wedding ceremony music melbourne

5 Common Questions About Wedding Ceremony Music

5 Common questions about wedding ceremony music

Melbourne Celebrant Common Questions

Let’s talk wedding ceremony music. How many songs will I need for my wedding? Is Spotify or a live band better for the ceremony? Who’s controls the wedding music? How long should each song be? Do I need a licence to play wedding ceremony music?

wedding music melbourne

Angus Legg (@angusleggmusic) – I’ve done many weddings with this great man and he is an incredible musician. Chilled out, brings a great vibe as well as his voice and guitar.

Question 1: How many songs will I need for my wedding ceremony?

Let’s start with ‘The Basic’ vs ‘The Whole Shebang’!

‘The Basic’ involves three songs to create a great atmosphere for your wedding ceremony… plus an amazing Melbourne celebrant I know 😉.

The Basic:
Song #1 (Processional):
When your bridal party and yourself/selves walk in

Song #2 (Signing):
When you sign the legal wedding documents with 2 witnesses

Song #3 (Recessional):
When you walk back down the aisle as a married couple with everyone throwing money at you… hopefully.

‘The Whole Shebang’ is like adding a few entrees and matching wines to the menu for a much better overall experience.

The Whole Shebang:

5-10 x Atmosphere songs:
Include 5-10 songs for playing softly in the background to ease everyone into the moment.

1 x Processional:

2 x Signing:
Add a second song for your signing in case your first song isn’t long enough.

1 x Recessional
You can also pop the 5-10 atmosphere playlist back on at this point

Using Spotify at Wedding Ceremony

Question 2: Should I use Spotify or a Live band for my wedding?

Whether I’m a Yarra Valley Wedding Celebrant or Melbourne Wedding Celebrant for the afternoon, I personally prefer a live band/duo. I choose them because the timing is always seamless and avoids those awkward silences from when someone hits play a little late. Another benefit is that musicians can quickly wrap up a song or naturally prolong a songs end without bringing attention to it.

Generally speaking, if you don’t notice something, it’s because it was done well – like when you’re listening to radio, all is perfect until there’s 2 seconds … of dead air.

But I get it, this decision is dependent on many factors: like if your music people or your budget or if you just neeeeeed Ed Sheeran himself to serenade you through the speaker! Some of the issues I’ve also mentioned won’t happen if you choose the right person to control the music.

Wedding Songs Melbourne

Brentwood Duo (@brentwoodduo) – They’ve opened many weddings that I’ve done and they have killer voices. Check out how they started on X Factor and featured on Deadpool Unloaded.

Question 3: Who should control my wedding music?

As your celebrant I’m there to create an easy going, flowing and engaging experience for everyone; I want my attention on your guests, the timing of my delivery and my hands are also full with a microphone and iPad. So, I recommend picking a trusted friend or family member to be your music person if you choose not to use a live band.

Qualities of your music person:
Gives a 💩
They know the basics of Spotify or iTunes
They have a sense of timing and can fade music

Ultimately it comes down to them paying attention during the ceremony, as they’re focussed for their next cue. Copy and paste my tips for that person.

Tips on nailing our ceremony music:
Thank you so much for helping us play our wedding songs, here’s what our celebrant gave us to send you.

  • Check the device is Bluetooth connected before the ceremony – even double check if you’ve walked far away from the speaker after initially connecting it.
  • Ask for the celebrants cues if they haven’t been given them or are still unsure.
  • Have them sit/stand close to the speaker so the Bluetooth link stays strong. Bluetooth provides great quality sound, but not quality connection; if someone walks between the device and speaker, it may cut out for a split second.
  • Fadeeee the music down; stopping their favourite song chosen for one of the biggest days of their life dead in its track is like hurting a bunny… we just don’t do it.
Wedding Music Melbourne

The White Tree (@thewhitetree) – I have a lil (lot of) crush on The White Tree, it started back in 2013 and continues strong to this day. While their focus is receptions (video and photography too), they also do ceremonies.

Question 4: How long should my wedding song be?

There’s no right or wrong for this, I’ve had music play for over a minute before anyone walked down the aisle because they loved the song. It’s better if it’s longer so the chosen person can fade it down rather than have to play it through again.

