FAQs

/FAQs
FAQs 2017-07-30T04:47:32+00:00

Music can make or break an event.

Kevin will work right with you and will do all he can to help make your event a success!

He has made it his career providing professional live music and entertainment for events with a fun, unique, professional approach to live music!

Kevin is an award-winning, full-time, professional sing, guitar player, and entertainer from Western New York. This has been his career for almost 20 years. He has over 33 years experience performing all types of events! Kevin is fully insured and has been a member of the National Association of Mobile Entertainers for the last 10 years. He is one of the most sought after entertainers, not only Western New York but throughout the eastern United Sates, having performed in 7 states in the past few years. He performs for huge concerts to small parties and just about everything in between. He can make any event a party and has been called the ultimate one-man band!

Kevin is an experienced and seasoned entertainer with a dynamic show! He plays acoustic guitar, has a pleasant singing voice, and uses backing tracks for a full band sound. He has an extensive catalog of songs, enjoys taking requests, and can make any event a party. One of his biggest assets is his huge variety of songs he can play. He’s has a crowd pleasing show that gets everyone involved, requesting songs, singing-along, dancing, and having fun. Most of his backing tracks he has recorded in his studio with some of the top musicians in WNY and are recorded for the live setting. He sounds like a full band because his tracks are recorded by real musicians! He also has a complete, computerized live music and DJ setup as well with a huge song selection for continuous music throughout the entire event.

There are a number of things that makes Kevin the ideal choice for events.

Better than a Band – Kevin is affordable, much less expensive than a party band, has a much bigger selection than bands (often more than 10x the number of songs), and has full volume control. full bands often have to be as loud as their drummer so volume control is difficult. When asked to play quieter most bands lose their excitement and energy!) – Plus, Kevin can fit into much small spaces if space in an issue.

Better than a DJ – The advantage over a DJ is Kevin can provide both LIVE and DJ music! This combination is VERY rare – so it automatically sets your event apart and it gives him a lot of flexibility for all types of situations, events, and crowds. Kevin can easily switch back and forth from performing live to DJing for continuous music for any event.

Having live music creates a much more of fun type of party vibe, singing-along, and dancing and Kevin’s show can elevate any situation and create more excitement with his live performance and his ability to play a huge variety of songs!

You name it and Kevin has probably played it! Kevin plays bars, restaurants, private parties, festivals, country clubs, company events, company parties, company picnics, holiday parties, wedding receptions, wedding ceremonies, rehearsal dinners, birthdays, anniversaries, churches, church events, funerals, beach clubs, colleges, high schools, middle schools, elementary schools, summer picnics, pig roasts, and many more! Just about any event where music is needed.

HUGE VARIETY! Kevin has over 1000 songs he can perform (& thousands of songs he can DJ in between sets!).

Click here for more information on music –  Kevin’s Song List

1. Experienced Live Entertainer! – Nothing beats live entertainment for an event! With over 33 years of experience and thousands of professional shows, Kevin is the ideal choice for any event that needs music and entertainment… (plus, a touch of Irish humor & Irish luck thrown in for good measure!)

2. Professional & Affordable! – Kevin is a full-time, professional entertainer for almost 20 years and is fully insured. His insurance coverage also covers any venue he performs at (as additional insured)…many entertainers do not have insurance! He is also been a member in good standing with the National Association of Mobile Entertainers for over 10 years – the largest of it’s kind in the USA.  Considering all he offers, he is a very affordable options for a variety of events!

3. Full-Band Sound! – He not only sings and plays guitar but he also uses his state-of-the-art backing tracks on most songs for a full-band sound!

4. Huge Song List! – He draws from his huge collection of popular music he can perform from oldies to current radio hits and many songs in between.

5. Continuous Music! – If needed, in between Kevin’s live performance, he can DJ in between sets with his extensive DJ collection of over thousands of songs for continuous, non-stop music for your entire event!

6. PA & Lights – He uses the best equipment available. He uses an amazing PA setup utilizes the State-of-the-Art Bose PA system. Wireless mic is also provided if needed for special announcements for your event.

