OFFICIANT | ARTIST INTERVIEW ///
Meet Central Coast Wedding Officiant Tom Allen! Upon introduction you will notice his warm hospitable demeanor that puts you at ease during the first minute of conversation. I met Tom years ago through his bride who is a world renown dress designer/alterer in Santa Margarita. She has worked with so many brides here on the Central Coast, including my wife, making their dream dresses. It makes sense Tom has a flair for art and music being married to such a talented and creative woman. As far as officiating weddings go, Tom delivers such a charming ceremony. He is sensitive enough to let the moments happen and then breathe, comical to lift the tension and he customizes his oration to fit each and every unique couple. If you're looking for an officiant who cares about creating a tailored ceremony and mood, Tom is your man!
How did you get your start?
Some friends from the tattoo industry had asked me to get ordained in order to marry them....which they never did. However, when the Minister for my best friend's wedding had to bow out due to illness, and the alternate Minister was deemed "not acceptable", I got pressed into action.
Describe a pivotal moment that led you to be an artist.
My 4th wedding was a beach wedding in Cayucos. I still didn't have much experience. When I was done and walking to my car, the mother of both the bride and the groom came over and said, "You have a calling. Our children (the word they chose) could not have chosen better." Up to that point I'd simply been happy to make a few extra bucks. From that point on, I looked at everything differently...
What or who continues to inspire you?
What makes your business unique?
I am not "boilerplate". I'm not for everyone. I believe that each wedding MUST have something fresh from the last wedding. That each wedding is a singularly special as a newborn baby.
How do you normally begin your day?
The dog wakes me up. "The Alarm Clock with the Fur Coat". After coffee and contemplation, my wife, the dog, and I walk the town.
First (music) album you ever bought?
"Do You Believe in Magic" - the Lovin Spoonful
What is your favorite flower?
Favorite part of a wedding?
When all the preliminary stuff is done and the bride and groom clasp hands and face one another.
Favorite movie or documentary?
Song that makes you get up and dance?
"Whip it" - the Dazz Band
What is your ideal couple?
The one that in our initial meeting makes ME laugh.
What do you enjoy doing on your day off?
Assaulting the neighbors with high decibel rock and roll played live from my "man cave".
What's your personal business philosophy?
Listen, then speak, say, then deliver.
Playing guitar, or seasonally....the veggie garden.
Why do you do what you do?
I do a number of things. At this point in my life because I either want to do them, love to do them, or have a driving not completely understood passion to do them.
The snack bar at the Bogart Theater in Sierra Madre.
Something that moved you deeply at a wedding orwith a couple recently?
I'd had a young couple who were literature/library arts students at a private college in New Mexico, who had the most beautiful, elegant wedding....the Cass House in Cayucos. They were a postcard, a Sepia tone print, and I'd researched quotes from literature for the day, which as I said them, the bride and grooms eyes kept getting bigger. The bride came up to me afterwards and said, "How did you know those were my favorite quotes"....and she smiled and hugged me, and walked off shaking her head. It was one of those times where I knew I'd given the couple something they'd absolutely wanted.
How do you sign off on your emails?
If you had to move to a foreign country, which one?
What question do you always ask the bride & groom?
Have I answered all of your questions?
If you were an animal, what whould you be?
A dragon fly, an elephant, or an egret.
If you were in a band, what instrument would you play?
I'm a guitar player....however.....I'd happily live a second life as a cross between Lionel Hampton and Gary Burton (vibraphone).
What's your favorite wedding food?
Sunrise or Sunset?
Depends on the place and season.
Wedding trend that you're loving right now?
Wedding trend that will hopefully be out next year?
The Macarena, Hokey Pokey, and the Chicken Dance.
Read the book or watch the movie?
The recent release of the American version of "the Girl with the Dragon Tattoo" is a great argument for doing both....
Stranded on a desert island, what would you bring?
My family, my guitar, a cross section of favorite fiction, and a picture of my late father.
Favorite song on your iPod playlist?
"Going Home" - Mark Knopfler/soundtrack from the movie "Local Hero".
What's one of your favorite quotes?
"It's only impossible 'til someone's done it".
What chore do you absolutely HATE doing?
Nothing I can think of that I hate. Not big on cleaning toilets.
What sound do you love?
The season frog roar from the creek next to our house.
What do you want to be when you grow up?
A fiction novelist.
What would you name the autobiography of your life?
The "Work in Progress" is still gainfully employed.
What was the last movie, TV show or book that made you cry or tear up?
"Things we lost in the Fire".
What's the hardest thing you've ever had to do?
What's the greatest gift you've ever given or received?
The love of my wife, family, and friends.
What do you miss most about being a kid?
Kool Aid and summer vacations.
What's in the top 5 of your bucket list?
1. publish a novel
2. be a loving Grandfather
3. New Zealand
What is something you learned in the last week?
That most people simply don't listen.
At what age did you really become an adult?
Where do you see yourself or business in the near or distant future?
Straight outta Santa Margarita, CA - 93453, and happy being there.
Anything else you want to add that we didn't ask?
I believe in love. I believe in weddings. I believe in marriage. And from these things, all things are possible.