Wedding Day Reminder: Don't Forget To Party!

If there's one thing Downbeat LA prides itself on, it's knowing how to get the party started and how to keep it going strong! Weddings involve a great deal of planning and hard work, but when the day comes it's important to enjoy it to the fullest, and as musicians and entertainers, it's our job to make sure everyone in the crowd is having the time of their lives. 

Here is some inspiration to serve as a reminder that no matter what, when the big day comes, don't forget to have fun and party! 

15895670_591950644334226_2830337587929778621_o.jpg

Read more from Downbeat LA's blog here

Vendor Spotlight - Best Day Ever Floral Design

Florals are an important part of every wedding, and today's vendor spotlight goes out to one of Downbeat LA's favorite floral designers to work with: Best Day Ever Floral Design

Best Day Ever is a boutique floral design studio based out of Los Angeles, and their creations are simply stunning! With a style that's a "complementary mix of wild playful blooms that also carry a sense of ethereal beauty and magic," you truly get a true sense of the team's passion in every arrangement they bring to life.

Check out some of their amazing work below: 

For more information about Best Day Ever, visit their website at www.bestdayeverfloraldesign.com

Libraries, Museums & More! Unconventional Wedding Inspiration

Los Angeles is home to many different and unique wedding and event spaces for those looking to take a more unconventional approach to the big day. In fact, any city will have historic locations, popular attractions, museums, libraries and public spaces that can accommodate weddings if you can find one that suits you. 

We rounded up some specific spots around Los Angeles County that would make for an unconventional and memorable wedding: 

1. Natural History Museum

Imagine having your wedding ceremony in the African Mammal Hall or North American Mammal Hall, then taking guests to the impressive Grand Hall or Rotunda to continue the celebration in true "Night at The Museum"-style. 

2. The Last Bookstore

Archways of books, labyrinths of shelves and hidden passageways make up this iconic bookstore in Downtown Los Angeles, perfect for the book-loving couple who are looking for a unique and intimate gathering for their big day.   

3. Huntington Library, Art Collections & Botanical Gardens

This 207-acre estate has endless possibilities when it comes to weddings. If the idea of being surrounded by art, history and literature on your big day excites you (and you don't mid a site fee between $50,000-$150,000), then this is the place for you! 

4. California Science Center

Did you know you can host your wedding in the Samuel Oschin Pavilion, which is home to the space shuttle Endeavor? You and guests can dance the night away under the last orbiter built by NASA. Space junkies, you're welcome. 

For more wedding tips and industry insights, visit the Downbeat LA blog here

Vendor Spotlight - The Bosco

Downbeat LA's band Soultones recently helped celebrate the wedding of Clark and Lara Tesora in Garden Grove, CA. Between dance sets at the reception, we had the opportunity to experience the impressive animated GIF booth setup, The Bosco. Our singers and band members had so much fun with this creative team - as did all of the wedding guests - so we decided to find out more about the company!

This "luxury and high tech social media photo booth" is based in New York, Los Angeles and San Francisco, and is known for creating custom, creative photography installations and experiences for clients. They have an impressive portfolio of previous work, and exploring their website's case studies alone gives you an inside look at the company's grand scale collaborations with global brands and products. Here are some of our favorites: 

To see how these GIFs and experiences are created, take a look at the innovative Bosco Multicam:

To find out more about this awesome company, visit their website: www.thebosco.com

Wedding Reception Must-Have Music Moments

Downbeat LA has years of experience providing its wedding clients with unforgettable celebrations filled with great music and entertainment. While we strive to create custom playlists and unique selections of songs special to each and every couple we work with, there are five must-have music moments that every wedding needs: 

GRAND ENTRANCE: Keep it upbeat to get everyone ready and excited for the celebration!

(Can't Hold Us by Macklemore, covered by Soultones)

FIRST DANCE: Find something romantic and meaningful to you as a couple. 

