The music you choose makes a huge impact on how much dancing there will be. A wedding band ensures your guest will have a blast, especially when you choose a talented Portland wedding band like Pressure Point. We recently chatted with local musician and band leader Michael Winkle about his Portland based wedding band, Pressure Point. Take a look!
All photos courtesy of Pressure Point Band
AOW: Where are you originally from? And how long have you been in Portland?
Originally from the Bay Area. Alameda. Moved here in 1970.
AOW: What is your favorite thing about Portland?
Spring and Fall
AOW: What is your favorite spot or thing to do in Portland?
There is a coffee house that we love in Sellwood. The Blue Kangaroo! Many great restaurant options, the diversity of the music scene and the jam at Clyde’s on Sunday nights!
AOW: How long have you been working as a professional wedding musician?
I have been a musician who performs at weddings and other events since 1976. Probably in excess of 2,000 weddings.
AOW: What people/training/experiences/op
My wife encouraged me along with a guitar player who answered an ad in the Oregonian. I was young and inexperienced, he taught me the fundamentals of being a band leader and what it meant to be a professional musician, instilled confidence, then patted me on the backside and sent me on my way. I will forever be in their debt.
AOW: How would you describe the importance of your role & why do you feel a couple should hire a Portland Wedding band for their wedding day?
I tell clients all the time that they really need to be careful when hiring a band … as the band can be one of the most important elements of the entire wedding. In many cases, the memory of the band might be one of the only things that guests take home with them. It was fun, or it wasn’t. Many bands sound fine but don’t have the experience to execute a sometimes complicated and evolving time line. As experienced professionals, we understand that “game plans” are subject to change on a moment’s notice. There is protocol for weddings in particular that is unique to that event. Inexperienced band leaders may not be prepared to follow through with the finer details that are expected from professionals. You get one shot at this, hire pros!
AOW: What is the best part of your job?
The satisfaction comes usually post event when the couple and or family make a point of thanking us, hugs, smiles, tears and just a sense of a job well done. The joy comes from performing with people whom I have grown to love over time and are in a sense, family. I never get tired of that!
AOW: What do you find most challenging about your specific line of work or weddings in general?
The actual selling process of the band gives me no joy. I love booking the band, but trying to sell the band to folks with a DJ budget can become tiresome. It is rare when a client’s first priority is music. I love those folks as I know that they will not be disappointed if they hire our band. The performance part is not the work. Depending on the venue, set ups can be challenging. So, trying to sell the band to folks who have an unrealistic budget and set up are the most challenging and demanding aspects of my job.
AOW: Do you work solo or do you have a studio and/or team?
I have a team. A great team!
AOW: What do you attribute to your success as a wedding (fill in blank)? What do you think makes you stand apart from other Portland Wedding Band?
We have a great product. We have stability and continuity as the band’s nucleus has been together going on 16 years now. That is unique in this business and a source of pride.
AOW: At what point in the wedding planning process should clients hire a Portland Wedding Band?
Clients who put an emphasis on music should lock us in right after they book their venue. Many of our weddings book a year out or more.
AOW: Where do you draw inspiration? Are there any current trends you are excited about?
I know who my competition is and if I see that they are doing something great that I am not, my competitive juices go to work and I will try to surpass what they are doing or at least emulate the successful aspects of their approach and incorporate them into my own. I guess that could be called inspiration. When you are successful as we have been, it is easy to become complacent and I never take any of this for granted.
AOW: What is the most important thing that couples should ask a Portland Wedding Band before hiring them?
What actual wedding experience do you have? How do I know that the band I hire today will be the band that plays at my wedding?
AOW: What is your best advice for wedding clients?
Relax and enjoy the event. Don’t micro manage and allow the professionals that you have hired to do the job for which they were hired.
AOW: Anything else you’d like couples to know about you?
Music is something that I am really good at and has always been an important part of my life and defining to a degree. I love the band, my band mates, making clients happy and to be honest, the wedding band business has been very good to me. I am a team player and will work together and support other vendors when needed to help achieve our mutual goal of “the best wedding ever!”
Best ways to contact Michael are: