Sheldon’s Blog

Every week I welcome you into my world. I share my thoughts on a variety of subjects relating to performance, teaching and composing. From venues, to techniques to songs I find interesting. It’s all in my blog.

Book A Musician and DJ – Bespoke Wedding Music

Sheldon Conrich - Singing guitarist and DJ

Book A Musician and DJ – The Bespoke Wedding

Sheldon Conrich - Singing guitarist and DJ

The modern wedding is very different to that of even a few years ago. I’ve been performing as a wedding musician for over ten years but I have seen a shift in the last few years. Couples are looking for much more creative control of their wedding music. Gone are the days where a band or musician can have a set repertoire list and the couple leave all to the band’s discretion. These days couples have a lot more knowledge of music and what they want. Maybe this is because of the emergence of Spotify or because weddings were becoming very similar musically.

After performing for eight years in a DJ live band – a blend of DJing and live music – I realised that this format was the way forward. So for a period of years I worked hard crafting my Djing skills so that I could offer clients both a musician and DJ for their wedding.

The modern wedding musician

So with my large acoustic knowledge and now growing DJ party music knowledge it was time to let clients know what they could expect at their wedding. The fact that I could offer a wide range of acoustic music for the wedding ceremony, reception drinks and dinner was not enough. But now I could take this to clients and offer them my Djing services for the party. I found once the musician and and DJ option was on the table clients were a lot more interested in my services. I think this is because of what I mentioned before, the idea that couples can completely bespoke their wedding music and it’s changed the game.

Book your wedding music today or carrying reading to find out more musical options.

More Wedding Music Options

Before I was DJing at weddings I offered a duo and trio set up for the acoustic elements of a day. Often I would perform an instrumental jazz set with my saxophonist and a modern poppy acoustic vocal set with the added percussionist during reception and dinner. Going out as a musician and DJ, plus having a duo and trio option, couples were again having even greater ability to create a bespoke wedding. I was also finding couples asking my musicians to stick around for the DJ sets to jam along with the tracks – giving a DJ live feel to the party. Again this has been a new development to find it’s way into the wedding scene over the past few years. Giving the sense of a big party with a live element but with fewer musicians has giving couples a much more affordable wedding in regards to their music. I pride myself on offering the best deal I can for my clients and always try to stick within their budgets.

Book your wedding musicians or read on to learn about the first dance.

The First Dance – The Magical Moment

Musician and DJ - Sheldon Conrich

A couples first dance is always a magical moment and is something that will be remembered for the rest of the their lives. So you would think it would be an important decision, both what song is chosen and how it is performed. Some couples choose a song that is extremely special to them. They want the original song played by the original artist – just like when they first heard it. Other couples want to hear their first dance sung to them live to bring a completely intimate and one off moment for them. Traditionally this can pose a problem for a DJ – who can’t perform a live track – and a band – who can’t perform with the original artist. With myself being a musician and DJ, this has been a great advantage for couples. It has meant they can choose whichever option they want for their first dance. If they need an acoustic performance then I’ll grab my guitar, learn their song and perform it live. If they want the original artist version, I’ll make sure it’s queued on the decks before I DJ the rest of the party. It really has been a great option to add to my services.

Book your musician and DJ today or read on to find out about my function band.

A Full Live Function Band

The only thing I found that was missing from my services was the ability to provide a full wedding function band. If I was to truly offer a bespoke wedding service then I needed all options covered. And this meant I had to start putting together a function band option. After 2 years of work, the Cocktails and Dreams band was born. With my full live function band armed and ready I could now offer clients the widest set of musical options for their wedding. I can now offer couples the following options for music at their wedding – a solo guitarist/DJ, duo, trio and full live function band (up to 7 piece including sax and percussion).

Your Bespoke Wedding Musician and DJ

So the modern wedding is one of unique, individual moments, that have a mixture of live and DJ’ed music. I feel fortunate enough to have been able to have recognised this, develop new skills and offer a truly bespoke wedding to all couples. If you are looking for a musician and DJ at your wedding, or maybe something larger like a duo, trio or full band feel free to get in touch.

Weddings, Videos and A New Function Band

Sheldon Conrich - Singing guitarist and DJ

Weddings, YouTube and My New Function Band

The past few months have been very busy for many reasons. Firstly I became a dad and that has been amazing, scary and time consuming all at the same time. It’s also coincided with the busiest time of the year for a musician performing at weddings and events. The summer is notorious for celebrating weddings and the British summer has not let us down.

On top of that I’ve been working hard putting together a music video, collection of audio and photos for my new function band – Cocktails & Dreams. There’s actually a lot of work that goes in to showing the general public what a function band does if they haven’t seen you live. It’s very difficult to capture the feel of a live performance when adrenalin is flying and everyone is high on life at a wedding. But we’ve done our best to put together some cool material for everyone.

Wedding Music

Wedding musician in France and new function band

It’s been a busy wedding season so far and I’ve been travelling about the UK which has been great. I even had a little wedding stop off in a small town called Trets in France. It has some beautiful picturesque views from the Vineyard venue I performed at. Granted I was insanely tired after very little sleep – tends to happen being a new dad – but it was still fun to adventure out of the UK.

Some of the highlights over the past couple of months have been performing at Andy Murray’s hotel, Cromlix, in Dunblane with The Function Band. I’d had very little sleep up until that wedding but we drove for 10 hours in a double decker tour bus with bunk beds. So I actually slept there and back. The wedding was also beautiful but the memory is sleep at this moment.

