So first and foremost we The Blue Rinse boys, remain very positive and are hoping that in the not too distant future, we'll be able to perform once again! We also hope one day very soon, things will be back to normal and weddings, parties, events are back to how we remember them. However, let's just say that for the moment this might not possible... so what can we all do to keep the party in full swing, whilst respecting the current situation?
Over the last few months during lockdown, we've had time to think! Like many suppliers, 2020 was a bumper year for the The Blue Rinse Band, we had a diary full of weddings and events. When we said bye to each other after a fab wedding at Chicheley Hall on March 13th, we really didn't think the next time we were going to be playing together as a band (we have done some lockdown vids) would be Sept/Oct (if they don't postpone too)! Looking on the Brightside, it will be soon that weddings of a certain size will be allowed, and it's the job of all the various suppliers involved to be able to deliver their services with minimal impact. So to do that, certain parts of the day will need to change a little.... So it's time to focus on the evening party let's get creative here are a few of our thoughts!
So for couples who have booked a band, the evening atmosphere and party is a major part of the day and possibly the main reason they are getting married in the first place :), can you carry on and have a more physically distanced party? So we hesitate to use the phrase 'socially distanced' as people can still socialise, but our thoughts still allow friends and family to enjoy live music, drink and dance but perhaps for now, physically distanced. We understand we have to be as professional as always in working in these times. Behind the scenes we've been closely monitoring government requirements and industry advice. We've also been planning and updating our working risk assessment, along with considering how we can continue to deliver our performance safely in these changing times.
I think we have all taken for granted that certain aspects of life will need to be different for a while. The queue at the supermarket, shop or pharmacy is now a standard way of life. So below are our ideas how we can still have a great party with The Blue Rinse Live Band (or any other band and DJ :), albeit perhaps laid out and approached a little differently for a while! But still remaining fun and engaging!
1) We perform so many weddings where the wedding breakfast and evening reception are in the same room. In the very recent past, there may have been say, a 1 hour turn around, clear the tables, tidy away, get the dancefloor down, ok band.... ready, steady, go! What if people were still able to boogie, party and socialise but around remaining table settings. The tables remained in place (even perhaps with micro dancefloor nearby), with chairs remaining and perhaps at some tables not, for people to stand around. How about poser tables too for people to gather around, still creating physical distancing in the dance floor area near the stage. In addition, a small dance floor space could be included for the couples first dance and perhaps some of the guests, space permitting, to fill when available. The result is the whole evening remains engaging but promotes physical 'dis dancing' whilst still encouraging socialling and enjoyment of the live music experience with the wedding party.
2) For the First Dance, guests remain seated with the tables as mentioned above... in place. Instead, friends and family watch and encourage from the table settings, rather than the whole wedding party gathering around the dancefloor... I guess you could say.... a bit more USA style?
3) Evening parties outside wherever possible. Festival style, ok perhaps more of a summer thing but weather and venue facilities permitting, could the evening party be moved outside with some of the indoors areas remaining available to seating. Open canopies similar to the images below where we performed last year, could be a great option for venues that can facilitate this move outside. Or how about venues with doors out to open spaces. The band set up in the doorway facing the outdoor space instead of indoors? Or how about picnic blankets for guests in the evening, similar to an outdoor cinema idea?
4) Perhaps bands play non contact songs... the conga, 'Oops Up Side Ya Head' is out right (note, we don't play these songs :) you see the point though!
5) Mark our sound engineer and DJ could display a phone number to allow guests to text and to communicate requests to him, physically distanced.
6) There could be a marked out gap in front of the band to allow for a bit more physical distancing between us performing and the wedding party. Stage screens
7) Place some items on the dancefloor to maintain distancing, we were thinking various massive cuddly handbags or something that people can dance around (told you we've had too much time to think).
8) Tables can have names or colours, during the evening we can invite different tables to come up (if they want to) to take their turn to have a little boogie on the dancefloor and not just at their tables. A little competition can begin, with the table winner of the evening dance off/competition for example.
9) From the band's own point of view, we will continue to practice social distancing wherever we can both on and off the stage. When we are setting up and packing up we'll also remain away from guests and use entrances where we can do this.
10) Send out a few rules to your guests early, including bringing fun masks, perhaps music related .... singing mouths maybe, be creative?
11) Bands can be volume conscious and at the Blue Rinse we are skilled in playing at many venues with varying sound limiters. We can still deliver a great sing and dance along party at a lower volume, even if people are seated and are encouraged not to have to raise their voices, we can still deliver a party, particularly if your guests insist :) .
12) We've been thinking about about adjusting delivery too, perhaps an alternative version a type of busker delivery ... basically, minimal amplification but all the favorite songs, sing a longs with the same players and live energy you'd expect!
So for now hopefully these few ideas might also help venues and couples get creative, being able to have a party in the evening, but like mosts things right now, perhaps just a little different, but we're sure, still very memorable!