7. BACK-UPS! – Because of Kevin’s setup with 2 Bose System, he actually runs 2 complete PA systems – so if for the some reason a speaker or amp stops working, Kevin can switch to the other system on the spot. He has back-ups of just about everything with him for those rare times when something breaks or doesn’t work etc. Kevin does his very best to be prepared for every event!

Most other bands or DJs use very cheap equipment do not carry back-ups so if their equipment breaks / or speakers blow – your event / party is over! Kevin makes sure this never becomes an issue.

1. Volume Control – Kevin has complete volume control for the times you need it quieter to the louder rockin’ points of the night and everything in between. Bands usually have one volume “LOUD”… Unfortunately live drums don’t have a volume nob and depending on the room size, a full live band can be overwhelming for guests, patrons, etc…

With Kevin’s PA system and setup, he can can have the full band sound without excessive noise and yet, if called for, because he recorded his tracks with full bands, he can rock like a band when needed!

2. Crowd Fun – Over the years, Kevin has developed a knack for connecting with many different types of audiences. Kevin gets them singing-along, clapping, dancing and having fun…there’s nothing he enjoys more than the crowd participating and enjoying themselves!

3. Many Different Bands – When you hire a band, they sound like that specific band all night. Kevin has recorded his tracks with dozens of top musicians from the area and all over the country depending on the song. So you are getting a variety of bands all on the same night!

4. More Diverse & Flexible – Kevin plays a much bigger variety than bands and can adjust his setlist as he sees fit. He can adjust on the fly and has complete control of each song selected that is appropriate for your event, your crowd, for that exact time. Many bands are locked into the same setlist, have much less songs to choose from, and can’t easily change their selections once their setlist is set.

5. Professional – While Kevin gets the party going, he takes pride in being professional at all times. No worries of the bands drummer making inappropriate advances with your mother-in-law or the bands bass player getting hammered and making a scene. With Kevin you know you are getting a class act. Kevin’s experience allows him to blend in with the many different events he plays for and knows how to get the most of almost any event while always maintaining a pleasant, professional demeanor.

1. Live Entertainment – Nothing beats live entertainment for any event. DJs are a dime a dozen and most all rely on the same old “stuff” you hear every DJ play.

2. Crowd Participation – Over the years Kevin, has developed a knack for connecting with many different types of audiences. Kevin gets them singing-along, clapping, dancing and having fun…there’s nothing he enjoys more than the crowd participating and enjoying themselves!

3. Personalized Setlists – Kevin will personalize you event to your tastes and your request for your guests. Some DJs won’t play what you want! They think they know better… Kevin plays what you want to hear, period. If he has it he will play it, if he doesn’t have it, he will do all he can to get it for your party. He will make up his sets based on what you are looking for making every single show different. Kevin uses his experience to decide which songs work when and is always thinking about what is the right song to play at that exact time.

4. Plays Music! – There is nothing worse than an obnoxious DJ who talks too much. Some established DJs forget that the party is not about them, it’s for the people they were hired for. Kevin’s approach is continuous music, with just enough talking and interaction as needed. People have much more fun with a relaxed party atmosphere compared to someone trying to force the vibe and force the issue.

5. Thoughtful Sets of Music – Playing the right song at the right time is key for any event and that is art form all its own. Kevin works very hard to play the right song at just the time for good flow throughout the night. He draws on his years of experience the pick the right songs, mixing in requests from the organizer and the attendees.

6. Clean Versions – He has clean radio-friendly versions of songs which many DJs don’t have or don’t worry about. He is prepared if your event has called for that.

What sets Kevin’s live show apart is that he produces & records his own backing tracks with real musicians – with some of the top players in WNY. There are professional, dynamic players on these tracks – the best the WNY area has to offer!  – Including drummers Tom Brown, Kirk Beers, Paul Campanella. Ted Reinhardt, Bassist – Jim Wynn among others! Kevin produces the tracks, records them in his studio, and also performs guitar, keyboards, and some bass on the tracks.

