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Thread: Songs for a wedding

  1. #1
    Registered User paulspafford's Avatar
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    Default Songs for a wedding

    I've been asked to play at a wedding ceremony. I've started learning the Bridal March, but need to play while the signing is happening as well. I may get some input from the bride and groom. If I do, I'd like to suggest some tunes for them; if I don't, then I need to get learning some stuff right away.

    I mostly use my mando to accompany my voice while I sing songs about death and heartbreak. Those songs aren't appropriate - and really, my vocal style isn't either.

    So I'm looking for tunes appropriate for a wedding ceremony, but I don't know enough tunes to choose for myself.

    Suggestions? Bonus points if the tab is in the tablature library. Half points if you can point me to some standard notation.

  2. #2
    Registered User Mike Buesseler's Avatar
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    Default Re: Songs for a wedding

    (Ooh! Bonus points!) Do you know The Ash Grove? Lovely, easy, tab is here!
    --Mike Buesseler

  3. #3
    Mandolin user MontanaMatt's Avatar
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    Default Re: Songs for a wedding

    Oopik Waltz, Ashokan Farewell, Salt Spring (played slowly), Billy in the Lowground
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    Registered User zookster's Avatar
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    Default Re: Songs for a wedding

    Haste to the Wedding.

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    Default Re: Songs for a wedding

    I have played exactly one wedding and the couple waltzed down the aisle while we played Lover's Waltz. One of my favorite playing experiences ever.
    Bobby Bill

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    Default Re: Songs for a wedding

    Wedding Tarantella
    Argeers (aka the Wedding Night) : https://thesession.org/tunes/13887
    - Jeremy

    Wot no catchphrase?

  8. #7

    Default Re: Songs for a wedding

    Lots of classical music works for the processional and recessional. I have used the middle movement from a Haydn Sonata for a processional and a Clementi Sonatina for the recessional. Our daughter used two movements from a Haydn Sonata for her processional and recessional. Two pieces that I have managed to NOT have to use are the traditional wedding march (Lohengrin) and Pachelbel's Canon.

    Using tunes with "wedding" in the name is clever, but only to you, as hardly anyone will know the name of an instrumental tune.

  9. #8
    Registered User paulspafford's Avatar
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    Default Re: Songs for a wedding

    Thanks, y’all. I’ll check this stuff out. I forgot to mention that the wedding is in a month; doubt I’ll be learning any Tarantella in that time!

  10. #9
    Registered User Mike Buesseler's Avatar
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    Default Re: Songs for a wedding

    I heard You Are My Sunshine played at a wedding once...on a banjo. Coolest thing ever.
    --Mike Buesseler

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    Default Re: Songs for a wedding

    The Wedding Song written by Paul Stookey was popular back when I was playing weddings. R/
    I love hanging out with mandolin nerds . . . . . Thanks peeps ...

  12. #11
    Registered User foldedpath's Avatar
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    Default Re: Songs for a wedding

    In recent years I played in a mandolin + guitar duo that played a bunch of weddings (we finally figured out that was where the money was, vs. bar gigs). Mainly Irish trad, background music for the reception. But we did often get requests to play the processional and recessional for the ceremony.

    Most often requested for the processional was the (cough, sputter, please don't make me play it again) Pachabel Canon in D. It's not a difficult tune to learn if you focus only on the part that people recognize. People loove this tune. You can't miss with it, and it sits easily on mandolin.

    A tune we often used for the recessional as the bride and groom walked back down the aisle was "Banish Misfortune," a lively and happy-feeling tune that happens to have a nice title for the event.

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    Default Re: Songs for a wedding

    How about " All The Good Times Are Past And Gone"

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    Default Re: Songs for a wedding

    You and I were meant to be together, by the Statler brothers.My Only Love is the title of this song.

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  17. #14
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    Default Re: Songs for a wedding

    What about "Give me your hand" from O'Neill's?

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  19. #15

    Default Re: Songs for a wedding

    "Waltz Across Texas". Pleasant love-story happy-ending type of lyrics. An example, nice mandolin solo by Alan Sibley at 0:50:


    (or direct link)

    I just noticed that the OP is in Canada, quite a ways from Texas, but I suppose one could substitute a local geographic name to make the song more personalized for the wedding? Just thinking out loud...

    One thing I'm wondering, will the venue allow you to perform anything you want regardless of copyright? Or are you limited to old public-domain music? "Waltz Across Texas" was written in 1965 so it presumably has the usual copyright/performance strings attached as far as what people are/aren't allowed to do with the music.

  20. #16
    Registered User Bruce Clausen's Avatar
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    Default Re: Songs for a wedding

    A coupe of oldies I always think of for weddings are "Chains" and "Mother-in-law".

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  22. #17
    Registered User paulspafford's Avatar
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    Default Re: Songs for a wedding

    Quote Originally Posted by JL277z View Post

    I just noticed that the OP is in Canada, quite a ways from Texas, but I suppose one could substitute a local geographic name to make the song more personalized for the wedding? Just thinking out loud...

