Author Topic: First Dance song suggestions?  (Read 546 times)

Jem

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Re: First Dance song suggestions?
« Reply #15 on: June 12, 2019, 03:03:32 pm »
It's nice, of course, if the song is special to the couple.  But honestly, I think even more important is that the song be short -- it's amazing how long even thirty seconds will seem; stand still and count and you'll see -- and easy to dance to.  That's one of the reasons old standards like "The Way You Look Tonight" and "At Last" are popular choices. 

In my experience, the Special Dances (first dance, father daughter) work best when others (bridal party, parents, siblings) join in along the way.

This is a really good point - maybe even pick a song but only do one chorus/verse of it and then move on. Or even do a montage of songs where various groups join when the music changes. So at first it is just the bride and groom, then the parents come out and the father/daughter mother/son dances happen, then the wedding party joins, or whatever makes sense.

Lilac

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Re: First Dance song suggestions?
« Reply #16 on: June 12, 2019, 03:23:40 pm »
Yes, that is good advice.  It's really cringeworthy to watch people "perform" for their guests.  I believe the custom of guests of honor "opening the dance" was just to have them lead the way to the dance floor, with others falling in quickly behind them, not to put on a show while guests are expected to sit out the music and watch. 

30 seconds or so of the bride and groom is OK but I would have family, other guests, attendants or whoever primed in advance to quickly join them on the floor.  Then it seems charming and hospitable rather than something during which guests are sneaking a look at their watches or phones.  The mother/son, father/daughter etc. don't have to be spectator events.  People know who the cast of characters is. 

jpcher

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Re: First Dance song suggestions?
« Reply #17 on: June 12, 2019, 04:14:33 pm »
For a more modern slant, I always thought this would be a beautiful song for first dance . . .

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=lp-EO5I60KA

Listen to the words.


But it is long and I agree with other posters that you should keep your first dance on the short side unless you bring in other people to join you on the dance floor.

I think 2-3 minutes is perfectly fine for a first dance. 30 seconds? In my opinion, is way too short.

I've seen it where the B&G start the dance, then they visibly invite the parents of the B&G on the dance floor for a minute or so, then they invite the  bridal party to the floor to finish the song/dance. I thought that was really nice because it showed that the couple isn't in this marriage alone, they have family and friends to surround/support them.
« Last Edit: June 12, 2019, 04:39:55 pm by jpcher »
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gmatoy

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Re: First Dance song suggestions?
« Reply #18 on: June 12, 2019, 05:12:24 pm »
I'm going to suggest our wedding song: Colour My World by Chicago

It is a classic, we had it at our wedding in 1971 and DD and DSIL invited us to dance to it at their wedding in 2014. I love that song.
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Hmmm

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Re: First Dance song suggestions?
« Reply #19 on: June 13, 2019, 09:02:19 am »
It's nice, of course, if the song is special to the couple.  But honestly, I think even more important is that the song be short -- it's amazing how long even thirty seconds will seem; stand still and count and you'll see -- and easy to dance to.  That's one of the reasons old standards like "The Way You Look Tonight" and "At Last" are popular choices. 

In my experience, the Special Dances (first dance, father daughter) work best when others (bridal party, parents, siblings) join in along the way.

Really agree with this advice. As a guest, I find it a little cringy to watch the couple dance through a full song.

It seems like it used to be that after the first chorus of the first dance, the parents and bridal party would join in. It was more of a "the couple's first dance as husband and wife" not "the couple dances the first dance alone and with everyone staring".

But it seems like a decade or two ago bridal parties didn't want to dance with each other. It was 'ooh, it's awkward to slow dance with someone I barely know" which I always thought of as a precious attitude. It is possible to do a foxtrot, two step, or just shuffling your feet to the music without being overly intimate. (off my soap box now)

Gellchom

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Re: First Dance song suggestions?
« Reply #20 on: June 13, 2019, 12:35:04 pm »

But it is long and I agree with other posters that you should keep your first dance on the short side unless you bring in other people to join you on the dance floor.

I think 2-3 minutes is perfectly fine for a first dance. 30 seconds? In my opinion, is way too short.

I didn't mean that the dance should be no longer than 30 seconds, just that the time the couple is dancing alone shouldn't be too long.  The thirty second test is just to help us realize how long 30 seconds, a minute, two minutes, whatever, really feels like.

