How many musicians are in The Usual Suspects?
In our complete line-up, TUS contains nine musicians. However our available band sizes start from a 4-piece, with configurations as follows:
4-piece: female vocals, guitar, bass and drums.
6-piece: female vocals, male vocals, keyboard, guitar, bass and drums.
9-piece: female vocals, male vocals, saxophone, trumpet, trombone, keyboard, guitar, bass and drums.
What style of music do you perform?
We specialise in performing funk-infused bangers from the 80's, 90's, 00's and current hits. Yep, it's a prettty large repertoire - we've built it over the last decade of entertaining crowds of all different ages and sizes, so there's definitely something in there for everyone! In the music industry however, words are cheap - to have a listen to some examples of what we sound like, check out the audio page.
In regards to set lists, we tailor the music for your gig according to your individual specifications. It's a collaborative process, and you can have as much (or as little) input as you wish. We highly recommend having some input though, because Alley generally buys the drinks at meetings (insider tip).
Do you provide PA and lighting?
Every booking is completely inclusive of our state-of-the-art QSC PA, run by our resident sound engineer Dom, as well as a complete Martin lighting rig. The size of the PA and lighting component is tailored according to the band size, number of guests, and the size of the venue to ensure we're only billing you for things that you need. Our equipment can cater for up to 1000 guests, and for larger events than this we utilise a series of touring AV companies. This ensures that we can perform at a wide spectrum of events, ranging from intimate gatherings, to parties and festivals with thousands of guests.
How many sets will you play?
This depends on the timings of the event. Generally, for a standard 5-6 hour party or reception, we will perform 4 x 45-minute sets, which will be structured according to your specifications and the event run sheet. Most other bands offer 3 x 45-minute sets, but we prefer to give you the most bang for your buck possible!
What happens during set breaks?
Seb does stand-up. Just a short, sharp 15-minute routine, it's pretty.....just kidding. We provide a semi-DJ service for all band breaks on every gig that we do, so that there is continuous music throughout the event. This music will be chosen and arranged prior to the event, as suited to your requests and the style of music we performed in the previous set - if you'd like to provide your own background music, we will happily facilitate this however will also talk you through what we'll be playing on the night to ensure there's no double-ups, genre-hops or other weird industry slang happening.
Can I use the band's microphone for speeches?
Definitely - that's what it's there for! We provide you with a wireless mic for speeches upon request, for no extra charge. Probably a second one for free as well if you ask super nicely.
Can I make song requests?
Sure can. In fact, it's encouraged! That way, songs that are special to you, or chosen to suit the tastes of your guests can be performed. We just require that you make your requests at least 30 days prior to the event, and that they are physically capable of being played by a 4-9-piece live band. E.g. Despacito. Ripper song. Also extremely difficult to replicate as neither Seb or Jess can speak Spanish, and learning the song phonetically would be like Eurovision in reverse. Hilarious, but ultimately a flawed musical outcome.
When will you arrive and set-up?
We will arrive to set-up and sound-check 2-3 hours before the event begins. That way, when your guests arrive, we are set-up and ready to go! This may seem like a long time before guests arrive, but it was a unanimous decision when we formed the band. Every member of the band has played in events with other bands that involve somebody running around gaffing cables while guests are mingling, or the PA feeding back because the bass player has arrived 3 mins before guests enter the room and plugged straight into the PA. Great events are made up of little moments that people remember - we want to confine those to only good memories of a great night, not the ringing sensation of imminent tinnitus.
How far will you travel?
We are based in Sydney, however we perform regularly all over NSW, at locations including the Hunter Valley, Dubbo, Berry, and the Blue Mountains, as well as interstate. Bear in mind however, locations that are over an hour's travel time from the Sydney CBD will incur costs for travel, and possibly accommodation.
Do I need to provide food/drinks for the band?
As per union rules, bookings over three hours require a meal and beverages to be provided for each musician/sound engineer booked. Most venues offer crew meals for a nominal fee, which is usually the easiest option.
Is the band covered by insurance?
At events, anything can happen. However, you can rest assured knowing that we are covered by public liability insurance that covers damages up to $20,000,000.