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Notes from The Florida Songwriters Association Conference

You’re Attending a Songwriter’s Conference and You’re Not a Songwriter? 🤪

How did that happen?

What had happened was, LOL! My good friend, neighbor, and podcast co-host Brad, is a local singer-songwriter in the Orlando area. During one of our recording sessions, he mentioned the Florida Songwriters Association Conference and said it would be great for me as a performing vocalist and pianist to network with the people who attended the conference. I am all about networking because if you don’t know, that is the key to this industry as well as being talented. To be honest, I was on the fence because I had quite a few performances that week, AND I had one scheduled in the middle of the conference. I decided to bite the bullet just a few days before and I went ahead and purchased my ticket.

I was glad my friend would be with me because although networking is key and I know I should do it, as an introvert it can be pretty daunting. Well, I packed up my equipment and made the voyage across town to the event. You know sometimes as a performing vocalist and pianist you end up attending events a little overdressed! And that was totally the case, but it wasn’t the first time and it definitely won’t be the last.

My friend and I arrived early and we picked out a couple of prime seats in the center near the stage. I met a wonderful vocalist and musician who was a songwriter and we discussed our mutual acquaintances. This made me feel a little more comfortable because I felt as though I was out of my element.  Soon after, I met the Executive Director but I had no clue who he was. He was very down-to-earth, hands-on, and welcoming. He shared his contact information with me and I reached out to him later that evening and set up a Zoom meeting for the following week. Networking tip: engage with your new contacts as soon as possible, don’t wait to reach out to them. They may forget you or worse, you may forget them!

Who Attended:

Host of the Florida Song Writers Association Conference at the podium
The Host for the day- Meka

There were many singer-songwriters in the audience as well as DJs, teachers from Fullsail, and people in the industry. I felt a little out of place because I was not any of those things but just a “performing vocalist and pianist”. You see when you end up in situations out of your comfort zone, you just have to roll with it and have a perspective of “What can I learn from this experience? How can I grow?” With that perspective I sat and listened to the speakers. I did have to hop out of the conference halfway through because I had a gig, but I returned after I was done. I could have left midway and just gone home after my gig, but I felt as though I was meant to be there.

The Speakers:

One of my favorite speakers was from the Mechanical Licensing Collective. His presentation and handout were phenomenal! There are many artists out there who don’t know they have royalties because of a bill passed in 2019! They literally have thousands of dollars waiting for them and they have no clue. Because most music on streaming platforms were backed by music companies, those artists received their royalties. However, during the big boom of Indie artists uploading their own songs, there was no way to find them until now! Some of the stories he shared were amazing and very inspiring. If you have music on streaming platforms, be sure to check out the MLC right HERE to register. You can find out if you have royalties coming to you! As a performing vocalist and pianist, I have gone into the studio multiple times. If my name is listed on a track (which it should be) then I could also receive royalties. I would register anyway, you never know!

The second group of speakers was all the way from Germany. Technology is so amazing! Two representatives from a publishing company all the way in Germany took the time to speak at the Florida Songwriters Association Conference. They were so gracious. It was around 2:00 am their time and they stayed up late to impart their wisdom. I learned that Germans prefer to hear songs in English, who knew! This particular publishing company really wants to partner with female score composers. So ladies if you are a score composer, you may want to look into the European market. Children’s music was another popular genre needed in Germany.

Florida Songwriters Association Conference Takeaways:

  • Don’t be afraid to step into rooms that may seem a little intimidating for you. You never know who you will meet or who could be your next partner on a new project. The more I learn and network, the more I realize that partnerships and relationships are key. I am so thankful that Brad invited me along for the ride, I would have never thought to go on my own.
  • If you have ever gone into a studio and recorded music, register with the MLC just in case you have royalties laying around!
  • Don’t be afraid to look outside the American market for opportunities. We all have to explore and find the right market for our music. It may be here in the States, or in a different country, but everyone has a place.

~ Deanna



What Music Do I Need for a Wedding Ceremony?


Planning for a wedding can be super stressful and I am sure if you are planning a wedding you can relate! There are so many details to think about that it can be overwhelming, especially, if you are like most people, it is your first time planning planning a wedding.

As a musician, I love performing at weddings and today I am going to share some practical ideas and tips to help you plan the music for your wedding ceremony. 🙂

Prelude Music

When you are busy getting ready to walk down the aisle, your guests begin to arrive. They will mingle with long-lost friends and relatives while choosing a prime seat for the festivities. If your guests don’t know a lot of people, it can be a bit awkward, and no one likes awkward silence. Can you imagine coming into a new space not knowing a lot of people and it is dead silent or you have the privilege of listening in on conversations you wish you never heard? Well here is where your choice of prelude music can set the tone for your day. Instead of awkward silence as your wedding vibe, you can choose a romantic or sentimental vibe to greet your guests. You will typically need to choose between 5 -10 songs to fill a time frame ranging from 20 minutes to 45 minutes.


