As a wedding piper and provider of wedding music to around 2000 weddings over the past 25 years, I am regularly asked by brides and grooms, what are the best wedding songs and which ones are the best wedding songs to walk down the aisle to.
The easy answer is “the ones you like are the best”! Of course, that isn’t very helpful because there are other considerations, like “are the songs suitable and appropriate for a wedding?”; “will my family and guests understand why you have chosen them”. This is especially difficult when brides and grooms-to-be, have hundreds of other things to do and decisions to make for their wedding day.
So how exactly do you find out which wedding songs are the right ones for you?
Songs to walk down the aisle to
For some people the song choices can make themselves because there are songs that mean so much to them. This isn’t always the case though, in which case it can become a really time consuming, frustrating chore. It doesn’t have to be…
If you’ve hired a piper or other musician, for your wedding and you are happy with your choice, then you can usually rely on them to choose the music for guests arriving as there will be a lot of tunes played during that 30 minute period. In some cases this will amount to 20 pipe tunes, so your piper needs to know this many…at least.
However, when you’re walking down the aisle you will want to choose a song that you love and usually one that means a lot to you and your partner. This is when an experienced piper or any wedding music professional for that matter, can be worth their weight in gold. When the question is asked “what is the best wedding song to walk down the aisle to?” a wedding music provider can immediately help narrow the choice down by asking some simple questions like:
1 “Do you have songs that you both like listening to and/or mean a lot to you both because it reminds you of a shared experience?” and then depending on the answer, which may take some time, give some simple advice about which may be more appropriate in the circumstances.
2. If the answer to question 1 is “I don’t really know” then a suggestion like: “here are some wedding songs that I have played before and people really enjoyed” can be really helpful. Rather than just narrowing the choice of a bride and groom, this is a clever way of getting people to remember songs that they might like or shared moments that remind them of a song. This can open up some new possibilities and make the decision making much easier.
As a very general rule of thumb, it is nicer to have a slower, softer melody for going down the aisle to be married, as it makes the significance of the moment more poignant and allows everyone to soak up the atmosphere of the occasion.
Then when you’re walking back up the aisle, as a married couple, again as a general rule, a more upbeat and lively song will give you and your guests a lift and get them into the spirit of the reception which is about to come. Afterall, it is meant to be a celebration.
Wedding songs during photos
This is another of those times when you may want background music, so that there isn’t that eery silence of a big room or you’re maybe just trying to provide some extra entertainment for your best friends and family while they help you celebrate the wedding day. Whatever your reason for having the music, it doesn’t matter so much which individual songs are being played when it’s background music, as long as they don’t annoy everyone…agadoo springs to mind for me.
This means that once you have chosen your musician or band you can generally leave the tune selection to them, with an indication of your preferred genre of song.
Music for the Bride & groom’s grand entrance for the wedding breakfast
This is another moment a bit like going up and down the aisle when you are both centre stage and perhaps want to say something with the choice of music. Again, there is no right or wrong, but a more upbeat song will tend to get your guests cheering and really set them up for enjoying themselves through the wedding breakfast and into the evening when the dancing finally starts. The added bonus of creating a fun, lively atmosphere is that it can really help settle the nerves of anyone who is feeling slightly nervous about an upcoming speech.
If you have found this blog helpful, but still feel you need help, then please feel free to get in touch for some advice, whether you have booked me as your piper or not…I am always happy to help.