DJ Brian Anderson has heard more wedding toasts than Elton John has eye glasses. We’ve heard some good ones, and boy, we’ve heard some bad ones. I heard another lousy wedding toast recently and found myself muttering,
“It doesn’t have to be this way.”
Wedding couples DESERVE a scintillating wedding toast. They are ENTITLED to a heartfelt toast that simply sparkles. That’s why we blog on the subject frequently.
The most recent lousy wedding toast came from a best man to the groom. He was quite young and lacking in experience, and it showed. He immediately told us he had written down his remarks so he wouldn’t forget them.
I thought, “excellent!”
But then he proceeded to prowl the wedding party’s platform blathering about nothing much as his hands fumbled through his pockets looking for his cheat sheet, which leads to wedding toast tip #1.
Wedding Toast Tip #1
Write out your remarks and KNOW where you put them.
After several minutes of discombobulated mutterings and misdirected quips, he turned his back to the gathered guests and fumbled through his suit coat, which he had earlier tossed on the floor behind him, giving us all an unwelcome view of his posterior.
Wedding Toast Tip #2
Don’t give your guests an unwelcome view of your posterior.
Once he found his elusive cheat sheet, he resumed stalking the wedding party platform with his crumpled cheat sheet clenched in his left hand and the microphone in his right hand. And then something weird happened: He. Never. Looked. At. It.
Wedding Toast Tip #3
If you have a cheat sheet, use it.
After all that fussing, he didn’t use his precious notes, but instead returned to lengthy ramblings on why he didn’t like the groom when he first met him in eighth grade. As I gazed around the banquet hall, I could see eyes glazing over.
All faces sent the same message: Please, wrap this thing up, like fast!
Wedding Toast Tip #4
Read your audience.
It really helps to look out at the guests to be sure you’re connecting with them. If our young toaster had done so, the blank visage adorning the face of each audience member would have been a useful motivation to him to bring his toast to a succinct, heartfelt conclusion, instead of continuing with the meandering mess into which it had devolved.
So how do you give a good toast?
Wedding Toast Tip #5
Make ‘em laugh and make ‘em cry. And do it quickly.
The longer the toast, the more likely it’s going to crash and burn in wedding reception ignominy. The shorter the toast, the more likely it’s going to be remembered, especially if the toast makes the audience laugh and cry.
Our young toaster would have been better served if he had said something like this:
Sample wedding toast
“Johnny may be my best friend today, but let me tell you, I didn’t like the guy at all when I first met him in 8th grade.
Now my reasons were not particularly good. He’s better looking than I am. He’s smarter than I am. And he’s got a better personality to boot. Maybe that’s why he always dated the best looking girls in our class.
I was kind of jealous.
But then he fixed me up with this gorgeous redhead, and the rest was history! How could I not love this guy?
You know what else I grew to love about this guy? He saw something in me that I didn’t see. He embraced me as a friend, and frankly, made me into a better person.
He’d give me the shirt off his back, and he has in a variety of ways.
Jenny Sue, I’m not telling you anything you don’t know, but you just married one heckuva human being. And so did he. You two deserve each other. You are special, the perfect complement to a very special guy.
I can honestly say that I am delighted that I am no longer Johnny’s best friend. That honor belongs to you, Mrs. Smith. You make my best friend so very happy.
I’d like to invite all your guests to raise their glass in a toast to the very special friendship that has blossomed into a beautiful love affair … a toast to Johnny and Jenny Sue Smith!”
A minute-and-a-half. You don’t have to be long-winded to make a beautiful wedding toast.
Be sure to forward this blog to your best man and maid of honor. And as you plan your wedding celebration, remember entertainment makes the event. Be sure to check out all of our wedding entertainment services: DJ; lighting; photo booth. You’re going to fall in love with them!
Millennials are interesting. They by and large have similar beliefs on heaven, hell, and miracles as previous generations. They pray. But they don’t attend church regularly, because they’re not all that comfortable with organized religion. Nonetheless, when it comes time for planning their wedding ceremonies, they are totally interested in including popular wedding Bible verses.
