SOLID STEEL: OUR WEDDING BAND

Steel band hire for all weddings

Solid Steel, as an all-acoustic steel band is a particularly popular choice for couples who require live steel drum wedding music. Why?

  • Our history. With 35 years of experience and a strong heritage couples can’t go wrong hiring our steel band for weddings.
  • Our reputation. Hospitality professionals such as wedding planners and, of course, numerous wedding couples are very happy with their choice as you can see from the Testimonials on this page.
  • Our look. Visually our steel band is colourful, sunny and our informal nature makes us the perfect contrast to the formality of a wedding.
  • Our sound. Our wedding musicians are outstanding- and we have wonderful video and audio evidence to support that claim!
We love playing at weddings and we love diversity. Straight weddings, gay weddings, interracial weddings, Jewish weddings, Indian weddings, celebrity weddings. We’ve done them all and are hungry to meet the ever more diverse demands of modern British couples.

Steel bands have been playing live as UK wedding bands since the ‘50s when Trinidadians like Max Cherrie (Solid Steel bandleader Paul’s father) and Ralph Cherrie (Solid Steel musical director Mark’s father) first played in trios featuring these novel instruments that had been ‘invented’ only 20 years earlier in the Caribbean island of Trinidad.

Our background, our experience and our quality means you can trust Solid Steel to do a great professional job at every stage- from your initial enquiry right up to the last note we play at your wedding.

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Lovely bride trades her bouquet for a photo-op

A beautiful venue pre-wedding breakfast performance

Steel band hire for wedding receptions

You may want to hire Solid Steel for your wedding drinks reception. There are more, but here are two great reasons:

  • Great outdoors. In our acoustic and ‘unplugged’ steel band formats, in particular, you can position us outside and we won’t need any electrical power point. We’re ‘green’ and so are you should you hire us!
  • Ideal volume level. The music we make exclusively playing steel drums is ideal for the background music you want before your wedding service and/or during your wedding service, drinks reception, wedding breakfast and reception for evening guests. Even two metres from the band you will still be able to chat with no need to shout.
Sometimes we are hired for the post-wedding breakfast period to play for dancing when we advise you should hire us as a bigger amplified band including other instruments to produce more accurate sounding covers of your favourite tunes. Please take a look at Solid Steel’s alter ego, an an ace reggae-pop covers band called ‘We Be Jammin’!

We encourage our clients to browse our playlists and offer us direction on what they would like us to play to fill their dance floors and help them create bespoke playlists.

So whether you require acoustic or electric modern steel band entertainment- with or without vocals- we guarantee not to disappoint.

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Steel band hire for wedding services

Make a great choice with our steel band for your wedding ceremony too. We know hundreds of songs and can play those special song requests for you. So we deliver:

  • Playlists of different songs and musical styles you can browse through.
  • Lively reception music for arriving guests.
  • Traditional ceremonial music for that walk down the aisle.
  • Romantic music whilst you sign the register.
  • Triumphal music while you exit as a married couple on your big day.
We offer all the variety of traditional wedding service and song choices as any other wedding music specialist. But, of course, Solid Steel will never be a conventional choice and we are even more accustomed to atypical requirements that are not traditional at all!

Whilst you may want us to play our steel band version of ‘Canon in D’ for your processional tune or those other more traditional steel band wedding tunes we played on Good Morning Britain in 2018, I will not be surprised if you’d prefer us to play Bob Marley’s ‘One Love’ for your recessional tune. Or something very different. A tune we don’t know and have never played before, for example. No worries. Solid Steel’s repertoire is comprehensive, but we are always looking to extend it!

