If you’re searching for a ceilidh band London area, then you’ve come to the right place. There are images of some of our local ceilidh bands below. For further search facility, click on them or head over to our Homepage and pop ‘London’ into the drop boxes.
Based around Chelmsford, Essex, this is a well established, exciting ceilidh / barn dance...More Info
A VERY exciting band – comprising Les – guitar / bass / bazouki Chris...More Info
Soil music – because it’s earthy! The band themselves coined this phrase to describe...More Info
This Ceilidh band includes musicians who draw from the huge repertoire of popular folk...More Info
A top-notch 4 piece Scottish Ceilidh band! Who actually played at the Film Premiere...More Info
Hands Up! Who remembers the film ‘Four Weddings and A Funeral’? Hugh Grant is,...More Info
This is a traditional style Barn Dance Band that operates in and around Hertfordshire...More Info
Our agency, ‘Jigs ‘N’ Reels’ is a specialist agency which only represents ceilidh bands, barn dance and hoedown bands on a national basis as well as ceilidh bands in London. (So, if you are looking for a DJ, magician or a classical string quartet we will be of little use). We have been representing ceilidh bands for many years and know our game. We have provided ceilidh bands for all sorts of different occasions.
You can contact us as follows
1 – our enquiry form at https://jigsnreels.com/contact/
2 – by text or telephone on 0788 788 7917 or landline 01905 424411. Just leave a message together with your contact details and we will get back to you. We actually prefer to talk to people on the phone where a brief chat about your event, your budget and our ceilidh bands can be far quicker than e-mails back and forth.
When we talk about ‘ceilidh band London’, we are, of course, including all of the Greater London area stretching out to the counties on the fringes of our capital city.
Probably your first question is about fees charged by ceilidh bands, which is a sensible place to start. It’s not really possible to cover the fee scale of every band on our website (but the search box at the top of this page gives some guidance). As a rough idea for most bands, work on, say, 3 performer line-ups including the caller charging around £500-£600, the larger ceilidh bands around £600-£1000. Some of the larger bands may even charge more should they have very expensive sound systems. Prices will vary from band to band for many reasons (numbers of band members, travel costs, the standard of their equipment, the band’s reputation. As reputations expand, performers feel that they can begin to charge more. As an example, The Rolling Stones are local lads but we hear they charge well above £1000 these days!
Within guidance fees above, the ceilidh bands allow all travel expenses to/from your venue, provide their own PA sound system and the setting up time during the hour before performing. Performance times usually allow for two sets of ceilidh or barn dance over a 3 hour or more period (during which there is usually an extended break for buffet arrangements or similar). You may want to vary your timings from the above. That’s fine, just let us know because every event is individual and quotations can be adapted to suit your own requirements. For more about timings and other ‘tips’ for your ceilidh see https://jigsnreels.com/have-a-great-night/
Is anything NOT included in the fees?
We have probably all experienced or heard about congestion and emission charges (or similar) in some of our cities, particularly London. These charges can vary depending on the exact ‘where and when’ and are likely to be scales that will change in the future (and when we say ‘change’, we mean ‘become dearer!’). In the larger cities especially, the venue often does not have its own dedicated parking area so ceilidh bands may have to use pay-parking areas for the evening just like everybody else. Since these are all variable costs, band prices quoted will NOT include these charges which will become an extra charge on any quoted fees and payable separately. However, we are more than willing to check these costs for you upon release of specific date, times and venue to avoid any confusion over the cost of booking your band.
Something else to consider is that band members will have missed out on a traditional meal/supper whilst travelling, setting up their gear before performing at your event. They will, then, expect to be offered free of charge some food and drink hospitality during the event by the host (very often this involves joining the queue for the buffet!)
That’s the negatives out of the way, let’s get back to what the ceilidh bands actually offer!