As you can see in the accompanying chart, the next generation born after 2000 tend to be a little more prayerful than those born in the 80s or 90s. As we pointed out in a previous blogpost [The changing role of religion in modern weddings], even though Millennials are less religious by some metrics, they typically want to include God in their ceremony to honor the solemnity as well as the joy of the occasion.
Popular wedding Bible verses
We touched upon a few popular verses in a previous post. We barely scratched the surface. For example, savor the logic of this beautiful Jewish scripture from the the Book of Ecclesiastes (4:9)
“Two are better than one, because they have a good return for their labor: If either of them falls down, one can help the other up. But pity anyone who falls and has no one to help them up. Also, if two lie down together, they will keep warm. But how can one keep warm alone?”
Some believe Ecclesiastes was written by King Solomon, considered to be one of the wisest sages of the ancient world. Here’s another thought provoker from the same book (4:12):
“Though one may be overpowered, two can defend themselves. A cord of three strands is not quickly broken.”
So if the first strand is the husband and the second strand is the wife, what is this ‘third’ strand to which Solomon refers? It is God. Couples who invoke this scripture passage are acknowledging that God will be a part of their marriage.
Bible verses for atheists
Suppose you’re an agnostic or an atheist. Does any of this apply to you? Certainly. Wisdom is wisdom, as you can see in this passage written by St. Paul in Romans (13:8):
“Owe no one anything, except to love each other, for the one who loves another has fulfilled the law.”
Psalm 143:8 tenderly reveals how trust is central to loving another, which is why this is a wonderful Bible verse for your wedding ceremony:
“Let the morning bring me word of your unfailing love, for I have put my trust in you. Show me the way I should go, for to you I entrust my life.”
The most romantic book in the Bible is Song of Solomon. This passage (4:9) gives you a taste of what is to come:
“You have captivated my heart, my sister, my bride; you have captivated my heart with one glance of your eyes, with one jewel of your necklace.”
I’ve barely scratched the surface. Let me leave you with this beauty written by St. John in 1 John 4:12:
“No one has ever seen God; but if we love one another, God lives in us and his love is made complete in us.”
God is a mystery to man in so many respects. Religious tradition says that it is through sacred scripture that we get to know Him. That’s why popular wedding Bible verses never grow old. That’s why one of these gems might just be perfect for your wedding ceremony.
The perfect complement to a perfect wedding ceremony is a perfect wedding reception. That’s where we come in. We know how to pack a dance floor with fabulous, customized entertainment. Learn more today without obligation.
Proposing marriage is an art. Should you do it on your knee? Should it be an intimate experience? Or is your romance one that lends itself to a grand, public proposal? Let’s take a look at how they do it in the movies. Here are the top ten marriage proposal movie scenes according to Ms. Mojo’s Youtube channel:
Marriage proposal movie scenes
‘Magical’ marriage proposals
Youtube showcases some interesting proposals, like the one below which features a magic trick. Why not! Love is magical:
Public marriage proposals
Should you propose in public? Only if you’re sure your girl is going to say yes!
Intimate marriage proposals
Most couples prefer more private, personal proposals. For pure romance, check out Haley Reinhardt’s tender music video of her cover of “Fools Rush In.” Beautiful.
Marriage proposal movie scenes are nice, but real life is much better when it comes to creative wedding proposals.
DJ Brian Anderson has a proposal for you. When she says YES, take your wedding celebration to the next level with dance-floor packing wedding entertainment. Entertainment. Makes. The. Event.
Check our availability and our package pricing. Check out if you like us. It’s so easy. Simply click here.
Don’t come across as a “gimme” person! Don’t put your registry info on your wedding invitations. I know it’s so very tempting to discreetly list the URL for your registry at the bottom of your invitations. Don’t! It’s tacky. It’s a wedding etiquette mistake you don’t have to make, because modern technology has solved the problem.
