Manhattan Bride Magazine did a feature article on MCM with an interview with MCM President Victor Lesser.
Manhattan City Music bandleader – Victor Lesser – has been featured jamming with the band on “The Letterman Show”, leading the on-camera band on Lifetime Network’s talk show “Attitudes” and has been a featured headliner in nightclubs, events and feswtivals all around the world. He also has played with Chuck Mangione, the Luther Vandross band, Daryl Hall from Hall and Oates, the Coasters, and Ben E. King, both on the road and on records. “Most of the guys in my band have this kind of experience as well.”
“There are three big questions that the bride and groom should ask when meeting with a potential band” says Victor. “What styles of music do you specialize in? What is your experience? What kinds of events have you you done?” “I always ask about your favorite styles and artists, and what songs you don’t like. Do you want an understated, elegant affair or a high energy, funky party? Perhaps you want something in between or a mixture of both which is generally the case,” That kind of mixture means, for example, Beyonce and Frank Sinatra. “There’s a way to sequence the songs and maintain continuity while still covering lots of different styles of music in the course of an evening.” “Let’s say we’re doing a swing Sinatra medley. From there we can go into classic 70′s dance music or into Louis Prima tunes and that decision will be based on what I see and feel happening in the room at that given moment.” “In either case, I’ve already gotten a sense that the couple likes both 70′s dance and Louis Prima-”
From Victor’s experience, most parties start out with jazzier music – like Sinatra and swing, “because people want to hang out, talk and get reacquainted. As the evening progresses, things move toward higher energy dance music which can mean Jump, R&B, Motown or contemporary.” “The point is to inspire people to dance and have fun – You can plan in advance by getting a sense of what the clients like and what their style is” says Victor, “but the band must be prepared to respond to the crowd.” Establishing the desired volume is always a challenge.
“I’ve played many weddings where the brides parents want moderated volume, while the 20-somethings want louder music. It’s a common scenario.” “One of the best solutions – and this is something that I think takes really professional musicians to pull off – is to play at a moderated volume without sacrificing the groove. In other words, to make dance music feel motivating and fun without being overpowering.” “I never forget that this is one of the biggest days of the couple’s life, so it’s extremely important for me to set the right tone and to help make it a truly special day.”