    One thing I'm wondering, will the venue allow you to perform anything you want regardless of copyright? Or are you limited to old public-domain music? "Waltz Across Texas" was written in 1965 so it presumably has the usual copyright/performance strings attached as far as what people are/aren't allowed to do with the music.
    I guess there arenít really any copyright issues. The wedding is happening in a private home. Iíll check this out - thanks!

    Iím doing instrumentals because Iím usually a blues guy and there is absolutely nothing about my voice that says "hopeful, young love".

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    Registered User Randi Gormley's Avatar
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    Default Re: Songs for a wedding

    OK, when my-husband-the-guitar-player and I were asked to play music for my nephew's wedding, we were asked to use Into the West (from the Lord of the Rings movie) as the wedding march (you can find it on YouTube) and Maury's Wedding as a recessional (slow, melodic and somber for the march, lively for the recessional). and the rest was just incidental stuff, so we played what we knew best -- which for us was ITM standards. I was able to find the sheet music for Into the West in various keys at sheetmusic.com (yes, there is such a thing) and there might also be tabs involved but i personally wasn't looking (I can't read tab) so i can't say for sure. Nice pieces, both of them.
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  26. #19
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    Default Re: Songs for a wedding

    Quote Originally Posted by Mandoplumb View Post
    How about " All The Good Times Are Past And Gone"
    Boy howdy.
    "The paths of experimentation twist and turn through mountains of miscalculations, and often lose themselves in error and darkness!"
    --Leslie Daniel, "The Brain That Wouldn't Die."

    Some tunes: https://soundcloud.com/j-person

  27. #20
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    Default Re: Songs for a wedding

    Banks of the Ohio !
    My two favorite pastimes are drinking wine and playing the mandolin but most of my friends would rather hear me drink wine! Adapted from quote by Mark Twain------supposedly !

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  29. #21
    Registered User paulspafford's Avatar
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    Default Re: Songs for a wedding

    Quote Originally Posted by yankees1 View Post
    Banks of the Ohio !
    Perhaps I should have mentioned that this is my girlfriend's nephew, and she was the one to tell me "No songs about death or heartbreak".

    And I really like her.

  30. #22
    Mandolin user MontanaMatt's Avatar
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    Default Re: Songs for a wedding

    Quote Originally Posted by paulspafford View Post
    Perhaps I should have mentioned that this is my girlfriend's nephew, and she was the one to tell me "No songs about death or heartbreak".

    And I really like her.
    Play it instrumentally, or make up nice words.
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  31. #23

    Default Re: Songs for a wedding

    Quote Originally Posted by paulspafford View Post
    I've been asked to play at a wedding ceremony. I've started learning the Bridal March, but need to play while the signing is happening as well. I may get some input from the bride and groom. If I do, I'd like to suggest some tunes for them; if I don't, then I need to get learning some stuff right away.

    I mostly use my mando to accompany my voice while I sing songs about death and heartbreak. Those songs aren't appropriate - and really, my vocal style isn't either.

    So I'm looking for tunes appropriate for a wedding ceremony, but I don't know enough tunes to choose for myself.

    Suggestions? Bonus points if the tab is in the tablature library. Half points if you can point me to some standard notation.
    Lovers Waltz by Jay ungar. Over grown waltz by Bela fleck
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  32. #24
    Confused... or?
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    Default Re: Songs for a wedding

    Since we're straying a bit from the OP's request, let me keep it a little more focused on, ya know, a wedding?

    Even now, 40+ years later, I'm still floored by my wife's college buddy who chose Jefferson Airplane's (by then, relatively obscure) "Today" for their first dance:

    Today, I feel like pleasing you
    More than before
    Today, I know what I want to do
    But I don't know what for
    To be living for you
    Is all I want to do
    To be loving you
    It'll all be there
    When my dreams come true

    Today, you'll make me say
    That I somehow have changed
    Today, you'll look into my eyes
    I'm just not the same
    To be any more than all I am
    Would be a lie
    I'm so full of love
    I could burst apart
    And start to cry

    Today, everything you want
    I swear it will all come true
    Today, I realize how much
    I'm in love with you
    With you standing here
    I could tell the world
    What it means to love
    To go on from here
    I can't use words
    They don't say enough

    Please, please listen to me
    It's taken so long to come true
    It's all for you, all for you

    Songwriters: Marty Balin / Paul Kantner

    (Side comments: I got to see both Balin, solo, and Kantner, w/ Starship, perform within the past 5 years or so; both great shows. Unfortunately, Kantner died in 2016, Balin in 2018.)
    Last edited by EdHanrahan; Mar-20-2019 at 1:05pm.
    - Ed

    "What our group lacks in musicianship is offset by our willingness to humiliate ourselves." - David Hochman

  33. #25

    Default Re: Songs for a wedding

    Quote Originally Posted by EdHanrahan View Post
    Since we're straying a bit from the OP's request, let me keep it a little more focused on, ya know, a wedding?

    Even now, 40+ years later, I'm still floored by my wife's college buddy who chose Jefferson Airplane's (by then, relatively obscure) "Today" for their first dance
    what a great song, i discovered it back in 05ish when i was 14/15, my wedding is coming up and I should have the Dj play this

    Beethoven wrote 4 pieces for mandolin and piano, we'll be playing Adagio for Mandolin in E flat(WoO43b) during our ceremony

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