Apr 24, 2006

Bride and grooms show real distaste for their wedding guests.

I used to be a wedding photographer for many years. Most of the weddings I attended were pretty uneventful, but there was always something irritating about most of them. The one thing that would drive me nuts about that job was the music I had to endure.

Now remember I was at a wedding at least once a week during the season. When I first started shooting weddings in high school there was a constant song that played at at the majority of receptions. That song being Bryan Adam's sappy Robin Hood Prince of Thieves theme 'Everything I do I do it for You'. Many times was this the setting for the couples' first dance. I would stand back with my camera taking shots of the moment while people in attendance would cry. I would over hear such comments as "Oh isn't that lovely? It's their song." Yeah them and about every other couple getting married that year.

About a year went by and the song "I Swear" became the hit of the wedding season. This was more interesting in that fact that you would hear different versions of the horrible song, but it didn't make the experience less painful. What was even more disturbing is that a few couples invoked this tune into the actual ceremony. Every single time this happened I looked at the face of the minister who always had that forced smile that said "If only I weren't a pacifist".

Next up we had Whitney Houston or Dolly Parton belting out "I Will Always Love You". Not only was this one of the most overplayed songs ever, it sent chills into every wedding party. When this song came blaring always too loudly over the simple sound system churches use groomsmen as well as bridesmaids would look at me and give a half grin. I guess my fake smile could not hide my disgust. People in the congregation would often bury their heads in their hands praying that it would be over soon.

What was really funny is the customers who chose the Dolly Parton version felt really proud of their choice. A few times they came to me and commented about how cool they were choosing the Dolly Parton version. When I asked why they told me that everyone was selecting Whitney Houston and they felt like they were the only bride and groom on the planet to choose the busty country singer. I didn't have the heart to tell them about the reality of their chosen Whitney rebellion.

The years went by and those songs slowly died out. What followed was quite possibly the most annoying trend in my short career as a photographer.

The Faith Hill/Leann Rimes/Trisha Yearwood song 'How Do I Live' was a huge success and was destined to be played at the weddings of simple minded folk. This time instead of hearing the version made famous by the record label couples would have a bridesmaid/cousin/sister-in-law once removed stand up in front of the congregation and belt out the tune.

Ye Gods we were brought into the age of the karaoke weddings. Kicking and screaming I went. Given the song was so simple most couples must of thought anyone could sing it well. They were oh so painfully mistaken.

The problem with this song is that it was played mostly within ceremonies so the congregation had no chance to sneak out. When a bad song plays during a reception you'll see a mass exodus take place. Brides and grooms for some reason felt obligated to make the audience endure such American Idolness. They must hate their families.

What's worse about that season is that during every reception the DJ would play the often requested 'Macarena'. Oh how I hated that song from the first day I heard it in a club. I thought at the time "This song is really bad. It's going to go nowhere." A soothsayer I am not.

Everyone would do the simple line dance with glee. Laughter was struck when watching old people try to follow along. Adults would try and teach their children the awful dance. I considered calling Child Protective Services, but I don't think it would fall under their abuse criteria.

Everytime that song came on I would glare at the DJ and he/she always gave me a shrug. Sometimes they would come over and ask me to join them for a smoke and a bitch session about how we loathed everything about the frenzy that was the 'Macarena'.

I left that career shortly after the Spanish duo infested the pop charts with their annoying dance craze. I did learn something from my experience as a photographer. I love my family and friends and if I get married I will never make them suffer through the latest horrible, but popular, pop song. They hear them enough without even wanting to. It's bad enough that some of them endure this blog.

"Are the Democrats going to dance the mandate macarena?" - Dan Rather

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