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A Letter From The Musician's Lips (Continued page 3)

What is the Price? The price is always contingent upon the number of players and the hours used. There are a couple of instruments to this exception: the harp and the keyboard. Because these instruments require more set-up time, they ask for more money. It is not unusual to pay $200-$300 for the first two hours and $150.00 every hour thereafter. Some leaders require a minimum of two or three hours, others price in one half-hour increments.

If I sign with you now, will you take 10% off the price? How many times have you heard, “It never hurts to ask”? Take a moment to ask. All they can say is no. If you have a skill that you can barter, don’t be afraid to ask either.

Selecting the ensemble
Make sure you select the appropriate ensemble for your needs. If your wedding is in a garden area that only allows acoustical instruments to play, you may not want to hire a keyboardist. A guitarist will always need an amplification system if the affair is outdoors.

If you are looking for a rich, warm tone, the string quartet may be right for you. A string quartet is made up of two violins, viola and cello. If you are looking for something a little more regal, perhaps it’s the brass quintet; two trumpets, trombone, French horn and tuba. If you're not quite sure what goes together, your musician leader will help you make the correct combination.

Your contract
Always have something in writing; whether it is a friend performing or a professional! This little piece of paper protects you, the consumer. Here are some items that are a must for every contract:
• Name and address of place of engagement
• Date of employment
• Hours of employment
• Type of engagement
• The number of musicians and type of ensemble
• Price
• Price per-half hour of overtime
• Amount of the deposit and when the balance should be paid
• The musician’s signature

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