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What Will Your First Dance Song Be?

Weddings are a time for joy and celebration, and one of the most cherished moments is the first dance between the newlyweds. The choice of their song has a special meaning for the couple and the guests are overjoyed when their personal song plays for them. Over the years certain songs have emerged as favorites among couples. Here are some of the most popular first dance songs, along with a few less traditional yet very intentional selections!

Real bride Kellie and husband Jason have their first dance

“At Last” by Etta James

One of the all-time classic first dance songs is “At Last” by Etta James. The soulful, romantic lyrics and the smooth, elegant melody make it a perfect choice for a slow dance. The song has been covered by many artists over the years, but James’ version remains the most iconic.

“Can’t Help Falling in Love” by Elvis Presley

Another favorite among couples. The sweet, tender lyrics and the gentle melody make it a timeless classic. The song’s popularity has endured for decades with other artists covering it, yet the original sung by Elvis it remains a popular choice for first dances.

“Thinking Out Loud” by Ed Sheeran

For those who prefer a more contemporary sound, “Thinking Out Loud” by Ed Sheeran is becoming more popular. The song’s catchy melody and romantic lyrics have made it a modern classic, and its popularity shows no sign of waning.

“A Thousand Years” by Christina Perri

Another newly popular first dance song is “A Thousand Years” by Christina Perri. Originally written for the Twilight movie soundtrack, the song’s haunting melody and heartfelt lyrics have made it a beloved choice for couples. Its popularity has been further cemented by its use in other movies and TV shows.

“You Are the Best Thing” by Ray LaMontagne

For those who want something a little more upbeat, “You Are the Best Thing” by Ray LaMontagne is a popular choice. The song’s catchy rhythm and joyful lyrics make it a great choice for couples who want to dance the night away. It’s a feel-good song that will get everyone in a celebratory mood.

There are others that perfectly fit couples’ love stories, as you can imagine with:

  • Bless the Broken Road by Rascal Flatts
  • All of Me by John Legend
  • Still the One by Shania Twain
  • Say You Won’t Let Go by James Arthur
  • Lover by Taylor Swift

To get even more real world experience, we asked our go-to wedding entertainment company professional Art Armani with Armani Entertainment.

Art Armani of Armani Entertainment discusses the choice of the first dance song
Art Armani, Armani Entertainment

Regarding the first dance song, Art said:

Of the 200 or so weddings that we have been a part of, we have definitely heard a bunch of the same songs played many times for the newlywed’s first dance.  Nevertheless, each time we play the first dance song, the room is overcome with such emotion and tears as this moment has been a dream come to reality right before our very eyes.  Tissues are out and tears are present in the eyes closest to the couple as we all get to witness one of the most important moments in their lives.  Each time though, even though the song chosen wasn’t the only time played for any couple’s first dance, it was their first dance and the moment it was unique because it was theirs.

Every once in a while we get surprised with a not so common first dance song.  

Some of the surprises we have seen over the years were theme songs from movies such as Harry Potter, the Beauty and The Beast theme, and Titanic.  Something else that has been popular as of late has been acoustic or alternative versions of pop songs that normally would not fit in the moment.  

Here are a few unique one’s that we played in 2023: 

  • Let’s Stay Together – Al Green 
  • “Boop” – Jeff Williams and Casey Lee Williams 
  • Perfect – Ed Sheeran and Andrea Bocelli (they really wanted the Italian lyric as this was an Italian Wedding) 
  • You’ve Got a Friend In Me – Randy Newman (the couple is big on Disney and they even selected Disney World for their honeymoon) 

The selection of the first dance song is very personal for the couple, just like the bride choosing her wedding dress, and each couple will have their own reasons for selecting their song. Whether it’s a classic love song or a contemporary hit, the important thing is that it resonates with the couple and sets the tone for a joyous celebration of their love.