Wedding Music

May 15, 2017
wedding music

Wedding music is a huge area, and oh, so important.

Music touches emotions. It is atmospheric and can set the tone for the whole ceremony. As a celebrant, I am quite often asked if I have any thoughts about music (even for funerals, by the way). I certainly have my opinions, but it really goes down to what sort of ceremony you will be having (ie the tone, degree of formality etc.) and the sort of music you actually like.


So plenty of generalising and sitting on the fence for Michael now!

When do you want music?

There may be music in the middle of the service, but most commonly you expect it at the beginning and at the end. To be more precise, for maybe a quarter of an hour before the bride arrives, and then for the processional. If there is certificate signing at the end, music could be played, and it’s almost obligatory for the recessional.

Live or recorded?

Recorded music critically depends on the apparatus functioning correctly. Things can go wrong for live musicians too, of course, but they are probably better placed to sort things out. Live performers may well cost more than, say, the DJ who is already going to do your reception. However, I feel that live music has the edge when it comes to conjuring up an atmosphere.

Traditional or Modern?

If you are having a big, traditional ceremony, then you may well opt for the trusted works, like Mendelssohn’s “Wedding March” or Pachelbel’s “Canon”. They are absolutely fine, but you don’t need to raid the classical repertoire for suitable music.

Pop songs or ethnic music have their place at many weddings. It all depends on the tone, of course. Youngsters may appreciate Adele’s “Make You Feel My Love”, or “Circle of Life” or Bruno Mars’ “Just the Way you are “.


The other obvious element for a couple to consider is their own personal taste. They need to agree on whatever is to be played, and they need actually to like the music! (There’s little point choosing it, otherwise.) If it’s a personalised ceremony, then the music can reflect the personalities of the pair.

However, think carefully before you organise loud rock music blasting out to a room full of middle-aged aunties! A little moderation may work wonders!

It possibly doesn’t need saying that, while the entry music can be reflective, the recessional should be upbeat.

It’s worthwhile carefully weighing up the various pros and cons, and deciding what matters to you. Once you know the degree of formality you are expecting, choose music that you love or that means something to both of you. Then you’ll be well on the way to inspiring a wonderful atmosphere for your big day.

And that is precisely what the right music can provide.

For more advice, feel free to contact Michael.