The Best and Worst Wedding Songs

by Sarah Macdougall on May 23, 2013

the best (and worst!) wedding songs! great to check out for your first dance as a couple

Recent events have landed me in some… ahem… interesting situations, and while listening to what somehow became the soundtrack of my life (which is the best soundtrack ever, by the way), it occurred to me how awkward a reception would be if some of these songs were to be included. Other songs are awesome for receptions, and not necessarily on the “Songs you MUST play at your reception” list. I’m convinced that if I were to just plug in my iPod and put it on shuffle, people would leave so fast. I have bhangra music, raunchy comedy, classical music, bagpipes, you name it. So here are my picks for the best and worst songs to play at a reception.

Awesome Songs

1. Walkie-Talkie Man by Steriogram

This is one of those songs where the second it shows up on my iPod, there’s no going back. It’s fast paced and really does the adrenaline some good. Great song for getting the guests up and perfect if you just want to dance like a fool.

2. This Is Love by Kelly Rowland

One for the slow dancers, this song will have you looking longingly into each other’s eyes. In case you aren’t sure what love is, she explains it rather clearly, so you can avoid any further confusion.

3. Ain’t No Other Man by Christina Aguilera

Mixing the vibes of the previous two songs, this one proudly proclaims one man as THE man, making you want to shout it from the rooftops while clicking your heels together in your wingtips. Vocal gymnastics abound. I’m convinced this woman was born with some parallel bars in her esophagus or something.

4. Loving You by Paolo Nutini

Nutini is a Scottish singer-songwriter born of Italian parents. The two accents combine to make a gorgeous sound. Mix that with his bluesy genre and it’s amazing to listen to. Smooth like buttah. Also great for when you’re home alone with a bottle of wine (not that I would know).

5. For Once in My Life – The Stevie Wonder version

Classic song, upbeat take. It’s Stevie Wonder. I can’t say no.

Awkward Songs

1. Damn, It Feels Good to be a Gangsta by Geto Boys

Without going into too much detail here, I was recently in a situation where things were a little serious. Not in a somber way, but definitely in a way where laughing until you cried was not ideal. The movie “Office Space” was on during this situation and it was the part where they were beating the crap out of the printer. While my attention wasn’t entirely on the movie, whenever I tried to be serious, I just heard “…real gangsta %#$ &*^^$s don’t start fights” and I couldn’t do it. I just lost it. My abs still hurt from laughing. Avoid this song.

2. Flathead by the Fratellis

Another Brit band, this song is truly amazing, but not at all appropriate for an event celebrating love.

3. Try A Little Tenderness – the Chris Brown version

Irony at its finest. The Otis Redding version is great. The Chris Brown version is… hypocritical. Anyone partaking in your festivities who is at all familiar with this young man’s anger issues will be very confused. Anyone unfamiliar with said issues will be wondering why you didn’t just play the Otis Redding version.

4. I Want You Back by the Jackson 5

I love this song. But it makes no sense in this setting.

5. I Can’t Get Next To You by The Temptations

This won’t work, because you DID get next to each other… sooooo…….

What songs would you add to the list?


Becca May 23, 2013 at 6:22 pm

I’ve heard “Wedding Dress” by Matt Nathanson as a first dance song (probably because OTH did it, too) and I’m guessing people don’t listen to the lyrics? It’s actually a pretty terrible song to be played at a wedding.

sandy May 24, 2013 at 11:46 am

“Unchained Melody” by The Righteous Brothers.
Made my hub cry when the band played that at our reception (and the lead singer was a female)…granted, it’s not a hip and happening song, but for a slow dance loaded with emotion, this is a good one.

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