I also enjoyed performing at the Arts Club in Dover street. It’s a pretty cool place with a basement club. I think the couple were a little surprised to hear their Jewish Israeli dancing music performed at 11.30 in the evening but they certainly went for it. And the highlight for that wedding was our acoustic set where all the guests during their dinner got onto the dance floor, surrounded us and sang along to every song we performed. What a buzz.

YouTube Videos

So I’ve continued performing various themed videos for my YouTube channel. This includes Masters of solo, masters of the riff, Guitar tip of the week, Acoustic cover challenge and Short solos for a year. All of these playlists feature me demonstrating the various things I do on the guitar. As I was once called Sheldon ‘The Encyclopedia’ Conrich because of my song knowledge. I wanted to demonstrate this both on a soloing level and on a riff based level. So I’ve been performing some of my favourite riffs and solos which I hope you are enjoying. It’s been a lot of fun recording them and hopefully I’ll reach maybe 100 videos for those two playlists in the years to come.

I continue to give free guitar tips to budding guitarists trying to improve their guitar skills. Obviously as a guitar teacher, you’re only getting a scratching of the surface in each video. So if you want to reallllly learn, then do come and have some guitar lessons with me. But in the meantime enjoy the guitar tips each week.

I’ve also embarked on a journey to improve my soloing ability and general ability around the guitar. So this will be an ongoing project to record solos every week for a year. The aim is by the end of the year my soloing will have transformed from the first to the last video. Let’s see.

New Function Band

As mentioned Cocktails & Dreams are a new function band I’ve put together with some great musicians. We’re all about having fun and enjoying ourselves at the events we perform at. We do play a lot of party songs for people to dance to on the dance floor, but I’ve also introduced my DJing skills to the set up. So in between live band sets, couples will continue to be entertained with me Djing their favourite songs. So it’s been great to finally get this new function band on the road and start performing at events. We do have a regular venue we play at each month called the Ranelagh. Should you want to see the band then feel free to come down and check us out.

That’s all folks

So that’s really it for the moment but I’ll write another update blog in probably another few months when I get five minutes to myself. In the meantime, have a great rest of your week.

 

February – Weddings and YouTube Videos

Sheldon Conrich - New YouTube Videos

February – Weddings and YouTube Videos

In my last blog post I talked about all the projects I am excited to be involved in and will be part of over the course of 2017. It’s been a month or so since I last posted and a lot has happened since then. So this blog is really to share with you what’s been going on in my world and to invite you to become vocal and interactive in the content I’m sharing. I’ve been creating and sharing YouTube videos and performing at some great weddings.

New YouTube Videos – Song Intros

I started this little game to test myself on what I could play and to test you lot on your musical knowledge. The concept has been to play the intros to various famous and obscure songs and for you to guess them. But really what has come out of it has been a lot of fun performing some of my favourite songs. And I’ve now been given a nickname by my fellow musicians ‘The encyclopedia’ which I’m taking as a compliment. I’ve recorded all of these intros and turned them into YouTube videos for you to watch.
My encyclopedic knowledge of music was tested at a recent function when I was asked to jam along to some songs the guests were singing without any pre warning of the songs or keys. I love these sorts of challenges. It’s part of the reason I love being a musician – testing my skills and musical ability every day.

New YouTube Videos – Famous Guitar Solos

This next project I’ve been sharing with you is based on famous acoustic and electric solos. I don’t think up until this point anyone has really seen what my soloing ability is like and who has influenced it. So before I start to perform my own solos I wanted to record a load of solos that have made me the lead guitarist I am today. There have been over twenty solos recorded so far, so watch out for these over the coming weeks. But I seriously love this stuff. And if you have any suggestions for me, let me know. I aim to add more YouTube videos over the next month so just keep checking out the playlist.

New YouTube Videos – Guitar Tips of the Week

As well as being a gigging musician for weddings and events I am also a guitar and piano teacher. I was talking to my wife and she mentioned that people might be interested in short simple tips that will dramatically improve their guitar playing. I thought, ok this could be fun. So I’ve started recording and posting a bunch of guitar tip YouTube videos for those of you who want to improve your guitar playing. Eventually this playlist will cover anything from simple chord changes and strumming to advanced soloing techniques and theory knowledge. I guess in some way this playlist will be my legacy for my children to watch when I’m old and grey!

Weddings weddings weddings

Duo musicians and DJ for weddings

It’s been a busy month or so with both weddings and events. I was fortunate enough to provide live music at Nick and Laura’s wedding which was a lot of fun. I’ve also performed a classic acoustic set at the Millennium Mayfair Hotel, gigged at the O2 with the Cocktails and Dreams band and most recently headed to Leeds to perform with the Function Band. Playing at weddings and functions is what I love to do so I’m very fortunate to be able to do it so regularly.

What’s Next?

So what’s coming next? Well I’m a performing musician both as a singing guitarist and DJ and with other musical set ups. So next up for you, I’ll be recording a playlist of cover songs I would usually play at events so you get a sense of what I do every week. You may have to wait a few weeks before this starts to materialise but I’m up for it and I hope you’re keen on watching it too. I’m also sharing a load of photos and videos on my instagram account. If you haven’t seen them then check them out. Do you have any suggestions of new YouTube videos I could post? Get in touch.

So that’s it for this month’s blog. I hope you’ve enjoyed watching and listening to me play and I look forward to updating you all over the next few months about other things going on in my world. But for now, ciao.

P.s. If you have any questions, enquiries or just want to chat feel free to contact me.

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