The traditional approach
In the past, a bride simply left registry details with her parents, grandparents, and her wedding party and let word-of-mouth do the rest. That still works. Now, however, wedding couples increasingly publish their own wedding website. Voila! The perfect place to post registry details without being tacky.
The wedding website
Okay, what else should you put in on your wedding website? Tell them a little about you and your fiancée’s love story, how you met, and your background. Everyone’s a sucker for a love story. But don’t go into too much detail, just the major points.
Tell them about your wedding details, where and when with some nice pics. Then you might want to tell them a little about your honeymoon plans, and why you chose the location.
You might include a guest book on your website for your friends to write you a quick note. Your wedding day will seem like a blur, so you’ll cherish the comments friends leave on your website.
So don’t come across as a greedy “gimme” person by listing your registry info on your wedding invitations. That’s a major wedding etiquette mistake. List your wedding website instead.
Speaking of websites, be sure to browse our website for a few minutes. We offer you great wedding advice in our weekly blog. Even more, we offer fabulous, dance-floor-packing wedding entertainment. Check out our availability and package pricing today.
People attend movies to laugh and cry. In a way, they look for some of the same things in a wedding toast, but in a couple of minutes instead of a couple of hours. So the two essential wedding toast ingredients? Sentiment and humor.
Leave out either and your toast is incomplete. Load up on too much of on one or the other and your toast will be lopsided, and may ignominiously crash and burn in uncomfortable snickering … or silence.
Too many toasters don’t know where they’re going in their toast. A nice technique is to begin with a little silly humor. For example:
“I just saw two nuclear technicians getting married. The bride was radiant and the groom was glowing.”
Then “marry” the quip to a little sentiment:
“And you know, [bride’s name], you truly are radiant today. And as for my friend, [groom’s name], we don’t typically use the word “glowing” to describe a groom. But I’ve noticed something about him. Every time your name comes up, his eyes light up. Every time you walk into the room, his eyes light up. Yes, it’s safe to say you’re glowing today, [groom’s name].”
Here’s a good use of wedding humor, compliments of stand-up comedienne, Rita Rudner:
“I think men who have a pierced ear are better prepared for marriage. They’ve experience pain and bought jewelry.
Then link the humor to a little sentiment.
“[Groom’s name] never got his ear pierced, but I know he’s experienced some pain in his life. And it simply made him stronger. [Bride’s name], you’re marrying a man of character. When life knocked him down, he dusted himself off and got right back up. That’s the kind of guy I like having as a friend. That’s the kind of man who knows how to love, honor, and cherish a wife, through good times and bad. Get ready for a great life.”
Humor and sentiment make a nice one/two punch when delivering a wedding toast.
How long does it take to make a great toast?
Nighy uses subtle humor when he references B.B. King, as if everyone in the world should know that’s one of the three men he honors most. And then he links it to his son with quiet tenderness.
The two essential wedding toast ingredients? Humor and sentiment, dispensed in perfect proportions.
Can a wedding toast be more than 65 seconds? Sure, but keep it down to a few minutes at most. After listening to several toasts, your guests will be itching to get onto the dance floor. That’s where we come in. DJ Brian Anderson provides the perfect balance of wedding entertainment that knows how to pack a dance floor. And you’ll love the high quality and fabulous value of our package pricing. Learn more without obligation.
As you plan your wedding spend, you need the answer to a key question: who is going to pay for your wedding?
If it’s your deep-pocketed parents, your wedding spend may be higher than what you and your betrothed could afford if you’re paying for it alone.
On the other hand, if the two of you are older with well-established careers, you may be comfortable enough to enjoy a wedding spend without scrimping much.
The Knot surveyed 13,000 couples who got married last year to determine who paid for their weddings. Here is what they found out:
√ The bride’s parents paid for 44.5% of the weddings.
√ The bride and groom paid for the wedding themselves 41.1% of the time.