(At Last by Etta James covered by The A-List)

DINNER MUSIC: Guests will want to enjoy great meals and conversation, keep it soft and light. 

(Baby by Justin Bieber, covered by TruBlu)

DANCE MUSIC: Make sure your band or DJ can keep the party going with upbeat favorites. 

 (Uptown Funk by Bruno Mars, covered by AMFM)

LAST SONG: Whether it's a slow sing-along or a party hit, make it unforgettable!  

(Rather Be by Clean Bandit, covered by Gold Standard)

For entertainment booking inquiries and music consultation for your next event, click here

Soultones + Genband

Downbeat LA recently had the exciting opportunity to team with Genband, the global leader in real time communications software solutions. The company's most recent global customer and partner summit, Perspectives17, was held in Los Angeles for the first time and to make it better than ever, they had Soultones perform for attendees across the five-day event. 

"We opened up our general session with a special welcome message by the Los Angeles Mayor Eric Garcetti, while an r&b, rock and roll and soulful vibe thanks to the remarkable Soultones band entertained the audience and kept them energized throughout the day." Bita Milanian, Senior Vice President of Global Marketing, GENBAND

"There is something magical about "the moment" when over 600 people, who traveled from countries around the world, experience ideas and each other in real time."Bita Milanian, Senior Vice President of Global Marketing, GENBAND

For more information on the band Soultones, visit their artist page here

For booking inquiries regarding your next special event, visit Downbeat LA's booking page here

Top 5 California Garden Wedding Venues

There's something so romantic about a wedding celebration secluded in the unforgettable setting of a natural landscape and garden surrounded by your closest family and friends. If a secret garden-feel is what you envision for your big day, we've rounded up our top picks for private California wedding venues that offer a ceremony and reception site surrounded by gorgeous gardens and floral bed-filled grounds. 

Beaulieu Garden (Rutherford, CA)"Imagine the exchange of vows in the sunken garden or dinner delightfully served under a sycamore arbor dappled with lights. As night falls, your guests can dance beneath the stars next to a sparkling pool bordered by manicured lawns and grape vines stretching up into the rolling hills beyond." 

Eden Gardens (Moorpark, CA): "Situated in the hills between Thousand Oaks and Moorpark, the Eden Gardens has over four acres of gardens and a glassy pond at its center.With carefully maintained palms, colorful birds of paradise, and countless rose bushes, you are genuinely removed from everything else in a little Eden to call your own."

Bear Flag Farm (Winters, CA): "Just a short drive away from Napa, Bear Flag Farm is a blissfully romantic venue that captures the artisan spirit of California. This private estate boasts acres of vineyards, orchards and lavender fields carefully positioned to optimize privacy from the outside world and an intimate environment from which to celebrate. Surrounded by beautiful gardens, this peaceful estate promotes a feeling of relaxation and tranquility."

Greystone Mansion (Los Angeles, CA): "Grand or modest, Hollywood glamour or California casual, at Beverly Hills’ Greystone Mansion & Gardens: The Doheny Estate, your wedding ceremony and reception will be unforgettable. Imagine being surrounded by the beauty of a garden setting as you tie the knot among your family and friends. The mansion courtyard, framed by the walls of the mansion with a lit fountain in the center, suggests an air of European timelessness."

Descanso Gardens (La Cañada Flintridge, CA): "Located in the quaint town of La Cañada Flintridge in California, this venue provides several landscapes to backdrop a gorgeous wedding. Occupying over 150 acres, this botanical garden also includes a Rose Garden, Oak Forest, Japanese Garden, and several lawn areas both expansive and intimate. Whether among the serene bed of the oak forest or the gazebo surrounded by five acres of rosebushes, the natural splendor of Descanso Gardens never seems to end."

For more wedding tips and industry insights, visit the Downbeat LA blog here. 

