If Music Be the Food of Love, how do you plan it for your Wedding?
Congratulations, you are getting married….that is the great part!
Yes, but now you have to plan for the Wedding Date, Dress, Wedding Flowers, Ceremony Location, Venue, Rings, Food selection, Guests List, Seating Arrangements, Invitations, Honeymoon Plans, Limo’s, and so on. That is the not-so-great part!
The Wedding Planning experience can be both uplifting, and frustrating. It can often feel like, “the best, and worst of times”, to paraphrase Charles Dickens. There are, so many decisions, and so little time.
This article will address Wedding Music Entertainment, help you in your decision process, and hopefully reduce some stress.
Wedding Music Entertainment,…or not?
Unlike other aspects, Wedding Music Entertainment (Bands, DJ’s, Musicians) is not a “must have”, for your Special Day. It is truly an option.
So, first of all, do you desire Music of any type, for your Wedding?
If, “no”, you have one less decision to make, stop reading… and about that Dress!
If, “yes”, we have a bit of work to do: do you want music for your:
B) Cocktail Hour
A, B and C,….or just A,B, or C….. (there are nine possibilities here)
And if you chose any of the above, do you want Live Music (Musicians, Bands), or Recorded (DJ) Music?
Your Wedding Ceremony
Your Wedding Ceremony, will undoubtedly be the most personal part of that Special Day.
Live Musicians are preferred for Wedding Ceremonies. They enhance the ambiance and emotional setting. And being human, as opposed to recorded Music, they can react quickly to changes in the environment.
For example, as Bridal Party members, enter and leave, a ceremony area, Live Musicians can very naturally alter the music tempo (speed, feel, etc.), to keep in sync with changing walking steps (older folks tend to walk slower, and young folks – especially when nervous, walk faster). Watching an accomplished Musician effortlessly perform this task, is truly an art in itself. (experienced DJ’s can also do this electronically with recorded music, but it just does not feel as, “natural”).
Therefore, if you desire Ceremony Music of any kind, my suggestion, is Live Musicians (either solo, duo, or trio). And instead of the classic organ, you might want to try something different….flute, harp, piano, violin, cello, horn, or guitar.
Also, if someone in your family has musical talent, by all means invite them to perform a song…it will become a much more memorable experience for you, them, and your guests.
Your Wedding Cocktail Hour
Wedding Cocktail Hours are usually given the least thought regarding music planning. Why? Well first of all, you (the Bridal Party) are typically not there (for most of it anyway). This time (just after the Wedding Ceremony) is usually allotted for Picture taking with the Wedding Photographer….most often in a different area. That is all fine for the Bridal Party, but don’t forget about your guests!
For both those that attended the Wedding Ceremony, and those that did not, the common meeting ground, in anticipation of your return from Picture taking, is the Cocktail Hour area. It is here that they will, try an hors d’ oeuvre, have a drink, and begin to mingle.
Now I may be a bit biased, but there is nothing more inviting, than soothing music as one enters a room…it creates a certain, welcoming, ambiance. It sets the mood. It says to your guests, “yes, come on in, there is a celebration happening in here”!
Which type of Cocktail Hour Music Entertainment should you choose for your guests?
Live Bands, unless a small Classical, or Jazz trio, could be, “overkill”, for a Cocktail Hour. A Solo Musician or DJ would be more reasonable.
I have attended great Cocktail Hours with Musicians, and great Cocktail Hours with DJ’s. It is again, very subjective, but some people feel Musicians, tend to add a certain, “Elegance”…
A key point to remember is that this is the “prep time” for your Reception. Until they have satisfied their hunger for food, drink and talk, most guests are not going to be in a partying mood initially. This is fine, because remember, you are not there! So in choosing Cocktail Hour Music, be it Live Musicians or a DJ, keep it, “low-key”, at this point…nice background, easy listening melodies, no head-banging sounds, at least, not yet.