They are a familiar sight at many a wedding party: ageing musicians who once harboured dreams of performing their own work belting out cover hits of timeless classics.
Now newly-weds keen to call time on a crooning rendition of "Sympathy for the Devil" sung by an unknown four-piece outfit can hire the Rolling Stones to perform it... provided they can pick up the £5m invoice afterwards.
The rock group has been named the world's most expensive wedding act in a new poll, ahead of contemporary performers including Elton John and Kylie Minogue – both £2m – and Amy Winehouse, just £1m. Lady Gaga and Katy Perry are said to be available for £60,000. Cheap and cheerful is former Hear'Say singer Danny Foster, a snip at £650.
Hiring stars for private parties is a popular option for those with the budget or friends in high places. U2 took a break from their tour schedule to perform at the wedding of The Corrs frontwoman, Andrea Corr and billionaire Brett Desmond, last Friday, while Christina Aguilera's services were requested at the wedding of Russian Andrei Menichenko.
The survey, by TV Channel Living, also revealed a resurgence of interest in one-hit wonders. Rick Astley, who stormed the charts in the 1980s, weighed in at £25,000 following an internet-led revival of his hit "Never Gonna Give You Up".
The Proclaimers will belt out "I'm Gonna Be (500 Miles)" for £50,000, while X-Factor stars JLS can be snapped up for £25,000.
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