How To Choose The Right Wedding Songs To Get Your Guests On The Dance Floor

Choosing your wedding music may not seem like a big deal, but there is a little more to it than deciding what your first dance song will be. Many couples leave planning the music to the last minute because they don’t realise just how much time it can take to choose all their wedding songs.

Creating the vibe for your wedding day has everything to do with the songs that you choose! For this reason, we gathered tips on how to choose the right wedding songs to get your guests on the dance floor from the beginning of your special day to the end.

1. Crowd Diversity

Choosing wedding music is so much more than asking the question, “What’s the best wedding song, ever?”

While new and trendy songs are what is popular in today’s music culture, your wedding guests come from an array of generations and backgrounds.

While it is impossible to suit everyone’s taste in music, it is a wise idea to have a variation of music styles to keep all your friends and family happily entertained. This isn’t to say that it’s necessary to include songs from the 40’s to please your grandparents, but maybe consider slowing the tempo instead.

A blend of upbeat and slow songs plus a good mix of old and new tunes will get guests of all ages out of their seats!

This is just one of the reasons why the best wedding song ever is hard to claim, as there’s so many generations and genres to consider for the wedding.

Genre is another factor to consider. Your chosen music and everything about your wedding should represent you as a couple. Don’t be afraid to choose music that defines you as individuals and makes you happy! If you love to waltz with your partner, chances are someone in your crowd enjoys it too!

2. When Is Music Necessary?

When choosing how many songs for a wedding ceremony and the style of music, decide at which points during the wedding music is necessary. At the ceremony, couples usually choose to entertain guests with music:

  • On arrival, before the formalities begin
  • For the entrance processional
  • A reflective musical interlude immediately after the exchange of rings
  • The exit recessional
  • As guests mingle for celebratory cocktails.

How would you like your guests to feel during these moments?

While guests are arriving, the song or songs you choose will be the first impression of the wedding. It’s recommended that heavy beats and fast tempos are avoided until after the formalities of the ceremony. Let your loved ones feel the emotion of the unity about to take place.

For the ceremony, we like to set the tone for the union and play songs that are romantic, warm and heartfelt to connect with the guests.

How many songs are needed for a wedding ceremony?

One song for the ceremony is recommended to avoid awkward pauses or transitions while walking down the aisle and maximising the emotion of your entrance.

What is a recessional song at a wedding?

A recessional song will be played after the celebrant concludes the ceremony. Playing light joyful music will cue the celebration for guests and jumpstart the high energy!

At the reception, there are typically six “key moment” songs that need a musical flourish. These are:

  • The Wedding Party Entrance
  • Cutting of the Wedding Cake
  • The First Dance/Bridal Waltz
  • The Bouquet Toss
  • The Garter Toss
  • A Farewell Song

How many songs are needed for the wedding party entrance?

The wedding party entrance, or “bridal” party entrance is where the newly married couple and their chosen entourage are formally announced and make their way into the reception hall. Usually couples choose a single song to be played for the official entrances. Some couples choose two songs – one for the couples official entrance and a second one for the rest of the entourage. Less common, but still popular is to choose a single song for each couple’s entrance (logistically this can be a bit tricky so make sure your DJ/Band, MC, wedding manager and Entourage are all working off the same list. Otherwise you might have them entering in the wrong order and having the wrong entrance songs played!!) .

What type of music is appropriate for the cutting of the wedding cake?

A single song is recommended for the cutting of the cake as this event usually doesn’t take up too much time during the reception. The type of music played really depends on what you as a couple desire. Usually the cake cutting is a romantic act and the MC will say a few words before you cut the cake, get some photos taken – and then head to the dance floor for your first dance!

Do you need help choosing your first dance or bridal waltz song? The first dance, or bridal waltz, is best if featured with a single song that represents your love for one another. Adding a second song for your first dance may lessen and disconnect the crowd’s emotions, however some couples may choose to not only slow dance their first song but do a silly choreographed dance with multiple blended songs.

Red Soda Band has extended experience and love to help couples choose wedding music that will suit their taste and be unforgettable for your guests. We would love to chat with you about recommendations!

How many songs are needed for the bouquet and garter toss?

