At some point during your journey, you’ll have to take some time and decide on some songs. Most planning timelines have you doing this about a month before your wedding date. Personally, I know that a month before the wedding is going to be a busy time, so if I can check this off my list sooner, I’m going to! The nice thing about our DJ, The DJ Firm, is that they have an online system. We just log in and choose songs from their database and put them into the categories, to keep everything organized!
Some things that you need to think about are if you’re a modern or traditional bride, the restrictions of your venue and the crowd that will be attending your wedding. We’re a more modern couple, so you probably won’t be hearing “Here Comes the Bride” as I make my way down the aisle. We luckily do not have any venue restrictions, but since our cocktail hour is in a different space, our DJ will need to move a speaker into that area to be able to play background music. We have a wide range of ages attending, so we want to make sure to play a variety of music during the reception so that everyone is out of their seat and on the dance floor! This has caused some debates when choosing our must play song list.
When starting this process, I did not think for a minute that I would need to choose so many songs, so once we got started, we soon realized that this process was going to take a bit longer than previously thought. Here is a list of songs that you’ll need to have:
Pre-ceremony: background music while your guests are being seated
Processional: specific songs that will be played while your grandparents, parents and bridal party walk down the aisle. You might need two songs for this.
Bride: a song that you want to walk in to. Make sure that your song is long enough to get you down, if you have a long walk, you might want to time it out, or speak with your DJ/musician to find an extended version.
Recessional: song that will be played as you and your new hubby leave your ceremony. I’ve seen the most variation in this song. Some brides choose a soft, romantic ballad and others are upbeat.
Cocktail hour/reception seating/dinner: typically instrumental songs that can play in the background. I’m not going to worry too much about this and will leave this up to our DJ.
Bridal party entrance: some brides are foregoing the bridal party entrance altogether, while others introduce everyone from the grandparents down. If you do decide to intro your party, make this a fun upbeat song to set the mood for the evening!
Couple entrance: one of the best parts of the night! Again, you’ll want it to set the mood for the evening, so make it true to the two of you!
Cake cutting: if you choose to announce your cutting, you’ll probably want to have something playing in the background.
First dance: this one goes without saying, pick something that means something to you!
Father/daughter & Mother/Son dances: to make this one a little easier, ask your parent if there is a song that means something to them.
Must play/do not play: I’m going to say it, and I may get some flack for it, but I HATE a lot of cheesy wedding songs. Sorry, I know many people like them, but I just can’t do it. So our DJ will know well in advance that there will be no hustle, cupid shuffle or any other dance like that!
Anniversary dance: this is a fun tradition, in which all couples come out on the dance floor and are asked to leave based on their length of marriage. It’s always amazing to see the last couple standing and how long they’ve been together!
Last dance: in the past, this was left up to the DJ/band and still can be, but I’ve had more friends lately who choose the note they want to end their night on.
This list might look a little overwhelming, especially when you’re in prime decision making mode, but the nice thing is, many websites have done the work for you! I googled each type of song, and at least ten sites popped up, so it was much easier for us to narrow it down!
What songs would you or did you choose?