Monday, January 30, 2012

Cross Pollination for Valentine's Day

Are you looking for some fun ways to say, "I love you"? With February upon us and Valentine's Day approaching you might want to mozy on over to my other blog. It's called Fun With Words and the current post is loaded with love quotes that you can insert into a card or letter or say to your sweetie.

After visiting the Fun With Words blog, come back here for related posts about music and more for Valentine's Day. I call this a bit of cross-pollination for Valentine's Day :-)

Are there some posts you'd like to see here relating to Valentine's Day? Please share your thoughts.

Friday, January 20, 2012

Wedding Music Predictions (And More) for 2012

With the new year comes predictions of what will be. Since we are closing in on Valentine's Day, I'm posting the Top 12 Wedding Trends for 2012, from the pundits at

#12--Food Trucks--Fun food trucks are rolling in at receptions and after parties with non-traditional food items like fried twinkies and giant pretzels.

#11--Unique Head Chic--Last year's royal wedding turned headpieces into the "in" accessories, as everyone was looking at who was wearing which unique hat at Kate and Will's wedding.

#10--Royal Wedding Inspiration--Not just the headpieces, but this year's wedding styles reflect last year's royal wedding, too (think simpler wedding dresses with lace sleeves, natural make-up, and ivory bridesmaids dresses)

#9--Letterpress with a Modern Twists--Bold colors on traditional paper makes for a popular stationery choice.

#8--Bijou Weddings--Small guest lists mean that couples can afford elegance.

#7--Two Wedding Dresses--One for walking down the aisle, and one for the reception. It's what Kate Middleton and Kim Kardashian did (Kim had three dresses).

#6--Scaled Back Centerpieces--Smaller, shorter centerpieces using unique additions like crystals and antique books.

#5--Touches of Sheer--Transparent necklaces, for instance.

#4--Sparkle--Gold and silver accents are being used for everything from shoes to centerpieces.

#3--Mix and Match Mania--Mixing the dress look for your bridesmaids and groomsmen. They don't need to wear exactly the same outfits.

#2--Ditching Tradition--New traditions are taking place of the old and couples are inventing their own traditions.

#1--Not Your Mom's White Wedding Dress--According to, "blush is the new ivory".

Read the entire article at

What about music??? Notice that nothing was said about music! No music in 2012? Ridiculous!

I searched the web, and presently, I could find very little about any music trends for 2012 (at least very little about romantic music trends).

So, here are my own wedding and romantic music trend predictions for 2012:

1. Live Music Makes a Comeback--2011 was the year of the iPod. It was used everywhere, for ceremonies, receptions, and all kinds of other events. The pendulum swings back to live music in 2012. A harpist played at Kate Middleton's reception, and since the royal wedding theme will prevail in 2012, so will live music.

2. Ceremony Music to Fit the Bride's Experiences--More brides will opt for favorite songs as their entrance music, instead of sticking to the traditional (just as they will be creating more of their own wedding traditions and not going with the standard white wedding dress).

3. The Use of Less Mainstream Music--Weddings and events will utilize more music that the couple recently discovered, whether it be Celtic Music, music by independent artists, or music that brings a bit of nostalgia to older generations and is new to young couples. It's their way to introduce something new to their guests.

What are your wedding and music predictions for 2012? 

Hint: You can gather some great ideas for your wedding music from my book The Bride's Guide to Musicians: Live Wedding Music Made Easy and Affordable, published by Hal Leonard Books. It's also available as a Kindle edition on

Monday, January 9, 2012

How Music Can Help You to Keep Your New Year's Resolutions

Yes, it has been a while since I've posted, and one of my New Year's Resolutions is to keep my blogs fresher! Many of us have resolutions to exercise more, take the pounds off, and be healthier in 2012. Here's how to keep these health resolutions using music!

To start, I found these wonderful tips from Dr. Mehmet Oz and Dr. Michael Roizen. In an article posted at, they say that research proves that "listening to music bestows mind-body benefits":

1. Music improves your brain. It actually helps to boost memory and mental powers by firing up neurons in the brain!

2. Slow tunes lower blood pressure. Just 30 minutes per day breathing along to the beat of slow, soothing numbers can do the trick (think Celtic harp music, especially music from my Through the Mist CD!)

3. Music keeps your ears young. Did you know that older musicians don't usually experience the typical aging in the part of the brain (the auditory cortex) that often leads to hearing problems? This means that it's never too late to take up an instrument (like the Celtic harp!)

4. Music relieves stress. I'm sure we've all experienced this effect when we've listened to our favorite music. But there's scientific proof of this: Listening to music lowered heart rates by as much as 5 beats per minute in critically ill hospital patients hooked up to breathing machines. This helped them to heal by relieving their anxiety.

5. A good beat keeps you moving. Pick songs with a good beat to motivate you to exercise harder and longer.

Read more of this article at And read and listen to NPR stories with more proof of the health benefits of music:

Here's hoping that one of your resolutions for 2012 is to immerse yourself in the health benefits of music!

Do you have your own stories about how music benefited your health and well-being? Please share them here.