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first dance

How To Choose Your First-Dance Wedding Song

Written By Watermill Caterers | 08/14/19 | 3 min read

Of all the responsibilities involved with wedding planning, selecting your first song as a married couple should be a fun and relatively stress-free endeavor. That is, until you realize how many dulcet tones there are on the airwaves that could be perfect for that first dance. You might feel a twinge of pressure in your musical choice, as it will forever be your song.

In the interest in keeping the planning process a harmonious one between you and your partner, we’ve compiled a set of guidelines you should follow to ensure your first song is one that will always inspire a loving embrace. 

Find A Song You Both Love
Not all couples share the same musical tastes. Maybe you love to rave while listening to electronic dance music, while your partner leans more toward flannel-waving ’90s grunge. If that’s the case, no problem! As they say, “opposites attract.” But when the time comes for your first dance as a married couple, you definitely don’t want a situation where either of you are rolling your eyes at the romantic melody presiding over you as you dance. Find a common musical interest—something that you don’t merely tolerate, but actually love. And if your musical tastes are so incredibly disparate that you cannot agree on a song, perhaps go with a timeless classic that is undeniably a symbol of devotion and affection.

Lyrics Matter At A Wedding
While a rhythm you can actually dance to is a priority, you want your wedding song to present a set of lyrics that convey your story—this is often the difference between a generic, unremarkable love song and one that is completely and unequivocally yours. Music often articulates the words we are incapable of saying ourselves and finding a song that delivers a truthful message about your love story serves to amp up the passion and tenderness of the wedding. Couples who choose a song based on the words often make the choice for deeply personal reasons—so find a quiet afternoon with your partner and scroll through your favorite shared tunes. 

That Said, Dance, Dance, Dance!
Pick a song with a beat that makes you move your body and your feet—it’s called a first dance for a reason. Always remember that your wedding is a party and the best parties boast lots and lots of dancing. Sure, you can count on your guests cutting the rug once the reception is in full swing, but your first dance can do plenty to set the tone for a full night on the dance floor. And one note on dance music: If you’re not exactly the world’s greatest hoofer, don’t feel intimidated at the prospect of having to dance in front of all of your closest family and friends. This isn’t an episode of America’s Got Talent and no one is there to judge you. But that said, plenty of couples take ballroom dance lessons prior to the wedding. If you think this might help, go for it!

Think Outside Of The Music Box
If you are the type of couple that often eschews tradition, don’t be afraid to go the unconventional route when choosing the song for you first dance. Just because some of your guests might expect to hear a certain musical number when you hit the dance floor to kick off the reception, that doesn’t mean you are obligated to oblige. In fact, turning toward an unconventional selection will further separate you from the marriage pack and highlight how very individual you and your partner are. A great idea in this regard is compiling a mash-up of your favorite songs—you can play about 30 seconds or so of a slow opening number, then break into an unexpected and riotously fun dance song.