WEDDINGS TIPS BLOG

WEDDING 101 – THE WEDDING CEREMONY - PROCESSION 

As a Jazz Band in the greater Los Angeles and in the greater Tampa Bay area, we have performed at several hundred weddings so far. We had the honor to be part of one of the most important events of a couple’s life and add our magic, to make this day unique and memorable.

With the next blogs we like to shed some light for the brides and grooms to be on the customary parts of a traditional Western wedding and include definition too. Of course this should only serve as inspiration, as each wedding is unique and there are no set in stone rules on the parts and sequence.

 

WEDDING CEREMONY:  

All parts of the formal exchange of vows in a special location. 

 

PROCESSION

The ceremonious entry of the wedding party at the beginning of the wedding ceremony. 

 

In Christian religion in church, the bride walking down the aisle accompanied by her father towards the altar, where the groom awaits her. 

In a traditional Jewish processional, the groom’s parents escort him down the aisle, followed by the bride being escorted down the aisle by her parents. 

 

BRIDESMAID:

A female friend who attends on a bride at her wedding.

GROOMSMEN:

A man who attends the bridegroom in a wedding ceremony. 

 

Often the processional begins with bridesmaids and groomsmen walking down the aisle, typically paired up. 

 

MAID OF HONOR:

The most important bridesmaid at a wedding ceremony 

BEST MAN:

A man serving as the main groomsman and right hand of the groom leading up and  during a wedding. 

 

The maid of honor and the best man walk down after all other bridesmaids and groomsmen have made their way down the aisle. 

 

RING BEARER:

Typically a young person who carries the rings during a wedding ceremony. 

FLOWER GIRL:

Usually a younger girl who spreads flower petals on the floor before the bride or to carry a bouquet of flowers. 

 

The ring bearer will then carry the rings to the altar, flowed by the flower girl.


Follow us with our wedding ceremony explanation in our next blog about the wedding ceremony

WEDDING 101 - THE WEDDING CEREMONY - EXCHANGE OF VOWS

 

Roger Harrison - solo performer, piano player and singer - and the Harrison Jazz Ensemble, a Jazz band in the greater Los Angeles and the greater Tampa bay area, will be happy to help you with music and more to make your big day a memory of a lifetime.

POPULAR SONGS TO WALK DOWN THE AISLE TO 

As previously mentioned, the customary song to walk down the aisle to in the Western hemisphere is "Here Comes The Bride", the Bridal Chorus by Richard Wagner. 

But for brides who prefer a popular song customized to this special occasion for their walk of their life, here are some suggestions in our last blog of tunes to walk down the aisle to.

 

Ed Sheeran - Perfect

 

Adele - Make you feel my love

 

John Legend - All of me

 

Israel "IZ" Kamakawiwoʻole - Somewhere over the Rainbow

 

Elvis Presley - Can't Help Falling In Love

 

You might have a unique personal song to use for this special walk. You might want to use the song with lyrics or have it played instrumentally. As the walk down the aisle is usually about one to two minutes long, it is smart to pick the best part of the song and customize it to fit your individual occasion. In any case, whatever genre or style you favor, the Harrison Jazz Ensemble, a Jazz band in the greater Tampa Bay area, can help you make your music choices work perfectly for your special event.

JAZZY TUNES TO WALK DOWN THE AISLE TO 

As already mentioned in our previous blog, the number one song to walk down the aisle to is "Here Comes The Bride", the Bridal Chorus by Richard Wagner.

But there is a certain percentage of brides that dreams of other tunes and here are some suggestions for the Jazz loving brides out there, who want to jazz up their walk of their life.

 

All Of Me - Roger Harrison as Solo Performer 

 

At Last - Etta James - Here with lyrics

 

My One And Only Love - John Coltrane and Johnny Hartman - Another unforgettable Jazz Classic

 

Louis Armstrong - What a Wonderful World 

 

Frank Sinatra - The Way You Look Tonight - With Lyrics

 

Louis and Ella - Dream a Little Dream of Me

 

What ever tune you have in mind and heart for that one or two minute walk, the Harrison Jazz Ensemble, a Jazz band in the greater Tampa Bay area, will be happy to edit and customize this song to shine the light on you on your unique walk down the aisle!

