Congratulations! You're now husband and wife! You've left the church or other venue to the music of the recessional. Now your guests are in the event hall, smiling and talking about witnessing your great event. An abrupt ending of the music would chill the mood that you've carefully created. There is a need to keep and enhance the joyous feelings of all in attendance. The music that fills that need is called the Postlude.
"Post" as an adjective means after, so the postlude is the music that fills the hall after your ceremony. The idea is to keep that music going until the last person leaves and moves to the area for the cocktail hour or reception. The music should revert to the background at this point, but be more joyous and exuberant than the it was in leading up to the ceremony. After all we're celebrating your new marriage!
In some cases the band or pianist will have to leave the ceremony venue to move to the reception area immediately after the ceremony is completed. In this case, have the band leader or musician help with setting up an iPod with music for the Postlude. That way there's no abrupt stop.
Here are some popular Postlude songs:
For Once in My Life (Stevie Wonder)
All You Need Is Love (Beatles)
Waltz in A Flat (Brahms)
Exsultate Jubilate: Alleluia (Mozart)
Water Music: Air (Handel)
Fly Me To The Moon (Sinatra)
Signed, Sealed, Delivered (Stevie Wonder)
I Feel Good (James Brown)