Wedding Ceremony Music

Question 5: Do I need to pay for a license to play music at my wedding?

Thankfully no! After being in contact with OnMusic (the organisation businesses need to purchase licenses in order to play music legally), they said:

The public performance of musical works (APRA) and/or sound recordings (PPCA) during a wedding ceremony is deemed by OneMusic to be ‘domestic’ in nature. Therefore, the following uses of music within the wedding ceremony DO NOT require a OneMusic licence:

  • Use of recorded works (via devices such as CD’s, iPod etc.)
  • DJ’s playing recorded music
  • Live performances (e.g. band, string quartet etc.)

So when you’re ready to walk down the aisle, all we need to do is hit play. ​🙌

If you want want tips, stories and suggestions on how to make your day all the more special, subscribe here and don’t miss out!

Planning your wedding and need a Melbourne Wedding Celebrant – Look no further, you’ve found me! I’ll guide you through the whole process; vows, paperwork, story writing and stand by you on the day to deliver the ceremony you desire. Let’s talk!

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Melbourne Celebrant’s Wedding Day Part 2

A Melbourne Celebrant’s Wedding Day Part 2

The Real Shin-dig!

Those Feels!!

We were late for our Melbourne wedding; because why not, we’d just come from our other one (read blog 2 if this makes no sense). Once the bus stopped, my boys and I jumped out and walked down to the front of the room; that’s when it hit me!

 

I remember the feeling of walking into an electric atmosphere of anticipation and excitement. Everyone was beaming their pearly whites, all wanted to hug and kiss us…and I couldn’t help hope they wanted to give us lots of presents too (just being honest)!

My groomsmen and I assumed the position, in order, on a slight angle and flys up. The music began to play (have no idea what it was), and then came my soon to be daughter Mila as our flower girl, the bridesmaids and my gorgeous Bride. I wish I wasn’t so soppy about this moment, because I’m not a soppy guy, but I’d be lying if I tried to down play my personal experience. I could see people were looking and her, then at me to read my face, then back and her… and then back at me. It was an incredibly beautiful and overwhelming feeling to watch Grace walk down the aisle with her parents either side.

Celebrants Wedding Melbourne

Who does a celebrant’s wedding?

I also had the perfect celebrant for us, Darren my previous youth pastor and friend. He’s the main reason I love to be upfront with a microphone and if it wasn’t for his trust and giving me opportunities to speak publicly (we’re talking 13 year old voice popping age too) I probably wouldn’t be doing what I do today.

As expected he was faultless at the job; spoke to the room with confidence, kept us calm, had us in stitches and set the tone of our wedding, from ‘pretend’ ceremony at Fitzroy Gardens to the real one.

The words Darren shared aren’t exactly what I remember; however the emotion, the vibe, the energy is what I can still feel when I think back to it! He carried the atmosphere we walked into and only added to it; that’s what made it great!
During the ceremony Grace and I shared the same vows, gifted each other rings (custom designed by Chris Hannan at Hannan Jewellery Design) and finished it with a big ol kiss! Hello world, meet Mr and Mrs Hordern!!

First Dance Melbourne

The Reception

After the ceremony we went to our reception at The Pavilion in the Fitzroy Gardens where we were showered with cheers, hugs, canapes, drinks and gifts (Yea Baby!).

Our first dance was a perfect cliché to ‘Thousand Years’ followed by our speeches where people still comment on Nick’s (Best Man) speech (mostly for good reasons haha).

We chose not to have a sit down wedding – both a financial and atmosphere decision, there were some chairs for some to sit, but we wanted guests to mingle and dance.

What My Wedding Taught Me

All in all, the lessons I walked away from our wedding were;
  • Make sure you get to eat some of your own wedding cake (still shattered about that one)
  • Don’t be afraid to do things differently or something cliché, if you like it and want/don’t want it for yours, choose it or don’t. Yes you may have to make some choices to keep other significant parties happy, but it’s yours to choose.
  • Enjoy each moment - the day goes quick!
  • Remember to "stop" throughout the day and take it all in. After all, this is your special day.
A celebrants melbourne wedding

Thankyou to everyone who made our wedding day possible and the parts you played; both big and small, upfront or unseen – you made it great for us.

