• I will shortly be re-doing the recommended wedding music list for our parish, and I was wondering:
    - what songs do you commonly hear sung at Catholic weddings?
    - what songs do you recommend on your own wedding music lists?

    I am not interested in instrumental selections, vocal only. When I steer a bride away from "The Prayer," what should I be steering her toward (besides Panis angelicus, Ave Maria, and Gift of Love).

    (And please don't even mention the propers. They're hardly on the radar yet.)
  • Ben YankeBen Yanke
    Posts: 3,115
    PROPERS. THE MASS ISN'T VALID WITHOUT THEM.
    Thanked by 2Gavin StimsonInRehab
  • Ben YankeBen Yanke
    Posts: 3,115
    On a serious note, that's what you do need to be steering them towards. They might not be ready for it, they might not pick it, but big picture, they should be your goal. Other things you do should support that goal, such as perhaps introducing shorter and simpler congregational versions.
  • CharlesW
    Posts: 11,270
    "Love Stinks" seems like a good choice for weddings.

    There are wedding masses and then weddings without a mass. If it is a mass, we steer the happy couple toward songs that are actually sacred in content.
  • RVW “The Call”
    Ubi caritas
    Love divine, all loves excelling
    … and pretty much any general hymn of praise.
  • ClergetKubiszClergetKubisz
    Posts: 1,911
    Yeah, if you're looking specifically for good hymns for weddings, praise hymns seems to work the best. Here's a not-so-inclusive list:

    Ubi Caritas (as mentioned above)
    Love Divine, All Loves Excelling (as mentioned above)
    Joyful, Joyful, We Adore You (I've heard/done this one lots at weddings)
    Holy God, We Praise Thy Name (I've heard/done this one lots at weddings)
    God We Praise You
    All Creatures of Our God and King
    For the Beauty of the Earth
    Now Thank We All Our God (you can even do the J.S. Bach arrangement!)


    There are, of course, many, many more, but I can't name them off the top of my head.

    As Ben mentioned above, you want to be moving in the direction of the Propers, and have that at least as your goal. If you're looking for music for places other than where the Propers would normally go (which is where most hymns are nowadays in the OF), Mary songs usually work well, such as:

    O Sanctissima
    Ave Maria (chant version if you can do it)
    Ave Maris Stella
    Thanked by 1CHGiffen
  • Along the line of wedding propers, may I suggest using "Deus Israel" and "Ecce sic benedicetur". These two chants were omitted from the GR1974 for musicological reasons, but insofar as the texts go there seem to be no better texts for those moments.

    Particularly given newly composed settings, IMO it is better to use the more liturgically "focused" texts than ones that were appropriated for purely musical reasons.
    Thanked by 1Gavin
  • AndrewK
    Posts: 41
    There is a lovely setting of the Offertory text, "In te speravi," by Richard Rice that is set for either treble voices or SATB. I like it set for treble voices better, and I do not think that having just a solo soprano sing it does injustice to the piece. (Mr. Rice, if you read this, I don't mean to butcher your music.) I have used it several times with positive results. Since the Offertory is not long at the Nuptial Mass and it is the proscribed text, I can always manage to convince the brides that it is the best option. It is also very beautiful!

    The St. Michael Hymnal also has a number of good wedding texts in it that are in the PD.
    Thanked by 1BruceL
  • melofluentmelofluent
    Posts: 4,160
    CantorConvert, if you're seeking suggestions that are not necessarily chant-based, but are quite licit for weddings and recommended as worthy by other musicians, please Private Message me by clicking my name above this post.
  • dad29
    Posts: 2,078
    For soloist/organ: "Wedding Song" by Flor Peeters. The usual high-quality semi-modal music of Peeters with text 'Whither thou goest, there shall I go also...' (etc.) from the O.T. Not hackneyed; sadly, it's almost unknown. Fits perfectly as a voluntary at Offertory, following Ben's propers, of course. Art song, no bombast, sacred text.....what more do you need?
  • It may help (okay, I'm an idealist) to "sell" the idea of the propers if people know that the same entrance and offertory antiphons are used for the feast of the Holy Family. (Communion is different, as it relates to the Gospel of the Mass). It gives an insight into the reason or spirituality behind the antiphons.
  • ClergetKubiszClergetKubisz
    Posts: 1,911
    I didn't know that Sr. thank you!
  • Mark HuseyMark Husey
    Posts: 192
    I send out this Youtube playlist which gets the conversation started. We also take into consideration their budget for musicians.

    https://www.youtube.com/playlist?list=PL7gDJO5zDWITIeD6qHYTD6tmwUP-Vr8rG
  • canadashcanadash
    Posts: 1,468
    Mark, that is fantastic! I love that you added Rutter to the list too. I think he is quite appropriate for a wedding and brides tend to love his music. Any couple in their right mind would have a lot to choose from here.
    Thanked by 1Mark Husey