“Piano Man” and Dropped Pants Really Is a MN Wedding Tradition
Real men admit when they're wrong, so here goes: I was wrong.
Earlier this week, I watched a video on Instagram of a Minnesota wedding DJ sharing what he believes is one of the "craziest" wedding traditions here in Minnesota. He goes on to share how -- at the first wedding he ever DJ'd -- the bride and groom asked him ahead of time to play Billy Joel's "Piano Man." "Ok, fine," he says in his Instagram video. "It's a long song, but I'll play it." He goes on to share how -- at the wedding -- he plays the song, and all the groomsmen and other men there circle up around the bride and groom, drop their pants and sing along to the song. The DJ goes on to insist that this is a tradition at Minnesota weddings.
I'd never heard of this before and certainly never seen it, so I was beyond dubious and quick to call B.S. After unabashedly sharing my speculation online and on-air, however, I began to hear back from Central Minnesotans that this matter of "Piano Man" and dropped pants is very much, in fact, a tradition (or at least common occurrence) at Minnesota weddings!
"1000% a thing!" said Katelyn Kelly. "I run a wedding venue and every time the couple is from St. John’s or St Ben’s it happens!"
"I've worked hundreds of weddings at St Bens. Yes, It's a CSB/SJU tradition," agreed Rebecca Hoye.
"I have seen it at many weddings," said Jessica Nierenhausen. "I believe it all started at with St Johns College guys."
"I'm a wedding DJ, definitely a thing," concurs Rob Lindholm. "Started with St John alum."
"Absolutely a thing. May even know who started it..." hints Joel Torborg. I even found this video as further proof. I don't know who Jeff and Laura are, but the video is dated 2013. And yes -- the dudes are all singing with their pants around their ankles.
So, I'll say this again for good measure -- I was wrong. Still, it's a strange tradition, though...
The State Symbols of Minnesota