The first dance is a tradition that is still going strong but when it comes to choosing that elusive song, the decision isn’t always easy. Every year there are popular songs that crop up time and time again – timeless classics that are as romantic as it gets, easy to dance to and the perfect fit for a first dance. And then there are the pop songs that win over couples hearts (Ed Sheeran stole the show this year and last year). For others, it’s a song that means something to them – a song that was knocking about when they first got together, one that was played on a first date or one that just reminds them of their other half.
While slow or romantic songs used to claim their fair share of the first dance limelight, anything goes when it comes to first dances now so if you don’t fancy swaying to a slow set, there are lots of fun, up tempo tunes to choose from as well from Bruno Mars to Hall & Oates. To help you whittle down your song choices, we’ve asked our experts, weddings bands Surefire Trio, Harlequin and Sway Social to share some popular and unusual songs suggestions couples are requesting. Here are 40 fab first dance songs…
Surefire Trio – View Profile
Our top first dance song choices are:
1. God Only Knows – The Beach Boys. “God only knows what I’d be without you” – Tony Asher nailed it with these classic lyrics for Brian Wilson’s genius composition.
2. This Must Be The Place – Talking Heads. “Out of all those kinds of people, you got a face with a view” – this song says all the right things in a very unique way.
3. Fade Into You – Mazzy Star. Probably one of the most romantic songs ever recorded – it’s a song in 3/4 time, a waltz… which of course, makes it all the more dance-able.
4. Thinking Out Loud – Ed Sheeran. This song is no doubt more than a tad over done at weddings these days… but it’s an undeniably beautiful song – if you both love it, go with it!
5. Home – Edward Sharpe & The Magnetic Zeros. Definitely not your typical done-to-death first dance song, hippy-ish, cute words, set to an upbeat though moody musical background.
6. Hotel Yorba – White Stripes. An upbeat, quirky choice, perfect for the synchronized-funny-dance couple! Definitely individual.
7. All Of Me – John Legend. Inevitably a ‘safe’ choice – this is a modern and incredibly romantic, classic – perfect for the slow dancers.
8. Many Of Horror (When We Collide) – Biffy Clyro. A great alternative love song about how imperfect we are in love – very honest!
9. Come To Me – Goo Goo Dolls. Another beautiful love song that tells it like it is! Worries, doubts, fear… and love – overriding it all!
10. The Voyage – Christy Moore. Written by Johnny Duhan and made famous by Christy Moore… this is a truly beautiful song about starting a family with and making it through life easily with and because of the love of your life! – “Life is an ocean, love is a boat”.
Harlequin – View Profile
It’s always interesting to see what first dance song a couple decide to go with for their wedding. Sometimes it’s a personal favourite, a chart song at the time, the song they remember first dancing to or even a song they saw the band perform previously. Here is a selection of the first dance songs requested during our summer weddings. It might give you a few ideas for your own wedding!
1. Sugar, Honey, Honey – The Archies
2. 1000 Years – Christina Perri
3. Happy Together – The Turtles
4. Heaven – Bryan Adams
5. You Make My Dreams Come True – Hall & Oates
6. Never Seen Anything Quite Like You Tonight – The Script
7. Ho Hey – The Lumineers
8. Book of Love – Peter Gabriel
9. Higher Love – James Vincent McMorrow
10. Marry You – Bruno Mars
11. Rule the World – Take That
12. Budapest – George Ezra
13. I Won’t Give Up – Jason Mraz
14. Everything – Michael Bublé
15. All of Me – John Legend
Sway Social – View Profile
Wedding couples will frequently ask for our opinion on the ‘First Dance’ and wonder if we might be able to suggest a good track for this purpose. While some Bride & Grooms have a long-standing special song that is appropriate, others don’t have such an easy choice. Perhaps you both love ‘Maniac 2000’ by Mark McCabe, but don’t necessarily want everyone filming your dance to it, at the start of the night! There are songs that are traditionally appropriate, for good reason: suitably romantic or uplifting lyrics and music, with tempos that work well for dancing. Recently, a couple of welcome additions to Sway Social’s list of first songs were ‘Better’ by Tom Baxter, ‘Greatest Day’ by Take That and ‘One Day Like This’ by Elbow. Here are some more popular tracks that Sway Social have been requested to perform for the First Dance…
1. Let’s Stay Together – Al Greene
2. You Are So Beautiful – Joe Cocker
3. The One – Kodaline
4. Into My Arms – Nick Cave
5. It Had To Be You – Harry Connick Jnr
6. Can’t Help Falling In Love – Elvis Presley
7. Wonderful Tonight – Eric Clapton
8. Better Together – Jack Johnson
9. Perfect Day – Lou Reed
10. You Do Something To Me – Paul Weller
11. The Way You Look Tonight – Frank Sinatra
12. L.O.V.E – Nat King Cole
13. Crazy Love – Van Morrison
14. Chasing Cars – Snow Patrol
15. Baby I Love You – The Ramones
Photo by One Love Photography via Green Wedding Shoes
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Pamela enjoys writing about all things decor (she loves buying it too) and has a not so secret addiction to stationery. Her favourite section on the site is the galleries section (too many pretty images to choose from), and she can often be found lurking in the fashion and beauty forums as well.