 

HERE COMES TE BRIDE! CLASSICAL SONGS TO WALK DOWN THE AISLE TO 

 

One of the most touching and memorable walks in a bride’s life, in which family and friends participate, will be her walk down the aisle. 

Most of the brides will pick “Here comes the bride” for that walk, the “Bridal Chorus” from the 1850 opera Lohengrin by German composer Richard Wagner. This march is played for the bride’s entrance at many formal weddings throughout the Western world. 

Some brides might want to pick some other classical songs, to set the tone for that special occasion, for which there are wonderful choices as well.

In this blog we will showcase “Here comes the bride” as first choice and some beautiful classic alternatives, for brides who want to go the less traditional route. 

In our next two blogs we will then showcase some more songs from other genres, which can set the tone and work perfectly too.

 

Bridal Chorus (Here comes the bride) - Richard Wagner 

 

Cantata BWV 147, Jesus, Joy Of Man's Desiring - Johann Sebastian Bach 

 

Ave Maria - Bach-Gounod

 

Wedding March - Mendelssohn


 

Canon in D - Johann Pachelbel 

 

Roger Harrison, piano player and singer, and the Harrison Jazz Ensemble, a Jazz band in the greater Tampa Bay area, can help you to create the dream music for your wedding and your wonderful walk down the aisle too!

TENDER SONGS FOR PARENT DANCES AT YOUR WEDDING  

Even though not mandatory, the father-daughter and mother-son dances are amongst some of the most emotional times of the day – in a positive way! Heartfelt tears, tender embraces, cheek-to-cheek moments, these are the things we live for. 

Here are some wonderful song ideas to get inspired for these special and unique dances at your wedding (maybe grab a box of Kleenex first): 

1. Wind beneath my Wings - Bette Midler 

2. Can you feel the love tonight? - Elton John 

3. My Girl – Temptations 

4. Simple Man - Lynyrd Skynyrd 

5. The first time I ever saw your face - Roberta Flack 

6. Because You Loved Me - Celine Dion 

7. You’ll be in my heart – Phil Collins 

8. You are the sunshine of my life – Stevie Wonder 

9. How sweet it is to be loved by you – Marvin Gaye 

10. I hope you dance – Lee Ann Womack 

The Harrison Jazz Ensemble, a Jazz band in the greater Tampa Bay area, can help you with song choices and will be happy to provide just the right music for your unique wedding. If desired we can even announce dances, speeches and more!

8 CLASSIC FIRST DANCE SONGS FOR YOUR WEDDING RECEPTION  

The first dance at a wedding reception is a significant song for the just married couple, to express their love for each other and for the world. 

 

Here are some all time favorites to consider: 

 

Etta James 

At Last 

"At Last" is a song written by Mack Gordon and Harry Warren for the musical film Sun Valley Serenade (1941). Glenn Miller and his orchestra recorded the tune several times, with a 1942 version reaching number two on the US Billboard pop music chart. In 1960, rhythm and blues singer Etta James recorded an arrangement by Riley Hampton that improvised on Warren's melody. James' version was the title track on her debut album At Last! (1960) and was inducted into the Grammy Hall of Fame in 1999. Celine Dion and Beyoncé also had chart successes with the song. 

 

Eric Clapton 

Wonderful Tonight 

Eric Clapton is an in international guitarist, singer and songwriter renowned for his hits “Wonderful Tonight,” “Pretending,” “Call Me The Breeze,” “Forever Man,” “My Father’s Eyes,” “Change The World,” and “Layla.” He worked with artists like B.B. King, Roger Waters, Peter Frampton, and George Harrison — amassing billions of global streams and is the only three-time inductee to the “Rock and Roll Hall of Fame.” 

