Planning an Event? How to Find the Best New York Bands for Hire

New York Bands For HireOne of the best parts about living in the Big Apple is having options – options for eating out, options for shopping, and for fans of live music, tons of options when you’re looking for New York bands for hire. NYC’s music scene is so rich and varied, thanks to superstar bands like the Beastie Boys, Blondie, Simon & Garfunkel, and the Talking Heads – just to name a few bands from New York. Luckily, many of the new bands coming up the pipeline are just as talented, yet much more affordable for your upcoming event.

Pick the Right Music

Before you start your search, consider what type of music is most appropriate for the event you’re planning. The best band for a classy midday wedding, for example, isn’t always the best choice for a late-night party. Also, think about what’s most popular right now. Currently, New Yorkers are digging these genres at the local clubs, bars, and music venues:

  • Rock
  • Blues
  • Acoustic
  • Cabaret
  • Traditional
  • Experimental
  • Jazz

These aren’t your only choices by a long shot, though. You can also choose a New York band that specializes in cover music, dance, pop, retro music, and even DJs that bring their own style to current hits.

Browse Through the Local Classified Ads

When looking for New York bands to hire, try looking through local classified ads, or place your own ads and let the bands do all the work. Great options for browsing or placing ads include Craigslist (under the “Musicians” section), and Gig Salad, which lets you find New York bands by genre, such as New York Jazz Bands or New York Party Bands. Gig Masters categorizes bands by events, such as New York wedding bands. Another option is Music Mates, which features a comprehensive list of bands available for New York gigs.

If you choose a band from the classifieds or online, take the time to check out one of their shows before hiring them and making a down payment on the event. While there are some stellar artists out there, it’s always risky to hire an unknown. If you can, search online to see what previous customers have to say about them before signing on the dotted line.

Check Out Local Music Venues

If you’re more of a hands-on shopper, you might prefer to visit some of the local live music venues and listen to a few bands. This is great if you’re the type who isn’t sure what you’re looking for until you hear it. And who knows – you might end up hiring the next hit sensation for your event before they start charging thousands of dollars per show!

You can find superb jazz acts at Barbès in Brooklyn, but beware, because once you go in and listen, you may never want to leave! The Blue Note also features some excellent local jazz acts.

Looking for a more retro style of music or something out of the ordinary? Check out Cakeshop on the Lower East Side. Need something more exotic? Take a stroll through Polynesia at Otto’s Shrunken Head. Does your crowd dig country music? You might find the perfect New York band for your event at Pete’s Candy Store. There’s also an interesting mix of new and undiscovered artists awaiting at Rockwood Music Hall.


With so many options around, finding New York bands available for your next event is a breeze as long as you know where to start. With the above resources in hand, you’re already one step closer to pinning down the perfect band!


Interested in Private Lessons?

Search thousands of teachers for local and live, online lessons. Sign up for convenient, affordable private lessons today!

Free TakeLessons Resource

Photo by Oliviero Di Lauro

3 replies
  1. Bernard Clyde
    Bernard Clyde says:

    I agree with your tip to find the right type of music that will best fit your wedding, especially when looking for a band. They have the ability to instill just the right mood in the day, whether you want something more relaxed and romantic or up beat and dance-friendly. It’s probably wise to check out the band’s live performances, too, to see if they can deliver what you want at your wedding as far as performance goes.

  2. Barbera Peters
    Barbera Peters says:

    I really like that you mention going to local music venues when looking for a wedding band. I never thought of the importance of seeing and hearing the band in person before hiring them. My sister is getting married in a month and I am in charge of the music. Although, until this article, I had no clue how to find the right band. I also really like that you mention figuring out what music you want before hiring anyone. This way you can hear what the band sounds like in that genre of music. I will be sure to use this advice, thanks.


Leave a Reply

Want to join the discussion?
Feel free to contribute!

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *