Monday, 3 June 2013

Davenport House Wedding Open Day -

I'll be singing all day at the Davenport House Wedding Open Day this Sunday 9th June from 11am until 4pm.

All welcome. Free entry, drink on arrival and prize draw entry!

Thursday, 18 April 2013

Birmingham Wedding Singer >

Introducing Birmingham Wedding Singer, James Barlow.

Wedding Singer Birmingham

James is a Staffordshire-based singer and DJ who regularly provides wedding entertainment throughout Birmingham and the West Midlands.

James sings some of the best and most well-known tracks from rat pack and swing to motown and soul, right up to current pop and chart music. James' aim at your evening reception is to entertain guests of all ages and get as many people as possible up on to your dance floor.

Also an experienced DJ, James is able to provide you with a full evening of excellent music. See an evening play list from one of James' recent weddings

In addition to his evening singing and DJing, James is able to provide you with some live singing during your wedding breakfast, singing classic tracks from the likes of: Andy Williams, Frank Sinatra, Dean Martin and Nat King Cole, as you and your guests dine. James can even act as your Master Of Ceremonies during the day to provide a complete solution to your day's entertainment.

James provides wedding entertainment at over 80 receptions each year throughout Birmingham and The Midlands. At the end of 2012, James was Runner Up in the West Midlands 'Best live Enterainment' category of the 2013 Wedding Industry Awards. See here for more information about the awards.

West Midlands Wedding Singer

James has played in some of Birmingham and the West Midlands' top wedding venues including:
  • Brierley Hill Civic Centre
  • Clarendon Suites, Birmingham
  • Copthorne Hotel, Dudley
  • Forest Of Arden Hotel & Country Club, Meriden
  • Gables Hotel, Solihull
  • Goldthorn Hotel, Wolerhampton
  • Hogarth's Hotel, Solihull
  • Kings Norton Golf Club, Alvechurch
  • Moxhull Hall Hotel, Sutton Coldfield
  • Marston Farm Hotel, Sutton Coldfield
  • Mill Hotel, Alverley
  • Paragon Hotel, Birmingham
  • New Hall Hotel, Sutton Coldfield
  • Plough & Harrow Hotel, Birmingham
  • Ramada Hotel, Oldbury
  • Ramada Hotel, Solihull
  • Ramada Hotel, Sutton Coldfield
  • Village Hotel, Dudley
  • Windmill Village Hotel, Coventry 

Wedding Singer Birmingham
Set up at Moxhull Hall Hotel, Sutton Coldfield. 2012

James, Andy and I are just back from our honeymoon so wanted to take this opportunity to send you an email and say a massive thank you for singing at our wedding.

We, along with all of our guests, were amazed at how brilliant you were; your voice is simply brilliant. I think it says it all when people kept on saying that they couldn't tell when you were singing or if you were playing records. What a compliment hey?

You were fantastic. You kept the dance floor full all night and that's just what we both wanted.

We are so grateful to you for being such a fabulous part of our wedding day. Thank you really doesn't seem enough, all of our friends and family could not stop singing your praises.

Thank you once again
Helen and Andy Lyons
Married at Moxhull Hall, Sutton Coldfield. West Midlands on 2nd November 2012 
The Wedding Singer The Wedding Singer The Wedding Singer

Feel free to use the links above to see and hear what James Barlow could do for you for your Birmingham wedding.

Monday, 8 April 2013

Song Recording >

Your song - recorded!

I am now able to offer a personalised song recording service. I will professionally record the song of your choice and send it to you on a signed CD, personalised with bride and groom names and your wedding date.

This is perfect for hearing me sing your first dance before the day, particuarly if you are learning a choreographed routine. It's also perfect as a surprise wedding day gift for your new husband or wife, or just as a momento of your day for both of you. Your track will be sent electronically as well as on disc so you could even frame your CD to show off at home!

It's not resctricted to first dance tracks either, it can be any special song.

The current cost of this is just £50, including all recording time, your track sent as an MP3 and on personlaised disc.

Contact me for more details.

Subject to song availability and suitability.

Tips for choosing your perfect limo to hire

Before you choose a limo hire company, it’s important to take the time to consider the type of limo you want. Limos come in all shapes and sizes – and different companies will offer different limos that appeal to different people.

That’s why Limo-Scene’s Manchester limo hire experts have compiled this easy to follow list to help you choose the perfect limo.

Ask yourself the following questions and you should easily be able to narrow down your list of potentials and figure out the limo that’s right for you.

What occasion do you need to hire your limo for?
Why is this so important? It will determine how much space you need and the vehicle and services you get.
That’s why you need to ensure the limo is not only everything you want, but is the style you prefer as well.
Make a list of everything you want the limo for the occasion. How long will the trip be? How much do you want to pay? Consider these and you will be able to narrow down your search much more easily.

How many people are you transporting?
This factor is pivotal when you choosing the limo you want to hire. If you have 18 people, for example, you will need a particularly big limo.
And, if your party is small, you’ll want to get a limo that accommodates a much smaller number – because, otherwise, it’s a waste of good limo space.

What kind of limo atmosphere are you looking for?
What vibe are you looking for inside the limo you wish to hire? Do you want to party it up or opt for a sophisticated ride. What am I getting at? Simply that some limos will create a different type of journey.
The H2 Hummer Stretch Limousine, for example, it has a party lounge with lighting to suit, while like Chrysler Stretch Limo, are much more elegant and professional.

What is your budget?
While many people don’t confine themselves to a particular budget, for some, this will determine which limo you can actually afford. Keep in mind your spending limit before leaping into a choice.
What do prices depend on? Well, most companies charge based on miles travelled, meaning the more fuel the limo’s engine uses, the more it will cost.

A final word of caution
Before you pick a specific limo hire company, make sure the cars they operate are safe and legal. Many companies neglect to get the proper paperwork for their vehicles and could be spot checked by the Vehicle and Operator Services Agency (VOSA) at any time.
Large vehicles, seating more than eight passengers, require a certificate of Initial Fitness (COIF) to register it. There are more companies operating illegally than you think. It’s therefore well worth your while to check.

Be safe, be legal and have a great time in the luxury limo you hire.

Wednesday, 20 March 2013

Stone House Wedding Fayre - this Sunday!

I will be exibiting and performing at the Stone House Hotel Wedding Fayre this coming Sunday.

The fayre is on 11am to 3pm and I will be singing all day.

All welcome!!

Venue details:

Stone House Hotel
Stafford Road
ST15 0BQ

Tuesday, 5 March 2013


Have a look at these alternative wedding entertainment ideas. If you're wanting something different and unusual for your guests, maybe you're planning a very small wedding reception and want to avoid the usual band, singer or DJ. Or you might just want something to fill any gaps you have during your day to keep everyone entertained.

1. Magician


Perfect for the 'lulls' in your day - typically during reception drinks, after your ceremony and between your wedding breakfast and evening reception. 'Close up' magic works best, your magician will move around tables and mingle amongst your guests performing everything from interactive card magic to mind reading tricks.

Expect to pay: £300 - £500 for 2 hours of close up magic

Useful Contact: Anthony Chan Magician

2. Casino  


Why not hire one or several full-sized casino tables. Again perfect for the gap between your wedding breakfast and evening reception, or actually during the early part of your evening reception. Professional croupiers are also normally included with table hire and many different games are available: American Roulette, Casino Stud Poker, Blackjack (21),  Wheel of Fortune Texas Holdem and Craps (Dice).

Expect to pay from £200 - £600+ depending on the number of tables you require

Useful Contact: Royale Casino

3. Photo Booth


A photo booth on the day has a number of uses. Firstly, instant photos for your guests to take home as a memento. Most booths will also have the option of printing a duplicate copy for the bride and groom to collect and make an entire album. Photo booths can also be used to record a video best wishes message for the bride and groom.

Expect to pay from £300 - £700 depending on your requirements

Useful Contact: Picture Blast

4. Bouncy Castle

Picture - Emma Case Photography

Perfect for children and grown up kids! Preferably for summer weddings outside but a more accommodating large venue might also be able to squeeze this in! Perfect for keeping kids occupied during your reception drinks and between your wedding breakfast and evening reception.

Expect to pay from £100 - £250

Useful Contact: Mr Bouncy Castle

5. Ice Sculpture

Not strictly entertainment but your guests will be wowed by your table plan suspended in a solid block of ice or  minutely detailed table centres. Your blocks of ice can be sculpted into a virtually limitless number of different shapes - from large love hearts, swans, flowers or even a champagne bottle.

