The Houlies

From: £540
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Reviews: 7
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Price from: £540
Our price for every event is different, as we take factors such as how long we are playing for, how far we are travelling, and when we can set up into account. Simply browse our packages; or get in touch, and we can discuss your requirements and provide you with a bespoke quotation for your event.

Houlies (noun) - wild, drunken brawls, especially at Penny Weddings.

The Houlies formed in 2017, when like-minded musicians with a love of traditional music came together from across the North-East of Scotland. A four-piece ceilidh band, The Houlies deliver a modern, funky, and energetic sound more in keeping with that of a contemporary trad group than a Scottish Country Dance band. All of the band members come from a background of classical training and have extensive and varied experience of playing at both concerts and functions, so you can be confident that your event is in safe hands.

Over the last few years we have built a reputation for being one of the most energetic and modern sounding ceilidh bands Scotland has to offer - with a combination of fun dances, expert calling and modern traditional music ensuring that even the most reluctant dancer finds themselves drawn to the dance floor. A ceilidh with The Houlies consists of all of the classic dances, such as the Gay Gord...

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7 Reviews

Chris Pearson

7 Oct 2017

I engaged The Houlies as the Ceilidh Band for our school fundraiser in October, and have confidence in recommending them to anyone. The band were a pleasure to work with, and music was to a very high standard throughout. They also encouraged the crowd to get up to dance, explaining clearly how each dance worked.


Genevieve Marsh-Feiley

16 Jun 2019

The Houlies played at my wedding in June and were absolutely fantastic. They were thoughtful and helpful from the outset when I first contacted them, they were willing to change schedule around due to my indecision! When they played they were amazing, Sam's calling through the Ceilidh was so clear, even though we were very terrible dancers we all had a whale of a time, meanwhile the standard of the music was so high! So many people came and complemented them during and long after the wedding the...

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Frances Parrish

1 Jun 2018

Houlies, you were fantastic, the perfect mix of fun, skill and professionalism, thanks for making our party!

The Houlies were absolutely wonderful as a band at the wedding. It was such a key thing to have a ceilidh band, and to find you could also do the afternoon music, followed by great management of the play list- could not have been better. The Greek dancing was one of the best moments of the whole day, thank you very much for the research you put into that.


Donna Taylor

1 Apr 2019

I worked with The Houlies on a wedding in 2018. In the run up to the big day, I found them to be timely and professional with correspondence. On the day, they were fantastic! They had everyone on the floor all night, they were great at calling the dances, they were fun and very lovely people to boot. Would highly recommend!


Cathleen Tait

1 Jul 2019

Excellent band and would thoroughly recommend. Booked for my daughter’s 21st birthday. Great!!

  • Please, describe your act or business in on sentence:
    The Houlies are a young, energetic, and professional ceilidh band.
  • What are the highlights of your career?
    We've had the pleasure of celebrating many special weddings, birthdays, graduations and other milestones with some amazing people. We love our job!
  • What kind of events do you usually serve?
    Weddings, University Balls, Private Functions, Corporate Events.
  • Who are your previous clients?
    Couples, families, universities and university societies, businesses, community groups.
  • How can event planners pay for your services?
    Usually bank transfer and credit/debit card. In some circumstances we accept PayPal (usually when our client is based overseas).
  • How long do you play for?
    We usually play for up to 3 hours of ceilidh, and can follow or intersperse this with a DJ set for as long as you would like. We can also provide background music for events, for as long as required.
  • Do you have your own PA and lighting?
    We have a high-end sound system, which ensures that we sound great for every event - and can cater comfortably to events of up to 300 guests. For very large events with over 300 guests, we may need to hire additional equipment - but events of this size tend to have a sound team anyway, and we are more than happy to liaise with them!
  • Do you have Public Liability Insurance and PAT tested equipment?
    Yes! All of our equipment is PAT tested annually, and we are fully insured through the Musicians Union.
  • How much space do you require?
    Ideally 3m x 6m, but we can adapt to suit!
  • My favourite tune is not on your list. Will you be able to play it?
    If there is a particular song you would like played, perhaps for a first dance at your wedding, please let us know! If it works with our line up of instruments, we will learn it. If it doesn't work when arranged for our instruments, we can play the recorded song through our PA system
  • How many breaks do you take? How long are they?
    We usually take a 30 minute break halfway through the ceilidh, but leave a playlist playing through our PA system.
  • My guests have never been to a ceilidh before, is that ok?
    Absolutely! We love teaching and playing for first time ceilidh dancers! We will call all of the dances at a pace suitable for your guests, and are always on hand to keep people right should they get confused. At the end of the day, the most important thing is that everyone enjoys themselves, and we do not enforce strict dancing rules! Furthermore, nationality and language is no barrier as we frequently play for guests travelling from all over the world - with past guests coming from as far as America, Australia, Russia and Greece.
  • How long do you need to set up?
    We usually require an hour and a half to set up our equipment and soundcheck, but this can be done in an hour if necessary. We always prefer to set up before your guests arrive.

Set List/Services

Typical dances:

Gay Gordons

Dashing white sergeant

Strip the willow

Flying Scotsman

Military Two Step

Virginia reel

Cumberland square eight

Canadian barn dance

Hoolichan's Jig

Riverside Jig ...

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