As others have said, it's often awkward when the first dance is just the HC the whole time, even if they are really good dancers who have practiced.  Same for father-daughter.  In my experience of a zillion weddings, it works way better when, after a short time, others join.  For example, if the HC starts, then perhaps the parents and siblings join, or the bridal party.  If it's a father-bride dance, then pretty soon let mother-groom join, then perhaps groom's father with bride's mother and/or siblings and/or grandparents.  Like that.  The particular combinations don't matter so much, just whatever works for your group. 

And then invite everyone else to join, because that makes it feel less like a performance everyone is expected to sit and watch and more like leading off the dancing.

The timing of when to invite the next group is best left to the band leader/DJ, who can read the room.  Fabulous, confident dancing, and the crowd is enjoying watching?  Let it go on awhile.  Awkward and shy dancers?  Rescue them sooner.

At my son's wedding, his college a capella group surprised the bride by singing the first dance for them rather than having the band play it.  But it was still the song the couple had chosen.  (And it still felt too long, and this was my own kid's wedding!   :)) )

This is getting way off topic, but another special dance I've seen at a few weddings, sometimes starting with the First Dance, is to invite all the other married couples to the floor, start the dance, and then at intervals tell those who have been married less than five years (which of course includes the HC) to sit, then 10 years, and so forth.  The last couple left on the floor gets flowers (often the wedding bouquet, which fewer and fewer brides want to toss these days).  I have wondered if single/widowed/divorced people feel left out, but it seems like at a wedding, it is okay to recognize and celebrate marriage, especially now that same sex couples can marry, too.

Back to the original question: I repeat my original advice, which is that sentiment is great, but much more important is what will work best in terms of danceability.  Make sure it is one the band can do well, if you have live music. 
« Last Edit: June 13, 2019, 12:54:33 pm by Gellchom »
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Hanna

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Re: First Dance song suggestions?
« Reply #21 on: June 13, 2019, 12:44:12 pm »
So we are going with John Legend: All of Me. We love it and the band plays it so YaY!

Im definitely going to ask them to have others join us pretty quickly!
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Gellchom

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Re: First Dance song suggestions?
« Reply #22 on: June 13, 2019, 01:02:49 pm »
Sounds perfect!  I can't wait to hear all about your wedding.  Tell us wedding fans more of your plans!

But it seems like a decade or two ago bridal parties didn't want to dance with each other. It was 'ooh, it's awkward to slow dance with someone I barely know" which I always thought of as a precious attitude. It is possible to do a foxtrot, two step, or just shuffling your feet to the music without being overly intimate. (off my soap box now)

I know it's common elsewhere, but in our community, in hundreds of weddings, I have never seen the bridal party paired off to dance with each other.  Usually they aren't even called out for a special dance at all.  But when the bridal party is called to the floor, they just bring whomever they want.  Some choose their own spouse or dates, but some especially smart ones go get a grandparent or little sibling or niebling of the bride or groom, which is really charming and much more fun to watch, too.

jpcher

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Re: First Dance song suggestions?
« Reply #23 on: June 13, 2019, 04:16:37 pm »
So we are going with John Legend: All of Me. We love it and the band plays it so YaY!

Im definitely going to ask them to have others join us pretty quickly!


Once again, a perfect choice. Love it.
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Contrarian

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Re: First Dance song suggestions?
« Reply #24 on: June 15, 2019, 02:25:27 am »
Iím sure this song would annoy a lot of people but I love Al Bowlly. If I had to pick a song it would be
Love is The Sweetness Thing.
Recorded in 1932.  My sister hates my choice in music.
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nuku

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Re: First Dance song suggestions?
« Reply #25 on: September 11, 2019, 06:24:32 pm »
Two pieces of advice for anyone choosing first dance music:
  • Listen to the words. A lot of music doesn't mean what you think it means.
  • Make sure it's danceable.

I know a couple that chose Journey's "Faithfully" about 20 years ago. Unless you're marrying someone who will be on the road a lot, it's not really the right song. Also, it's a slow song, but really, really hard to dance to. The couple just kind of swayed awkwardly.

I know someone who chose the Beatles' "When I'm 64," and I know of another couple who chose "Here, There and Everywhere."
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Hanna

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Re: First Dance song suggestions?
« Reply #26 on: September 11, 2019, 06:45:53 pm »
Great advice Nuku!

We did dance to John Legend ďAll of meĒ. The band did a wonderful job and it was my favorite moment from my wedding reception because it was the only time that my husband and I got to just focus on one another. I was worried would feel on display but while we were dancing we didnít even notice anyone else there.
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