You’re itching in your seat post-wedding cake, just waiting for the perfect song to come on so you can get your groove on. Do you trust the bride and groom to have chosen great music? Do you recognize the DJ as a professional who wouldn’t lead the playlist astray? Or do you take matters into your own hands and march up to the deck and make a request for your favorite song of the moment?
While there may not be an Emily Post article on the subject, there are many opinions circulating the topic of whether or not it is okay to request songs at a wedding reception. After all, the party is all about the dancing guests, right? Well… not so fast. The DJ’s job is to keep the bride and groom happy by giving them exactly what they discussed and planned. It can then be up to the bride and groom whether or not to take requests from their guests.
So what are some general rules of thumb when it comes to song requests at weddings? Well, as the bride and groom, you can always…
In our previous post, we discussed that one great way to get guests out of their seats is to have them provide a song they would like to hear at the reception. This can be done on your wedding website, RSVP card, or even before the ceremony (to give the DJ enough time to fit the last minute requests in the playlist). This may also be the perfect compromise to allowing your guests to hover around the DJ, waiting to be acknowledged between the toasts and the garter toss.
However, if you are a guest, and the DJ has the go-ahead to consider guest requests, your rules of thumb are as follows:
Don’t ask to see a list of songs.
With today’s technology and a thousand ways to organize songs and playlists, this is just nearly impossible. Also, this is a wedding, not your neighborhood karaoke bar. #aintnobodygottimeforthat
Don’t be the 10th person in the last half-hour to request Journey, Iggy Azalea, or Madonna.
Chances are, if the happy couple wanted to hear it, it’s already on the playlist. Be original. Be creative. Request something a wee bit out of the box.
DJs will (most likely) work for compliments and beverages.
But seriously, doesn’t this apply to just about everyone?
A lot of Benjamins go into the spread you see the DJ working behind and I think I speak for DJs everywhere when I say we would prefer not trying to revive any of our equipment from the epic beer-spill shenanigans of so-and-so’s special day.
When you hear your requested song, please get on the dance floor and show the rest of them how it’s done!
To see a list of the top 100 requested songs at weddings, click here. For a list of songs most self-respecting DJs will never play no matter how much you beg, click here.
What is the first thing that pops in your head when you hear the following words: Macarena, Cupid’s Shuffle, Cotton-Eyed Joe. Whether you are imagining a fun time surrounded by friends or rolling your eyes as you watch from afar (at the bar?), line dances have been a staple at weddings practically forever. Did anyone else just get an image of gladiators doing the Electric Slide? For some, it can seem like another wedding tradition that should be tabled for something newer and less traditional, and for others, it is embraced in their reception as much as cutting the cake and tossing the bouquet.
If you are on the fence about incorporating line dances in your wedding reception, consider adding just a few of your favorites throughout the night to increase the fun and bring the most people on the dance floor. While it may seem corny to “put your right hand in and put your right hand out,” it could end up being some of the most fun five minutes of your reception. Consider this: line dances are probably the most surefire way to get those guests who swear they can’t or don’t dance to do just that.
Many a modern bride and groom go into their reception song selections as Team No Line Dances but then eventually move to the other side in the name of a good party. Here’s the truth: most wedding guests love to participate in a line dance simply because it is something everyone knows (or can learn quickly) and can have fun with. As a bride and groom, that laughter can just be too good to pass up.
This is all not to say that you can’t have a totally fun time sans line dances. Brainstorm with your DJ on how to choose the songs that make you the happiest and you know will get your guests to boogie. This could also be a good time to decide to take requests from your guests. You can do this by adding a line to your RSVP card or having a poll on your wedding website where guests can choose a song that would definitely get them on the dance floor. Taking these requests can encourage participation and gets guests excited when they hear the song they chose played at your reception (but as always, you get the final say). Hello, dance party!
