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A busy July with 8 gigs to report on…

Yes, we are well into the summer season now, and July brought with it 8 gigs (and consequently not much time to write the blog!).

moon loungers wedding band cripps barn

It was a great month, and here’s a quick summary:

1st July – FAB Ball

The month began with us playing the FAB Ball, which raises money for the Frenchay Afterburns Unit.  We’ve been playing this marvellous event for a few years now, and once again it was a great night.  There were a number of couples there for whom we’ve played their weddings in the past, so it was great to catch up with them.

As usual the floor was packed all night, and we took the chance to debut a couple of new covers (“1999” by Prince, gawd rest his soul, and also “Don’t Leave Me This Way” by the Communards). Well done to Lizzie and the team for organising another great event!

Three go mad in Somerset with trips to Coombe Lodge weddings and Clevedon Hall

The wedding summer season is in full swing for us now – although the weather doesn’t seem to be keeping pace, sadly…

A couple of weekends ago we played back to back weddings at Coombe Lodge.  If you’re thinking that sounds a bit, well, samey, fear not – apart from being in the same venue the evenings couldn’t have been more different.

The first one was for an older crowd, making for a more sedate evening that suitably kicked off with “Everything” by Michael Buble for the first dance.  Full credit to lots of the guests for either dancing or sticking around in the main room to enjoy our performance throughout what was a really enjoyable evening.

bristol wedding band the moon loungers coombe lodge somerset

The second wedding was for a much younger and rowdier bunch, which meant lots of (a) drunkenness, (b) dropped drinks/smashed glasses on the dance floor, and (c) guests wanting to play our instruments…

There was also the obligatory “annoying guest” who spent the evening being, well, very annoying, particularly during the first dance (“Grow Old With Me” by Tom Odell) when he had to be forcibly restrained from stumbling onto the dance floor to join the newlyweds!

A couple of smashing weddings at the Hare & Hounds in Gloucestershire and Clevedon Hall in Somerset.

Sometimes it feels the title “Bristol Wedding Band” is a little misleading for this blog, given the amount of time we spend away from Bristol in the surrounding counties!  Not that we are complaining – a couple of Saturdays ago our “commute” involved driving north away from Bristol and into the beautiful Gloucestershire Cotswolds.  On a nice sunny evening it doesn’t get much better.

bristol wedding band the moon loungers hare and hounds

The venue was the Hare & Hounds near Tetbury, one of our favourites.  The couple had gone for it and booked out the whole venue, which meant we were playing in the restaurant (while the wedding brekky took place in the main function room).  They’d somehow manage to keep the existence of the restaurant a secret, so we set up quietly to maintain this secret – although once we’d sound checked it’s likely that most guests became aware of our presence…

Nonetheless it must have been a nice surprise for everyone to discover this new room complete with band ready to play for them!  The first dance was “Let’s Stay Together”, and despite the very warm weather a number of guests stuck around for a dance.

During the break we were treated to mini fish and chips, and the bride and groom let us buy a round of drinks on their tab – what a lovely couple!

It was one of those VERY rare nights where you could sit outside all evening without getting cold.  This meant it was a bit more work enticing folk onto the floor, but the newlyweds weren’t afraid to tell everyone they had to have a dance – always helpful.  Come the end of the set everyone was up and getting involved, and it was one of those nights where we had to play “Ice Ice Baby” for the encore.

Our pack down took longer than normal, due largely to the bacon sarnies being served up around midnight!  This made for an enjoyable end to a splendid evening – well done all concerned.

gloucestershire wedding band the moon loungers hare and hounds

The following Saturday we headed a few junctions south down the M5 to Clevedon Hall.  After a rainy start the weather had perked up and guests were able to enjoy the amazing grounds as we set up and sound checked.

The first dance on this occasion was “Ho Hey”, which always seems to kick things off perfectly.  Given that England had also kicked off at the exact time of the first dance, it was no surprise that the dance floor featured mainly females (although that’s fairly normal anyway to be honest).  With Clevedon Hall now boasting some cracking accommodation complete with TVs, someone had put the game on in their room for the lads to enjoy (or endure – it was England after all).

somerset wedding band the moon loungers clevedon hall

During the break it was pork rolls, which we munched on outside.  As it wasn’t quite as humid as the previous gig, getting everyone up dancing second set was much easier, and we played out the second set to a busy dance floor. Hey Jude delivered the goods as our final song, and after a couple of encores it was disco time up until midnight.

So two marvellous wedding bashes for two lovely couples.  Congrats to both and thanks to all those who had a dance and a sing along!

Weddings at Folly Farm, Cripps Barn, Charingworth Manor and Rookery Manor

The last couple of weeks have certainly kept us on our toes, with wedding performances at a few venues we’ve either never played before or only play every now and then.

A couple of weeks ago we arrived at Folly Farm in Somerset, a lovely rustic place out in the sticks.  The couple had tied the knot the previous day, so there was a pretty relaxed atmosphere as we set up.

The first dance was “Tenerife Sea” by Ed Sheeran, which we’d managed to learn with only a week’s notice.  And it sounded pretty good as well.  The rest of the first set went down well, and during the break Chris’ mate Scott (also a close friend of the groom) played a few tunes on his acoustic guitar:

wedding band moon loungers folly farm

Once Scott had finished we cracked on with a second set that filled the dance floor quite nicely. The bride had asked for “Cake by the Ocean” by DNCE on the disco, but we’d learned that one too and threw it in towards the end of the set especially for the girls who went on the hen party.

Weddings band duties at Cowley Manor, Clearwell Castle, Priston Mill and Coombe Lodge

We’ve had a busy couple of weeks since the last blog post, with four cracking wedding gigs taking place across four different venues across the South West.

On Thursday 28th April we made a welcome return to Cowley Manor near Cheltenham – a lovely old manor house with super-stylish designer interior.  The booking was made before our retirement from drinks receptions, so we were booked to play during drinks as well as the evening party.

cowley manor wedding band

We were able to set up for the drinks in the bar (above), and positioned ourselves in same spot that we’d be for the evening – thus saving our future selves a lot of effort shifting equipment around…

Once the ceremony had finished guests drifted through to the bar and adjacent lounge, inevitably tending to favour the lounge (all seating had been removed from the bar, which didn’t help our cause… aaah, good old drinks…).