Soultones + Vibiana

Downtown Los Angeles' Vibiana is always a favorite venue of ours to perform. The jaw-dropping ballroom never fails to set the perfect scene at the weddings and events hosted there. Soultones recently performed at a gorgeous wedding on the property and guests loved the energy that the 10-piece ensemble brought to the party!

The room lends itself perfectly to the band's singers and horn players who love to go out into the crowd during each set!

For more information on how to book Soultones for your next special event or wedding, click here.

Wedding Planners, Vendors and Couples: Navigating the Process Together

A recent article featured on the Martha Stewart Weddings blog addressed the question of how hands-off couples should be with their wedding planners. Author Alyssa Brown outlined the following key things to remember: 

  1. Your wedding package should be customized. 
  2. Your wedding planner should keep you organized and on track. 
  3. There are always going to be things your wedding planner cannot do for you. 
  4. You should feel comfortable with the amount of and quality of work your wedding planner's doing. 

Not only are these important to remember for planners, but they can apply to wedding vendors as well. Whether it's the planner who communicates with the team of service vendors, or you are in direct communication as the bride and groom, it's important to establish mutual trust and respect, be very clear about what your vision is, and be vocal about how involved you'd like to be from the beginning. 

If you're aligned with a team you trust, there's no need to constantly check in with your planner or your contacts. Brown states: 

"Wedding planners hate being micro-managed just as much as the next service provider, but don't be afraid to say something if you're not getting your needs met. The relationship you have with your wedding planner works best if you're able to communicate and honestly so that all tasks on both your lists are taken care of in a timely and professional manner. Trusting your planner's guidance, organizational tools, creative ability, and general advice are crucial to the enjoyment of working together and planning a beautiful, fun, and relaxing wedding."

As long as you remember it's a team effort, and there are responsibilities that everyone owns - including the bride and groom - then the process is much easier to navigate together. 

For more wedding-related tips and advice, head to Downbeat LA's Wedding Tips Blog here. 

AMFM + Limoneira Ranch

Ventura County's Santa Paula is home to the lovely Limoneira Ranch, a rustic and charming wedding and special events venue. AMFM had the pleasure of performing at a wedding here on a gorgeous day with both the ceremony and reception set outside surrounded by the beautiful landscape of the Heritage Valley. 

The band kept guests on their feet all night, whether it was surrounding the bride and groom during their first dance and the parent dances or during the upbeat dance sets that went until the very end of the celebration. 

The lead singers kept everyone excited by singing and dancing along to the couple's favorite songs, jumping out into the crowd to encourage guests to sing along, and even breaking out a surprise horn section during the set. 

For more information on AMFM, visit the band's artist page here.

To book AMFM for your next special event or wedding, click here.  

Summer Wedding Weekend Inspiration!

For family and friends traveling from out of town to celebrate your wedding day, planning local activities and social gatherings around the date is a great way to welcome everyone and spend quality time together. Weddings have become so much more than just the big day as more and more couples are planning entire weekend itineraries around any budget for guests to enjoy. 

With summer in full swing, we've got plenty of inspiration to share with you for a sunny wedding weekend itinerary, including rooftop cocktails at sunset, beach games, boat excursions and more! And while it's never mandatory or expected, giving your loved ones the opportunity to continue the celebrations above and beyond the wedding day is something you'll both cherish forever: 

Fore more wedding tips and inspiration, read more from our blog here

Vendor Spotlight - Wish Wonder Dream Weddings & Events

Downbeat LA recently celebrated the wedding of Caroline and Mike at Triunfo Creek Vineyards in Agoura Hills, California. The beautiful outdoor venue was set beautifully and the big day went off without a hitch thanks to the amazing team at Wish Wonder Dream, a rockstar wedding and event planning team based out of Southern California. 

4630292359-5936c7b8af872-1140x760.jpg

The day-of communication and coordination we experienced firsthand was wonderful and highly professional, and we can only imagine how well the team worked with the couple throughout the entire planning process leading up to the big day. With packages spanning from small and simple to full-scale and premiere, Wish Wonder Dream seem to offer a wide range of services for couples looking to make their wedding special. 

