Blog, Ideas & Inspiration

Live music – It doesn’t have to be a Rollercoaster, but it could be!

June 22, 2017

So Glastonbury is about to get underway – lots of canvas, lots of people, lots of fantastic live music. The logistics behind the festival must be mind boggling. We know just how much work is involved putting together events for our clients, especially when many suppliers can be involved, but it pales into insignificance compared to a five-day event with hundreds of performers appearing.

RollercoasterLead singer Alistair told us: “It all starts with the booking. We perform at around 60 weddings every year and the diary fills very quickly, we can only perform in one place at a time and, unlike some of the Glastonbury performers, don’t have the luxury of a helicopter waiting to quickly ferry us around from one show to another! So when a date has been booked, we are committed – amazingly, we have actually known couples to have finalised their wedding date based on our availability… no pressure, then!

A marquee makes a great live music venue
“It’s really important to get the logistics right so that we’re ready to play at the appropriate time. For us, we have to make sure all our equipment is in good working order, be packed up and on the road in good time for when we need to arrive. For the bride and groom, it’s all about being able to give us sufficient time to set up in the space, making sure there is parking close by and easy access – the last thing we ever want is to spend a long time unloading and setting up at the expense of the soundcheck and possible quality issues when we play. We need sufficient time to assess the available space, set up and make any final adjustments. Then it’s on to the soundcheck, making sure that all the levels are correct, that the vocals and instruments can be heard and in the right balance. Marquees actually provide the best environment in which to play, quite simply because of the fantastic sound quality. In a standard venue, the sound bounces off the walls – in a marquee you’re hearing it directly from the instruments or PA.

“Rollercoaster never makes outrageous backstage demands (Kanye West, Madonna, Gaga and a few other big stars would shudder at this!). All we need is somewhere suitable to relax in and get changed before we perform and to be fed – we need plenty of energy for our set! And we’re not a bunch of narcissists but a mirror means we’ll be looking our best when we get on stage.

“We usually start performing around 8pm and will play for several hours, longer if the booking is for an event with a late extension. When we first hit the stage we have a quick check of the gear and tune our instruments. This is especially important in a marquee – the air temperature will have changed from our initial set up and that can affect stringed instruments, and we want to make sure we do ourselves justice.

“We have a massive songlist and we tailor our sets according to who we’re performing to and what the event is. Some clients like to specify favourite songs, others are happy to trust our judgement – equally, clients can also tell us which songs they definitely don’t like or want played! During the short break between sets we can also provide the DJing – armed with a laptop, Chris, our drummer, knows how to keep the dancefloor full.

“Once we’ve finished and the party ends, we pack down all the equipment and get the cars loaded. We’re often driving home in the early hours – there’s no plush tour bus, no after-partying, but hey, it’s still rock’n’roll and we love it!”

Fancy having Rollercoaster at your marquee wedding reception or party? Call Inside Outside on 01372 459485 or email to find out more.

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