CLASSICAL WEDDING GUITARIST
“You’re a classical wedding guitarist? What’s that then?!”
There are so many different types of wedding musicians out there, it’s sometimes unclear what each of them do. My goal with this article is to identify the role of the Classical Wedding Guitarist.
What Is A Classical Wedding Guitarist?
You might think that classical guitarists only play classical music. Whilst there is some truth in this, it’s not the whole story. Classical guitarists do play music from this period, however they have also developed to incorporate other styles too.
Most classical guitarists also play other types of guitars such as acoustic and electric guitar. Because of this they are immersed in a range of other genres. Many classical guitarists adapt songs from these genres and turn them into solo classical guitar arrangements.
A ‘Solo Classical Guitar Arrangement’ is an instrumental version of a song played on a single guitar. The original may or may not have lyrics, but the arranged version will be played entirely on solo classical guitar. This solo version will also include the vocal melody too if one exists.
Classical Guitarist vs. Acoustic Guitarist
What’s the difference between a classical guitarist and an acoustic guitarist?
First of all, classical guitarists use nylon string guitars. This gives a softer, warmer tone. This blends beautifully into the background and creates a lovely musical ambience. Acoustic guitarists tend to use steel string acoustic guitars. The sound of a steel string guitar is a lot brighter and crisper than a classical guitar. Acoustic guitars are great for accompanying vocalists and you’ll find that a lot of ‘Acoustic Duos’ incorporate an acoustic guitar into their line up.
These differences are why it’s best to make a distinction between a classical or acoustic guitarist before you start looking for a wedding guitarist for your big day. If you want ambient music you might be best with a classical wedding guitarist. If you’re looking for a musician to entertain by taking centre stage, you might be best with something else.
Genres of Music
Classical wedding guitarists are very diverse. For this reason it’s not unusual to see a wider range of genres on their repertoire list compared to some other wedding musicians.
For example, if you were to book an acoustic duo for your wedding, their repertoire would be mostly from the Pop/Rock genre along with some Jazz standards. You could sub-categorize the Pop/Rock songs into 60s, 70s, 80s etc but it all falls under the same broad genre of Pop/Rock.
Classical wedding guitarists tend to have multiple broad genres. My own repertoire lists includes the following 4 broad genres: Classical, Spanish, Jazz and Pop/Rock. Each of these has their own set of sub genres but this isn’t the place to get into that! In fact my ‘Classical’ genre includes music from the baroque and romantic periods, which any music snob will tell you are completely different genres. But I digress.
The point is that a classical wedding guitarist will be able to pick from a broader range of music than some other musicians. If you’re booking a musician for the entire day this is worth considering, as the same style of music can get a little tired by time the wedding breakfast rolls around.
Role of a Classical Wedding Guitarist
The role of a classical wedding guitarist is to perform background music at various points throughout the day. This can include the ceremony, drinks reception and wedding breakfast.
A classical wedding guitarist will attempt to blend into the background and provide a beautiful musical ambience. The goal of a classical wedding guitarist is not to be the centre of attention, but to create an atmosphere that enhances the emotions and enjoyment of the day.