Maybe you are on the fence about playing a few line dances or even have a list of songs that are absolutely off limits at your reception. No matter where you stand on the line dance debate, consider something completely new, either in addition to or instead of the Macarena. How about teaching your guests a dance that is known in the culture of you or your soon-to-be spouse, such an Irish jig? This could be a very fun alternative to the tried and true group dances and would definitely leave a lasting impression. You could also plan a performance to entertain your guests, done either by actual professionals or just your fabulous wedding party who would gladly teach anyone to Dougie. There are great alternatives and additions to those classic wedding group dances that would wow any crowd.
So, where do you stand on the group dance debacle? Love them or love to hate them? Let us know in the comments below!
Envision your dream wedding reception… what do you hear? The fact is, everyone has a dream playlist but most are unsure how to execute it or choose the songs that their guests will enjoy at least for the majority of the evening, no matter their musical preferences.
When planning the songs that you and your guests will hear during your wedding reception, most brides and grooms think of songs that are upbeat, danceable, and fun, while still appeasing all of the tastes represented by their eclectic crowd. After all, when you think of your reception, you think of the party and being surrounded by your family and friends.
The truth is, many brides and grooms have a few favorite tunes that may be a little more slow and romantic, or perhaps from another decade, and they feel as if those tunes have to be sacrificed for the sake of the boom-boom, dance-all-night reception. Am I right?
The perfect remedy to appease many different tastes and fit in your favorite ballads and slower tunes that aren’t exactly “danceable” is to create a unique playlist for your cocktail hour and dinner. This way, your guests of all ages have a better chance to hear the songs they like, your guests can enjoy appetizers and dinner with a great ambiance, and your favorite songs that hold sentimental value to your relationship can be heard and appreciated.
You may have thought that certain songs would have to be left behind for the sake of your dancing guests, but by creating a more intimate playlist for your cocktail hour and dinner, you are allowing your guests the perfect setting to meet someone new, have small talk, and enjoy you expertly chosen meal before the higher tempos ensue.
So what could this playlist sound like? This is where you can have the freedom to break out your favorite jazz, deep house, classical, and current love songs. This is where you can slip in that James Blunt or Frank Sinatra tune to which you and your beau shared your first kiss, or the Patsy Cline number that your mom taught you the lyrics to when you first learned to speak. Whatever the song and whatever the reason, there can be a special place for it on your wedding playlist.
This is where working with your professional DJ comes in. They can help you decide which songs would fit best at different times of the evening to ensure that your guests are feeling great and enjoying every second of your reception, without experiencing tempo whiplash. Showcase all of your musical tastes by customizing a separate playlist for the first part of your reception, and leave the dance party mix for the rest of the evening when the party really gets going.
What genres would you like to hear at a cocktail hour? What is your favorite slower song that you didn’t think had a place on a wedding reception playlist?
For some brides, fighting over a certain Saturday in June for their dream wedding is a thing of the past. Many couples are choosing to wed on days that have sentimental value to their relationship or provide a more intimate or cost-effective soiree. Whatever the reason, weekday and other seemingly nontraditional wedding days are becoming more commonplace.
If you are considering a weekday or offseason wedding, you are not alone! Even Cameron Diaz and her beau Benji Madden chose to share their intimate vows on a Monday evening. While the most important thing to keep in mind is what makes you and your future spouse happy, there are some things to consider when planning a weekday affair. Weigh your personal pros and cons, consider your guests and your options, and make the right decision for you.
First, the potential downsides:
The potential upsides:
Whatever your reasons for considering a weekday wedding, it is possible to deliver just about everything you want for your special day, any day of the week. While weekday weddings are becoming more and more utilized, some guests may still find it a bit strange. Combat the gossip by adding a line to your save-the-date or wedding website to show your guests a bit of the thought behind the decision. At the end of the day, the most important thing is the love that is shared and the day that won’t soon be forgotten... eight days a week.
The Blog & Podcast
Every month we sit down and discuss topics important to our company, namely DJing and the wedding industry.