√ The groom’s parents paid the wedding 12.7% of the time.
√ Other persons paid for their wedding in 1.79% of these weddings.
Pros & Cons
There are pros and cons to having parents handle the wedding spend. On the pro side, they may have deeper pockets which allows you to more fully indulge your wedding dreams.
On the other hand, parents can then exercise more control over who gets invited. You’ve heard about these conflicts a dozen times. The daughter has to cut some of her friends from the guest list to accommodate Mom and Dad’s old friends and business associates.
As you plan your wedding spend, keep this in mind.
Traditional wedding protocols have evolved over the years as to whom should pay for your wedding. For example, here are items and services the bride and her family typically pay for:
- church/synagogue/ceremony location
- organist and musicians
- wedding gown, veil, accessories, trousseau
- flowers, bouquets, corsages for attendants
- photography and videography
- engagement party
- professional wedding services
- groom’s ring
Here are the items and services the groom and his family typically pay for:
- marriage license and officiant fee
- groom’s attire
- bride’s bouquet
- boutonnieres for men
- corsages for mothers and grandmothers
- rehearsal dinner
- DJ and/or band
- bride’s rings
And then there are some miscellaneous expenses others pay for such as:
√ your attendants pay for their own clothing and shoes
√ your maid or matron of honor hosts the bridal shower and bachelorette party
√ by the same token, the best man and groomsmen host the bachelor party
Who is responsible for your wedding spend? As you can see above, tradition and reality don’t always align. Your situation is unique, except for one single factor: entertainment makes the event. Don’t ever scrimp there!
And for dance floor-packing entertainment, DJ Brian Anderson is your go-to DJ entertainment company specializing in weddings. Learn more without obligation. Or give us a call at 256-638-3535. We love questions!
Have you ever thought about why people dance? Don’t you think dancing is all about joy? Sure, it’s good exercise. Sure, it is artistic. But dancing is much more. Dancing unites people in a joyful expression of celebratory exuberance, especially at weddings. That’s why most wedding celebrations build towards a wedding dance.
But there’s a catch. You’ve got to get your guests to the dance floor first. That’s why a great DJ who specializes in weddings (like us) is vital to the success of a wedding dance. DJ Brian Anderson has the entertainment and people skills to get people out of their seats and onto the dance floor.
The dance video that captivated the world
There’s a video that went viral a number of years ago called “Where the hell is Matt?” I’m sure you saw it. This guy, Matt Harding, did something totally crazy when he travelled across the entire world and simply danced, as you can see in the video above.
He danced in Mumbai, India and Paro Bhutan.
He danced in Northern Ireland and Zanzibar.
And he danced in Lancelin, Australia and Lisse, the Netherlands.
In all, he danced across the word, doing his hokey jig in 42 different countries. He even danced in the demilitarized zone between North and South Korea. Wow!
People around the world came out in droves to dance with this guy. The unbridled exuberance of this union of cultures, united simply by dance, captivated the world. Fifty-one million people have viewed his video to date.
It’s one of those videos that is hard to stop watching, even if you’ve seen it dozens of times (like I have!).
Look at the faces of every single one of the dancers: sheer joy animates them. As for Matt, his dancing isn’t exactly Fred Astaire or Michael Jackson, which makes it all the more endearing to viewers.
DJ Brian Anderson liberates your shy guests from their seats!
You’ll have a whole bunch of people at your wedding like Matt who may not be polished dancers. But all it takes is a little coaxing, done without the least pressure, to liberate these shy dancers from their seats. That’s what DJ Brian Anderson knows how to do.
Have you ever been to a wedding where a small group of younger people get up on the dance floor while the more “mature” guests remain glued to their seats? Your wedding dance will be so much better if you can get ALL of your guests united on the dance floor.
That’s the gold standard for a legendary wedding dance, and that’s what we specialize in.
Unleash the sheer joy of dancing at YOUR wedding dance, like Matt Harding does in his video above. Call the wedding dance specialists: DJ Brian Anderson at 256-638-3535. You can check our availability online.
