Why should I hire MWO?
If you desire to make your event an memorable, MWO always delivers a top notch energenic performance and leaves the crowd cheering for more. Past performances include such events as weddings, corporate parties, dances, night clubs, conventions, fundraisers, festivals, and private parties. Are extensive experience over the past 20+ years means you’ll enjoy an evening of great entertainment, secure in the knowledge that every aspect of your event is professionally taken care of. Our unique broad range of music pleases one and all if you are looking to make the right choice look no further, MWO is your answer.
How do I find out if you're available for our date?
The best way to find out if we’re available for your date is to contact us via email or phone. We can usually let you know within 24 hours.
How many musicians are in the band and what instruments do they play?
MWO size can be modified to cater to your needs and budget but our most requested size is 11 pieces. This is our BEST product . It includes 2 Female and 2 Male Vocalists, Drums,Keys,Bass,Guitar , Trumpet, Sax,Trombone. It has a very powerful sound and is very exciting . We can also add more horns,Vocals Strings ,Dj for our breaks upon request . Just ask for a price quote.
Are the musicians professionals?
MWO has been entertaining people around the greater Chicago,Milwaukee and Midwest since 2005 , playing a wide variety of great music from the 50’s until today, including classic/modern rock, funk/disco, rhythm & blues, alternative, and standards. The band prides itself on its ability to cater to its clients’ needs and to craft set lists for any occasion that will create the perfect ambience and desired atmosphere. MWO partners seamlessly with party planners, property managers, and event organizers to ensure all events run smoothly and on-time.
Are you a traditional wedding band?
Not at all. Indeed, we owe our popularity to the fact that so many couples have asked us to play their weddings because they wanted a band that didn’t sound like a “typical wedding band.” Unlike many groups, ours is a band that has routinely played at the best nightclubs , Casinos in the Greater Chicago/ Milwaukee area for over a decade.
In addition to our ability to play all kinds of music that your parents and grandparents will thoroughly enjoy, when the time calls for it we can really rock, and our younger clients are always amazed how well we can also perform the songs that they love. Playing an average of five nights per week for ten years has given the band a reputation for superb musicianship.
Unlike many bands that work less frequently, or hire freelance musicians to read sheet music all night, we know our material inside out. Above all it is our ability to authentically perform so many styles that has set us apart for our enthusiastic fans and clients.
Whether it’s a party, wedding, or birthday celebration, if you are looking for the right band for your occasion… search no further! With its’ extremely diverse song list and unbridled energy, MWO is a proven winner for your next event!
Why should I have live music at my event?
Because music makes the party, and a great band will really make it a party to remember. Rather than a D.J., live music will make your special event truly special, and will make your wedding as unique as it deserves to be.
What type of music do you play?
The band plays a huge stylistic variety of popular music for dancing. Our songlist page is a snap shot of some of the current songs GravyBoat performs. View the media page to hear and see examples of the band.
The ages and tastes of our guests will vary considerably. Can you keep everyone happy?
Absolutely. We pride ourselves in being able to please everyone from the youngest cousin to the eldest grandparent. The band specializes in performing tried and true songs that appeal across cultural and generational lines. We have a great variety of party favorites, and we also play all the classic ballads. Typically at events such as weddings where there can be a wide range in ages, we begin with many songs that older guests who may not stay the night will enjoy, and as the party heats up we add more and more modern music in the mix. But at all times we use a wide variety of great music to insure guests of all ages are dancing and having fun.
Will the songs sound like the originals?
Yes. We approach the great songs of our time with a reverence for their original power and magic, and feel no need to “improve” the classic hits with our own interpretations and arrangements. Between the band’s attention to detail and our singers renown ability to sound like the original artists , your favorite songs will sound just the way you remember them.
Do you play Jewish weddings? Does the band perform horas?
Yes. The band has perormed at a multitude of Jewish weddings and our clients have been thrilled with the band. We instrumentally perform many horas: Hava Nagila, and a medleys of Siman Tov, Mazel Tov and Havanu Shalom. For our Jewish clients we have done all our clients required of us and they have been very effusive about both the performance of the horas and the overall success of their weddings.
Do you play traditional music from our ethnic background?
YES, we have songs like a waltz or polka ,Tarantella , Merengue that we play at many weddings where our clients’ heritage has been a major part of their celebrations. Also a common approach that always seems to work really well is for clients to provide us with cultural music on CD which we play for you during our breaks, and this is usually a great success as it provides traditonal music for the families to enjoy.
How many vocalist do you use?
We generally use 2 female and 2 male vocalists that can cover a wide variety of different styles . This is one of our greatest strengths ! We really can cover many musical tastes with this combination . Aretha Franklin to Katie Perry- James Brown to Bon Jovi etc…..
When do you set up? Will your sound check disturb our guests?
