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Yes, I am one of “those” kinds of people – the sappy kinds of people. I am a sucker for love and all the details that come with it! Like how you met, who asked who, where the proposal happened, did you know it was going to happen, etc. etc. I nerd out on wedding stuff. What can I say, this is my jam!

Hey! I'm Mariah!

man with a guitar playing wedding ceremony music while sitting outside
four person band of stringed instruments playing in an outdoor area
Evermore Creation @evermore.creation | LAPOMPE @lapompeband

We get it. After choosing your cake, decorations, venue, attire, and everything else under the sun, having to deal with another big decision-like your ceremony music-might seem like a daunting task. However, the music that plays throughout your ceremony helps to set the tone for your entire day, and the decision should not be overlooked or swept aside. But don’t panic, today we’re giving you a quick guide to choosing your wedding ceremony music so that you can check it off your to-do list and feel good about your decisions!

The first step when selecting the your wedding ceremony music is to think about the overall tone you want to set for your special day. Do you want it to be romantic? Fun and upbeat? Sentimental? Once you have an idea of the feeling you want to create, you can start narrowing down your song choices.

The Processional

man sitting in a wooden chair outside playing guitar
Bergreen Photography @bergreenphotography | DJ/Guitarist w/ Aisle Finesse @aislefinesse

The processional is the music that is played as you walk down the aisle. It sets the tone for the ceremony and should reflect your personal style as a couple. If you are looking for something traditional, “Canon in D” by Johann Pachelbel is a classic choice. If you want something more modern, “A Thousand Years” by Christina Perri has become a staple song choice in the wedding world. Ultimately selecting a song that is special to you and your partner should always be the top priority. Our advice? Choose any song that’s meaningful to you and consider playing the instrumental version as you walk down the aisle.

The Recessional 

full band playing together at a wedding ceremony
Red Aspen Photography @redaspenphotography | Moments Notice Entertainment @moments.notice.entertainment | Crooked Willow Farms @crookedwillowevents

The recessional is the music that is played after you are announced as husband and wife and you and your party walk back up the aisle together. Often, this song choice is joyful and celebratory. Popular choices for recessional music include “Signed, Sealed, Delivered I’m Yours” by Stevie Wonder and “Here Comes the Sun” by The Beatles. The goal when selecting this song is to bring lots of energy and excitement into the rest of the evening, after all, you just tied the knot!

Other Parts of the Ceremony 

There are other parts of the ceremony where music is played as well. For example, many couples choose to have some sort of unity portion of their service (like combining sand, tying rope, locking a wine box, etc.) Sometimes couples will select a special song to be played or sung during these moments. If you want to set an intimate tone during this portion of your ceremony, consider asking a family member or friend to sing/play an instrument. Also, remember to think about a “pre-ceremony” playlist and include songs that are soft, elegant, and express who you are as a couple. Whether your ceremony includes a DJ or live music, we recommend that the “pre-ceremony” playlist starts 30 minutes before it’s showtime.

Cocktail Hour

woman holding a tray with cups of drinks on it
Molly Margaret Photography @mollymargaretphotos

Finally, while it is not technically part of the ceremony, many couples like to have music playing during the cocktail hour as guests are mingling. This can be anything from classical music to pop hits. 

Ultimately, there are many factors to consider when choosing wedding ceremony music for your big day. With a little bit of planning, you can choose music that perfectly reflects your style as a couple and creates an unforgettable experience for you and your guests. Pro tip: your wedding planner has tons of experience in this area, so don’t be afraid to ask for recommendations! Cheers!

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