So what is the number one wedding processional? You guessed it! Pachelbel’s Cannon in D! My mom walked down the aisle to it…my friend had it played when she birthed her children…it can often be found and relaxation CDs with ocean sounds in the background…and somehow it never looses it’s charm.
This beautiful piece of music just sounds like a wedding ceremony! It isn’t too fast or to slow. It is sweet and gentle, without being overly dreamy. Since it is a cannon, it has an 8-chord pattern which repeats throughout the song, making it easy to come to a graceful conclusion as soon as the bride has reached the end of the aisle.
Most often it is used as the processional for the bride, but it can also be used for the bridesmaids, particularly if the bride wants to come in to the second most popular wedding processional (which we’ll talk about next time!). As you listen to it, note your reaction. Are you bored, or drawn in? Do you roll your eyes at the classical sound, or does it make you think of white dresses and flowers? It is all about what starts your emotions rolling!
Does it make a difference to have live musicians play it? If it repeats so much, surely it could be faded out on an iPod.
Of course it makes a difference! Live musicians can add a fanfare at the beginning to let everyone know it is time to stand for the bride. (Something you won’t find on recordings!) Or if it is being performed on the harp, a swirl of dramatic glissandos can announce the bride before the harpist launches into Cannon in D!
Trying to remember what Cannon in D sounds like? Click below to hear a sample of our arrangement!
If you actually want to have this song at your wedding, you might not want to watch the video below by the Piano Guys. It certainly gives the music a fresh twist!