If you want want tips, stories and suggestions on how to make your day all the more special, subscribe here and don’t miss out!

Planning your wedding and need a Melbourne Wedding Celebrant – Look no further, you’ve found me! I’ll guide you through the whole process; vows, paperwork, story writing and stand by you on the day to deliver the ceremony you desire. Let’s talk!

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Melbourne Celebrant’s Wedding Day Part 1

A Melbourne Celebrant’s Wedding Day

Perfect Wedding Weather

We had the perfect wedding day…wait…in mid-March you’d expect to have the perfect wedding day weather…here’s what really happened:
Melbourne Celebrant Wedding
Our plan was to be married at The Fitzroy Gardens, with the Observatory as our backdrop in the afternoon sun surrounded by friends and family. The morning began with our bridal party getting ready together in Kew, my mum was cooking a hot breakfast for everyone, champagne glasses filled to the top and lots of laughter! My role was simple; wear clean underwear, get suited up, finalise *cough*… start speech and smile and keep the groomsmen under control and keep my bride smiling (where was that champagne again?). When it comes to your bridal party – feed them, water them and thank them; it’s a huge day for everyone and the simple things will keep everyone in high spirits (especially spirits). Massive thanks to my boys Nick, Noel, Tyson and Ezra, and Grace’s ladies Sarah, Liza, Holly and Millie for being amazing on our big day. Another hot tip when it comes to feeding everyone – find someone like my mum where their Greek genes (or love for food) will instinctively cause them to overcook for the breakfast/lunch – this is a great thing!! As is keeping guests happy.

Remember To Smile For Those Wedding Photos

One thing I used to despise about weddings when I would attend was the empty gap of 4 hours in the day from ceremony to reception so the couple could take photos. I get it, I completely do; it’s a great time to hit all those incredible Melbourne scenes for the perfect wedding photos. But as a guest, it felt like a drainer. So to avoid that we got all our photos taken before the ceremony during the day; literally stuffed our bridal party into a 12 seater (Thanks for driving Pato!) and herded them around Melbourne city and the botanical gardens. It was definitely fresh and colder than expected, but it wasn’t too bad – not like we’d have to change venue’s more than once.
celebrant-wedding-melbourne

Prepare for bad weather…it’s a Melbourne Wedding

2 hours from our ceremony and our family kept calling to figure out if we were going to brave the weather or change location. The problem was…we didn’t have a Plan B (always…always have a Plan B!). At this time of life I was working at a church in Richmond and it was completely convenient and available..but as I basically lived there, it was the last place I wanted to get married. However as I looked as my wife standing outside prickled with goosebumps I made the call to have it indoors.

I honestly can’t thank those enough who were involved in its transformation; they flipped a massive foyer into a lavishly intimate and stunning venue, those being Luke (bro in law), Ashley (was her and Matts celebrant later on) and Dave (he’s just Dave, he bakes the best treats and I love him). However before we even got there, something happened.

celebrant pete melbourne

Surprise Wedding

As we left the city cruising towards Richmond the rain ceased for a pivotal moment as we were driving past The Observatory. Thankfully Pato (who married Millie, who was a bridesmaid for Grace, who got me to marry them in TAS…I digress) pulled over so we could have the ceremony we (Grace) had always wanted.

Out jumped our bridal party to assume the position, our celebrant and my youth pastor Darren McMahon ready at the drop of a hat to have an exciting and surreal experience, even if it wasn’t legal because we didn’t sign anything. We popped back in the van and headed towards Richmond where the real deal took place!

To read ‘The Real Shin-dig!’ (because we actually signed) it’s coming next blog!

A celebrants melbourne wedding

If you want to know about ‘Our Day’, the post is coming soon, subscribe here not to miss it!

Planning your wedding and need a Melbourne Wedding Celebrant – Look no further, you’ve found me! I’ll guide you through the whole process; vows, paperwork, story writing and stand by you on the day to deliver the ceremony you desire. Let’s talk!