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Arriving at a celebrity wedding on the isle of Capri

What Our Clients Say

Vik & Miranda of Eastcote, Middlesex

Solid Steel Band played our big gay wedding (ok, technically ‘Civil Partnership celebration!) at The Cavendish in Eastcote, Middlesex. They were fab! Hugely well-received by the guests, they struck just the right chord (pun intended!) for pre-disco musical ambience. They were well-liked by adults and kids alike! Refreshingly easy to book and deal with, having them there added a unique and stress-free dimension to our wonderful day. Solid Steel Band made our special day that much more special, and our straight/gay audience loved them in equal measure. Highly recommended! Thanks! Xxx

Val & Craig Gutteridge, Bucks

From beginning to end dealing with Solid Steel Band was an absolute pleasure. The booking was very straight forward and they made the wedding even more special. Everyone loved them! Can’t wait for another opportunity to book them again!

Rob & Jen Brindley, Kent

Absolutely EXCELLENT! – thank you so much for making our day even better than it already was, you were brilliant and everyone loved the music. Keep up the good work!

Ashley and Terry, London, N11

I wanted to say a belated but sincere thank you for the music at our wedding at the Devonshire Terrace. All the guests and ourselves so enjoyed the atmosphere the steel band created, so chilled and happy. We were delighted and just wanted to say how happy we were with your professionalism and talent. Best wishes.

Holly & Neil of Bristol

Hi Elliot, Paul and team, We just wanted to say a massive thank you for helping to make our wedding day so special. The Caribbean steel band music was such a fantastic addition to the day, it brought so much fun and joy. We had the best day ever! Thank you.

Nigel & Emma Evans, March, Cambridgeshire.

We just wanted to say thank you so much for providing such a great ambiance during our wedding celebrations, the fact that you guys were playing as we all exited the wedding breakfast was great. There was none of the usual lull before the disco started…. All the feedback from our guests about you guys has been amazing, you are fantastic musicians, very friendly & approachable and above all you made our day. Thank you so much!

Fiona Challacombe, Cambridge

The Solid Steel trio played at my wedding in Trinity College, Cambridge. They were absolutely wonderful, consummately professional and managed to bring out the sunshine too! Thank you Solid Steel for making it a really magical day.

Rich & Kate Sutton, Manchester

The three guys looked great and played some fantastic music. Every guest mentioned to myself, and my now wife, how excellent the 3 guys were and how great the music was. We did not get a chance to say thank you to them on the day so could you please pass those thanks on. We will definitely be recommending your company to others. Thanks again.

Natasha Gallop, Kings Oak Hotel, Essex

We cannot thank you enough for the job you did at our wedding. Professionalism was spot on, you were quick to reply to any queries prior to the wedding and on the day you were on time and ready to start the second we walked back down the aisle as man and wife. The band created the perfect atmosphere for our pre ‘wedding breakfast’ drinks; Relaxed but fun. Everyone’s been raving about you since. Brilliant!!!

Jon & Rebecca Cross, Ilfracombe, Devon

Just getting in touch to say a big thank you to your guys for the outstanding contribution they made to our wedding day on 11 June. They were fantastic. Totally prompt, professional, skilled and they created exactly the atmosphere that I had envisaged. Even better in fact. And they let us play too! They were helped along by some spectacular (and lucky) weather, which added to the Caribbean feel. Please pass on my best wishes to the band. Thanks again.

Heather & Damien Clarke, Yateley, Surrey

A massive thanks for keeping the guests entertained at our wedding at Rivervale Barn! Your music really added to the day and gave us a real tropical flavour. All the Somersetians loved the steel band version of Combine Harvester! Many thanks for that. Will surely recommend you again!

Kat & Matt Fortune, Sharston, Manchester

Many thanks for performing at our wedding in Macclesfield, Cheshire. The band were set up ready and playing when we arrived at the venue and the guests loved it! A very reliable company, communication is minimal but effective. Would highly recommend you for that extra special touch to any event. Great! Xx

Phil and Jill Carpenter, St. Ives Cambridgeshire

Solid Steel played at our daughter Michelle’s wedding to James last Saturday. They have such a love for the Caribbean and your music helped to make the day such a very special occasion for them. Your music suited all ages and so many people have commented on what a lovely atmosphere you created. We would have no hesitation in recommending you to anyone. Thank you for playing at their wedding and helping to make it such a happy and special occasion.

