One of the challenges facing a bride and groom is choosing their first dance song . In 18 years of performing at weddings I have performed in excess of 200 different first dance songs but there are definitely a few favourites that crop up pretty regularly, but we’ll come back to that later.
In my experience there are three types of couples when it comes to the first dance song . The couple that really don’t want the spotlight and instruct me to get people up to join them almost immediately. Then there are those that enjoy the moment and have an intimate dance. Finally there are those that go all out and plan a dance routine, sometimes involving half of the guests too. We’ve seen them all and providing the bride and groom have chosen what is right for them then you can’t go too far wrong.
Choosing a first dance is an opportunity to personalise another part of your day and so why not be a little different. Perhaps choose a selection of your favourite songs, open a bottle of wine and spend an evening slow dancing to them till you find the one that feels right. Don’t forget to ask your band if they can perform the track for you, which can be a good way to make the event a little different.
For my own wedding we wanted to start with something slow and personal to us but we also wanted to get the party going, so I edited two tracks together, when we danceby Sting and Hello Helloby The Cat Empire. We told our bridesmaids that when the music changed they should join us and encourage everyone up, it worked really well and I have great memories from that. Rhea and I got married at the Cwrt Bleddyn between Caerleon and Usk. A beautiful venue and worth a look if you live in the area.
My most performed first dance songs
I’ve looked back at the approximately 850 weddings I have performed at and drawn up a list of the 5 first dance wedding songs that have been selected most for us to perform. I’ve performed them a lot, but still love them!
- Fly me to the moon – Frank Sinatra
- Moondance – Van Morrison
- Let’s stay together – Al Greene
- Amazed – Lonestar
- Rule the World – Take That
There are some recent classics that are quickly racking up the performances. Ed Sheeran’s Perfect is popular and looks set to remain as a staple in the repertoire.
There are also the less obvious choices that have been requested. I don’t think we’ve ever had to refuse to perform a song, but there are definitely a few songs that challenged us. AerosmithI don’t wanna miss a thingand Journey Don’t stop believing are both classic songs and awesome to perform, but a challenge to sing at the beginning of a set!
Recording V Live
If you love a song and you love the artist and their voice then stick with the recording, but if you love the voice of the singer in the band you have chosen and you want to hear them sing your favourite song then ask the band to perform it. If it’s in our repertoire then we include that at no extra cost. If it’s a new song then we normally charge a small arranging fee to cover the cost attached to arranging and rehearsing the song. Speak to your band and see what they can do