Guest Post | Most Popular First Dance Songs

I am soooo sick right now, you guys. I have had bronchitis for 4 1/2 weeks and now I have the flu. Dizzy-making, head-spinning, hanging out on the bathroom floor kind of flu. Sorry if that’s T.M.I, but I’m feeling pretty sorry for myself at the moment.

Luckily for me I have a guest post for you guys today! Martin is here to share about some popular first dance songs – hope you’re inspired! Thanks Martin!

Cue me, lying back down and praying for wellness.

Landon Jacob’s Productions via Ruffled

First dance songs at weddings are designed to set the mood for the rest of the reception, while capping off the event as a whole. Choosing the right first dance song can take a lot of thought, with the final decision being highly personal to the couple in question. It might be the song that they heard when they first met, or one that they’ve both heard multiple times and have always wanted to have as their first dance. In either case, the first dance song should always be something that a couple is comfortable dancing to. Some of the most popular songs for weddings, in no particular order, include:

1 – At Last – Etta James

First released in 1941, this song has been covered by multiple artists, but is perhaps most associated with the blues singe Etta James. A soulful, romantic ballad that features grand orchestral pieces, the song has more recently been popularised by Beyonce and Christina Aguilera. A staple of wedding receptions for many years, ‘At Last’ is ideal for a first dance.

2 – ‘(I’ve Had) The Time Of My Life – Bill Medley & Jennifer Warnes

Maybe just a little bit cheesy, but not in a bad way, the most well known song from Dirty Dancing has been regularly seen at weddings since the film was released in 1987. Although it might be difficult for the audience to keep a straight face, it’s a song that’s bound to get a large part of the wedding party reaching for the tissues.

3 – ‘Your Song’ – Ellie Goulding

Goulding recently covered this Elton John song to great acclaim, continuing its wide use in different adverts and performances. Notable examples of the latter include the song’s covering by Ewan McGregor in Moulin Rouge.

4 – ‘The Wonder of You’ – Elvis Presley

Covered by Elvis in 1970, this song has long been one of Elvis’s most popular UK hits, and has been used in weddings for many years.

5 – ‘Wonderful Tonight’ – Eric Clapton

Written by Clapton in 1976 for his future wife Patti Boyd, ‘Wonderful Tonight’ represents an intimate choice for wedding dance songs. The song has also been popularised by its use in Friends.

6 – ‘I Want To Know What Love Is’ – Foreigner

Another somewhat cheesy 1980s hit, ‘I Want To Know What Love Is’ is hard to beat in terms of sentimental high notes.

7 – ‘Unchained Melody’ – Righteous Brothers

A long term romantic hit, ‘Unchained Melody’ confirmed its status as one of the most romantic wedding songs of all time when it played a central role in the 1990 film Ghost.

8 – ‘You Say It Best (When You Say Nothing At All)’

Covered by Ronan Keating as part of the soundtrack for Notting Hill, the song first became a country and western hit in the 80’s, and was later recorded by Alison Krauss.

9 – ‘Can’t Help Falling In Love With You’ – Elvis Presley

Another Elvis song that has been perennially popular at different times, ‘Can’t Help Falling In Love With You’ is particularly notable for its stirring orchestral backing. Any opportunity to blast out Elvis at a wedding is always worth taking.

10 – ‘The Way You Look Tonight’ – Tony Bennett

Heavily covered since its original performance in the 1936 film Swing Time, ‘The Way You Look Tonight’ has been one of the most popular choices for weddings for multiple decades. The Tony Bennett version is recommended for its slower pace, making it ideal for dancing.

Guest Post by Martin Roche – Blogger, fan of live bands and provider of wedding singers

Sarah {A Paper Proposal} - April 27, 2012 - 11:18 pm

Ha, it’s kind of funny how many of these songs have the word, “Wonderful” in them! It’s a great list of classics, and I’m sure it’s super helpful those couples out there that have no idea what song to choose!

Angelo - May 14, 2012 - 11:00 am

Hi, I would like to say thank you for this list. I actually used these songs my friend’s party. I added She’s Always A Woman to me, some country and pop songs like Beautiful Mess by Jason Mraz and Out Of My League, etc.

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