Trumpet Voluntary-Jeremiah Clarke

Trumpet Voluntary by Jeremiah Clarke (1674-1707) is probably the perfect recessional song for your wedding. I used this version because French trumpeter Maurice Andre (1933-2012) was one of the finest trumpeters of the 20th century.

Fun Fact: The horn he is playing in this clip, is called a piccolo trumpet, because of the smaller size, as well as its ability to play in extremely high registers, not reachable on a traditional trumpet.

Clarke wrote during the same period as more celebrated Baroque masters Bach, Vivaldi and Handel. This piece is one of the most recognizable 3:35 minute pieces in the history of “Classical Music.” Music of the Baroque period adds a uniquely stately, regal air to any occasion. Trumpet Voluntary is the perfect soundtrack to celebrate your wedding vows

Let me know what you think.

The Four Seasons, Spring 1st Movement-Vivaldi

The opening notes of the first movement of the “Spring” concerto composed by Antonio Vivaldi  is one of the most instantly recognized pieces of music from classical music’s Baroque period.  In fact, he wrote music during the same years as Bach, Handel and Scarlatti. (What a dream team, especially when you add Vivaldi).  After all, ” The Four Seasons”  is more of a compilation of masterworks than one single concerto. As a matter of fact, it includes four complete concerti, one named for each season.  To be precise, you are listening to the Concerto No. 1 in E major, Op. 8, RV 269, “La primavera” (Spring)

This is a spectacular choice for a “classical” recession.  There’s an incredible feeling of majesty courtesy of the violins, which are “driving” the piece. It’s delicate yet fierce; a complex but lovely juxtaposition. The lightness and the speed of the “allegro” (fast) movement gives the piece a great “regal” sense of  love to beautifully escort you out of the chapel as partners for life. images

Listen and leave a comment. I’d love to hear your thoughts.

Water Music, Suite #2, Alla Hornpipe-George Frideric Handel

George Frideric Handel and Johann Sebastian Bach composed some of the most beloved music of all time. Ironically, both were born and raised in Germany in the same year, 1685. Bach lived until 1750, Handel until 1759. The inspiring and elegant work of these two men literally has come to represent the very definition of the term “Baroque Music.”
Handel is most often remembered for composing The Messiah, with its famous “Hallelujah Chorus.”  (Bach is remembered for composing just about everything else). But, in addition,
Handel’s “Water Music” remains one of his most enduring compositions. What you are listening to is his “Suite in D Major,” often referred to as “Suite No. 2.”  (There are three entire suites that comprise the complete “Water Music.” )  To make it a little more confusing, each suite is made up of several parts. “Alla Hornpipe” is the name given to the 2nd movement of the 2nd suite.

George Frideric Handel

The piece is known for its regal nobility and triumphant trumpets. It runs deep and powerfully. And it translates so beautifully into other instruments,  as it sounds just as spectacular with a string quartet if you are using traditional “Classical” Music. It’s definitely a bold choice for your recession. But if you can “own” that sense of elegant monarchy and power for just a few minutes, it’s an exquisite solution.

Please leave a comment to let me know what you think.



All You Need Is Love-The Beatles

“All You Need Is Love” is one of the Beatles’ most iconic recordings. The song was released in 1967 and was supposed to be an anthem for socio-political optimism for peace and love. Unfortunately,  John Lennon’s words weren’t exactly taken quite as optimistically as intended. For more of what happened the following year, read on.

But before I get on a rant here, the purpose of this post is to talk about how The Beatles’ song became a surprise hit again in 2003. This joyful scene from the beloved rom-com “Love Actually,” written and directed by Richard Curtis, redefined music for wedding recessionals. [Although it is difficult to pull off hiding brass instruments under your tuxedo at a real wedding, the concept remains totally charming.] The scene stars three then-unknown Brits: a breathtakingly gorgeous 18 year-old Keira Knightley;  a charming 26 year-old Chiwetel Ejiofor, (10 years before his Academy Award for “12 Years A Slave;“) and a lovelorn 30 year-old Andrew Lincoln, seven years before his breakout role as the star of “The Walking Dead.”

Not surprisingly, “All You Need Is Love is the most-often requested bridal recessional by my brides and grooms. And between the message of the song, and the pure joy of the moment, it really is the perfect bridal recessional.

There’s nothing you can do that can’t be done
Nothing you can sing that can’t be sung
Nothing you can say but you can learn how the play the gameit’s easy
There’s nothing you can make that can’t me made
No one you can save that can’t be saved
Nothing you can do but you can learn how to be you in timeit’s easy
All you need is love,
All you need is love
All you need is love, love

Love is all you need

The Beatles
Now for some historical perspective. The year after All You Need Is Love” was released turned out to be one of the ugliest years in American history. Here’s a short timeline of events in 1968. On April 4, The Rev. Dr. Martin Luther King was assassinated;  on June 5, Robert F. Kennedy was assassinated; from August 26-29, Mayor Richard Daley turned Chicago into a bloody war zone pitting Chicago Police and Illinois National Guardsman against Anti-War protestors, polarizing the country more than anyone could have ever imagined. [Careful what you wish for, Mr. Trump.]

