How to structure the music on your wedding day
Here is a rough and fairly generic outline as to how I like to structure the music on a wedding day. Of course, not everybody’s day is the same, but this is easily adaptable and just highlights the main parts of the day.
- Gentle / romantic pre-ceremony music while guests arrive to settle nerves and set the mood
- [endif]Bridal Entry Song - I like to leave a few minutes of silence prior to playing the ‘Aisle Song’. This builds a little bit of anticipation but also distinguishes this as The Bridal Entry. I also like to increase the volume a little for this particular song.
- [endif]Signing The Register – It is nice to have a song (although it often requires 2) while you sign the register. There’s no rule as to what kind of song to choose here. All the “serious stuff” has now taken place and people will be feeling a bit more relaxed so you could have a slightly more upbeat song if you like.
- [endif]Recessional Song – This is the song that sends you back up the aisle as Husband & Wife. I would highly recommend an upbeat, uplifting song here.
I always ask that the Bride & Groom provide me with their ceremony song choices. I provide a list of songs that I have played at previous weddings that they can choose from but if they already have particular songs in mind, I am always happy to learn them.
This element of the day is usually around 1 and a half to 2 and a half hours and it is great to fill this with some cool background music for your guests to mingle to. Unless you are putting your own playlist together for this, you don’t have to worry about the songs here. Just leave it up to your musician(s) / DJ.
- [endif]Bridal Party Entrance Song – Choose a banger that will get everyone hyped and clapping along.
- [endif]Dinner – Don’t worry too much about specific music during dinner. Just a nice mellow playlist will do the trick. If you would prefer live music during dinner, again I would recommend nothing too intrusive.
- [endif]First Dance Song – much like the Bridal Entry song, this is quite a personal choice and I like to leave this up to the B&G. Again this song can be performed live by myself / my band or I can play the original track from my phone through my system. If you're not confident dancers but are planning on doing a choreographed dance, I would suggest playing the original track. You don't want to have practiced the routine at home or at a dance lesson only to be put off on the night when the live version sounds slightly different to the original song.
- [endif]Party Time – I always send my couples my song list and ask if there are any songs that they definitely do /do not want me to play. I then ask them for a handful of special requests. If I know how to play them live I will put them in the set. If not, I add them to a playlist for during breaks or I offer (what is turning out to be my most popular option), a half live / half DJ set.
I am always happy to answer any questions and discuss all things music so if you have any other queries or would like to know more, please don’t hesitate to get in touch.