For more information on this Southern California-based wedding and event planning team, Wish Wonder Dream, visit their website at www.wishwonderdream.com.

To visit Downbeat LA's blog, click here.  

Gold Standard + Terranea Resort

Gold Standard recently performed at a gorgeous oceanfront wedding at the luxurious Terranea Resort in Rancho Palos Verdes. The picturesque ballroom was set with romantic florals, pops of red and lit candelabras with friends and family filling the space, eager to celebrate the newlyweds, Brent and Jessica Fierro. 

The 10-piece band was on stage the entire night, keeping the all white dance floor packed. Per the bride and groom's request, the band performed the special parent and sibling dances live and there wasn't a dry eye in sight. From dance-offs and party props to heartfelt toasts and speeches, here are some of the highlights from this amazing wedding we were lucky to be a part of: 

Find out more about Gold Standard by visiting their artist page.

For live entertainment booking inquiries regarding your wedding or special event, click here.  

How To Host Wedding ANY DAY of the Week!

Saturday weddings are commonly desired by couples for many reasons, but what if your dream venue doesn't have any dates available or the price tag isn't as flexible as the Friday or Sunday option? There could be a number of reasons why you choose to host a wedding on an off-day, but here are some things to consider before you do to ensure it's the best it can be:  

weddings.jpg

1. Guests traveling from out-of-town may need to take time off from work on one or both ends of the trip, if that's even an option. While you shouldn't expect them to do so, be sure to show you're consideration by hosting a welcome reception or planning to spend together before or after the actual wedding day. 

2. For weekday weddings, make sure to ask your vendors for any deals or discounts they may offer, especially if most of the weekends are already booked. You and your planner should feel comfortable having these discussions with the people you'll be working with for the wedding.

3. Plan for evening activities and celebrations for Monday-Friday weddings. Anything after 6:00pm is safe if guests are expected to travel on the same day. For activities before or after the actual wedding day, consider a cocktail hour instead of brunch, or an intimate dinner instead of a luncheon. However, if the day after your wedding is a Saturday then anything goes!

4. If the day following your wedding is a work day, don't feel like you have to cut celebrations short on behalf of guests who can't take the time off. You can still plan an after party or keep the reception going late, just give them the option to stay of leave if they'd like. 

Remember that whatever day you decide to host your wedding will be perfect because it will be what's best for you! 

For more Downbeat LA wedding tips, click here

Vendor Spotlight - Spark Creative Events

Working in the entertainment and events industry, we know - and appreciate - that it takes an extraordinary team of talented individuals to design and implement an entire event's ambiance and feel. Downbeat LA had the pleasure of witnessing a creative vision be brought to life at a beautiful Ojai wedding with Gold Standard and Santa Barbara-based event designers, Spark Creative Events.

Specializing in weddings and corporate events, Spark offers a massive array of services for clients, including lighting, decor, rentals, audio, video and more! Visiting their online gallery alone gives you an idea of the incredible work they do, see for yourself:

The team is highly professional and an absolute pleasure to work with, and we're already looking forward to the next time we visit Santa Barbara to work with them on a wedding or special event.

For more information about this amazing vendor, visit them at their website: www.sparkcreativeevents.com

For more wedding tips and industry insights, visit Downbeat LA's blog here.

Wedding Day Transition Tips: Ceremony to Reception

Congratulations! You've found your dream wedding ceremony and reception venue! If they're two totally different properties, you and your guests shouldn't experience much trouble transitioning from one part of the day to the next. However, if they're on the same property, planning a seamless transition is key. 

Downbeat LA has performed numerous ceremonies and receptions located within the same venue, and have compiled a list of helpful tips to ensure the transition goes smoothly: 

1. Immediately following the ceremony, have servers greet guests with champagne and/or passed hors d'oeuvres to keep everyone in the same area while bridal party and family photos are taken at the ceremony site. 