Expect to pay - table centres from £30 + each, seating plan from £300 + 

Useful Contact: Glacial Art

Wednesday, 27 February 2013

Wedding DJ Playlist >

My name is James Barlow am I a Midlands-based wedding singer and DJ entertaining at 80+ wedding receptions each year throughout the UK.

The below is the entire evening play list from a recent wedding where I was both singer and DJ. To give you an idea of how a typical evening might be structured the list includes the tracks featured in both my singing and DJ sets on this particular evening.

The happy couple and friends were young and lively and requested current chart and 90s music. Parents and grandparents loved 60s and 70s and there was a large Irish contingent, so some traditional Irish songs were thrown in for good measure.

It's really important to note that EVERY WEDDING RECEPTION IS DIFFERENT. I do not play a pre-selected list of tracks and always seamlessly mix music live on the day - no iPods or pre-arranged play lists! This DJ set, as with every set that I do, was completely tailored to take into account several factors:

1. Requests from the bride and groom before the day
2. Requests from the guests on the day
3. My judgement and expertise on the night - 'reading the crowd' based on age, sex and their reaction to different kinds of tracks on the dance floor. The key is playing a wide range of tracks to suit everyone in attendance.

THIS WORKS! The dance floor was full for the entire evening.

You will see from the list a really good mixture of bride and groom requests, guests' requests and my own input.

Click here for more information about my singing and DJ services


The list is comprised of:

You Send Me (First Dance)
Aretha Franklin
Crazy Little Thing Called Love
Michael Buble
You To Me Are Everything
The Real Thing
Dance The Night Away
The Mavericks
Brown Eyed Girl
Van Morrison
Sweet Home Alabama
Lynard Skynard
Stuck In The Middle With You
Steelers Wheel
All Night Long
Lionel Richie
You're The First, The Last, My Everything
Barry White
Walking On Sunshine
Katrina And The Waves
You Can't Hurry Love
Phil Collins
I'm In The Mood For Dancing
YMCA Village People
Disco Inferno
The Trampps
I Gotta Feeling
Black Eyed Peas
Gangnam Style (강남스타일)
Scream & Shout (Feat. Britney Spears) [Radio Edit]
Candy (Radio Edit)
Robbie Williams
Troublemaker (Feat. Flo Rida)
Olly Murs
9 To 5
Dolly Parton
Young Hearts Run Free
Candi Staton
Blame On The Boogie
The Jacksons
Take A Chance On Me
We Are Family
Sister Sledge
Lulu & The Luvvers
La Bamba
Los Lobos
Great Balls Of Fire
Jerry Lee Lewis
Jailhouse Rock
Elvis Presley
Rock Around The Clock
Bill Haley & The Comets
Tutti Frutti
Little Richard
Love Reallly Hurts Without You
Billy Ocean
Amy Winehouse
Relight My Fire
Take That
Billie Jean
Michael Jackson
Build Me Up Buttercup
I’m A Believer
The Foundations
The Monkees
I Want You Back
Jackson 5
Kool & The Gang
Mr Brightside
The Killers
Jump Around
House Of Pain
Walk This Way
Run Dmc Feat. Aerosmith
Ice Ice Baby
Vanilla Ice
Can't Touch This
Mc Hammer
Fresh Prince Of Bel Air (Tv-Edit)
Jazzy Jeff & The Fresh Prince
Boom! Shake The Room
DJ Jazzy Jeff & The Fresh Prince
Everybody Get Up (Radio Edit)
The Galway Girl
Steve Earle
Wild Rover
The Dubliners
Tell Me Ma
Sham Rock
Uptown Girl
Billy Joel
Don't Stop Me Now
Livin' On A Prayer
Bon Jovi
Don't Stop Believin'
What Makes You Beautiful
One Direction
Groove Is In The Heart
Show Me Love
Robin S
Livin Joy
Single Ladies
Livin Joy
Turn Around
Phats And Small
Set U Free
N Trance
Let Me Be Your Fantasy
Baby D
Feel The Love
Dancing Queen
Love Is In The Air
Can't Take My Eyes Off You
My Girl
How Deep Is Your Love
Wonderful Tonight
John Paul Young
Andy Williams
The Temptations
Take That
Eric Clapton
The Galway Girl
Steve Earle

Monday, 18 February 2013

Top Ten First Dance Tracks 2012 >

Here is my updated list of the top ten first dance tracks of 2012, based on all my weddings last year.

