Friends and readers frequently ask me what’s most important about planning your wedding—gay or straight. Ultimately, the crucial element is that you’re happy and the wedding showcases you and your honey in the best light.

gay-weddings-musicOne of the important aspects of a wedding is music. And that can all go quickly downhill with the wrong song. It happened to me. My wife and I had our reception DJ also play all the classical music we wanted in our ceremony. We sent him the titles and composers of the pieces we wanted played, and thought that was enough. Far from it.

He got most of it right, but when it came to playing Ave Maria, the instrumental version, for our bridesmaids’ and flowergirls’ walk down the aisle, he played a loud, obnoxious German marching tune I was extremely unfamiliar with. I was peeking around the corner of the hedges of our garden wedding, trying to understand what the heck that sound was and what had gone wrong. Truthfully, I was cringing. “Who would want this played at their wedding?” I wondered to myself.

Luckily, our family didn’t seem to notice, the walk was short and soon Pachelbel’s romantic Canon in D transitioned the moment to my entrance.

Where did we go wrong? Here’s where: We had all the music at rehearsal, but we didn’t insist that our DJ attend. We played it all on an iPod, assuming he’d found the same music with our titles and artists on our playlist.

Lesson learned. For your wedding music, I suggest sending MP3s to your DJ or band ahead of time, as well as insisting that they come to your rehearsal, so any problems that arise can be dealt with properly.