 

Joe Cocker 

You are so beautiful 

Chorus:

You are so beautiful 
To me 
You are so beautiful 
To me 
Can't you see 
You're everything I hoped for 
You're everything I need

 

Frank Sinatra 

The Way You Look Tonight 

Lyrics: Some day, when I'm awfully low, When the world is cold, I will feel a glow just thinking of you... And the way you look tonight. Yes you're lovely, with your smile so warm And your cheeks so soft, There is nothing for me but to love you, And the way you look tonight. With each word your tenderness grows, Tearing my fear apart... And that laugh that wrinkles your nose, It touches my foolish heart. Lovely ... Never, ever change. Keep that breathless charm. Won't you please arrange it ? 'Cause I love you ... Just the way you look tonight. Mm, Mm, Mm, Mm, Just the way you look to-night. 

 

Nat King Cole 

Unforgettable 

Unforgettable That's what you are, Unforgettable Tho' near or far...

 

Fred Astaire 

Cheek To Cheek 

"Cheek to Cheek" is a song written by Irving Berlin in 1935,for the Fred Astaire/Ginger Rogers movie Top Hat (1935).In the movie, Astaire sings the song to Rogers as they dance. The song was nominated for the Best Song Academy Award for 1936, which it lost to "Lullaby of Broadway".

Heaven, I'm in Heaven, And my heart beats so that I can hardly speak; And I seem to find the happiness I seek When we're out together dancing, cheek to cheek...

 

Elvis Presley 

Can’t Help Falling In Love 

Wise men say Only fools rush in

But I can't help falling in love with you...

 

John Legend 

All Of Me 

Chorus:

'Cause all of me

Loves all of you

Love your curves and all your edges

All your perfect imperfections

Give your all to me

I'll give my all to you

You're my end and my beginnin'

Even when I lose, I'm winnin'

 

WEDDING THEMES AND COLORS Part 3 


 

Here are some more styles to consider for your big celebration of you two: 

Modern Wedding 

A modern wedding shines in bright clear colors, with white, grey and black. Metal, stone and glass together with straight lines and shapes are added to the equation. Here the couple can splurge on colors carefully avoiding the softer and more muted hues.

The modern style can be seen in dresses, decorations and even in the location. An industrial warehouse, a loft or a roof top are great locations to pick but also less dramatic places can be the right place to celebrate your big day in your unique way. 

Vintage Wedding 

A vintage wedding takes your guests back to another time. It usually uses vintage clothing and vintage decoration. Antique furniture fits very well with it and an antique car for the married couple can add to the message.

Its colors are more on the soft than on the too bright shining side. You might have that hand down wedding gown or the antique furniture already in the family to use for this special occasion. Older buildings or gardens are a great location for your vintage wedding, but you can usually make a lot of other locations work. 

DIY wedding 

Here you have probably the most opportunity to add your personality and your creativity to your big day. There are lots of possibilities to create for yourself from the wedding invitations, ceremonial arch, ceremony backdrop, to the decorations of the chairs, floors, walls and more.

The foods and beverages are also open for your personal spin and creation, in all possible styles and colors, whatever you cherish most.

Your home or your backyard are a good location but you can make lots of other venues work for a successful DIY wedding. 

Glamorous Wedding 

Couples who love the lavish and luxurious might prefer a glamorous wedding.  A glam wedding shines and sparkles in any color scheme with white as the predominant base color. Metallic tones are often added as well.

This kind of wedding usually includes some jaw dropping elements, like a flower wall or fireworks. A ballroom or luxurious estate can be a great location to host it. Consider live entertainment too as surprise! 

The Harrison Jazz Ensemble, a Jazz Band in the greater Tampa Bay area can help with all your music needs for whatever style you pick for your big celebration!

WEDDING THEMES AND COLORS Part 2  

Next we want to go over some common wedding styles and the colors that usually go along with them. 