Let’s start with the Caller. Any ceilidh band in London area will always include a Caller. The Caller is actually a key part of any of the ceilidh bands and the Caller’s fee is fully included within any quotations. He or she might be one of the ceilidh bands’ musicians but often it’s a separate person who concentrates solely on the dancers. The basic caller duties involve explaining the dance moves just before each dance (the ‘walk-through’) and ‘calling’ reminders of these moves while each dance is in progress. At just about any social function from fund-raisers to glitzy wedding receptions the idea is to have some FUN, of course, rather than lecture style instructions of dance steps or techniques. That would be boring, wouldn’t it? Anyway, there just isn’t the time for all that. The FUN element springs from the participating, getting the moves within the dance right or wrong and maybe dancing with others that you have never clapped eyes on before. The Caller is not simply a dance instructor. Part of the caller’s role is to create a relaxed atmosphere and pick the level of dances to suit just about everybody on the dance floor (before giving the room a quick lick of paint at the end of the night!). There’s loads more information about the Caller if you follow our FAQs tab at the top of this page.
Will ceilidh bands take up lots of space? Well, that can vary depending on your chosen band.
The smaller ceilidh bands often comprise two musicians with a caller and actually take up little space (allow about 10’0” x 6’0” deep). We cover all this in our FAQ pages. And it’s worth remembering that some of the larger ceilidh bands are willing to downsize sometimes to suit budgets, room size restrictions.
Most of the ceilidh bands often include three or four musicians (so they will take up more space). But this allows more instrumental musical variety. Ceilidh bands are very often led by reed instruments like the accordion or melodeon. Sometimes a fiddle will be the lead instrument. Other band musicians might include guitar, banjo, woodwind, keyboards, piano or drums. One advantage in hiring a larger ceilidh band in London is their greater visible presence (especially if performing on a stage at venues). But don’t run away with the idea that a stage is an absolute necessity – because it isn’t. Ceilidh bands are pretty flexible in that respect.
How do we know that it’s a ceilidh band that we would be booking? Ceilidh bands, barn dance bands and American style hoedown bands are all the same thing aren’t they, all that diddly diddly stuff? The answer is as vague as the question – it’s both a Yes and a No. In general terms, the different genres overlap and most people would not notice any difference. If you have searched for a ceilidh band in London, you will probably already know the type of differences and this matter is also included with our FAQ pages. At this stage we will briefly touch on the various ceilidh bands’ styles in the London area below.
English Ceilidh? Never heard of it! Ceilidhs are Scottish aren’t they? Most people haven’t heard the phrase English Ceilidh before (unless you are a folk music devotee). It’s a tough one to explain if the phrase means nothing to you – imagine something like a harvest-time barn dance knees-up with the music beefed up! The music can be from anywhere within the British Isles and well beyond. It’s not just so much the tune but how it is played with energy and intensity that matters. These ceilidh bands might explain the whole thing far better if you listen to their music and many of them are very popular at the major folk festivals in the UK (and abroad). Their dances are also not restricted to any strict traditions.
Scottish Ceilidh bands – we have numerous bands in these traditions. Scottish style ceilidh bands can be categorised in two levels.
The more specialist Scottish Ceilidh bands that we represent will perform the music and dances from within the Scottish tradition for ceilidhs – what we call the ‘Strictly Scottish’ ceilidh bands who tend to be a bit more expensive in England since they are somewhat ‘niche’. Oh yes, expect kilts and Tartan!
Other ceilidh bands in London also have a good repertoire of the popular Scottish dances/music which they can combine with other very similar traditional dances. Less of the ‘strictly’ but many people booking these bands find that they still provide a real Scottish flavour.
We feel if fair to also refer to the Irish ceilidh bands (or ceili bands in the Irish spelling) in London. London has a rich tradition in Irish music. For ceilidh dancing, their music is from the Irish ceili traditional style and dances might include ‘Siege of Ennis’ or ‘Walls of Limerick’. Sometimes these bands include a vocalist for song entertainment as well. But do NOT expect music for Irish set-dances or Irish step dancing, both of which are a different matter altogether. Our FAQs page above can give more detailed explanation.
All our ceilidh bands carry, free of charge to the client, their own PA sound systems which are, of course, electrically wired. Your venue will therefore need a safe electrical circuit to be provided with access to a domestic style square pin electric socket. If your event is to be held outdoors or in a marquee, the band will still need access to the same sort of power supply. Since the bands also provide the speakers for amplification, safety is a paramount consideration. We insist that each ceilidh band in London provides Public Liability Insurance cover (minimum £250,000) and PAT certification for their electric gear.
Our FAQ pages cover many other considerations for ceilidh bands and we invite you to check out those pages via https://jigsnreels.com/faqs/
We are looking forward to hearing from you.