What Can We Do if Guests Request Songs We Hate?

Etiquette, Music
what to do guests request songs you hate

Photo: Nathan Smith of Ira Lippke Studios

After all the time you've spent listening to song samples, watching music videos, and maybe even heading out to see your wedding band or DJ play in person, the last thing you want is for guests to start making requests that don't fit what you'd hoped your reception would be. What can you do if the requests start taking your dance party from "packed floor" to "super cheesy"? Our experts weigh in.

Before your wedding day even arrives, talk to your band or DJ about their request policy. Do they place a strict set, no matter the crowd? Will they read the crowd and see what is resonating with your guests, then tailor the set list accordingly? Do they set out a sheet for guests to write down songs they'd like to hear, or do they have a strict no-request policy? You'll be better equipped to handle guests on your wedding day if you know what to expect.

If your band or DJ does take requests, talk to them about a Do Not Play list. Include any songs that you and your fiancé don't want to hear, whether you're not a fan of line dances, or would prefer that the hip-hop be kept to a minimum. It can often be more helpful for your DJ or band to know what types of music you don't than to have a list of must-play songs (which can often be all over the map).

See more: 5 Major Wedding Music Mistakes to Avoid

At your reception, if guests are trying to make requests, start off by letting the band or DJ handle it. They've got lots of practice saying things like "I'm sorry, the bride and groom have requested that I not play the 'Cha Cha Slide,' is there a different song you'd like to hear?" and most guests will get the hint. And if they don't take requests at all? Your guests won't find a request list on the DJ's table, and the band leader will let them know they have a prearranged set list planned for the evening.

If you weren't thorough enough with your Do Not Play list, and guests start asking for songs that you're not too thrilled to hear, ask your DJ to stop taking requests and let them work their professional magic, no outside influence allowed.

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