They are recorded with the live performance in mind and many people really like Kevin’s “live” versions of the songs. At his show, Kevin plays along with these tracks…close your eyes and its a full band! Most all of Kevin’s tracks are his own “live feel” version of the songs he performs. (Did you know? – Most of the top touring international acts actually use some sort of backing track at their concerts depending on many factors – so the use of backing tracks is popular on many levels of live performance).

There are many benefits to using backing tracks. One of the biggest is volume control. With full live bands, drums usually dictate the volume of the bands, since they do not have a volume control button. Playing quieter usually means less energy and a less exciting performance. With Kevin’s setup, there is full volume control and this is beneficial for many different events.

Another benefit to using backing tracks is the fact that Kevin can play a much bigger variety of songs than bands. In fact, he can sound like many different bands in one night. Thanks to technology, these days musical taste are more wide-spread & diverse than ever! People have many different genres on their IPODs & computers. Being able to satisfy many different age groups & musical tastes in one show puts Kevin above other live acts.

Many other benefits of using backing tracks are listed below.

You may be interested to know that “One-Man Band” shows are growing in popularity throughout the country and Kevin takes pride in being a part of that trend!

YES!   Please click here for his show menu and for more information on the different types of events he performs for.

Kevin is a member of the Buffalo Music Hall Of Fame – Class of 2009. He has played at many of the top events in the northeast, midwest, Florida, & the Bahamas including – Chicago’s New Convention Center, Michigan 500, Cleveland Air Show, Cleveland Grand Prix, Opening Day of Detroit’s Ford Field in Michigan, Livonia Spree in Michigan, Horseshoe, Saratoga, NY. opened for Dave Mason in Seven Springs, West Virginia, played before many national acts, including Coldplay & Lynyrd Skynyrd. Kevin has played throughout Florida and the Bahamas – 7 states since last June. Kevin has played public and private events for major Buffalo sports teams – Bills, Sabres, & Bisons. and many others! A few years ago Kevin opened for rock legend Rick Springfield at the University at Buffalo’s football stadium.

Click here to learn more about Kevin’s backing tracks!

“Thank you! Yes, this is a dream come true! I’m so incredibly thankful that I can do what I love s my full-time career for over almost 20 years and be able to support my family is really amazing. I’m grateful for every single show, for every person that comes to see me and supports my show, joins the mailing lists, likes a picture on Facebook, requests a song, and especially those who book me for an event. It allows me to do this for a living…. so the most important FAQ of all is a big thank you! Here’s an outline of some common questions to hopefully help you save time. Feel free to contact me anytime and continued thanks!” – Kevin

It’s very easy to book Kevin! It only take a few minutes and can be done all online on this website!

1. Click here – Booking Page.

2. Click on your desired date on the Availability Checker.

3. Fill he is available, fill out the information and get an INSTANT, no-obligation price quote. If you are interested in booking the date, click Book Online.

4. You can do the deposit by clicking on Make a Payment. will then receive and e-mail for the Agreement.

5. You then would return the Agreement e-mail.

This all can be done on-line securely in just a few clicks!

Kevin has been a full-time, fully insured, professional entertainer for almost 20 years! This is how he supports his wife Natalie and their three kids. The success of every show is important to him and he will work right with you to make sure you event is a success.

There are many benefits to having Kevin’s “One-Man Band Show” over a DJ and / or a band. With Kevin, you get the benefits of both and more. Kevin has the flexibility and volume control of a DJ and all the live performance, interaction, and fun of a band. He takes up less space than a band and can perform over 1000 songs ( most bands can play about 50 -60!). He can get people “into it” much more than a DJ especially for people who don’t normally like to dance. They will be more likely to be out singing-along and partying to the music. He does it all with full-volume control and takes up a lot less space than a band (also less expensive than a band about the same price as a DJ!).

If you are new to Kevin’s show and you clicking around, here’s a few links that will hopefully help.

songs@kevinsmccarthy.com – email Kevin

(716) 472-7700 – call / text Kevin

Kevin usually needs 1 to 2 hours of set up and break up time before and after the event. The amount of time depends on a few factors – the biggest being how close can he get to the stage area for the event.

