Like putting off thinking about and writing wedding vows (we'll do it closer to the wedding...), planning your wedding music and entertainment can often be left as an afterthought when it comes to levels of priority on the ever expanding wedding 'to do' list.
Sure, you might pick a band or a DJ, perhaps will email you a playlist template or a song-list for you to peruse but for many of us the prospect of sitting long enough to focus and actually go through and process these suggestions and thinking about the creation of a soundscape is the last thing on our minds 3-6 months before the big day BUT in fact for many couples, these choices will be a huge factor to shape your day
Listen to Episode 269 of The Bridechilla Podcast
Chose the right music and an amazing party will follow
I am hoping that this episode's guest, Andy Kushner, from Andy Kushner Entertainment Design, will convince you that your music and entertainment choices should be considered with as much forethought and gusto as catering and your venue, as chosen wisely, it will transform a wedding into an unforgettable event.
Andy is going to help us get our shit together when it comes to shaping our vision for the day, in particular using live bands and interactive wedding entertainment to the mood and atmosphere that you envisage.
Consider the stages of your wedding and work your music choices around them, from ceremony to goodbyes
Part of the magic of wedding planning, no matter what budget, is giving yourself permission to inject YOUR personality and creativity in your music and entertainment design, while also finding the sweet spot for your guests to dance, mingle and if you so choose, rock the heck out!
Creating atmosphere isn't just about decoration and visual aesthetics, it's also about setting a tone with lighting and music.
How to make an impact with your wedding music
Like your wedding invitations (which are the first opportunity to set the tone and vibe for your big day) when guests first enter your ceremony space, it is the first opportunity for you to convey what is coming up and set the event apart from every other wedding that your people have attended. Whether you have a friend working an ipod or a string quartet, think about what sort of music you want people to hear while they take their seats. Is it fun and jaunty? Serious and sombre (hope not!), sassy and upbeat?
Feel the room but take risks
Of course the venue itself should be considered. You probably aren't playing Drake in a church...although perhaps if it's a 'cool' church then ask what they are happy with you playing. One of my recent favourite albums has been Westworld Soundtrack, which has a bunch of cover versions of modern songs, song in a ye-olde way that I think would really work as wedding background music....the sort of songs that make people go 'Is that Black Hole Sun played on a pianola?'
In the episode I mention hearing about a fabulous wedding that included some very lateral music choices that totally shaped the tone and vibe of their wedding day...
We made a point of setting a silly tone for it (we walked down the aisle together to the Seinfeld theme), and ended the night with what was supposed to be a group sing-along to “My Heart Will Go On,” which turned into an interpretive dance by Wayland and me in the middle of a circle of people, and it was one of the most fun moments of my life.
Read more about Katie and Wayland's wedding as featured on A Practical Wedding... it sounded like a total blast.
Image of Katie and Wayland by Shelly Anderson Photography
Trusting your vendors
The difference between a good event and a great entertainment experience is in the details – lots of them.
There's a lot of trust that comes into play when with hiring the right people to help you plan your wedding.
I often share advice on the Bridechilla Podcast about finding the balance between trusting your vendors to do their work without you having to monitor and give feedback on every task and but also feeling comfortable enough to share your goals and ask about progress and directions without being hesitant or shy. When it comes to entertainment and music choices, this is something that I encourage you to be actively involved in without it taking over your life.
Get Creative With Your Music choices
As an Entertainment Designer, my work begins well in advance of the event to make sure I understand the host’s vision, goals, needs, and purpose. I create one-of-a-kind concepts for my clients to make events unlike any other they have previously experienced—true customization.
Andy shares some great anecdotes about the extreme opposites when it comes to music choices. Some couples are very lax with their music choices and other couples can be overly obsessed with details, creating long ‘do not play lists’…songs that don’t want to hear on their day. Like all aspects of wedding planning, balance is the key and also working with people who you can hand over tasks and decision to...to some extent.
Andy is using his knowledge of the wedding industry to launch his very own podcast, The Wedding Biz, which features interviews with event industry celebrities.