Tuesday, February 11, 2014

Alverez/Rodriguez wedding reception at The Durham Arts Council on February 8th, 2014

Olga & Adrian chose the Durham Arts Council in downtown Durham for their cocktail hour and reception.  I had never been there before, but love the layout and it’s great for a small wedding.  This one was just under 100 people. I’m sure photographer Michael Williams and his wife from Michaels Memories got some great shots of the guests and floral arrangements by Mel Day from Dogwood Floral Tree Designs!  They also had a sign in board for guests that looked like a painting easel.  Fun !!

Guests started arriving after the ceremony at Immaculate Conception in Durham and I had a mix of standards and salsa playing.  Both Olga and Adrian are latin American.  The small wedding party arrived and I introduced them to The Lumineers “Ho Hey” and they came down the stairs and to the dance floor in the lobby for their first dance to “Better Together” by Jack Johnson.  Olga had one of the biggest grins I have seen on a bride!  She then danced with her father to the slow version of ”Forever Young” by Rod Stewart and Adrian escorted his mother to the floor for their dance to “Simple Man” by Lynyrd Skynyrd.  Olga’s father welcomed everyone and Father Bill blessed the food of their family style dinner.  Guests found their seating assignments by looking on custom luggage tags that were on a board.  What a fun idea!

For dinner I played a mix of soft rock and classic R&B.  After dinner and toasts by Olga’s Sister and Adrian’s Best man we opened the floor with a “longest married couple” dance to “The Way You Look Tonight” by Frank Sinatra.  I then opened the floor with some oldies and latin music and guests filled the floor and hit the bar for 3 ½ hours.  Not kidding!
We stopped shortly for the Cinda’s cake cutting and then back to dancing.  The mix all night was latin and American.  It was so fun to see them salsa and merengue dancing and I love the music, even though I have no idea what they are saying. Ha ha…

The night ended with their last dance to “Sweet Caroline” and a sparkler exit.  What a fun night and I am glad they trusted me with their reception!

Webman/Boswell wedding at The Stockroom in Raleigh on February 7, 2014

I met Meryl & Trevor through a friend of mine, Bayhan that I worked with 10 years ago while DJing at The Office Nightclub in Raleigh.  As soon as I met them I knew this would be a fun group and a night to remember.  They chose The Stockroom for their cocktail hour and reception and All Saints Chapel for their ceremony.  I provided music for all.  I was thrilled to be working with photographer Cara Galati from F8 Photo Studios and Lyn Graves from Fresh Affairs for their floral arrangements.  I set up for the cocktail hour and reception and left music playing, then headed over to set up for the ceremony at All Saints.

Meryl & Trevor did not want typical music for the ceremony and pre-ceremony, so I turned them onto The Vitamin String Quartet and Trevor fell in love with their classical interpretations of pop songs.  The pre-ceremony music was classical covers of music by Panic! At The Disco & Metallica and soft rock like Adele and Lana Del Rey.  The grandparents and parents entered to a classical version of “Wonderwall”, the wedding party to “Air On A G String” and the adorable flower girls to a classical version of “A Thousand Years”.  Meryl entered to an instrumental of “Bittersweet Symphony”.  During the ceremony they had written very heartfelt notes to each other and the minister read them aloud.  Very, very touching!  They made their exit to Jason Derulo’s “Marry Me” and went off to take pictures and the guests caught the Raleigh Trolley back to The Stockroom for the cocktail hour and I joined them shortly.

The cocktail hour was just getting started when I arrived and I played a mix of standards with a lot of Sinatra in memory of Meryl’s father.  Meryl and Trevor arrived shortly and it was time to announce the wedding party.  The parents entered to “Get Down On It”, the wedding party to “Shipping Up To Boston” by Dropkick Murphy’s and our Bride & Groom to “The Rocky Theme”.  Trevor has arms as big as my thighs (kinda not kidding)!  They came to the back of the room where the dance floor was and had their first dance to “All Of Me” by John Legend.  It was very touching to see Trevor singing it to her.  Trevor’s father welcomed everyone and their friend “Big Boy Josh” said the blessing.  He may have had bigger arms than Trevor.  The buffet opened and I changed the playlist to soft rock and some current R&B.