However, the song remains a reminder of the eternal hope that “love” will prevail. The idea that “All You Need Is Love” will always be a beautiful, if naive, notion. Love is all you need.
Leave a comment and let me know what you think.

Cissy Strut-The Meters

The Meters are a band introduced to me by one of my favorite clients who had gone to Tulane, deeply entrenched in the New Orleans Sound. “Cissy Strut” has a truly infectiously funky groove indigenous to that great historical city.

Even as an instrumental with no lyrics it stands alone as a simple. happy, funky groove. Perfect as a fun choice for a Recessional to allow your guests to dance into the cocktail hour.

mardi gras

The possibilities of processional and recessional songs are endless, if you consider 400 years of “Classical Music” as well as contemporary songs that have particular meaning to you as a couple.

Let me know what you think.

Say Hey-Michael Franti

Here’s yet another example of a song, as well as performer that I had never heard of before it was requested by the bridal couple. What a great song! No deep hidden meaning…just a great upbeat dance beat and incredibly simple sing-along lyrics.

Check out the lyrics:
This one goes out to you and yours, worldwide…

I say, hey, I be gone today but I be back around the way
Seems like everywhere I go, the more I see, the less I know
But I know one thing that I love you, baby girl
I love you, I love you, I love you

I’ve been a lot of places all around the way
I’ve seen a lot of joy, and I’ve seen a lot of pain
But I don’t want to write a love song for the world
I just want to write a song about a boy and a girl

I say, hey, I be gone today but I be back around the way
Seems like everywhere I go, the more I see, the less I know
But I know one thing that I love you, baby girl
I love you, I love you, I love you.

michael franti

Used as a Recessional,  it sends your guests, relaxed and dancing their way into the Cocktail Hour to get that all important first drink. But used as a First Dance, it announces to your guests that you are ready, willing and delighted to set the stage for a truly great party.

As with so many of the songs we play, “Say Hey” by Michael Franti & Spearhead was a song request made by one of our bridal couples…allowing me to pass it on to you. Start dancing!

Let me know what you think.

Hey Pocky Way-The Meters

I’ve used this incredibly catchy song by the band The Meters as a recessional tune several times since it was first requested to me by one of our wedding couples who had gone to college at Tulane University and fell in love with the distinctly infectious beat simply known as the New Orleans or Cajun music. “Hey Pocky Way” (also seen spelled as “Hey Pocky a-Way”) as well as The Cissy Strut Listen to it a couple of times and tell me you can’t see yourself dancing your way out to grab that first cocktail of the night. Fabulous choice.

I have no idea what “Hey Pocky A-way” even means, but I guess it has as much a place on this list as “Betchabygollywow” by The Stylistics, which you’ll find in the Processionals Section. As discussed with James Brown style funk, the lyrics to songs like Hey Pocky Way are almost an afterthought after establishing the beat. But it really is a great beat.

Little bitty boy, with a heart of steel
You can’t boogie now but your sister sure will
Feel good music, I’ve been told
Good for your body and it’s good for your soul
Gonna do it now…Hey, hey, hey, hey, hey, pocky a-way
Hey, hey, hey, hey, pocky a-way


Listen and see if you can see yourself dancing up the aisle after saying “I do.”
Let me know what you think.

One Love-Bob Marley

What’s makes a statement that you have just committed yourself to spend the rest of your life with one person than the simple words One Love?” To even the most casual listener Bob Marley = “reggae” And this song is certainly one of his most famous. The instantly recognizable reggae beat is joyous in its simplicity and the melody is strong enough to work as an instrumental. And it’s guaranteed to put a smile on the faces of your friends and loved ones as they head toward the cocktail hour. It’s certainly not an overwhelming song to overpower the actual recession. It’s just a perfect little melody and groove to commemorate the moment of the very first moments of your marriage. Even though the vocals aren’t ever sung during the recessionals, you can see why these unsung lyrics are perfect for saying “I love you” after your “I dos!”


One love, one heart
Let’s get together and feel all right.
Hear the children cryin’ (One Love)
Hear the children cryin’ (One Heart)
Sayin’, give thanks and praise to the Lord and I will feel all right;
Sayin’, let’s get together and feel all right.


This is one of the best suggestions I have for recessionals, because of the fun and immediate recognizability of the reggae classic “One Love.”  It’s guaranteed to get your guests up and dancing, following you down the aisle…headed for your unforgettable party.

Let me know what you think.