. This is not so much as a Plan B though (Kevin has a Plan B for everything), but a Plan Z. It won't happen.

Does the price include petrol and accommodation? Motorway tolls? Congestion charging?

The price quoted is fully inclusive, there is no more to pay.

Is your equipment safe? Will it blow up?

All of our electrical equipment is PAT tested (see pat-testing.info). This means that, every single year, everything is tested and a safety certificate issued. It is very expensive and most bands don't seem to bother with it, although many venues insist on it.

I have my own DJ and/or a themed band. Can they use your PA equipment?

Maybe, but this will need to be discussed in advance and we may have to charge a small additional fee. We do not allow non-band members to play our instruments, for obvious reasons!

How loud will the music be?

We'll play at the volume that you want us to play at, and that's that. If you want the volume changed, just speak to our sound engineer. We will not burst Granny's eardrums!

Will the band play requests?

If at all possible, yes. If you let us know some songs you particularly like (and those you really dislike, if any), we will use this information when deciding the set list. For one or two songs not on our repertoire list, provided you are able to give the band reasonable notice then they will normally be able to play these. Any band would find it difficult to play a song requested on the night, as this relies on every single one of the band members knowing the complete song all the way through, and it's words.

Will the band play the exact set-list that I want?

Although you could specify every song, please bear in mind that this gives the band no flexibility at all if your guests don't like the same songs that you like. It is always much better to discuss the set with the band in advance and then leave it up to us. We know what we play best, and have been playing at all sorts of special events for many years and it is our job to know what audiences like! Be assured that, although there are 20 Madonna songs and 10 James Bond songs on our huge setlist, we would not dream of playing them all to your guests. Unless you really really want us to. But even then I will try and talk you out of it.

Will the band play any Metallica, Cliff Richard or Snoop Doggy Dog?

Good grief, no!