[Be sure to check out an earlier blogpost, “Your first dance song done exactly the way you want it.”]
Everybody loves the song, “At Last.” Based on the number of times it is requested at weddings, it may be the perfect first dance song for you.
It’s hard to believe it was written 77 years ago for a movie called “Sun Valley Serenade.” The movie may not have been that memorable, but the song sure was.
A sign of a good song
A sign of a good song is one that the top singers of the day are still singing it. This creates wonderful opportunities for you at your wedding reception, because you have rich choices. If you are as enthralled by these lyrics as so many other couples are …
At Last my love has come along
My lonely days are over
And life is like a song
Ohh yeah, yeah
At Last the skies above are blue
My heart was wrapped up in clover
The night I looked at you.
I found a dream, that I could speak to
A dream that I can call my own
I found a thrill to rest my cheek to
A thrill that I have never known
Ohh yeah, yeah
And then the spell was cast
And here we are in heaven
For you are mine
… then “At Last” may be the perfect first dance song for you.
Select the version you like
With DJ Brian Anderson, you can select the version you like.
Is it Cyndi Lauper’s version?
How about Celine’s?
How about Nat’s?
Aretha sure knows how to put passion into this great song:
Beyoncé hits it out of the park:
But if any singer defined the power of this song, it was surely the late, great Etta James. Her earthy, soulful rendition is still the one most couples request. But, that’s the beauty of DJ entertainment: we can provide you with the perfect first dance song, whether it’s Etta, Beyonce, or Celine’s version.
Do you know what else is great about this song? It’s short. That takes the pressure off you, and allows us to get your guests onto the dance floor all the faster.
DJ Brian Anderson offers you simply exquisite sound equipment that presents these timeless songs with clarity and controlled volume. Our MCs know how to set up your first dance with perfect timing. And when your first dance is through, watch our DJ pack your dance floor.
Looking for the perfect first dance song? We’ve got everything you need!
A fun wedding reception doesn’t just happen, it is planned.
It’s not hard to create a fun wedding reception, but it’s also easy to blow it and create a boring affair you’ll lament for years to come. You need to put some irresistible, positive elements in place at the same time that you eliminate the possibility of potential monkey wrenches.
These ideas are presented in no particular order.
Create a smart seating arrangement
You know your guests. Nothing launches a reception better than comfort and compatibility. By seating people next to others with whom they’re compatible, you enhance their enjoyment of your celebration. Shy guests in particular love having seating arrangements pre-established so they don’t have to worry about finding someone with whom to sit.
Carefully manage the toasts
You don’t want too many toasts, and you don’t want any of them to ramble on too long. That’s why DJ Brian Anderson has written on this subject in previous blogposts [“Read this wedding toast script”]. Your rehearsal dinner is the time for longer anecdotes. Your wedding reception is the time for short, sweet toasts.
If you allow children at your wedding reception, you might consider making arrangements for a side room with baby sitters to entertain the kids. The kids will have more fun with coloring books, games, or movies, and their parents will have more fun on the dance floor than keeping the kids out of mischief. [Check out our earlier blogpost on a similar subject, “The definitive guide to babies at weddings.”]
Find a great DJ
Music makes the event, and a great DJ knows how to make the music work! Find a DJ company you like and trust (like us!). It really helps if you connect personally with a company before you decide on your DJ. A phone call or personal consultation is worth its weight in gold.
Play danceable music
Don’t fall into a trap where you load up your DJ with a list of your favorite, obscure Indie songs your guests may not appreciate as much as you do.
Trust your DJ. DJ Brian Anderson know how to read your guests and play the familiar, danceable tunes that pack dance floors. Of course we’ll play the tunes you like, and we’ll take requests, too. But balance is the key. We’ll make your celebration rock with customized entertainment tailored to your style.
