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a classical guitarists guide to the top 20 guitar songs for weddings

A Classical Guitarists Guide to the Top 20 Guitar Songs for Weddings Classical Guitarists For Hire!

Are you looking to hire a classical guitarist for your wedding? Are you in need of some inspiration choosing the perfect piece of music for them to perform? Let classical guitarist, Dennis OKelly, take you through his top 20 classical guitar songs for weddings. For our complete guide to booking a classical guitarist, go here, for a dummies guide to the classical guitar, go here, and for our Top 10 Classical Guitarists in 2017, go here. Also see our wedding guitarists, acoustic singer guitarists, classical musicians & wedding ceremony musicians.

Are you looking to hire a classical guitarist to provide your wedding entertainment? Are you in need of some inspiration choosing the perfect piece of music for them to perform?

I've been a professional classical guitarist for many years and have performed at hundreds of weddings. This is my top 20 list of the most popular songs I've been asked to perform, and my personal suggestions for the perfect classical guitar wedding music.

  1. J S Bach, BWV 1007

    Originally written for cello. I thought it a very classy and emotive choice which I played as the bride approached through a flowered garden.

  2. “Close To You” by The Carpenters

    It’s a winning formula when you have a great romantic song, familiar to many, and well transcribed for guitar.

  3. “I Do I Do I Do” by Abba

    Highly relevant and slightly camp.

  4. “More Than Words” by Extreme

    An acoustic power ballad that has been consistently popular for the last 20 years, and I’ve been asked to play it more than words.... I mean more than once.

  5. “Gymnopedie No 1” by Eric Satie

    A sparse and very tranquil classical piece which I was playing at a bridal fair when a lady rushed up, clasped my arm fervently and said: “I don’t know what that’s called, but I want it played at my wedding.

  6. “Recuerdos de Alhambra” by Francisco Tarrega

    This piece uses a tremolo technique to produce a sound reminiscent of the flowing water at the palace of the Alhambra in Granada, Spain. This effect also gives it an irresistibly romantic sound.

  7. “The Wedding March” by Mendelssohn

    This and “Here comes the bride”, is usually played on the church organ by an enthusiastic but not always proficient elderly spinster of the parish. Works well for guitar though.

  8. “You Are The Sunshine Of My Life” by Stevie Wonder

    Chosen for a swooning bride by her adoring groom.

  9. “In My Life” by The Beatles

    I often play it during the signing of the register, and if you want something simple to declare your undying love, this says it all really.

  10. “I Can’t Help Falling In Love With You” by Elvis

    Much joyful sobbing when I was again asked to play this during the signing.

  11. “Hallelujah” Leonard Cohen’s

    It has the right blend of the sacred and the romantic to take it into our top 10.

  12. Prelude BWV 1007 by Bach

    People often think of a song’s heartfelt and loving words when they hear the guitar play its melody. However, classical pieces have to rely on melody alone to convey a romantic or joyful mood, and this piece, originally written for cello, does just that.

  13. “Your Song” by Elton John

    Flattery can get you anywhere, and saying “How wonderful life is, while you’re in the world” to your future partner, will almost guarantee a lifetime of devotion. “Your Song” by Elton John proves there’s more to him than tantrums and tiaras.

  14. “Fields Of Gold” by Sting

    Also made famous by Eva Cassidy, a simple and very effective melody makes this a winner with many couples.

  15. “Romance de Amor” by Anon.

    The title may not ring any bells, but when you hear the tune you’ll say: “Oh that one! How lovely!” He’s written a lot of great stuff has anon.

  16. “Romeo And Juliet” by Dire Straits

    This tune touches a chord with many. A melancholy guitar riff, with a love story theme.

  17. “Something” by George Harrison

    Arguably the Beatles best love song. Prospective married couples tend to agree, and I’ve been asked to play this classic many, many times.

  18. “Ave Maria” by Schubert

    A traditional favourite, associated with wedding ceremonies for many years. It will give your wedding that sacred and blessed feeling you’ve been looking for.

  19. “Cavatina” by Stanley Myers

    The theme from the Deer Hunter. It became one of the most famous guitar pieces of all time, thanks to the guitarist John Williams. A lady once asked me: “If you can play that at our wedding, it will make our day”. I could and it did.

  20. “Canon in D” by Johann Pachelbel

    A Baroque bullet, from the 17th century, not just played on classical guitar but on organ, piano, with string quartets and ukuleles. I don’t know if Pachelbel had wedding ceremonies in mind when he wrote this, but it's gorgeous chord sequence with many repeated variations, produces such a profound and moving effect that it has been the No.1 choice at weddings for the past 300 years, and judging by how many times I am asked to play this, it’ll be No.1 for the next 300.

So I hope that's helped to inspire you with few wedding entertainment ideas. The quality of classical guitarists for hire at Alive Network is exemplary and you shouldn't have any problem requesting any of the pieces from this list.

I hope you might consider me in your search for a fantastic classical guitarist to hire for your wedding.

Check our my profile page at Alive Network here >

Written by Dennis OKelly - Classical Guitarist based in Cornwall

Your Ultimate Guide to Wedding Entertainment