These fun traditions only require one upbeat tune to get the crowd excited and engaged! If you have a larger audience, choosing a second song or looping the first song may be better to allow guests to fill the dance floor before the bride and groom toss their garment. It also may be fun once the garment is caught, for the DJ to play a short chorus from a chosen song or a catchy beat!

How many songs should you choose for the newlywed farewell?

Typically it is just a single song that you need to choose for the farewell. A farewell song isn’t the final, high-energy dance floor hit that everyone goes crazy over. That’s already happened. This is the last song on the night which is played immediately after everyone stops dancing. It’s a transition song – the MC will announce that the wedding has concluded and thank everyone for coming. It could be a slow and romantic song or fun and upbeat – but the purpose of this song is to give your guests an opportunity to say goodbye and for you to say thank you.

3. Collect Inspiration

If you are stuck for ideas when it comes to what type of music you desire for your big day, do some research. Start with you and your partners existing playlists. You may be surprised to find that your partner has a soft side!

If you don’t find the perfect songs here, then try finding inspiration by scouring the online space for a list of wedding love songs, trending wedding songs, wedding pop songs, or wedding songs to dance to. You may find a few special gems that you otherwise wouldn’t have considered before.

It may help to sit down with your partner and compile a list of songs for the reception. Not only will this help to narrow down genre options, but it will give the DJ or band an idea of your music style.

Asking your band or DJ to give you recommendations for songs they have heard in the past may also be a good place to start. They will be knowledgeable in all music styles and popularity.

Prepare a list of your top 10 favorites and a list of songs or genres to avoid. Try listening to Red Soda Band’s top wedding hits here!

4. Guest Song Requests

Giving guests a chance to participate in what songs are played is a great way to keep them content and engaged.

Couples may choose to do this before the wedding even takes place. Simply leave a blank space on your wedding RSVP form for friends and family to write their favourite songs to have a chance for it to be played at the reception. You will have sourced a playlist that comes straight from the crowd!

Another form of entertainment is to have your guests participate during the reception and plan for your DJ to announce that they are able to take song requests for a limited time. Guests love this option and they will scramble out of their seats just to be one of the first to pass along their favourite songs!

5. Trust Your DJ Or Band

You hired a wedding DJ or live band for a reason. They have extensive experience and have been hired to play music for multiple weddings. They are familiar with all of the popular hits and are knowledgeable in strategies to get your guests moving!

An exceptional DJ or band not only plays music to keep guests entertained, but they are good listeners. They are able to listen to the crowd’s reaction to certain songs and alter the music accordingly.

While a band will bring more energy to your event, a dj will play varied styles of recorded music. Guess what? You don’t have to choose between the two. Red Soda band can accommodate a wide range of music styles and the transitions are seamless.

Picture the late night photos you will capture of your family and friends dancing the night away with a live band! Set the tone for your entire wedding and experience heartfelt, spine-tingling, and unforgettable wedding entertainment customised to suit the most important moments of your lives.

Contact Red Soda Band For A Unique Music Experience!

If you’re looking for a professional wedding band that clicks with your wedding style and takes it up a notch, Red Soda Band loves to help brides and grooms-to-be celebrate their union with a unique and memorable experience from the moment they book, right through to the last song of the night! Get a FREE quote online today!



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I loved the music; the violinist really set the atmosphere and I was almost lost for breath as I was about to walk down the aisle. We had talked about getting emotional thinking about that particular song and that was definitely the case for me on the day.


Red Soda Band played with perfection on our special day! The song choices were easy and done in a flash. Prompt and friendly communication the whole way through made this part of the wedding planning simple.


Just wanted to say a HUGE thank you to you guys. It was PERFECT – the songs were great, the volume was spot-on and you both were extremely professional. You were both lovely guys, too! It all came together and everyone commented on how great the music was!


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The music helped create the perfect vibe for both our ceremony and reception.


The song selection was top-notch and the dance floor was rocking.


Our warmest thanks for providing such beautiful music on our wedding day. It was absolutely perfect in every way and we have had so many friends and family comment on it.


Thanks for the fantastic job you did at our wedding!! It looked and sounded amazing and we have had nothing but compliments from our guests.