Hire a wedding coordinator for the day of your event
If your budget can handle it, a wedding coordinator takes a lot of heat off of you on your wedding day. But even without a wedding coordinator, DJ Brian Anderson provides the pre-planning tools for our clients that eliminates so much of the stress of your big day. We’ll coordinate with other wedding vendors to be sure everything is in place so you can relax and simply have fun!
Serve great food that complements your budget
People love to eat at weddings! But it’s your biggest budget item, so plan a menu that you can afford. There is nothing wrong with a nice buffet if that fits your budget best. Besides, people won’t even remember the food once we pack the dance floor with our guest-pleasing entertainment. We specialize in wedding receptions. It is the entertainment that makes the difference at your wedding reception, not the food. Your friends and family are going to remember the fun they had, not the vegetable served by your caterer!
Decorate with lights
Decor lighting simply creates a wonderland regardless of the size of your budget. This is such an easy and affordable way for you to create a fun environment for your wedding reception guests. We offer quite a selection of creative lighting options. We can customize the look to match your style.
Provide guests with food and drink while you’re getting photographs taken
Hungry, thirsty guests are not happy guests. If you’re having photographs taken between the ceremony and reception, provide for your guests. Open up the bar. Provide snacks or appetizers. Prime the pump for the greatest party of your life!
Are you planning your wedding right now? Check us out. It’s easy, just go to our contact page. Or give us a quick call at 256-638-3535. Personal contact is always the best way for discriminating brides.
The marriage rate in the U.S. began a steady decline in the early 1970s before leveling off around 2009 at much lower levels. Keep reading if you’re not married. Younger Americans have lost sight of the reality that marriage benefits are amazing. A lot of Millennials don’t realize the positive impact getting married can have on your finances, your longterm health, and your future children.
Financial marriage benefits
Forbes Magazine ran a nice piece on the financial benefits of marriage. Forbes contributor, Kate Ashford, spelled some amazing financial marriage benefits you need to be aware of, including:
• Married spouses qualify for an estate tax marital deduction. Not so for domestic partners.
• Married spouses qualify for the gift tax marital deduction. Not so for domestic partners.
• Ms. Ashford goes on to reveal other significant benefits for spouses when it comes to Individual Retirement Accounts (IRAs), Social Security benefits, and health insurance savings. If your spouse dies, you have more protection if you’re married than not.
Some of you reading this view these benefits as an abstraction, something you can deal with way down the road. Perhaps. But when that day comes, you may have wished you had gotten married.
Health benefits of marriage
If the financial marriage benefits are significant, the health benefits are even more significant. As we pointed out in an earlier blogpost [“Marriage is good for your health”], married people:
√ Live longer than single people.
√ Experience fewer strokes and heart attacks.
√ Have a lower risk of depression.
√ Have a lower risk for advanced cancer.
√ Survive longer when cancer does strike.
√ Are better able to survive major operations.
The health benefits for men are especially profound. Both unmarried women and men have much higher rates of depression than their married counterparts, but with men, the differential is glaring. Unmarried men are nine times as likely as married men to suffer from depression.
Marriage is so therapeutic to men, that a married man with heart disease will live an average of four years longer than a single man with a healthy heart.
And did you know that unmarried people spend twice as much time in hospitals as married people?
Okay, you’re going to be happier, richer, and healthier if you get married. Anything else. Actually, yes. I save the best for last.
Marriage benefits to your children are amazing
If you’re ever blessed with children, data shows that kids fare better in families where mom and dad are married. These children are more likely to enjoy longterm health and prosperity than their peers being raised by cohabiting parents. Even more, they are far more likely to avoid the social pathology that afflicts so many of our youth, such as addiction, dropping out of school, and crime.
What’s interesting is that studies from 13 other countries all had similar results: the marriage benefits for children are incalculable.
Marriage benefits begin with a wedding. If you’re planning your wedding, DJ Brian Anderson provides world class entertainment that will propel you into your new healthier and happier lifestyle with flair.
Learn more without obligation today.