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Retro music for vintage weddings

With vintage and retro weddings proving they are here to stay in 2015, many brides will be frantically sourcing authentic items to decorate their big day. Yet one of the quickest ways to evoke a vintage feel or retro period atmosphere at your wedding is with live music. We asked the experts at UK online entertainment agency Alive Network for their top tips and ideas for superb vintage and retro entertainment.

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Retro music for vintage weddings
Chose your musical decade!

One thing you quickly learn as a live entertainment advisor is just how evocative music can be. Think 1920s and immediately your feet are doing the Charleston, think 1940s and it's Glenn Miller, Andrews Sisters and that Boogie Woogie Bugle Boy! With a vintage band or era tribute band playing at your wedding, you can have both the look and the sound of your chosen period in history brought to life, before your very eyes.

Medieval, Elizabethan and Tudor weddings
Thanks to the popularity of the TV series Wolf Hall, weddings in historic houses and castles are highly popular this year. A band of strolling minstrels in costume will fit perfectly into a historic venue or Tudor manor house drinks reception. With authentic instruments such as lutes, sackbuts and crumhorns, historic musical acts create a soundtrack so evocative you'll expect Henry VIII to walk around the corner any moment! (And please let him look like Damian Lewis…)

Victorian Weddings
Many of our wedding traditions were actually started by the Victorians, who knew a thing or two about having a great time! You'll have some of the greatest classical music to choose from for your wedding ceremony, whether played on organ or by a string quartet. You can have super piano music or elegant harp music played at your drinks reception, while sipping Victorian-inspired tipples (Victorian ladies did love their chilled champagne). Then, surprise your guests with the bawdier side of Victorian life with a cabaret or music hall act, perfect for steam punk weddings!

1920s and 1930s weddings
Recreate the fashions and flappers of The Great Gatsby with a 1920s themed wedding, complete with a palm court orchestra playing live on the terrace while you sip cocktails in the afternoon sunshine. For the evening entertainment, enjoy a totally spiffing evening with an authentic 1920s dance band, or give the evening a bit of edge with a Prohibition band. Terrific fun, eh Jeeves!

1940s weddings
As we celebrate 70 years since the end of WWII this year, what better reason can there be to have your own wartime wedding? Deck out your retro venue with bunting, vintage china and the odd sandbag or two, and all your guests will soon be In the Mood for dancing. Choose a big band or jazz orchestra in the style of Glenn Millar for a big, bold sound that easily fills the largest venue.  Book an Andrews Sisters style trio of ladies for close harmonies and timeless songs including Chattanooga Choo Choo, Don't fence Me In and Shoo Shoo Baby, perfect for wedding meal entertainment.

1950s weddings
Celebrate the birth of rock n roll with a 1950s wedding, or jive and swing to your heart's content - this is the era when popular music found its feet and really did its own thing! From skiffle to jazz, rockabilly to retro crooners, you'll have so many sounds to choose from. Why not be adventurous and book three duos or trios, one for the ceremony, one for the drinks reception and one to keep you a hoppin' and a boppin' all night long!

1960s weddings
Sixties weddings are just so groovy baby! Channel your inner Austin Powers and recreate the era when almost anything goes, from Motown to The Beatles, soul to psychedelia. For a complete 60s experience, book a 1960s era tribute band who recreate the moves, grooves and fashions of this iconic era for everyone to enjoy.

1970s weddings
Encourage your guests to dig out the flares, pop on that afro wig and boogie on down at your wedding to a 1970s tribute band that boast more sequins per millimetre than Strictly! Perfect for all night entertainment, 1970s era tribute bands play almost every dance floor filling track you can think of. Less a disco, more a complete 70s immersion experience, and if your guests don't want it to end (and they won't) you'll have to Blame it on the Boogie!

1980s weddings
If you can remember when lifting a mobile phone to your ear was like weight training, when a mullet was not a fish and how shrugging in shoulder pads could keep your ears warm, a 1980s themed wedding is definitely for you!  Choose from tribute bands to those New Romantic bands we loved, or era tribute bands that revive your teenage Electric Dreams.

You choose the period, we'll find the entertainment
One of the advantages of booking wedding entertainment through an agency such as Alive Network is that whatever entertainment you want, chances are, they already have an act on their books who can provide it. What's more, if you did want a medieval fool, a breakdancing troupe, a Victorian style magician and a Fleetwood Mac tribute band all performing at your wedding (and why not!), one call to your coordinator at the agency deals with all the logistics and arrangements, including paying the artists.

So you can relax, tick "entertainment" off your wedding list and Keep Calm and Carry On looking for those perfect retro napkins…

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