After dinner we had a couple toasts and the cake cutting to “Pour Some Sugar On Me” and then Meryl went to clean all the cake off….oh Trevor!!  I opened the floor with some beach & motown that brought some older guests out and soon went into some current dance music that had younger guests join them.  Meryl changed into a “dancing dress” and soon they were joining their friends on the dance floor to some current Hip-Hop and dance music.

We paused shortly to do the bouquet toss to Marilyn’s “Diamonds Are A Girls Best Friend” and the garter toss to the “Mission Impossible” theme then back to dancing.

I had so much fun playing for them and meeting them prior to their wedding.  I couldn’t be happier for them and the opportunity to play for them.

Sheppard/Bonnet wedding at the NC State Alumni Center on January 31st, 2014

Delaina & Juan had me play music for their ceremony, cocktail hour and reception all taking place at the NC State Alumni Center in Raleigh.  I was thrilled to play for them and work with the center’s Wendy Dorman, planner Kailey from A Southern Soiree, videographer Jill from Darling Jill Videography and photographer Christobal Perez from Azul Photography!  With this “dream team” of vendors I knew I was going to have a blast.

Their ceremony was held on the 2nd floor in the Chancellor’s Reception room with live trees arranged in both corners and floral arrangements by Blooms Artistry.  The prelude music they chose was country and soft rock to flow with their ceremony music.  Their Grandparents & Parents entered to Carrie Underwood’s “Mama’s Song”, The wedding party to “When I Say I Do” and Delaina to “Make You Feel My Love” by Garth Brooks.  Their recessional was “Kiss A Girl” after Juan kissed his Bride…. Get it??
The cocktail hour was held at the bottom of the  stairs in the lobby and I had a mix of standards and Salsa to represent Juan’s Puerto Rican heritage and get guests ready for the latin dance lessons after dinner. Not by me, thank god.  No one would have learned anything.

After pictures were taken, Delaina and Juan were ready to be introduced.  Guests made their way to their beautifully decorated tables.  Great job Kailey!  The wedding party entered to “Marry You” by Bruno Mars and Delaina and Juan had their first dance to “I Won’t Give Up” by Jason Mraz.  Delaina then had a dance with her father to “I Loved Her First” and Juan danced with his mother to “The Man You’ve Become” by Molly Pasutti.  Delaina’s father, Donny, welcomed everyone and Juan’s mother Iris said the blessing.  Dinner was individually served and I had a mix of country, soft rock and latin playing.

After dinner and some toasts by bridesmaids and a groomsman, we had the Sugarland cake cutting to James Taylor’s “How Sweet It Is”.  They had cake shooters and a gelato bar for guests to enjoy.  This led to a fun game, the “Shoe game” where Delaina and Juan sat in chairs with their backs against each other holding one of each shoes in their hands.  I asked questions and they raised a shoe to signify if it was Juan or Delaina.  An example is “Who is a better cook?”.  This was a blast and really gave you an idea of each other’s perceptions of the relationship!  This lead to latin dance lessons by Mambo Dinamico that taught salsa, merengue and bachata dancing to the guests.  It was great to see their parents and grandparents learning these dances with their friends and them.
I opened the floor with a longest married couple dance to “The Way You Look Tonight” and Delaina knew her grandparents would win.  She gave her grandmother a bouquet and I played their favorite song, Celine Dion’s “The Power Of Love” as they sang it to each other.  I have to admit there was a tear in my eye!

I opened the floor with some Motown and current dance music and it took no time to fill.  I loved seeing Juan and a couple of his buddy’s acting out the Backstreet Boys “I Want It That Way”.  There was no way they hadn’t done this 100 times before. Ha ha..I ended the night with “Time Of My Life” from Dirty Dancing and Delaina and Juan made their way through a sparkler exit.  What a fun and unique wedding.