Category Archives: Stories

Stories about special events from the past.

Long Beach Island Wedding

If This Isn’t Nice, I Don’t Know What Is

The bride and groom rented an entire Bed and Breakfast for the weekend: The Island Guest House in Beach Haven, NJ.  The wedding, including the ceremony took place in a tent right beside the house.  The weekend was rainy, but the guests were energized and not a single drop fell throughout the reception.

As guests were getting settled into their seats, Trevor Collins played acoustic guitar plugged into our system.  A friend of the couple conducted the  brief, touching and beautiful ceremony.  At one point all the guests joined him in repeating the famous words of Kurt Vonnegut, “If this isn’t nice, I don’t know what is.”

LBI Wedding
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The last party ever held at El Taller was #DebsEpicProm.

#DebsEpicPromIt was a chance for friends to get together for dancing, drinks and laughs in their finest ruffle shirts and prom dresses.

The music for the night was heavy on the 80s, with some 90s music and cutting edge dance tracks. There was even some Punjabi MCs and Disko Partizani for the international crowd.

The prom queen was crowned to Orchestral Manoeuvres In the Dark – If You Leave, which you might remember from the movie Pretty In Pink.
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Beth Elohim Wedding

Congregation Beth Elohim, Park Slope, Brooklyn
Sunday of Labor Day Weekend 2014

Brooklyn Style

The bride and groom started working on their playlist nearly a year before the wedding started. Their initial Spotify playlist had very distinct selections from across the musical spectrum. It included songs by Arcade Fire, Jackie Wilson, KT Tunstall, Talking Heads, Destiny’s Child, No Doubt, Jens Lekman, Outkast, James Taylor, Creedence Clearwater Revival, Dire Straits, Mos Def, Usher, M.I.A., The Cure, The Roots, Jay Z, Amy Winehouse, Beck, TLC, and Stevie Wonder.

Beth Elohim
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Indian Spring Country Club Wedding

Multi-Cultural Wedding With Style

This wedding at the Indian Spring Country Club celebrated the union of an Indian bride and Korean Groom. It was planned at a distance: the bride and groom live in California, but the wedding was held in New Jersey, close to the bride’s family. All the meetings and conversations took place over the phone or using Google Hangouts for video conferencing. The bride wanted to include some Bollywood hits and provided a list of songs that she and her family like. The groom’s music was from his college days where he and his friends used to host excellent parties. The combination made the wedding a memorable experience for everyone involved. Continue reading Indian Spring Country Club Wedding

Bryn Mawr Sweet 16

High Energy

The theme was Chinese New year for this Bryn Mawr Sweet 16 party. The setting was the upstairs of Yang Ming restaurant, with a full seated banquet in one area, and a dance floor in the other. During the weeks that led up to the party, I worked with the family to create a song list that was fun and energetic. Using a google spreadsheet, the family and birthday girl had a chance to approve or disapprove of my suggestions, and add some requests of their own. The final result was an upbeat Top-40 party set with a couple of classic rock songs and show tunes thrown in for the parents and younger kids. Continue reading Bryn Mawr Sweet 16

Spring Hill Manor Wedding

Classic Rock on Records

This wedding took place on a gorgeous day in late June at Spring Hill Manor in Rising Sun, MD.  It was fun planning the music with the bride and groom. The couple asked for a lot of classic rock, and even brought some of their favorite records with them to the wedding.  I was so inspired by their vinyl collection, I surprised them a copy of Salt-N-Peppa’s “Whatta Man” on a record.  Through the night, I was able to switch over to vinyl for a some songs,  including “Golden Years” by David Bowie and “We’ve Only Just Begun” by The Carpenters.

For the full digital playlist for the night, click here.

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Montclair Bat Mitzvah

The Un-Bat Mitzvah

This bat mitzvah, at Bnai Keshet, in Montclair, NJ, was supposed to be different from the start. There wasn’t going to be all the pomp and flash that you might see at similar parties. It was meant to be a more intimate celebration, reflective of the family’s values. During the planning of the event, the parents talked about the event being very “low key.” But low key does not mean low energy The crowd was diverse and energetic and danced through the night. The circled wildly to the hora, and rocked out to some Saturday night classic rock.

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Bat Mitzvah at The Women’s Club of Glen Ridge

Parents and kids on the dance floor at the same time...and loving it!
Parents and kids on the dance floor at the same time…and loving it!

When the parents of the Bat Mitzvah girl first got in touch with me, it was three weeks before the event. Since the parents are both production types who work in media, I knew that we would be able to put together the best music for the event on a short timetable. Neither the parents nor the daughter wanted any kind of top 40 music, and the bat mitzvah asked about having a Charleston contest. Continue reading Bat Mitzvah at The Women’s Club of Glen Ridge

Hotel Monaco Wedding

This fun wedding was at the recently opened Hotel Monaco, a Kimpton Hotel, diagonally across from Independence Hall in Philadelphia.  The bride and groom both work at nationally recognized, innovative Jewish start up organizations. Musically, they wanted a lot of energy and dancing, particularly when they made their post-ceremony entrance. 
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New Hope Wedding

I met the couple six months before their wedding. At our first meeting we discussed their musical likes and dislikes.  We talked about the wedding itself: how many people, who will be in the room, what they envision happening on that day.  After thinking about the guests and the flow of the wedding, we turned our attention to music. When they shared their love for Society by Eddie Vedder, I knew it was going to be a special wedding. Continue reading New Hope Wedding