We always arrive early before your event begins to get all our equipment loaded in, set up, thoroughly tested and ready to go so that no one is disturbed and our sound checks have been totally completed before the arrival of your first guests. The band requires about 1.5-2.5 hours to complete our set up, and typically we arrive to setup before the scheduled start of your event just to make sure we get everything done before your guests begin to arrive.
Will the band be too loud?
Never. A band that drives guests away with excessive volume can ruin an event, so we take great care to get it right. We strongly believe that our music should never overwhelm your guests, and we always strive to attain a volume that is just right for dancing on the dancefloor, but also perfect for facilitating easy conversation away from the dancefloor. Because we are working for you we want to be at the perfect volume, so we always encourage our clients to let us know just where they would like it, but since no one ever seems to say anything we must be doing something right!
How will the band be dressed?
The band takes great care to be appropriately dressed in all circumstances. Unless otherwise instructed, we perform all special events and weddings in Tux/ Suits and we wear contemporary clothing for most “standard” events. Please take a look through our photo gallery to see the clothes we wear at private functions.
Can you make announcements for us during your performance?
Absolutely, and this is something we routinely do as your host. At weddings We are happy to announce various events during your reception, such as the bridal Party entrance,cake cutting, first dance, centerpiece giveaways, sweet table, last call and so forth. If you decide you would like to do a bouquet toss and / or a garter toss, We can coordinate and announce these for you in a way that’s quick, simple and fun. At other events it is customary for us to help with draws, prizes, introductions, awards, announcements, or any other facet of your event I can be of help with.
How long does the band perform? How long are the sets?
Our standard pricing is based on the band playing over a time span of up to four hours in length. The most requested time period is 8pm to 12 am, although it can be any four hours you choose, such as 9-1 , 10 to 2, 7:30 to 11:30 and so forth. The timing and length of the sets are flexible depending on the flow of the evening and the needs of each client, but usually sets are at least one hour in length unless otherwise requested. We can also provide a Pianist or smaller groups 2 to 6 pieces for the cocktail hour and Dinner.
How many breaks do you take? How long are they?
In most circumstances the band takes only two twenty minute breaks during the entire evening. The placement of the breaks is flexible and can be determined by prior arrangement. More typically the placement of breaks is strategically determined by the way your event actually unfolds on the night of your engagement.
What happens when the band is on break? I don't want my party to stop!
Your party will continue uninterrupted, because the moment we go on break we put on a great mix of dance music that is designed to keep the dance floor packed the entire time we are offstage. Typically guests really enjoy this portion of the evening, as we give you the very best material that a disc jockey would typically play. Also ask about our Dj package . For a small additional fee , we supply an actual Dj for our breaks and he will also play an additional 1 hour of dance music at the conclusion of the bands performance that night!
Can you perform extra sets, during dinner for example?
Yes. If you would like an extra set or sets over and above the standard four hour time frame, these are billed separately by the hour for playing time only, and can be pro-rated by the half hour. Music for listening and dancing during dinner can be quite a success, for this is the one time that the maximum number of guests can enjoy the show and get up to dance. Our dinner set is typically much more laid back than our dancing set after dinner, and we take extra care to make sure our volume doesn’t overwhelm your guests while they are eating and conversing. If you opt to simply have the band begin after dinner, remember that we play a nice mix of recorded dinner music through our sound system as part of our standard package.
Can you perform overtime?
Yes, overtime can usually be arranged on the spot, and is billed by the half hour at a rate proportional to your total fee.
Can we use a smaller combo of musicians and / or solo piano for cocktails and dinner?
Yes. It is definitely possible to arrange a smaller combo of musicians to perform background music, jazz standards and light ballads during an earlier part of your evening.
Do you perform ceremony music?
Yes we have many different options to chose from starting with a solo pianist , many different duo, trio , Quartet combinations including Strings , Guitar,vocals. We will consult with you to find out the perfect fit to fill the style of your wedding ceremony.
How far do you book in advance? How far should we book ahead?
We book our dates as far in advance as possible . Our calendar fills fast for each year so we highly advise you book as far in advance as you are comfortable with. If your event is less than a year away then it is a good idea to book sooner rather than later.
Where is the best place to hear the band perform live?
The band plays different styles of music at different clubs and so it’s best to contact us to see which club will most closely matches what you are looking for. Often you can see us on a weekend at a nightclub, although frequently we do not perform in public on weekends because we are booked with private events.
How far will you travel?
In theory the band will travel anywhere if the price is right. Generally speaking however the band works in the Midwest. It is not uncommon for us to have bookings in Northern Wisconsin , Minneapolis, DesMoines, Iowa, Detroit, Cleveland, Indiana etc…
How can we hear the band?
You can hear the band perform by watching and listening to video and audio samples on the media page and please download our list of songs on our songlist pages. Of course you can come to hear the band perform live at one of our public performances. Just check out our performance page on the this website.
Can you hold our date for us?
If requested we are usually able to give prospective clients the right of first refusal for a short period of time to enable them to see the band live and make a decision. We often get multiple enquiries about the same date and generally confirm our dates with the first client who contacts us wanting to book.
