Live music brings a certain beauty, majesty and emotional energy to weddings that recordings just can’t replicate, and wedding music goes far beyond the traditional wedding march. Music for the ceremony could be a classical favorite or perhaps even an instrumental version of a favorite modern song.
Harpists and instrumental music is also widely popular and an elegant addition to your ceremony and cocktail hour. Couples may also consider having live music or an acoustic version play during their first dance, father/daughter and mother/son dance.
Harpist and vocalist Eryn Jones Fuson caters to her clients – putting together a playlist customized to each couples’ musical styles and preferences, whether that’s traditional, contemporary, vintage, boho, etc.
Musical preference is, of course, highly influenced by modern trends: popular songs, artists, and even movie soundtracks. “In 2011 the bridal world fell in love with “A Thousand Years” by Christina Perri, which is the song the character Bella walks down the aisle to in Breaking Dawn,” Eryn explains. “That’s probably been the most popular request over the past few years.” And Eryn’s clients are always pleasantly surprised when they find out she sings as well, thus bringing in the lovely lyrics which add even more to the meaningfulness of the song. Eryn also plays piano and guitar.
Hiring a one-person “band” certainly helps save on cost, though it’s wise to make sure the song is done justice when played solo. There are other times when a fuller ensemble is necessary or preferred. Solo musicians like Eryn will network with others to complete the set.
Save the Date Music is a musical group that comes in all sizes. They even work with brides who may want a family member to be the vocalist or, if he/she is an experienced musician, to play as “part of the band.”
“A lot of couples ask their parents what their music was to continue a tradition,” Save the Date shares. “Or they might choose songs with lyrics that reflect their life to make the music more unique and meaningful.”
Save the Date is noticing trends with Irish songs, Bluegrass songs, and New Orleans inspired weddings.
Likewise, The Boulevard Ensemble a 1-8 member band. They play music from many different eras and genres all performed in a high end, classic and classy, big band Sinatra-esque jazz style. “We honor specific musical requests, too, so it’s always fun when couples like personalized songs for the first dance, father/daughter dance, etc.,” they share.
The Ensemble has performed their own arrangements on modern songs like “Enter Sandman” by Metallica, “Paranoid Android” by Radiohead, “Black Hole Sun” by Sound Garden, “Wrecking Ball” by Miley Cyrus and “To the Last” by James Blake.
It can be an overwhelming task to come up with the “right song” and the best playlist, so hiring a professional who is familiar with a large array of music is very helpful.
Tips for Making the Most of Your Wedding Music
- When planning an outdoor wedding, remember that in order to provide the best music, your band/musicians will need comfortable temperatures, protection from sun, rain, wind, and bugs.
- If you wish to incorporate family as a singer or musician, be sure they are committed and confident. They might be genuinely excited to be a part of your wedding when first asked, but it’s common to feel pressure mounting before the big day and they might back out if they get nervous.
- If you have a special request, provide your musicians with ample time to practice. Trust their judgment when it comes to the best way to play the song – they want you to be happy with the result and know if playing solo or on a certain instrument will work or not.
- Remember, all weddings are unique – striking a balance between traditional and modern music is important so that all generations in attendance have a good time!