We really wanted students from either NOCCA (New Orleans Center for Creative Arts) or Loyola’s Music Department to play for our ceremony, for two reasons. First we wanted to support student musicians, and second, we needed to save money to be able to afford Bucktown All-Stars. I emailed some teachers at NOCCA and professors at Loyola for recommendations. A NOCCA teacher called me and said she wouldn’t recommend high school students doing a wedding ceremony, even though they could certainly play the music very well, because of all the timing issues and last minute adjustments that could come up. She did offer to put together an ensemble of NOCCA teachers, but we were determined to have students. A professor from Loyola emailed me and recommended his graduate teaching assistant, Riccardo Emilien, as great trumpeter, and suggested Riccardo could recruit some other students for the ensemble. At the same time I had contacted Harry Hardin of New Orleans Finest Musicians for some advice. He also warned against having a group of students who weren’t experienced at the timing demands of a wedding ceremony. We decided to compromise and have Harry put together 3 musicians from New Orleans Finest Musicians and also have Riccardo from Loyola as the trumpeter. Harry was super flexible and appreciated our effort to include student musicians. We met with Harry to pick out our ceremony music which was really fun, and he did all the rest of the coordinating, including with Riccardo so everyone was on the same page. Harry and his wife and another great musician performed beautifully, and Riccardo did an amazing job on Trumpet Voluntary. We did have a last minute change in number of people walking down the aisle, which affected the timing of the music, so I was glad we had a professional in charge. I wouldn’t hesitate to hire students if you can find a group that plays weddings all the time, but I was unable to, and I’m glad it worked out the way it did. Also, Harry gave us the confidence we needed to go ahead with having the brass band walk us up the aisle playing the recessional, which was definitely one of the highlights of our wedding day. You can contact Riccardo Emilien, trumpeter extraordinaire, at rfemilien at gmail.com and Harry Hardin at http://www.neworleansfinestmusicians.com/contact-us
New Orleans Finest Musicians is the perfect name!! They played at my wedding last weekend and were phenomenal! Very professional to work with all the way through the playing process and I can say without hesitation that the ceremony music was the only aspect of the day that I had no worries about! Harry Hardin was excellent to work with. He was the first vendor that we booked and definitely the easiest part of my wedding planning. We had to change our ceremony location several times and Harry always was so accomodating; he always responded immediately and said "no problem". The music was fantastic in our church ceremony!!!! Harry sent me a CD of their music in advance to choose my songs - the CD is actually them playing, not some recording of other musicians. Unfortunately, being the bride, I was only able to hear the songs played live for the bridesmaid and bridal processional as well as our recessional, but everything was flawless! I heard so many rave reviews from our guests about how elegant the music made the ceremony. I would highly, highly recommend New Orleans Finest Musicians!! Thank you for everything!!!
During a recent trip, we heard the "perfect" music for our son's upcoming wedding. However, it became obvious it was not as easy to find as we thought it would be. After stumbling across New Orleans' Finest Musicians link on a wedding site, our prayers were answered in the form of Harry Hardin. He actually listened to a clip of the musicians we had heard and quickly began to give his recommendations he thought would meet our wishes. A trio including Harry played at the rehearsal supper and Harry accompanied the organist at the actual wedding. From the initial contact, through the planning and all the way through the performances, Harry and his team were helpful, organized, professional and accommodating. During the rehearsal dinner, Harry and his team created just the atmosphere we wanted, one of elegance and class. Our guests were extremely complimentary of the musical performances at both venues. Should we have any future requirements for musical entertainment, Harry will be at the top of our list to help plan our event.
Since I live in Washington, D.C., I was very worried about planning a wedding in New Orleans. Not only was the distance an issue, but I am also an event planner by profession. So, you can imagine how meticulous and particular I am. I did the majority of selecting vendors through the internet. When I came across New Orleans Finest Musicians, it seemed like a perfect fit for what I needed. When I contacted the group, I immediately felt I could trust Harry Hardin to do a great job organizing my quartet. Of ALL my vendors, Harry was the most responsive when I had questions. As both a bride and an event planner, I greatly appreciated this. On our wedding day, we didn’t have any issues with the quartet. They all arrived early and were great musicians. We also coordinated to have two of my friends sing with the quartet, which went very smoothly. Harry and New Orleans Musicians are professional, great musicians, and fun! Without pause, I recommend this group to anyone who is considering them.
Harry was a pleasure to work with in the months leading up to my wedding - the utmost professional, Harry helped guide me through music and instrument selection, was always prompt to return emails and phone calls, and patiently answered all of my uber-detail-oriented-bride questions! The day of my wedding, Harry and his quartet were on-time, looked great, and sounded unbelievable. I was soooooo overjoyed and happy with the results of their playing. At my request, Harry orchestrated a jazzy version of "A Whole New World" from Aladdin, and it turned out even better than I ever could have expected! Harry and the jazz quartet were the perfect compliment to my ceremony!!! I absolutely recommend New Orleans Finest Musicians without reservation!
Harry was so easy to work with, and so flexible in terms of song choices! I did not want typical songs for my ceremony processional and recessional, and he was willing to learn anything that he didn't know. We had Harry and a guitarist, and the music for the ceremony was absolutely beautiful. They knew exactly how to pace the music. They were professional, on time, easy to work with and get in touch with and just so nice! I would recommend them to any bride out there who wants to add a beautiful, special touch to their wedding day! Thank you to Harry and the rest of New Orleans Finest Musicians, you really helped make my special day wonderful!
Harry helped us arrange music for both our wedding ceremony (a string quartet) and the reception afterwards (a vocalist and band). Not only was Harry extremely easy to work with, he was able to find just the "sound" we were looking for, and even helped with the music selection for the wedding ceremony. The vocalist and band he secured for us was Kristina Morales and the Bayou Shufflers. They were fantastic! Everyone loved their music and had a great time dancing throughout the evening. I give my highest recommendation to Harry, New Orleans Finest Musicians, and Kristina Morales and the Bayou Shufflers.
We cannot praise Harry and his musicians highly enough. Not only did Harry leap with enthusiasm at our wishes for less-than-common ceremony music, he sat with us for over an hour in his living room, helping us pick out orchestrations and giving suggestions. His responses to emails were prompt, his humor endless, and, most importantly, he is one of the most talented musicians with whom I've ever had the pleasure of working. As I watched my wife come down the aisle to Handel's Overture to the Royal Fireworks, tears came to my eyes. We received endless compliments from our guests about the ceremony music. Book him now.
Harry Hardin's music and professionalism cannot be Matched! Harry Hardin was a true pleasure to work with and we loved the wedding music which he tailored to our desires. I cannot express my appreciation enough regarding his professionalism and outstanding follow up; that is truly a rare gift and we loved working wih him. He was one of the best vendors we've ever worked with from start to finish. His follow through was so prompt and kind and accurate to a tea! We cannot say enough superlatives about the professional quality of his music and working relationship with us! Ellen Martin
i would like to say that harry was amazing at our wedding. he was there to help us with music, and even went out of his way to make sure that we got the music that we were looking for, and the way he played journey's dont stop beleiving for our exit music was awesome, a true uniqe touch to our unique wedding. Harry was very easy to get a hold of at all times, and even email us sound clips of him playing the songs that we had wanted. very thoughtful and pays very close to details. jamie and i can not thank harry enough for being a part of our special night.