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How To Successfully Choose Your Wedding Songs And Music
Date: June 02, 2006 • Author: Emily • Filed Under: Music & Dance & Site Reviews

Whether you choose a live band, a string quartet, a DJ or even do it yourself with an iPod your musical choices will set the mood and the pace for your wedding day. Wedding songs are one of the elements of the wedding day remembered most by guests, so be sure to put your own stamp on the day through your choice of music for both the wedding ceremony and the reception.

The music you select for your wedding will help to create the right atmosphere for your big day. It is really crucial that you take time to select wedding music which best reflects your feelings, your personality and the theme of the wedding you want to create. After all you want your wedding to be remembered for the right reasons – not the fact that you allow the DJ to play D:Ream’s “Things Can Only Get Better” for your first dance!

Some of the things you might want to consider when choosing your wedding songs are as follows:

* Remember that you will need to select music for the wedding ceremony, the cocktail hour or pre-reception drinks party and the reception.

* If your wedding has a specific theme (for example medieval, beach, tropical, Asian or Italian) you should choose music to match.

* If you are selecting music for your first dance than really think carefully about your choice. Have a look at the lyrics for your chosen song and practice dancing to the beat of it with your partner to ensure its not too slow or fast for you both. Beware of choosing songs which are trendy and popular at the moment. Its more important that you choose a song which is meaningful to you both.

* When selecting music for your ceremony talk to your officiant. They might well have strict guidelines about which wedding songs can be used during your ceremony in their house of worship. Its important to discuss this with them at an early stage to agree which songs will be used at your wedding. Officiants could well have some recommendations they can make to you for songs too.

* You will want your guests to not only feel relaxed and enjoy themselves but additionally you might want them to feel included in your wedding day. Perhaps you could choose a specific song for a specific guest to make them feel special.

* A key piece of advice professional wedding planners give regarding choosing wedding music is to plan out an outline or plot for your wedding, as if it is a movie. This will mean that you know which key moments will require specific wedding music (e.g. walking down the aisle, father/daughter dance, the bouquet or garter toss) and which moments simply require background music (e.g. during the reception meal).

* Always ensure that you have given clear instructions to your live band, DJ or whoever else is responsible for your wedding music so that both they and you know what music is being played at what time during your wedding day.

To simplify the process for you of choosing the perfect soundtrack to your wedding day I have researched some of the most popular wedding song websites and have set out below a brief review of some of the best. Most of the websites I’ve recommended contain large libraries of wedding songs to choose from and some of them have broken the lists down into categories and sometimes even sub-categories, such as processional or ceremony music and then celebratory or reception music. You might also want to consider having a look at these websites to select music to include on your wedding video. Have a browse through the websites and have some fun!

This is a slick site with very nice graphics. It is easy to navigate and sets out in detail descriptions of each different type of song available for each different segment of your wedding day - from the ceremony to the reception, including bouquet toss songs, unity candle songs and even cake cutting songs. There seems to be a good amount of songs to choose from and they range from oldies to more recent chart-toppers. With each song suggested they include lyrics, which is great so that you can check that the wording of the song you choose for a specific part of your wedding is totally appropriate.

This website is set apart from the others by the fact that it gives you ratings out of 10 for each of the songs displayed within the different categories which members of the public have voted on. This is great as it tells you which are the most popular wedding songs, or you might prefer to think of them as the most common (meaning perhaps you should set yourself apart from everyone else and use something different!).

This website has a varied selection of categories and sub-categories to choose from. It features 1200 songs which are said to be the most popular wedding songs in North America.

Although it does not have lyrics to many songs you can listen to soundbites of a lot of the songs. By clicking on a certain song title within one of the categories Real One Player opens up and allows you to hear a 45 second sample of the song (only if you have speakers though!). Some people might prefer hearing the sample of the song rather than reading the lyrics as it can really help to remind you of what a song sounds like. Be warned though 45 seconds can sometimes not be long enough to help you decide whether a song is going to be appropriate for your first dance. This site does have links though telling you where you can buy the CD’s the songs are taken from.

This website has lots of good suggestions for songs you might like to play for different aspects of your wedding including father/daughter dance, mother/son dance etc. As well as listing contemporary and classical songs this site also has a well presented ethnic music selection with plenty of variety to inspire you with your choices. I think that this website gives great advice on how to choose your wedding music and how to organize timings for the music on your wedding day in order to create the right atmosphere.

The wedding music library within this website is fantastic. There are a huge selection of popular wedding songs and lots of song suggestions within each category. Unfortunately only some of the listed songs have samples attached to them that you can listen to, but you will find that the most popular wedding songs do have sound clips available. A great feature of this site is the CD listening room. It sets out recommended wedding CD’s which you can select and then listen to taster songs from each CD. The site also has links on how to buy those CD’s.

Another reason to visit this website is that it has an invaluable guide on how to pick the soundtrack to your perfect wedding. There is a huge amount of well laid out information to help you select which songs you need and when you should play them at your wedding so that you can organize the music for the whole ceremony and reception. The expert planning section is fantastic and I think it will greatly assist you in making your music selections.

Look out for the article within this website on “How to avoid the 3 biggest wedding mistakes most couples make with wedding music” by Gloria Sklerov and Barbara Rothstein. This is a must read!

This website says that its selection of wedding songs have been chosen by disc jockeys who have performed at weddings throughout North America. I think that this is brilliant because you know that the songs listed are authentically chosen by experts who are in the know as to which songs are most popular. This could be especially useful if you are planning on using an iPod at your wedding and handling the music selection yourself as it will give you an idea of which songs are appropriate for the different stages of your wedding. For example, by using the suggestions listed on this website you can gain ideas of which songs are great for getting people up onto the dancefloor, background music during the meal or even music for cutting your cake to.

Although there are not as many categories as the other websites I have reviewed above they have got a very full selection of music for the 4 categories that there are. As before, when you click on a link to a song Real One Player opens in another window and allows you to hear a 45 second snippet of each song.

This website also has numerous links to live bands who are available all over North America for wedding hire, which is very useful if you are thinking of having living music at your wedding. In conjunction with this, they have the facility on their website for you to listen to samples of popular wedding songs being played live by bands free of charge. This is a great way to get an idea of a band’s sound before you consider contacting them.

I hope that you’ve found my reviews useful. Good luck with selecting your wedding music!

Further Reading On Wedding Music and Songs:
20 Essential Wedding DJ Choosing the right DJ is crucial and my top tips should help you get it right.
Alanis Morissette Favours An iPod Over A Wedding DJ - How About Yourself? - How to save money by opting for an iPod.
Revealing Five Wedding Song Ideas 5 tips to selecting the best wedding songs you can.

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As you plan your wedding you will receive advice from just about everyone. Friends and family have a million and one tips to pass on, in fact here at Wedaholic I have been offering tips galore.