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Building Your Wedding Playlist

April 4th, 2016 by Jeannine

Building Your Wedding Playlist

Music sets the mood of the party. But what songs should you choose? If you’re providing your own music, you have to face the daunting task of putting together a playlist. And not just one playlist…

  • pre-ceremony – to be played as your guests arrive
  • ceremony – includes procession, bride’s theme, registry signing, recession (note: religious ceremonies may need more music)
  • cocktail hour
  • dinner music
  • dancing music

And if you’ve got a DJ… A DO NOT PLAY list. You know those songs… the ones that make you cringe and absolutely cannot stand… Hence, the importance of this list.

Plus you’ve got individual songs to consider

  • reception entrance music
  • cake cutting music
  • first dance song
  • bouquet toss
  • garter toss
  • songs for other games or activities you might have
  • last song of the night

That seems like a lot, but with some organization, planning and my advice, it will be a breeze! Some things to think about when building your playlist…

  • Are you classical or contemporary? – Traditional brides prefer to walk down the aisle to classic compositions by Bach, Schubert, Pachelbel or Beethoven… but others prefer to DANCE down the aisle to modern hits like Chris Brown’s “Forever” made famous in this YouTube video and Bruno Mars’ “Marry You” covered by Glee. Which bride are you?
  • Know your audience – What gets a crowd up and dancing? Music they love. Not only will you be thinking about classic songs known to get people dancing like YMCA or Dancing Queen, think about the year most of your guests grew up in. We were children of the 90′s so we had to have some Spice Girls and Backstreet Boys on the list (I know it’s not everyone’s cup of tea)… BUT we had 70′s and 80′s hits as well for the older generation.
  • Will you be including slow songs? – It’s nice to tone it down a bit and let your guests slow dance with their partners, it’s also a nice break from all the jumping around so adding a few slow songs to your playlist isn’t a bad idea.
  • You don’t need songs for every part of your event. – What I listed above is just a guide, there’s no set rule on how many songs you need to choose for your event. If anything, you can just keep the dinner music running as you cut the cake or do the tosses.
  • Choose songs as a couple! – Compromise is the key to a happy marriage right? It also applies when picking songs for a playlist.
  • Beware of interludes – Some songs can have some additional spoken interludes… would you really want that heard? Best to ask your DJ if there are radio edits you can play or find a free audio editing tool and edit them out yourself.
  • Make a long playlist – If you are your own DJ, create long playlists, longer than you may think. If you think dinner will last 2 hours, add another hour or hour and a half of music, just to be safe, so no song is repeated.

Need help choosing a First Dance song? Read my previous blog post on that topic.

And now… the playlists I used for my previous wedding, great for couples who love rock music!

Dinner Playlist

Dance Music

Hope that helps you narrow it down a bit! Happy hunting!

Feature photo courtesy Shutterstock

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