Photo by Monique Schoenfeld, Town Crier
Wedding couples could opt for a fresh approach by choosing from long-established styles
Walking down the isle to the "Wedding March" is a musical tradition. But what if the couple wants to start a tradition of their own? Here are a few ideas:
Salsa brings together African, Caribbean, Puerto Rican, Cuban and other Latin influences, together for a vibrant and unique form of music. Many salsa bands feature different kinds of drums, guitars, trumpets, trombones and many other instruments. The word salsa also pertains to dancing, and just like with salsa music, there are many forms of salsa dance. Along with hiring a band for the ceremony and/or reception, the couple may want to hire some dance instructors for their guests. For the more daring, self-taught salsa lessons are available online at www.salsaweb.com.
The word mariachi originated in the language of the Coca Indians in the 1500s. The word mariachi meant musician or any person engaged in musical activities, according to the International Folk Culture Center. Today, this word also defines a group of such musicians with a distinct and celebratory sound. The sounds of violins, trumpets, a vihuela, a guitarrÃƒÂ³n and one or more guitars, accompany the singing voices of the mariachi. The mariachi also dress in a traditional costume, make for a colorful addition to the environment and the wedding photos. The costume consists of ankle boots, a sombrero, a mono or large bow tie, a chaleco or short jacket, snug trousers without back pockets, a wide belt and botonaduras or shiny buttons on the side of the pants, according to the International Folk Center. For more information about mariachi music and local bands visit the Fiesta del Mariachi web site at: http://www.geocities.com/Broadway/2626/.
According to the Encyclopedia of Cajun culture, accordion-based Zydeco evolved from the music of Creoles, French speaking people of color in Louisiana. In the 1930s and 1940s, Creole music was very similar to Cajun music. After World War II, Creole music began to take on different influences including blues and rock and roll. The fiddle is generally absent in Zydeco. Electric instruments, drums, and corrugated metal rubboard called a frottior, make for a good time on the dance floor, or for a spirited dance down the isle. For more information about Zydeco and the Encyclopedia of Cajun culture at: CajunZydeco.net.
The term "Bluegrass Music'" has no universally accepted definition. According to Cybergrass, the Internet Bluegrass Music Magazine, "Bluegrass is a type of American country folk music. A Bluegrass band is usually made up of an acoustic guitar, five-string banjo, mandolin, fiddle, dorbo, and a string bass."
The bride and groom could have their first dance to the distinct harmonies of a bluegrass band, which typically features the singing of high-pitched tenors, while waltzing in cowboy boots. For more information about Bluegrass music visit the Cybergrass web site at: www.banjo.com.
Bagpipes have been a ceremonial instruments for ages. The Oxford History of Music mentions the first documented bagpipe being dated to 1,000 B.C. The Scottish or Highland Pipes are only one of the over thirty different kinds of bagpipes that have appeared throughout the world. The Spanish, French, Italians, Germans, Hungarians, Czechoslovakians, Tunisians, Indians, Greeks, and a myriad of other cultures have developed bagpipes of their own, according to www.pipeband.com. The bride can walk into the ceremony while the pipers play a processional, or a slower tune. When the bride and groom leave the church as a newly married couple, the pipers play a spirited faster tune for the recessional. The bride and groom can dance a jig to the lively pipers, while the guests clap on to the beat of the drum. For more information about bagpipes, visit: www.pipeband.com.