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Top 5 First Dance Songs for your Favorite Genre

Aug 26, 2015

Falling in love is the easy part; now the planning begins. You may have already picked out a magnificent dress and breathtaking flowers, but one of the most important and sometimes overlooked part of the special day is music. The search for a perfect song to share your first dance together as husband and wife will be one of the most special decisions that will be made. For some couples, a song actually defined your relationship and so the choice is easy. For many other couples, the decision will require careful consideration. The song you choose will be a reflection of your identity, as a couple and every time that song plays on the radio, it will be a reminder of how it all began. In addition to considering the lyrics and tempo, you should also consider a song that demonstrates personal musical taste and that suite the mood and location of the event. Selecting a musical genre is a great place to start and then the song can be narrowed from there.

First Dance Genres


Modern Pop

Modern Pop is a genre of popular music that originally derived from Western rock 'n roll but has come to represent the typical music heard on the radio. Selecting a first dance song from this genre will mean that nearly all of your guests will recognize the song.

  • Sweet Pea - Amos Lee
  • Lucky - Jason Mraz and Colbie Caillat
  • Marry You - Bruno Mars
  • Hey There Delilah - Plain White T's
  • The Way I Am Ingrid Michaelson

Classic Rock

Classic rock features music from the 1960's to the late 1980's focusing primarily on commercially successful hard rock. This genre will evoke a sense of nostalgia for many middle aged guests and songs in this genre have persevered, much like a successful marriage.

  •  Wild Horses - The Rolling Stones
  • Wonderful Tonight - Eric Clapton
  • Something - The Beatles
  • Open Arms - Journey
  • You're My Best Friend - Queen

Indie / Alternative Rock

Originating in the United Kingdom in the 1980's, indie rock is "post-punk" and includes bands that identify with their independent status and rely more heavily on electronic style compositions. Children of the 80s will love music selections from this genre and will understand the message of abandoning convention suggested by this genre.

  • Baby I'm Yours - Arctic Monkeys
  • You are the Best Thing - Ray LaMontagne
  • Everlasting Light - The Black Keys
  • I Need My Girl - The National
  • All This and Heaven Too - Florence & The Machine

80's Pop


The 1980's experienced a surge of mostly upbeat dance music. Many refer to this era as the golden age of music and it is suggested that 80's pop music will continue to stand the test of time. Selecting a first dance song from this genre will ensure that guests of all ages will relate.


  • CountryKeep On loving You - REO Speedwagon
  • The Drive - The Cars
  • I Want To Know What Love Is - Foreigner
  • I Just Called To Say I Love You - Stevie Wonder
  • Heaven - Bryan Adams

Originating in the Southern Region of America, country music emerged in the 1920's but grew to mainstream popularity in the early 2000's. Consisting of many ballads and dance tunes with simple harmonies, country is a fun and popular choice at weddings.

  • I Don't Dance -  Lee Brice
  • Til My Last Day - Justin Moore
  • Amazed - Lonestar
  • Are You Gonna Kiss Me or Not - Thompson Square
  • I'll Still Be Loving You - Restless Heart


Golden Oldies

The Golden Oldies or "Oldies but Goodies" typically refers to music from the birth of rock and extending 15 years to the beginning of the singer/songwriter era in the 1970's. The Golden Oldies generally covers popular music played between 1955-1972. Music from this time period includes songs from Elvis Presley and The Four Seasons. The Golden Oldies is a great choice for diverse weddings because it includes many styles of music.

  • Can't Help Falling In Love - Elvis Presley
  • It Had to be You - Harry Connick Jr.
  • God Only Knows - The Beach Boys
  • I Will - The Beatles
  • The Way You Look Tonight - Frank Sinatra


Perfect for weddings in tropical settings, Reggae / Tropical music originated in Jamaica in the 1960s and is strongly influenced by mento, calypso and American jazz music. The offbeat rhythms and melodies connote balmy beaches and relaxation. Many reggae songs portray love and socializing.

  • One Love - Bob Marley
  • D'yer Mak'er - Led Zeppelin
  • Cupid - Johnny Nash
  • Somewhere Over the Rainbow - Israel Kamakawiwo'ole
  • The First Time I Ever Saw Your Face - Marcia Griffiths

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