Suggestions for Choosing Wedding Reception Music
1. Think of everyone who will be attending your wedding reception.
Picking the music for your wedding reception, if not done carefully, can be like going grocery shopping on an empty stomach. Don’t let your play-list be like a cart full of junk food. Before making your song choices, I suggest looking over your guest list and consider who will be attending and who is likely to dance. Early on in the reception, I recommend playing wedding reception dance music that will appeal to as many of your guests as possible. Get that dance floor packed early. Once that happens your dj will have more leeway to play songs that might be a bit more “off the beaten path”.
2. Ask your dj for popular songs played at weddings.
Your wedding dj can be a great source of what’s hot & what’s not. Most will offer some form of suggestion either in print or online. For example, my website tracks the top 200 best wedding reception songs requested at weddings overall, by decade & by genre. Lists like this will give you an idea of what’s popular and danceable. They can also be a good source of material for your “Must Play” & “Don’t Play Lists”.
3. Add a third request list.
Most dj’s offer “Must Play” and “Don’t Play Lists”. I recommend a third list labeled “Play if Possible”. I ask my clients to fill it up with all their favorites from their iPod & cd collection. This lets me get inside my clients head a bit. If I have a choice between two songs, I can choose the one that fits both my clients taste & the mood of the dance floor.
4. Let your wedding dj know how much “wiggle room” he has.
Every couple who prepares a music play list has the best intentions. The fact of the matter is that it’s quite possible that the wedding reception songs you pick won’t offer the results you expect on the dance floor. On my planner, I have two clearly marked options: “If our requests aren’t working play what will keep everyone dancing” and “The music is more important than dancing. Stick to our requests”.
5. Pick out lots of music tracks for your wedding.. It’s gonna be a long night!
I’m occasionally contracted by couples who want “total control” of the music. If this is a challenge that you feel like taking on, I recommend picking more music than your dj could ever possibly play. If the music list is reasonable a good dj should be able to fit your choices together in a way that gives maximum results on the dance floor and a play list of songs that you can be excited about.