How much does it cost for the band to perform at my event?
All our private events are individually priced depending on the circumstances. Just contact us and we will email you a detailed price quote within 24 hours. A deposit will be required in most cases.
What are the factors that affect cost?
The main factors that affect cost are the day of the week, the traveling distance, the size of the band and the length of time performing.
I would like to book the band - what happens next?
If you would like to book the band all you need to do is let us know by phone or email that you would like to confirm and your date will then be exclusively reserved for yourself. Shortly after that we will contact you by phone to double check the details, at which time we will send you a simple contract for you to return with a small deposit (usually 20%) within two weeks.
Do we need to meet personally to plan our event? Do you need to see our venue?
Unless you make a specific arrangement at the time you book the band we do all of our planning by phone and email, including coordinating with the venue. We are meticulous in making sure all details are looked after ahead of time, and we have performed literally hundreds of events in this manner without a hitch. You are always welcome to drop by any of our public performances and discuss your event with me during one of the breaks. I can also set up Skype or FaceTime meetings . In some cases I would be willing to set up a in person meeting if we can find a way to make it happen.
What equipment do you provide?
We bring our own full sound system, wireless Mics and lighting to all our events (the only exception is venues that require the band to use their own in house sound system, lighting and technicians). Our equipment is first rate and designed to give you high fidelity at a comfortable volume. We also provide our own stage lights to illuminate the band. We always have an MP3 player to play background and dance music whenever the band is not onstage, and we also provide you with access to our CD player/Ipod plug-in should there be any music that you wish to play during your event.
What are the band's power requirements?
All of our equipment uses ordinary power, so we can perform literally anywhere there are outlets. Ideally we like to use two outlets on separate circuits, and we always have lots of extension cords with us to make sure we can access them.
Does the band require a stage? How much space does the band require?
Except for outdoor events the band does not require a stage. A stage or risers can be a nice touch however, and most venues usually have risers on site specifically for this purpose. The 11 piece requests a 18×24 sized stage but is highly flexible and we will make arrangements before with you and the venue to fit.
Does the band perform outdoors?
Quite regularly, although outdoor shows require additional preparation because of the variables involved. For the success of your event in all circumstances, the band and our equipment must be protected from the elements. This includes shelter even in sunny situations so our equipment doesn’t overheat, and a stage in case it does rain so our gear stays dry. The band requires a reliable power source, and power from an indoor source is preferable where possible. It is also important that your outdoor event does not violate any laws concerning noise at night.
Can we use your P.A. system for speeches and presentations?
Most major venues will provide you with a podium, microphone and in-house P.A. system for speeches but that being said you are always totally welcome to use our system. We can supply wireless Mic’s for your toasts and speeches.
Can we provide our own music during breaks?
Yes. As mentioned previously, there is always a CD/Ipod player hooked up through our sound system available for your use. The music we can already provide you with has proved a great success in a wide range of settings, but if you feel so inclined you can provide us with CDs that you own or have burned yourself and we can play these for you instead. The music you provide can be for any portion of your cocktails and dinner, and / or any portion of the band breaks after dinner.
Can we make requests from your songlists?
Absolutely! Most people who hire a live band love music, and so our clients often have many songs they would really like to hear. In addition to giving me a general idea of the styles of music you would like for your event, if you have specific requests I encourage clients to give me a list taken from our website songlists of up to 40 songs. Of this list I then ask you to designate up to 10 of these 40 songs as “must plays.” The 40 songs give me a general idea of what you would like for your event, and I usually try to play as many of these as possible; I guarantee you will hear every song you designate as “must play,” and this arrangement allows me to give you what you want while maintaining my ability to make repertoire decisions on the spot based on whatever music seems to be generating the best audience response at the time. On the evening of your event we’re also happy to accommodate any request that we believe your guests will enjoy dancing to.
Do you play songs that are not listed on your websit songlists? Will you learn songs for us that are not in your repertoire?
We have a large inclusive song list which you can download from our site. We will learn a couple of special requests for First dance, Mother/Son &Father /Daughter Dances and perform these love for you . There is a limit on how many we can learn for any particular wedding . This takes time and preparation so we must have these requests at least 6weeks in advance . You can request any song in the world, however, by playing it on MP3 player through our sound system at any appropriate time, such as during one of our breaks or right before we begin performing.
Do you know our first dance?
See above – Quite possibly. Our list of first dance suggestions contains a number of popular songs that couples frequently ask for. Even if your special song is not part of our repertoire, you can have any song in the world by playing your first dance on Ipod ect..and then having the band begin immediately afterward, which is a very common procedure that many couples opt for. You can also do the same for your parents dance as well if you wish, although we also have a list of ideas for you that the band currently performs.
Can you answer my question that's not on this list?
We would be happy to. If you have any additional questions or would like further explanation of any item above, please contact us. We look forward to addressing your questions. Thanks again for visiting our site.