Kevin uses regular wall power, Kevin only uses one plug so please do plug anything else into that line. He needs good power as he uses a state-of -the-art high-end BOSE PA system. He needs to be within 50ft of regular wall-power outlet.

Does Kevin take requests?  Absolutely! He enjoys taking requests!  Having requests before the date of the event can be very helpful, but Kevin can also take requests night of for all involved!

Can I have a DO NOT playlist? – Absolutely! Kevin is flexible if you change your mind night of as long as he has the song!

Kevin keeps his website up to do date. If the checker says he is booked, it is likely that I am not able to take on another show that day. However, if the timing works out, there are times when Kevin plays multiple shows in one day… please contact Kevin directly to check to see if this is possible.

The obvious answer is more experience. However, you may not have thought about the fact that the success of your event is the key to Kevin’s career!  Full-time entertainers have a lot more riding on the success of you event!  A part-timer might not care as much about the out come. Many companies hire part-timers who don’t have a lot of interest in the outcome. This is why there are so many DJ / band horror stories.

When you hire Kevin, you get the owner. This is how he supports his family averaging 3-5 shows per week for the past 16 years-plus! The demand for his show has increased greatly of the year mainly because he personalizes each event he does and make it his goal to make every event the best it can be. Most of his shows come from referrals from satisfied clients!  Click on Testimonials for show feedback.

YES!  feel free to contact Kevin anytime by e-mail  songs@kevinsmccarthy or by phone – call / text  (716) 472-7700.

Once the event is booked, feel free to contact him anytime as well… he is accessible and flexible through the whole process!

He does prefer e-mail as it is easier for him to reply and store, however phone / text anytime as well!

Kevin provides personalize, online, event planning that is password-protected with 24-7 access. This is included in his price!  Wedding couples love this as way to plan their event, save lots of time and helps Kevin to further personalize your event.

The price actually varies depending on a few factors.  He does his best to give you the best price possible depending on the type of event, time, location, etc…

You can get a price immediate quote and book directly on line here – BOOK KEVIN!

Load in, set up, and break down is included in the price. However, it is not not included in the actually time… the time begins and ends with the agreed time based on the amount of time. So if you want music from 6pm – 10pm, Kevin will load in and be ready for 6pm…music will start at 6pm and end at 10pm.

If you want music from 6pm – 10pm but need Kevin loaded in, set up, and ready for by 4pm, even though he is not starting until 6pm, the amount of time needed in the agreement then is 4pm to 10pm.

The price quoted includes everything Kevin normally does for your events.

1. Load in & set up of all his equipment.

2. Breakdown & load out

3. BOSE PA (Sound system for the music)…  (high-end PA- Kevin brings 3 – 4x the cost of normal DJ setup)

4. Wireless mic for announcements (if the event calls for that).

5. Continuous music for entire event – unless there is part of the agreed event time where you don’t want music.

6. Live Music and DJ music throughout agreed time depending on your details.

7. Requests – he is happy to take requests from you and guests and tried to tailor the music and personalize each event he does!

8. Insurance & Associations – he is fully insured and a member in good standing with the National Association of Mobile Entertainers since 2005.

9. Lights – New Regular color LED lights and lights for stage area if needed.

10. For weddings – the meeting a few weeks prior to finalize details either in person or by phone is included the price.

11. For Weddings – personalize, online, event planning that is password-protected – 24-7 access – couples love this as way to plan their event and save lots of time and allows Kevin to further personalize your event.

12. For Weddings – personalized outline of the entire night including your requests.

In general, things he normally does and has for most events is included in one price!

Also included in the price – “No Kevin, No Party, Know Kevin, Know PARTY!”    LOL!

Kevin tries not to add to his price, however, there are circumstances which Kevin will need to add to the price that is quoted.

