• jsyrett0

Four Simple Steps To Choosing The Right Funeral Music

Updated: Mar 14

It is never easy to choose music for an event and these decisions are even more meaningful when it is for a funeral. Whether you’re choosing music for your own service or have the difficult decision of choosing songs for a loved one’s funeral, it isn’t easy.

A few years ago funeral music was predominantly hymns or organ music but today, when it comes to song choices, just about anything goes.

Most funeral services have at least two slots for music – one for entering (processional) and one for the exit (recessional). However, there is no hard and fast rule and I have sung at many funerals where up to 3 more pieces of music have either been played or sung.

Here is a quick guide to what to think about when choosing songs for a funeral : -

Make it Personal

Music is probably the easiest way to personalise a funeral service. Make sure the songs chosen means something to a person's life you are celebrating. Did he or she have a favourite song or artist or music from a film? And remember, the music you select doesn’t have to be traditional funeral music; it just needs to reflect the person you are remembering. Don’t be put off by using happy songs – it’s a celebration after all.

Set the Tone

Music can really set the tone of any gathering, so think about how you want to make people feel: poignant, uplifted, reminiscing, comforted? Even funny songs can be used to make people laugh if that’s what the deceased would have wanted.

Ask Family & Friends

Sometimes when trying to think of songs which you think sum up the loved one or which they liked, you can forget the obvious songs that they always used to hum or play. If you have access their music collection it can be a great source of inspiration and insight to the music that meant most to them. Why not family and friends as they may come up with suggestion you haven’t thought of.

Listen to Lyrics

If you are choosing songs or music with lyrics, it is important to read or listen to them carefully. Sometimes the actual lyrics are a bit surprising and you may not feel they are appropriate for the occasion. It is far better to discover that the words weren’t quite what you thought they were before and not during the service.


Lastly, remember that if you’re choosing songs for someone’s funeral, you will know them better than anyone else; don’t worry about what other people think about your choices. As long as you keep good taste in mind and honour the deceased, there are no right or wrong choices – any genre or style is appropriate. Make decisions based on the person you knew and you are certain to make the right selections.

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