What a Rush!
Well we gals had a BLAST at The Rush Harbour Festival last weekend where we served up a little Motown-On-Sea. Driving to the outskirts of North County Dublin the dionnemobile had to surf some pretty big puddles as torrential rain threatened to dampen our beehives. The Festival Marquee was surrounded by dodgems and carousels, right by the sea in this charming and pretty village. It felt like stepping back in time to the showband era!
Angela Byrne and her wonderful team of organisers went above and beyond the call of duty ferrying revellers to the marquee with golf umbrella’s and indomitable spirit. She even made sure we got our pre-show sandwiches! When the 300 strong crowd arrived they were ready to party and the dancefloor was rocking from start to finish.
It did a Dionne’s heart good to see good old fashioned community spirit in full flight, and we look forward to bringing Motown and Soul Music back to Rush any time they’ll have us 🙂
As everyone knows, Summer is High Season for wedding bands, and we Dionnes are hard at work!
June, July and August are our busiest months, and we’ve already had a ball playing at some of the most beautiful wedding venues in Ireland. Ballybeg House (www.ballybeg.ie), Castle Durrow (www.castledurrow.com) and Lisnavagh House (www.lisnavagh.com) are just some of the fabulous locations we’ve been invited to play this year. We also had a marvellous time at Patrick and Sarah’s wedding, held in a vineyard near Carcassonne in late June.
However, even when the weather is inclement, we gotta say that Ireland holds it’s own as a pretty near perfect place to get married.
So we girls are developing our very own shortlist of fave venues, ready for whenever those 3 Mr.Rights show up!
In the coming weeks and months we are looking forward to playing in venues as diverse as Rosedale House, Mount Falcon, the Morrisson Hotel and 10 Square in Belfast. You see, we believe that weddings, like snowflakes, are as unique as the couples who make them. But something all of our weddings have in common is the best of Motown and Soul Music. We still get an enormous kick out of seeing 3/4 generations bopping in unison to The Temptations, Stevie Wonder, Tina Turner and Aretha Franklin. We’ve been treated to Northern Soul dancing that would rival anything you’d see at Wigan Casino, and had our moves mirrored by 3 little flower girls who never left the dance floor the entire night!
Of course, we Dionnes take wedding season pretty seriously. We train, apply tons of vanishing creme, sleep in hair nets, eat our greens and gargle with salt and water to keep germs at bay. We gotta keeps hittin’ those high notes AND have the energyfor two or three weddings per week.
But challenging as this season is, we LOVE it. And when we see the dancefloor sway to the sounds of the Motown and Soul music that we love, there is NO place we’d rather be!
Tips for choosing your first dance song
Sometimes the bride and groom have completely different idea of what their first dance song should be. In that case we try to reach a compromise, or suggest one that we know works really well; ie creates that atmosphere and gets the party started. We always meet couples with a few suggestions, and reassure them that the first dance is really a device to get everyone on the dancefloor, so not to worry too much about it!
If a couple were a bit stuck about a first-dance song we’d do a bit of romantic-detective work and ask when and where they met, what was the first movie they saw together (movie soundtracks can be a good place to start), what was on the radio/what they might have have been listening to on the ipod/cd player when they started dating….that sort of thing.
We found ‘Ain’t No Mountain High Enough’ by Marvin Gaye, ‘I’ll be there’ by The Jacksons, and Tammi Terrell is a showstopper. Actually anything by Marvin and Tammi….’You’re All I Need to Get By’ and ‘Ain’t Nothin’ Like The Real Thing’ are fab too, they had such great chemistry when they sang together. Aretha’s ‘Say a Little Prayer’ is always a winner, and our gorgeous Ballybeg couple Daire and Orla recently chose Sam Cooke’s ‘Wonderful World’ which worked beautifully.