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pete the celebrant melbourne

Melbourne Celebrant Falls In Love

When a Melbourne Celebrant Falls In Love

My wife and I met at a wedding in Melbourne, not one I was the celebrant for though – that’s just unprofessional. She was easy to notice; beautiful, tall and… 7 months pregnant. I didn’t notice anyone with her or see a ring on her finger. Thankfully my friend and assistant at the time Laura was also there. She knew Grace and confirmed her singleness and with a cheeky smile, then told me she thought we’d get on well.
Pete and Grace Wedding Celebration Melbourne

It all began at a wedding?

The game plan would take place at The Atlantic in Docklands during the wedding reception where I’d approach Laura with a question while she was mid-conversation with Grace and naturally turn to introduce me.

The plan worked flawlessly! We began chatting and it was going…well..? There was no spark! She was stunning, interesting, smart… but no feelings of pizazz! So I left the conversation feeling disappointed and thought ‘Nice girl, but nothing there for us’.

Grace, on the other hand, left the conversation and just knew she’d met her future husband! Unknown to me began telling her friends and family the day after…creepy right? Like she’s a creep, I totally agree. But she’s my creep!

Authenticity wins the day

A few weeks later I’d just left work when I got a call telling me Grace was at Groove Train in Richmond across the road. So I turned around at the roundabout because… I don’t even know why; all I know is suddenly my heart was thumping! As I crossed the road I have the thought ‘it’s weird if you just walk up to her and sit down, what’s your plan champ?’.

Strolling into the café with slightly sweaty palms I began talking to one of the waitresses, asking about information for a booking or something. While I’m pretending to listen I “accidentally” notice Grace and politely wave and then walk over to chat with her. Starting the conversation with “Hi…Grace, right?” (somebody high five me here!)

We spoke for about an hour where she opens up about her whole life story…like everything! You know how people have their guards up for at least 3-6 months while dating…none of that! Yet THAT’S what I connected with, her authenticity and frankness.

You won’t believe what happened next…

Pete & Grace relationship

Meet the parents…

From there we got to know each other, it was sooo easy, we would sit and effortlessly chat for hours (this easy flowing conversation is ironically what I hear almost every couple tell me they experience). A few months later when Mila was born she sent me a text and I turned up to the hospital with flowers for the most awkward waiting room experience known to mankind.

Surrounded by uncomfortable silence I met two of her sisters Sarah and Lisa, her best friend Millie (was her and Pato’s wedding celebrant a few years later in Tasmania at Josef Chromy Wines), her Dad Gerard and his partner Sarah.

There are many things I could say about this experience; for someone who confidently speaks in front of audiences of hundreds – I wanted the ground to swallow me whole when Sarah jokingly said to Gerard “well go on, this is your chance to ask him something embarrassing”.

Pete & Grace Engagement

The Celebrant’s proposal!

While there’s debate over when we started officially dating and let’s be honest, there’s normally contention over this fact…the truth is it was in July.

I was certain I knew what and who I wanted, so I took a little trip to visit Chris Hannan from Hannan Jewellery Designs. We sat and chatted over a drink about the style of ring, the diamond grading and organised to visit him again in a few weeks when he’d completed the design. It was incredible! He showed me a 360-degree detailed diagram of exactly what the ring would look like; happy days!!

In October, a few months later, we went driving just outside Melbourne to Cannibal Creek Vineyard for a “picnic” (obviously I chose that location for the name). I led her blindfolded to the perfect view where she could read the balloons ‘MARRY ME’ tied to the vineyard poles by my best mate Nick, soon to be Best Man. I undid the blindfold, got down on one knee and proposed in French. All photographed by her sister Sarah to capture the memory.

Finally, by March we were married! Now that’s a day I will never forget and conveniently wrote it all down for the next blog post!

A celebrants melbourne wedding

If you want to know about ‘Our Day’, the post is coming soon, subscribe here not to miss it!

Planning your wedding and need a Melbourne Wedding Celebrant – Look no further, you’ve found me! I’ll guide you through the whole process; vows, paperwork, story writing and stand by you on the day to deliver the ceremony you desire. Let’s talk!

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