In Creating The Sound Track for Your Wedding: Part One we gave you some pointers on hiring the right entertainment for your wedding. Now that you’ve picked out the perfect DJ or band for your wedding, it’s time you started thinking about song selection and putting together your wedding music list.

MDM DJ David O

First and foremost, you want the music played at your wedding to reflect your personal style and tastes. Don’t forget your guests though, they might not all share your taste in music. Creating the perfect playlist for your wedding will mean picking out songs you love as well as ones that will get all of your guests out on the floor dancing.

In order to give you some ideas on song selection for your wedding, MDM Entertainment has compiled some of the most requested wedding music lists for both your ceremony and reception. In Creating The Sound Track to Your Wedding: Part One we gave you tips on how to choose the right DJ, now we want to help you put together the right wedding music list.

Choosing Your Wedding Ceremony Music

Music for a standard wedding ceremony usually consists of a processional song for the parents, one for the bridal party and one for the bride and then a recessional song after the “I Do’s.”

Choosing your ceremony music will set the tone for your wedding. Think about your wedding theme, is it more traditional with the wedding march or is it more modern with a Bruno Mars song? The songs you choose should reflect your personalities and relationship.

All wedding plans start with a vision, so picture it. As you walk down the aisle or as your partner walks down the aisle, what song is playing in your head? The song can be a string quartet to make a grand royal entrance or a cute loving song like “Here Comes The Sun” by The Beatles. The song should bring a smile to your face knowing you’re about to start your life journey with your best friend.

Here are the top 20 processional songs MDM heard last wedding season.

Wedding Music List - Top 20 Wedding Processional Songs of 2013

After you say “I Do”, share your first kiss and make your way back down the aisle, what would you like your guests to hear as they stand up and cheer? The song should celebrate your new unity and prepare everyone for the night’s festivities. It should be a song that makes you say “Awe” with a little giggle of excitement!

Take a look at the top 20 wedding recessional songs of 2013.

Wedding Music List - Top 20 Wedding Recessional Songs  of 2013

Choosing Your Wedding Reception Music

After the ceremony comes the celebration, and there are a few key moments to think about before the dance floor opens. Let’s start by thinking about the songs that will be played in the background while your guests are enjoying cocktails and dinner or watching you cut your cake.

Cocktail and Dinner Hour Music

When choosing songs for cocktail hour or dinner, you want them to be easy listening but still fun and reflective of your personalities. For dinner we have seen couples choose music from Frank Sinatra and the Rat Pack to all current music and all genres in between. Have some fun with it and get creative. During cocktail hour and dinner is a great time to play your favorites that might not be dance floor fillers, just remember to keep it upbeat.

Cake Cutting Songs

The right music can bring a smile to your guest’s faces and make the moment even more special.  Many people choose songs that have to do with sugar or sweets, pun intended. The number one cake cutting song of last year (and many years prior) was the classic, “Sugar Sugar” by The Archies. This can be a cute idea but a little played out so feel free to get a little creative.

Check out the rest of the top 20 cake cutting songs below.

Wedding Music List - Top 20 Cake Cutting Songs of 2013

The First Dance

Now for the most important song, the first dance! Some couples know that one perfect song that relates to them. It could be the song they danced to on their first date, the song they enjoy singing together in the car or just a song that pulls at their heart strings as it explains their relationship. If you are not one of these couples, that is perfectly normal too. MDM has seen couples change their first dance song many times before finally deciding on the one. Every situation is different.

Here are the 2013 top 20 songs for the first dance.

Wedding Music List - Top 20 First Dance Songs of 2013

Parents Dances

Same goes for the Father Daughter Dance and/ or the Mother Son Dance. Some people know that one song, while others don’t and that’s fine because there is a song for everyone! Hit the Internet to look up lyrics or watch videos of these songs to find the one that says what you want to say to your parents on your wedding day.

Father Daughter Dance

Wedding Music List - Top 20 Father Daughter Dance Songs of 2013

Mother Son Dance

Wedding Music List - Top 20 Mother Son Dance Songs of 2013

When deciding on these specialty songs just remember that you are sharing this dance with someone special, whether it be your Mother, Father or new spouse. Bounce your ideas off one another and do some research. Describe your relationship with that special person and search for a song that speaks to that.

Dance Floor Do’s and Don’t

As the specialty dances come to a close it’s time to kick the party into high gear!

Here are some do’s and don’ts for selecting music for your wedding reception:


  • Keep the number of requests at a reasonable amount! A good rule of thumb is 15 songs per hour. A typical wedding reception will see about 3 hours of dancing after dinner and all the formalities are over. That is just 45 songs. A talented DJ will be able to mix the songs together so you get a taste of everything you asked for, while also having time to show off their skills.
  • Remember that everyone may not share your taste is music. A professional DJ will help you plan out the music for your reception and incorporate your style into the day while still playing a good mix to keep all of your guests happy and on the dance floor.
  • Submit your music lists at least two weeks prior to the wedding, this will allow the DJ plenty of time to compile the music and acquire any songs that they do not have.


  • Hand the entertainer a list of 100 songs and demand that they all be played and in that order. Don’t laugh, it happens. Of course you should be involved in the selection of the music for your wedding day but if you do this you are severely limiting the entertainers ability to “read” the crowd and play the right song at the right time. A good entertainer will understand your musical tastes and incorporate that throughout the event.
  • Say I want all this type of music and nothing else. Some brides and grooms say they love Hip Hop and that is what they want to hear all night. Take into consideration your guests enjoyment of the evening as well. Grandma and Grandpa might not like Hip Hop. Ultimately it is your night and the entertainer will play what you ask, but take into consideration the age ranges and musical tastes of your guests when making up your playlist.
  • Run up to the entertainer and say I want this song next! Again, it is your wedding and they should do what you ask but the entertainer has put a lot of thought into the selection of songs to get to this point in the evening. If your song fits in with the current genres being played, then playing your requested song is probably a great idea. If you are requesting a techno track be played next and the dance floor is full of grandparents dancing to swing maybe you could ask for the song be played soon so the DJ has time to progress into that genre.

When making your “must play” list, your “play if possible” list and your “do not play” list, it is a great idea to keep a pen and paper close by at all times. When you hear a song you love in the car or at work write it down. Also note songs that remind you of certain people and let the DJ know. This way the DJ can play that certain song when the person is in the room to enjoy it.

Bride and Groom on the Dance Floor

There are many details to think about when putting together your wedding music list and a quality, professional DJ or band leader can help gather your ideas, point you in the right direction and help create the wedding of your dreams.

MDM hopes these tips from Creating the Sound Track for Your Wedding, Parts One and Two have been helpful.

For help putting together your wedding music list with one of our experienced wedding DJs contact MDM Entertainment today at 773.253.4986.

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