1)      Classic Wedding 

A classic wedding is one that is timeless. It’s the most popular and usually defined as a more formal wedding, with clean lines and a traditional overall look and feel. Here your colors are already set with white dress and black suit and tie and you can add one or two colors of your choice in your clothes and decorations and make different kinds of venues work for you. 

2)      Romantic Wedding 

Of course every wedding is romantic and celebrates a love story in its unique ways, but a romantic wedding style would usually have added romantic elements. Flowers are a key element and also soft hues, pastel colors, flowing airy dresses and delicate lighting like hanging lights or candles. Venues like a park, a botanical garden or an old stylish building can add to the occasion, as well as poetry, oil paintings, and grand pianos. 

3)       Rustic Wedding 

The rustic wedding theme is still going strong, in which natural elements like wood, stone and foliage set the tone for a farm to table experience. String lights, wood boxes, shabby chic tables, mason jars, natural cotton and paper, lace and burlap can be used as features. Consider natural and earthy colors and a barn, a farm, a backyard or a rural setting and make sure you serve fresh food. 

4)         Themed Wedding

Here's where you can have lots of laughter and enjoyment.  Do you and your beloved have a common interest that you'd like to make central to your wedding?   Some themes that other couples have used include Harry Potter, The Beatles, Star Wars, etc.   

This is great when you simply want to have some fun with your guests in celebrating your big day.  The bride, groom and the guests are all in on the joke,  and sometimes even dress as part of the theme. Makes for a very memorable experience!

There are no hard and fast rules.  Take these ideas as a starting point.  You can even create a unique style by mixing some of these elements.

Remember it's YOUR big day! 

The Harrison Jazz Ensemble, a jazz band in the greater Tampa Bay area, can accommodate all your music needs for your unique wedding. 

Join us with our next blog for more popular wedding styles and matching colors.

WEDDING THEMES AND COLORS Part 1  

 

 

 

When you get ready to tie the knot with your beloved one, you might want to both sit down and imagine which style of wedding would suit you two best. You might have always dreamed of a white traditional wedding in the church, the bohemian wedding at the beach, the rustic wedding in the barn or backyard or a seasonal wedding. 

Are there specific colors you feel drawn to, you feel represent you best and you like to implement? 

Is there a special venue you already have in mind? 

Your wedding theme and color scheme will set the stage for your special occasion and can add greatly to the beauty, the aesthetics and the enjoyment of the event. 

With style, color, clothes, food, decoration and the location of the event, you two will create your unique celebration together, in which all your family and friends participate. 

If your venue is a modern setting with white walls, black and gray chairs, red carpets and lots of steel, you might reconsider it, if you are planning a romantic wedding with dusty rose dresses for the bridesmaids. 

So start to imagine and dream and we will go over some examples for wedding styles and colors in our next blog. 

You are creating your very own possibly first piece of art together here and it will be fun too!

HOW TO SAVE MONEY GETTING YOUR PERFECT WEDDING DRESS - PART TWO  

 

 

Here are some more ideas how you can save money getting your perfect wedding dress: 

1. Negotiate 

After you found your perfect match in the bridal store, can you negotiate the price of the dress? 

YES!

If you are able to find competitive pricing online, make sure you bring it to the store and ask the sales manager to match it. 

2. Renting a dress and the accessories is another way to go

If you put "rent a dress" in a search engine, lots of local stores to choose from will pop up, or another option is:

https://www.allure.com/story/best-places-to-shop-affordable-wedding-dresses 

Here you can rent a designer dress for 80 % off retail. 

3. By buying a machine-made gown and by shopping at large retailers you can easily land at the lower end of the price spectrum. 

Here are 26 places to shop for affordable wedding dresses: 

https://www.allure.com/story/best-places-to-shop-affordable-wedding-dresses 

4. Another charming idea is to wear the dress that is handed down through generations. It might be out of date and might not be your style, but you will look like a million bucks.

Happy creating and saving!