Yvonne Webster, Ramsey St Marys, Huntingdon, Cambs

Solid Steel played at the wedding of my son James to Michelle last Saturday. Having a love of all things Caribbean they were very keen to have a steel band. We were not disappointed. They were excellent and everyone of all ages groups were able to enjoy the music and party atmosphere that Solid Steel provided. They really got into the spirit of James and Michelle’s wedding and I would recommend them to anyone.

Ali & Tom Higham, Monkey Island Hotel, Berks

Just wanted to say a huge thank you for playing at our drinks reception on 3rd July. The music was fantastic and really set the relaxed mood for the afternoon. So many people commented on how good you were and we will definitely be recommending you in future. Thanks again.

Sally Holman, Borehamwood, Herts

Just a note to say a MASSIVE thank you for such an excellent addition to our wedding. Thank you so much for a wonderful performance, so many of the attendees commented on how good you were. I wouldn’t hesitate to recommend you and hope that I have the opportunity to book you again. Thanks again.

Karen and Ian

Thanks so much Solid Steel for providing the perfect accompaniment at our wedding. Totally professional and musically fantastic.

Kirsty and Richard Bond

We booked Solid Steel for our wedding and they were brilliant! The whole booking process was really easy, the guys were very friendly and the music was fantastic.. perfect! Thanks so much.

Judith Morley, Berkshire

Wonderful opening at the reception at my daughter’s wedding, which all the guests really enjoyed, and got us in the party mood! Very many thanks.

Sue Human of Cambridgeshire, U

I would like to thank you for the superb steel band which played at my daughters wedding on Saturday-Solid Steel. Everyone commented on how good they were and I have no hesitation in recommending them and your agency for any future events.

See Our Band!

Learn More From Common FAQs

Back in the 50s only the British upper classes would book live steel bands (please let’s not call them ‘steel drum bands’- it’s an unfortunate Americanism!) from London for their weddings and for many years it was seen as being quite a ‘posh’ thing to do. These Trinidadian musicians took their steel drums or ‘pans’ to wedding receptions and played mostly songs that Harry Belafonte was making popular at that time. It may be hard to imagine it, but in this era, due to the novelty of steel band music, the musicians were regarded as minor celebrities! Some of our steel band’s players are the second generation to those steel bands’ musicians and in their youth were playing at weddings even before Solid Steel was founded 35 years ago.

If we are booked as an all-acoustic steel band, because we can be single pan players, we can need as little as 1m x 1m for each musician, so our steel band takes up very little staging space and in this format can set up in no longer than 5 minutes. If vocals are required we would always add on a further 10 minutes of set up time for our battery-powered Bose S1 PA system. In these smaller formats our steel band is mobile so that we can be re-positioned or circulate throughout our engagement if you require that. As a larger band with mains powered amplification we will need more time to set up and will arrive at least an hour before we’re required to start playing to achieve that.

This depends on what role you’d like the steel band at your wedding to play. If, for instance, you’d like us to play lively background music at your outdoor wedding drinks reception, we will always recommend that you book us as an all-acoustic, unplugged 3-piece. You may be on a tighter budget and/or have seen steel band musicians playing as solo players or in duos. Whilst these line-ups don’t constitute a band as such and are more limited musically as live acts, we will be happy to supply you our best players regardless, subject to availability.
Whilst we will always respect your choices, sometimes we will advise you to book a bigger and perhaps amplified band including other instruments.
Sometimes clients have unrealistic expectations when it comes to live wedding music. For example, they may want to have our steel band trio play late on in the wedding reception for dancing. Ideally, they should hire us as a bigger amplified steel band for that- one that would include a drummer and vocals and could play some ‘modern’ popular music and include some Bob Marley and UB40 reggae classics, for instance. We can play this kind of wedding music very authentically, but only with a larger wedding function band- please take a look at We Be Jammin’! who share several band members with Solid Steel and often work together with them on the same bill. We’re fortunate to be successful enough not to accept a ‘fast buck’ from a wedding client who we feel may be disappointed later on.