I definitely saw more variation in choices in 2012 with some really excellent and original choices. The really good news about this year's list is that all of the songs are available for me to sing live!

For a more complete list of the songs in my live repertoire see my song list page.

1. Adele - Make You Feel My Love
2. Lonestar - Amazed
3. Jason Mraz - I Won't Give Up
4. Michael Buble - Crazy Love
5. Bruno Mars / Boyce Avenue - Just The Way You Are
6. Nat King Cole - L.O.V.E
7. Joe Cocker - You Are So Beautiful
8. Take That  - Rule The World
9. Lionel Richie / Diana Ross - Endless Love
10. Tom Baxter - Better

Perfect Wedding Magazine Article

Last summer I was asked to contribute to an article about wedding themes to the UK's most popular wedding magazine - Perfect Wedding Magazine.

My topic was my main areas of expertise, how to add a theme to your evening and particularly - dance floor filling!

Step-by-step - Disco Fever.

James Barlow shares three steps to the perfect dancefloor!

1. Ask your band or DJ to play a few themed songs at the beginning of your night to set the atmostphere. Have a musical-themed hour and pick a genre like swing or you could even have a retro Eighties half-hour.

2. Tie your first dance in with your theme - or see if your DJ can prepare a special mix or 'mash up' pf special themed songs.

3. Jazz up your evening reception by hriing a LED dance floor. have one with flashing multi-coloured panels for a Seventies theme

I'm hoping to contribute to more publications in 2013 - watch this space!

Friday, 15 February 2013

New Web Site Launch!

I've been busy giving the web site a complete design overhaul. I've improved the interface, it should be a much better vistor experience with a bigger resolution with lots more images. The blog has also been integrated more effectively with the rest of site and shall be contributed to much more often - I promise!

I hope you like it, feel free to get in touch with any feedback.


Wednesday, 13 February 2013

Priest House Wedding Fayre

I'll be at the Priest House Wedding Fayre, Castle Donington, Derbyshire this Sunday. I'll be singing background rat pack, swing, love songs all day 12 - 4pm - just stop me if you want a chat. Free entry, glass of bucks fizz and goody bag. No registration / pre-booking required.

THE PRIEST HOUSE HOTEL, Kings Mills, Castle Donington, Derbyshire, DE74 2RR.

Everyone is welcome!

Tuesday, 12 February 2013

The Deluxe Package set up - leaner, meaner and now available in multiple rooms!

Due to some recent equipment changes and upgrades I can now offer the Deluxe Package  - live singing during your wedding breakfast and singer / DJ in the evening - where your wedding breakfast and evening reception are in different rooms.

Having always been a popular request, logistically moving equipment from one room to another quickly enough for the commencement of your evening party was tricky. However, with some recent equipment upgrades, a second evening set up can be installed elsewhere in your venue during your wedding breakfast ready for your evening reception to begin almost instantaneously!

The new wedding breakfast set up also has a much smaller footprint - just 0.5m x 0.5m for mixing desk and processors and two speakers, just 0.45m x 0.35m each. You can enjoy some excellent live music whilst you eat in the smallest of rooms.

I can also now offer, depending on your location, live singing during your reception drinks as an option in the Deluxe Package.

If you are currently booked in for the Standard Package you can add either of these options (live singing during your wedding breakfast OR reception drinks) for just an extra £200.

Contact me for more details.


Tuesday, 1 January 2013

January £50 Offer!

Happy New Year!!

Particularly season's greetings to those of you who got engaged during the festive period. Congratulations!!

With the celebrations over, it's time for many to tighten their belts and keep a watchful eye on finances.

With this in mind, for any bookings placed in January, you can secure your date with just a £50 deposit. You can book your wedding entertainment package any time this month for just £50!

Also, for all bookings placed in January, I am including the Uplighters package add-on, normally £50, COMPLETELY FREE OF CHARGE!

This offer only applies to bookings placed in January 2013 and is available on both new and exisiting enquiries.

James Barlow