Processional Music

The procession begins when the family begins the walk down the aisle. This can look different for everyone so the number of songs you choose can vary between 2 – 4 songs. You have the option of choosing a song for each group that walks down the aisle or keep it super simple and choose one song for all of the group and one song for the bride. You also have a chance to make this part of your ceremony unique.

Long, long ago in a time far, far away, my husband, who is a Star Wars fanatic asked if he could walk down the aisle to the Star Wars theme. I being the musician, carefully chose the music at my wedding. My childhood piano teacher (she played the piano and sang for my wedding ceremony) also helped me with music selections because, like most of you, it was my first time planning a wedding. Even as a musician, I had questions and I relied on the advice of my piano teacher to guide me through the process because she had performed at weddings numerous times. We also did not have the luxury of the internet to do research by reading blogs or going on YouTube 🤪 So what does this mean for you? You can use this time in the ceremony to personalize it to your taste and personality.

Unity Ceremony or Special Music

The Unity Ceremony is an option that many couples choose to participate in during their ceremony. Some ceremonies include candles. I lit a unity candle at my wedding and it is now tucked away in my closet 🥰, but I had it on display for a while as a young bride and on occasion, I bring it out to renew that special memory. You can also use sand, plants, and even beer or wine to symbolize the two of you becoming one. During this time, you can choose a special song that plays while during the unity ceremony, just remember that this is typically a short ceremony. You can choose something that will play only during this time and end when you are finished or you can have the music continue and the two of you can listen until the song is finished. If you choose not to do a unity ceremony, you can have a musician play or sing a special song that is meaningful to both of you. Or you can do both options! Choose a song for the unity ceremony and choose another song to highlight your love as a couple or as two families become one.


Okay, let’s bring this home, literally! The Recessional is your awesome and amazing exit as a newly married couple. You have completed your matrimony ceremony, unity ceremony, and anything else you wanted to add and now it is time to celebrate your union go party! The recessional music can be 1 – 2 songs. You will have a special song played or sung as you are announced to your guests and then happily walk down the aisle together. You can either continue with the same song as your bridal party exits or you can choose a different song for your bridal party. The size of the room and the number of guests will determine how many songs are needed for your recessional.

Wedding Music Checklist

And there you have it! You now know all the parts of your wedding ceremony that will need music. You can use this blog for reference to help in your planning, AND you can also download our “Wedding Music Checklist” so you can be sure not to miss a beat (no pun intended LOL!) If you have any questions, feel free to leave a comment or message me. Having a plan and a guide will help alleviate some of the stress when it comes to choosing music for your special day. I am here for you if you need me. Happy planning!


Deanna 🙂


Download your checklist HERE

Have a question? Leave a comment below or message me at hello@deannalgiron.com

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Forever Enchanting: Taylor Swift’s Timeless Anthem Finds a Home in Wedding Playlists

As an entertainer with a knack for crafting unforgettable musical experiences, I couldn’t help but dive into the buzz surrounding Taylor Swift’s 2010 album, “Speak Now,” and its legendary title track. Nate Jones, a Vulture senior writer immersed in movies and pop culture, brought to light how this fictional tale of crashing a wedding has the potential to transform the landscape of real-world celebrations. Now, with Swift’s reimagined “Taylor’s Version” of the album, a particular gem from the vault is poised to resonate deeply within the hearts of lovebirds everywhere.

This hidden treasure is a romantic ballad titled “When Emma Falls in Love.” Its essence is as pure as it sounds—Swift’s lyrical finesse takes us on a journey through the discovery of genuine love by a friend named Emma. Lines like “Emma met a boy with eyes like a man, turns out her heart fits right in the palm of his hand” evoke a sense of timeless romance that is bound to tug at heartstrings. I mean who wouldn’t want to feel like this?

A delightful challenge arises: consider the number of individuals named Emma, a name that has graced baby-name lists with increasing popularity since the late ’90s. The Social Security Administration reveals that Emma has consistently secured a spot among the top five names for female births, capturing the top spot from 2002 onwards. The Emma phenomenon spanned Swift’s eras of Fearless, 1989, and Reputation, coinciding with the years of the Swift-Superfan demographic and the age of first marriages in the U.S. Talk about a perfect proverbial storm for Taylor Swift!

As a professional who strives to help couple and families create the most memorable musical moments at weddings, it becomes clear that those who are adorned with the Emma name are approaching a point in time where their love stories will take center stage. These blossoming Swift enthusiasts, raised on her melodies, will undoubtedly resonate with “When Emma Falls in Love.” It’s a melody that might have accompanied them in their cribs and will likely reappear to serenade them on their wedding days in the future.

With each chord progression, “When Emma Falls in Love” etches itself into the hearts of a generation, becoming synonymous with the celebration of love and commitment. So, as we celebrate the weddings of this season, let’s appreciate the unique charm of this moment—because, before long, the sweet sounds of “When Emma Falls in Love” might become the soundtrack that gracefully ushers in a new era of the ultimate love song.

As an entertainer who assists couples in shaping their special day’s musical ambiance, I’m here to ensure that every note resonates with the heart of their love story. Don’t miss our Wedding Music Checklist – download it now to ensure an unforgettable experience for you and your guests.


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