Songs About Wedding Days
by Chuck Eddy | May 26, 2014
There are songs that get played at weddings, and then there are songs actually about the days on which weddings take place. Sometimes the two overlap, obviously, but this playlist is dedicated to the latter category.
At their best, songs about wedding days get gleefully specific about the situation: Think of Stanley Holloway in “Get Me to the Church on Time” (from My Fair Lady) pulling out the stopper and having one last whopper of an all-night blowout before he gets married in the morning. Or else recall the old folks in Chuck Berry’s “You Never Can Tell,” wishing the teenage monsieur and mademoiselle well before the newlyweds head back to their cheap flat full of 45s and “coolerator" full of TV dinners and ginger ale. And then there’s the glassy-eyed and pleased-as-pie groom in Nick Lowe’s “I Knew the Bride (When She Used to Rock 'N' Roll),” shaking hands all around while the bride wears the dress her mom got hitched in 27 years ago. Or else Widow Callahan admiring handsome Mr. Charlie’s lime-green suit in Phil Vassar’s “Love Is a Beautiful Thing.”
Click on our playlist, and catch up with characters like the spurned grump in The Fools’ “Dressed in White” (who declines an invitation by saying “Your Daddy’d be in a bad mood/ And I’d only be there for the food”). And who could forget Natalie Merchant — in the Dixie Chicks’ “White Trash Wedding” — pointing out that “I shouldn’t be wearing white and you can’t afford no ring”? Elsewhere in our mix, Billy Idol hosts a different kind of “White Wedding,” involving a shotgun and somebody’s little sister. And Eugene Hütz, in Gogol Bordello’s “American Wedding,” simply wonders where the heck the vodka and marinated herring and decent musicians went to.
Toby Keith and Billy Ray Cyrus get all emo on us because their exes done tied the knot with some other jokers; Blaine Larsen watches his mom walk down the aisle with his awesome new stepdad; Gilbert O’Sullivan threatens to throw himself off a nearby tower after getting stood up at the altar; Harry’s brother Larry’s best man, Young MC, busts a move on a well-proportioned bridesmaid; Freda Payne and her new hubby sleep in different rooms (and she’s left holding nothing but a band of gold); Etta James opts not to forever hold her peace about why these two people should not be joined in holy matrimony. And Prince soils the bride’s dress, though not with eggs (as in Courtney Love’s infuriated new single “Wedding Day”). So: plenty of happy endings, but quite a few otherwise as well. After some of these worst-case scenarios, your own wedding day can't help but seem perfect in comparison!