2. Consider the use of custom signage or detailed ceremony programs with information as to what the rest of the night will entail, letting guests know where to be and when. 

3. Ask your officiant or wedding band MC/DJ to make clear announcements following the ceremony leading into the cocktail hour and reception, including where guests should go, when meals will be served, when everyone should take their seats, etc. so guests aren't left wondering. 

4. Whether you want to switch right into party mode or set the mood for a romantic dinner, make sure your wedding entertainment can play or perform the music accordingly as a cue for what's to come. 

5. Plan on a change in decor! Unveil a photo booth area, bring out the cake or special personalized items once the ceremony has passed and the celebration is underway.

For more wedding tips and advice, visit our Wedding Tips Blog!

Vendor Spotlight - ENCOR STUDIO

Last month, Soultones performed at The Ritz Carlton-Laguna Niguel for the beautiful wedding of Lan and Jack. The unique Taiwanese/Vietnamese Tea Ceremony and wedding reception was stunningly captured by Southern California-based cinematography and photography team, ENCOR STUDIO

The team was an absolute pleasure to work with and the results of the highlight video they captured and edited are incredible, see for yourself by watching below: 

Their story and mission are made clear through their work, and by speaking with the team and even visiting the company website you get a glimpse into how passionate they are about what they do:

"Throughout the years, we’ve been successful at helping clients create a lifetime of magical moments by capturing the beauty & emotions of their special day. We craft wedding stories with a creative artistic eye built with our bare hands & modern day equipment. We don’t just point the camera and shoot, we shoot like ninjas." - ENCOR STUDIO

We look forward to the next time we can work together with this amazing visual story-telling team professionally.

For more information on ENCOR STUDIO, visit their website at encorestudio.com.

To explore more highlights from their portfolio, visit their Vimeo page here.

For more vendors we love, wedding tips and industry insights, visit our blog here

Top 3 Malibu Mountain + Vineyard Venues

Malibu is mostly known for its gorgeous beaches along the Pacific Coast Highway, but we happen to love the area for its sprawling landscape and private vineyards nestled in the Santa Monica mountain range. Considering it is an extremely popular destination for weddings, we compiled our Top 3 Mountain and Vineyard Venues located in sunny Malibu, all with breathtaking views!

1. Saddlerock Ranch

This picture-perfect wedding venue offers couples a choice of five different locations for a ceremony and reception and is surrounded by natural beauty and charm. Whether you prefer a celebration under treetops, or atop a mountain with panoramic views, the possibilities are endless at Saddlerock Ranch!

2. Malibu Rocky Oaks Estate Vineyards

This private estate is not your typical wedding venue in the sense that it doesn't provide a turnkey operation, but it's perfect for anyone looking to customize their entire wedding to their liking! Most known for it's heli-pad ceremony site, this romantic Tuscan-style mansion boasts 360 degree views of mountaintops, hillsides and the pacific ocean.

3. Calamigos Ranch

Calamigos Ranch never disappoints, as couples can choose from four different venues on the property to ensure their wedding perfectly suits their needs, from party size, indoor/outdoor preferences, and more! Both romantic and rustic, there are luxury accommodations onsite to make it the ultimate wedding destination for you and guests. 

For more wedding tips and venue recommendations, visit our Wedding Tips blog here

Top 3 Luxury San Diego Wedding Venues

Downbeat LA bands and artists frequently travel to San Diego to perform at various venues across the city. With picture-perfect locations in the heart of Downtown as well as gorgeous oceanfront properties, we narrowed down our Top 3 Luxury San Diego Wedding Venues sure to make any special occasion absolutely perfect:

1. L'Auberge Del Mar (Del Mar, CA)

2. Hotel del Coronado (Coronado, CA)

3. The US Grant (San Diego, CA)

For more Downbeat LA wedding tips, head to our Wedding Tips blog!