Story by George W. Forman

To me, the months of May and June are the most musical months of the year, possibly rivaling the time around the end of year holidays. Between proms, graduations, and weddings, and events like the Kentucky Derby and the Indy 500, there’s a lot of music to go along with these wonderful times in our lives.   When it comes to graduations and weddings, if a certain group of composers were still alive and could collect royalties, they would love this time of year. You have Sir Edward Elgar, who composed the Pomp and Circumstance March that’s played at graduations. And for weddings, the music of Wagner and Mendelssohn are probably heard the most, but don’t forget composers such as Pachelbel, Handel, Bach, Vivaldi, Beethoven, and Jeremiah Clarke.

But what interests me more is when people go outside of the classical realm and choose things that are a little more personal. I’ve mentioned in another blog that I often get to see people getting married on the beach near Pier Village in Long Branch. A few weeks ago, I was walking by just in time to see a bride and (I’ll presume) her father making their entrance to an instrumental version of One Republic’s “Secrets”, with its very Bach-like cello opening.  When my nephew remarried almost 10 years ago, the bridal party entered to Louis Armstrong’s “What a Wonderful World”, and the recessional was “Linus and Lucy” from the Charlie Brown Christmas Show. One of my high school English teachers told us that one of her girlfriends used Chicago’s “Colour My World” at her wedding.

I still hold out hopes of being married someday, and there is one piece of music I would definitely use at the wedding, and that’s “Psalm 23” with music by Howard Goodall. You might have seen Howard recently hosting a special on PBS on The Beatles’ Sgt. Pepper album. But you’ve heard his work on some TV themes, particularly if you are a “Britcom” fan, including “Psalm 23”, which is better known as the theme to “The Vicar of Dibley”.  If you have a story about an interesting musical choice at a wedding, please tell us in the comments. And by the way, congratulations to the graduates, and couples getting married.

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