1. Travel – Additional cost depending on many factors, however there is no travel charge for shows with the 1/2 radius of Buffalo, NY and includes suburbs, Williamsville, Clarence, Orchard Park, Alden, South Buffalo, Lockport, and also includes Niagara Falls.

2. Travel to Canada – Due to the increased wait at the border, Kevin normally charges for going over the border as well as distances through the Canada.

3. Travel Cost, Availability, Lodging and Does he travel out of state? –  Cost depends on number of miles, amount of time etc.  Since last June, Kevin has performed in Alabama, Florida, Georgia, Southern Indiana, etc…. so he does travel out of his home state…but his availability may be limited depending on many factors. Normal lodging and travel expenses usually apply – nothing fancy needed – national hotel chain is fine.

4. For Weddings – For reception prices – Ceremonies and moving equipment to different locations throughout the night are not included in the price normally.

5. For Weddings – It’s rare, but if he needs to learn new songs he doesn’t currently perform, there may be an extra charge due to the amount of time.

6. Light Show – Normally LED lights are included but if you want the extra light show that is an extra cost… The light show is extra LED laser lights used to enhance the dance floor or used for special events. He has found that for most weddings, normal lights is what most couples want and they don’t need or want the light show (that is completely fine!)… I do offer it, however for those who do want it.

7. Extras – Over the years I have had a few situation where people needed / wanted extra things.  Please let him know if there is anything special or extra you want for your event. He’s happy to do all he can accommodate requests.

Yes, basically everything! The only thing he needs for most events is wall power!  Often, one wall plug with do it as long as nothing else is plugged into that line!

Because he does such a wide-variety of events, there are a few more specific details for each event type….

1. Weddings –  Kevin needs at least a 18′ by 10′ area on hard, dry surface, on the edge of dance floor within 50ft of a regular wall power plug on a separate line – nothing else plugged into that line. Kevin uses high-end state-of-the-art equipment. Most venues provide a table for the music. Kevin can eat at this table – to be close to his setup & to make it easier for your seating charts, however, he is happy to sit where it works best for you. Please do not put guest tables between Kevin’s setup and the dance floor.  If it has to be setup this way, please plan on asking venue to move/take down tables before dancing starts. Kevin needs about 2 hours for setup and will need someone at the venue to let Kevin know where he will setup when he arrives. Kevin does not move his equipment once it is setup. If you are having any part of the wedding in another location, this may require an additional equipment and additional charge. No cart is needed in most cases for weddings. One of the main goals is to finalize as many details as possible before the wedding so you can relax more and enjoy your night!

2. School Shows – Kevin needs at least a 18′ by 10′ area on hard, dry surface within 50ft of a regular wall power plug on a separate line – nothing else plugged into that line. Kevin has a state-of-the-art light show enjoyed by both students and adults. If at all possible, Kevin needs to setup in a location where there is full control of the lights. His first choice is an auditorium. If no aud is available, the a gym or cafeteria where it can get reasonably dark is ideal. Kevin does not ask for a deposit for school shows. He needs about 2 hours prior to show depending on equipment load in and show location for setup and about an hour to load equipment out. Kevin brings everything he needs for his show, he only needs regular wall power!  He does not need a stage but is happy to perform on a stage if there is one!

(If you can provide an empty flat-bed cart, especially there isn’t a direct door to the show area, that would be great! Though I usually bring a small cart, most schools have larger carts than I can carry which will help me load in quicker – thanks!)

3. Private Parties, Country Club, Restaurants, etc.  – Kevin needs a 18′ by 10′ area on hard, dry surface, on the edge of dance floor within 50ft of a regular wall power plug on a separate line – nothing else plugged into that line. He needs about 2 hours prior to show depending on equipment load in and show location for setup and about an hour to load equipment out. Kevin brings everything he needs for his show, he only needs power. He does not need a stage but is happy to perform on a stage if there is one! No cart is needed for most private parties and restaurants.

Please note that Kevin is very flexible and will work with you the best he can. Please consider these requirements – If there is an issue with any of these requirements, please contact Kevin before your event. Please contact Kevin with any questions, thank you!