It’s probably true in all professions that the further you go into it, the more you gain a deeper, 360 degree understanding of your field or your craft.

Early in our career as a wedding band and cover band, we figured it was just about the music. We thought all we needed to do was practice our instruments and voices, and we could be a great band. Wrong! It turns out there’s a whole lot more to a being top-level entertainers that just playing the music well.

Don’t misunderstand us, we still practice like crazy – for hours and hours, until our fingertips are numb and our voices are tired. All musicians with high aspirations have to do this.

But when customers spend significant amounts of money on a really professional caliber band, they really want to be entertained! So… superbly entertaining cover bands need to incorporate flawless music performances, AND amazing stage shows as well!

So what are the elements of really entertaining shows?

Well, for one, hopefully the musicians don’t just stand there and play, looking at their feet. Many bands do. We did, too, for several years. But if you think about great national headline performers – Michael Jackson, Madonna, Bruno Mars, Justin Timberlake, Beyonce, Mick Jagger – they do a whole lot more than play and sing. They dance! They move! They groove!

There’s nothing better than seeing a really tight band that plays great, and also busts out great-looking moves and grooves.

What about visual effects? Does the band have an impressive light show, with different colored lighting schemes, and lights that can pulse with the music? Do they use fog (artificial smoke) for visual effect? What about laser lights on the dance floor?

And finally, does the band seem confident from the moment they take the stage? Do they “reach out and grab” the audience, by engaging with them from the very first song?

These are things worth looking for in a band. If you’re shopping for a cover band, check out their live video demo. If you don’t see the value-added elements discussed in this blog, keep looking. You deserve to have great entertainment! And there some cover bands that bring it all.

Again, don’t get us wrong. At Raising Cain, music is Job One! We’re absolute perfectionists when it comes to musical execution. We relentlessly work music parts, harmonies, and rhythms. The quality of the music always has been, and always will be, the most important thing for us. Our music demos show the priority we place on this. But as we’ve evolved in our craft, we’ve come to understand: In addition to excellent musicianship, great cover bands should incorporate tight choreography, lighting, audience rapport, and outstanding overall delivery! These value-added items can make a good band great. Keep an eye out for these elements, too, when looking for a great band!