Finding The Perfect Music For Your Perfect Day
Choosing just the right music for your wedding is as important as the love, the ring, and the dress, so it deserves as much care and attention. In the most memorable and beautiful nuptials, no matter how large or intimate, the music has an actual personality that compliments the theme, tone and setting of your event.
First, you need to be practical. I suggest to my clients that the money for the music, which is, after all, the soundtrack for the most special day of their lives, should be allocated right up front, set aside, and left untouched. The budget for a band, plus a DJ to fill in when the band takes a break, usually accounts for ten percent of the total cost of the wedding.
In selecting individual pieces to be played, I start by reviewing the classics: “The Wedding March”, “The Bridal Chorus”, ”Sunrise, Sunset”, “The Wedding Song” and “Pachelbel’s Cannon in D”. But every bride and groom is unique, so I recommend your choices reflect that. Sure, every girl dreams of walking down the aisle to “Here Comes The Bride”, but from there on, everything is possible.
Hiring the right musicians is critical. Many bands in the wedding business have a dozen different personas to fit the tone of any event. But nobody’s passion is to become a wedding musician, so sometimes players who do too many of what we call “casual gigs” burn out. So yes, look for experience, and insist on recommendations, but seriously consider a fresh approach, too. You have the right to ask for special music. It’s your dime, and it’s your day.
No matter what the setting for your rehearsal dinner, ceremony and reception, I recommend you choose each piece of music yourselves, and not leave it to a bandleader who plays the same repertoire night after night. Original songs are enormously popular now and are always a big hit. Not only have I been commissioned to write a tune for a groom when he proposed, but the same young man wanted a parody, “Bridge Over Seltzer Water”, for his rabbi father-in-law who had six more daughters to marry off. The same groom-to-be also requested a romantic, new ballad for the very first dance with his bride. All of the guests were touched by the original music at that wedding, so as a special surprise to them, as planned, we put it on a CD, which was sent to everyone with the thank-you notes.
I remind my clients that a wedding reception isn’t a spectator sport. It’s exciting to get everybody involved. If Great Uncle Duncan took the most coach flights to attend your big event, why not honor him by playing his favorite song, or even have him sing it? Don’t forget your still-single sister-in-law, or the wedding party. Find out what their favorite tunes are, and include them, too. That way, everyone there becomes part of the happy memory that you, the bride and groom, will dance to forever.