Chapel of Optimal Life

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ADVICE: Dear Angel

Our baby is getting married and we want her to have a memorable but subdued ceremony. So much of the traditional wedding service is being changed every year, we no longer know what is proper. We are not sticklers for proper, proper but we do not want our daughter or her husband to be or her in laws or, lastly, our family to be embarrassed by an obvious no no.

Broadway shows now use "electronic orchestras." One clever person records the whole orchestra sounds on the computer and at some theatres even stands and "leads" the invisible orchestra not in the pit.

Flowers, yes, I think we have that under control. Enough but not ostentatious. She'll be married in our back yard which is large and quite beautiful and the venue fee is free. Parkers, check. Minister, check. Chair and bower rentals, check. She will wear my wedding gown which in its day was quite (too) expensive for my parents. The bridesmaids (two) and lady in waiting will all wear any dressy white dress they own. We've seen them and they are perfect. Liquor, no problem; there won't be any. Food, big problem and expense so we went with hors d'oeuvres and beverage stations. Music, big problem.

The harpist, the trumpets, the band, very pricey. Our daughter really wants them all and so do we but the beverage and food (even with the less costly hors d'oeuvres) broke the budget.

Thus, our big question. Is it too tacky, low rent, cheapo to use canned music? Is it all of the above to have the bride and groom program their own music? Harpists, trumpets and bands will play the music they are asked to play so we can't use the ploy of the kids wanting their own music unless they use really distinctive well known rock or rap artists. Those artists don't have a lot of wedding type music in their catalogs and the wedding couple really want a traditional mix. So, back to question one: Is canned music programmed by the happy couple too tacky?

Cost Contained But Not Tacky

Dear Cost Contained,

Musicians have been supplanted so many times by new technology and yet there are still orchestras, bands, soloists and new technology.

Pianos playing at weddings were replaced by piano rolls and then player pianos and then records (78s, LPs, CDs) of pianists.

Broadway shows now use "electronic orchestras." One clever person records the whole orchestra sounds on the computer and at some theatres even stands and "leads" the invisible orchestra not in the pit.

Many, many classy weddings have had DJs for years now. So, with the new technology available what could be more proper and up to date and cool than a couple taking the time to program their own music from the opening (harpist and trumpets or something completely original) to the ceremony (organ wedding march starting and leading to the full symphony orchestra) to the dance music (all the young and not so young folks favorites.)

It all sounds great to me. Just make sure the couple actually know what they are doing, recording, playing, amping wise. If they are unsure they probably have a clever friend who can be of great service to them. A technogeek who can do what the Broadway shows do would be a sensation.

Have fun and have a wonderful wedding.




Do You Remember When There Were...


Wax Coke-shaped bottles with colored sugar water inside?

Soda pop machines that dispensed glass bottles?

Coffee shops with tableside jukeboxes?

Blackjack, Clove and Teaberry chewing gum?

Home milk delivery in glass bottles with cardboard stoppers?

Newsreels before the movie?

P.F. Fliers?

Telephone numbers with a word prefix...(HOpkins 4376)?

Party lines (two, four, six, eight)?


Howdy Doody?

45 rpm records?

78 rpm records?

S&H Green Stamps?


Metal ice cubes trays with levers?

Mimeograph paper?

Beanie and Cecil?

Roller-skate keys?

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