What music should I select for a funeral?

Choosing the right music for a funeral can be quite a dilemma. Typically, there are three distinct pieces of music that play a crucial role in the funeral service. Each piece serves a specific purpose and holds its own significance.

These three pieces are:

● The Entry Music

● The Reflection Music

● The Exit Music

Music, as we all know, holds immense power in our lives. It has the ability to deeply impact us on a primal level. It all begins with the vibrations of sound waves resonating within our bodies, creating a profound effect on our organs. Music has the ability to soothe and calm us when we are stressed or anxious.

For instance, when a baby is being put to sleep, parents often play soft music to help them drift off. Similarly, when we are angry or upset, loud and heavy music can be played to drown out our thoughts and provide an outlet for our emotions.

As music plays, our stress and anger gradually dissipate. On the other hand, if someone wants to infuse energy into a room, they can use upbeat and lively music. This is a technique often employed by speakers, TV shows, films, and advertisers to evoke specific emotions and create a connection between the visuals and the audience.

Interestingly, listening to classical music is believed to slow down the onset of dementia. Attending an Andre Previn concert, one can witness members of the audience conducting the orchestra from their seats, some shedding tears, and others swaying to the enchanting sounds. Clearly, music holds a powerful sway over us.

In practices like yoga, sessions often commence with the chant of Om, which resonates at a frequency of 432 hz, the same vibration found in nature and believed to be the frequency of the universe. This rhythmic chant prepares our body, mind, and nervous system for meditation and exercise. Exercise routines are often accompanied by loud techno music, synchronising participants' movements with the beat. Have you ever experienced having a song stuck in your head that you just can't shake off? It's called an ear worm, usually accompanied by catchy and upbeat tunes. If I were to mention Kylie Minogue's "Can't Get You Out of My Head," who wouldn't start singing along?

Music holds a significant influence in various aspects of our lives. Religions utilise music to captivate the congregation's attention during services, keeping them engaged and breaking the monotony of sermons and lectures. The Bible alone contains over 400 references to music. Buddhists, Hindus, Muslims, and Shamans all employ music to call their congregations to worship.

When words are added to a piece of music, it takes on a whole new life, a new meaning, and becomes even more significant in our lives.

Now, let's delve into the importance of music in funerals.

The Entry Music serves as the opening act, setting the tone and tempo for the funeral proceedings. It acts as a "Call to Action," signalling mourners to enter the chapel and indicating that the service is about to commence. This piece of music can be a solemn tune that the deceased enjoyed listening to.

The Reflection Music, on the other hand, provides a moment of quiet contemplation. It allows individual mourners to reflect on their memories with the deceased and what they meant to them. This music is often deeply poignant, with lyrics that hold a profound meaning for the deceased and their immediate family. For example, James Blunt's "Monsters" may be chosen.

Lastly, the Exit Music marks the conclusion of the service and is typically a more upbeat piece that reflects the personality of the departed. It can be the theme song of their favourite football team or the title music from a beloved film or TV show. It may even be a song shared with a partner. This music signals to the congregation that the service has ended and it is time to leave the chapel, continuing to mourn with the family, spending time together, and reminiscing about the deceased. Examples of such songs could include "My Way" by Frank Sinatra or "Time to Say Goodbye" by Andrea Bocelli.

The choice of music for a funeral is deeply personal and should reflect the individuality and preferences of the deceased. It is a way to honour their memory and create a meaningful and memorable service. The right music can evoke emotions, provide comfort, and bring people together in their grief.

When selecting music for a funeral, it is important to consider the lyrics, the melody, and the overall tone of the song. It should resonate with the mourners and capture the essence of the person being remembered. It is also important to consider the cultural and religious traditions of the deceased and their family.

Music has the power to heal, to bring solace, and to provide a sense of closure. It can bring people together and create a shared experience of mourning and remembrance. Whether it is a classical piece, a hymn, a popular song, or a personalised composition, the right music can bring comfort and support during a difficult time.

In addition to the three main pieces of music, there may also be other moments during the funeral service where music can be incorporated. This could include a special song during a slideshow or video tribute, a musical interlude during a eulogy, or a hymn sung by the congregation.

Ultimately, the choice of music for a funeral should be made with care and consideration. It should reflect the life and personality of the deceased and provide comfort and support to those who are grieving. Music has the power to transcend words and touch the deepest parts of our souls, making it an essential element of any funeral service.

Created by APC Admin