Picking a Piece for the Processional
Weddings are typically planned by the bride. It's not news that this milestone event tends to reflect her tastes, not her beau's. A formal, sophisticated affair featuring a trio of violin players during a seated dinner may very well show that the bride is fairly serious herself. On the other hand, a bride holding a bouquet of wildflowers as she saunters down the aisle to a reggae band rocking some bongo drums is probably pretty casual or playful in spirit.
Deciding on the right song can be overwhelming. Fortunately, it doesn't need to be. Instead of perusing a gluttony of songs you dig (and hoping one jumps out at you), try this. First, narrow your options. Only entertain ones that fit the tone of the overall celebration. Here are three easy tips to whittle your list. Choose a song that:
- matches the overall wedding tone
- holds meaning for you and your fiancé
- leaves guests in a wake of energy -- a vibe -- that carries into the ceremony itself, and builds anticipation of the reception
Whether you're going for sweet and sentimental or happy and celebratory, there's a song out there that will do your big walk justice. Keep in mind, there are a number of ways to modify the tune you want. You don't have to play the song performed by the original artist. Here are some ways to adapt it for a softer, gentler sound:
- Hire a performer to sing it live.
- Have a band play a bluegrass or acoustic version of the song.
- Ask your band to perform an instrumental version.
Here are 10 processional-ready songs that all get our enthusiastic stamp of approval:
- "Forever," Ben Harper
- "Forever Young," Bob Dylan
- "Happy," Bruce Springsteen
- "This Must Be the Place (Naive Melody)," Talking Heads
- "Walk with You," Dispatch
- "Home," Edward Sharpe and the Magnetic Zeros
- "The Look of Love," Nina Simone
- "Love Me Tender," Norah Jones' version of the Elvis classic
- "Wedding Song," Tracy Chapman
- "Into the Mystic" or "Steal My Heart Away," Van Morrison