There’s nothing like jumping around and singing at the top of your lungs to get you in the celebratory spirit. The dance floor is the perfect place to release all of the stress that was building up in the lead up to your big day, and just let loose. You’re married!! It’s time to celebrate! But how do you choose which songs to include? How many songs should you use? What styles of music?
Mostly, it depends on you and your tastes. If the bride and groom are dancing it out in the middle of the room, you bet the rest of the guests will be right there with them too. It’s your wedding day, and everyone will want a chance to dance with you! I’ve put together a few tips for creating the best playlist possible for your big day, to hopefully alleviate some of the stress of planning it! Here’s what I’ve learned from the many wedding playlists I’ve listened to over my years of being a wedding photographer:
1. Let your guests request songs.
If you’re hiring a band for your evening do, maybe ask them if you can have a song request box put on the stage, so that your guests can requests songs for the band. It’s a great way for your guests to interact and a surefire way to get everyone on the dance floor!
If you’re not hiring a band, but instead are just going to be using a playlist on your phone, then Spotify is a great option! It means you (or your bridesmaids/groomsmen/whoever you delegate music to) is granted the freedom to change the playlist and put any song on whenever they want, which means if they see a song request, they can easily play it.
A (cheaper) alternative to writing out song request forms is to create a sign asking guests to tweet their song requests using your wedding hashtag. It’s a good way to have all of the song requests in one place, and who knows – maybe you’ll even get your wedding trending!
2. Always choose a banger for the first song after your first dance.
The song that plays immediately after your first dance will set the tone for the dancing. Lots of my wedding couples carefully chose song number two to encourage their guests to stay up on the dance floor. The last thing you want is a doozey that makes everyone sit down. Keep it upbeat and fun and you’re guests will love it. Personal favourite – Bruno Mars – Uptown Funk
3. Collaborate with your bridal party and groomsmen.
Never feel like you’re all alone in planning your wedding! A playlist is the perfect thing to delegate. Asking a couple of bridesmaids and groomsmen to create a playlist together is a great way to help them to feel really involved in the planning of the day, as well as helping them to feel like they’re helping you! A group of people creating a playlist will always be better than you doing it all by yourself anyway, because they’ll be able to represent more of your guests than just you would on your own. Between them, they can create a playlist and you can look over it and make suggestions as they go.
4. Make it longer than it needs to be!
It would be pretty awkward if your evening playlist was in full swing, and the dance floor packed with guests right through the night, and then all of a sudden the playlist finishes. It’s always a good idea to overshoot. If your first dance is happening at 7:30, kicking off the evening disco, then a safe playlist length would be in the region of 4-5 hours long. You never know wether your cousins will want to party into the small hours of the morning!
5. Include a little something for everyone
It’s great to play the songs of the moment, that everyone knows and recognises and can jump around to. It’s also good, however, to play some throwbacks, songs that your parents and grandparents will recognise and will feel as though they can dance to as well. Everyone loves a good bit of Abba and Elvis!
6. Have fun with it.
It’s not the be all and end all of your wedding day, so make sure not to stress too much about the playlist! Delegate it if you can, because there will be a lot on your mind leading up to the day and the more you can remove from your mind and put into someone else’s mind, the better. It’s really nothing to stress about, it’s about having fun and dancing and singing along and laughing. Don’t feel like you have to please everyone all of the time. People are expecting to not know some of the songs, and that’s totally okay. This is the one chance you’ll get to go to a wedding and love all of the songs that are played, so make the most of it and let your playlist be totally you!