Our volume in an all-acoustic format is ideal for the ‘background’ during a champagne and drinks reception or a wedding breakfast. Many have found that string quartets can often be too quiet to be heard above the ‘chatter’ of a wedding party and that louder, brassier wedding bands or amplified groups are often too loud and intrusive in a situation when many guests are either just meeting or have a lot of ‘catching up’ to do!

Whilst very capable of playing ‘traditional’ Caribbean and calypso music many wedding clients now also expect contemporary music and, in particular, pop and reggae hits. Solid Steel’s repertoire is the most extensive in the business and can be found here. We actively encourage our clients to browse our playlist, and are happy to take special requests. We’ve got the best sound files online of any professional steel band online. There’s a very simple reason for this. We use the best musicians. Our music is represented by those musicians going into a recording studio and playing the songs ‘live’. So our tracks are honest representations of what we’ll produce in performance.

Yes, here are some traditional and not-at-all traditional tunes our steel band has performed at wedding ceremonies in the past:-

“Bridal Chorus” from the opera Lohengrin, by Richard Wagner

“Pachelbel’s Canon in D Major

“The Arrival of the Queen of Sheba”, by George F. Handel

“You’re So Cool” from the film ‘True Romance’, by Hans Zimmer

“Wedding March from a Midsummer Night’s Dream” — Mendelssohn

“Ode to Joy” – Beethoven

“One Love” – Bob Marley & The Wailers

“Signed, Sealed, Delivered”, by Stevie Wonder

With over 20 years experience using only the best musicians, we will always try and cater to your specific needs. We often get specific wedding song requests, particularly if we’re required to play for the wedding service itself. The steel band you book for your wedding will be properly prepared to play the music agreed upon.

Weddings don’t always run on schedule and we’re always happy to go with the flow during the course of our band’s engagement and be as helpful as possible. It’s not always easy for us to change our scheduled leaving time, however, if we have another performance elsewhere booked in later.

We understand how important it is that we look great for your wedding photos. Our steel band’s ‘look’ is like our sound- authentic, colourful and full of sunshine for your perfect day! We’ll look the part for you and we’ll be costumed accordingly. We favour wearing black or white trousers and a colourful ‘tropical-themed’ shirt or waistcoat. Unlike Hawaii, the Caribbean islands do not have a national costumed identity that involves palm trees and girls in grass skirts. We can accommodate that theme on request, but left to our own devices we are more likely to choose alternative dress themes often borrowed from Africa or India that would make us stand out from the ‘English tourist’ costume ideas of Caribbean themed event guests in the UK.

However, please feel free to identify any specific outfit you might particularly like us to wear for your wedding.

There is an element of our look that we can’t change, of course. We are a small extended family- several of which are Cherries- which spans 3 generations. Unsurprisingly we do look a lot like a cross-section of the very racially-mixed Trinidadian society- some older, some younger, some darker skinned, some lighter skinned. Disproportionately male we would have to admit- but we’re working on that!

Ours does! Solid Steel is very popular and has a broad appeal across the full social diversity evident in modern Britain today. Whilst some community steel bands may only be hired as wedding music bands for wedding receptions within their own Caribbean community, Solid Steel is just as likely to be hired for an Indian wedding, a Jewish wedding or a gay wedding. Another very recent trend also is to choose our steel band as the live wedding band for post-wedding receptions. Many couples now go abroad to marry in romantic Caribbean beach settings and want to give their wedding guests back home in the UK a taste of Caribbean musical sunshine at their receptions. What better way to do this than to hire our timelessly ‘cool’ live steel band?