Your first dance on your wedding day is a romantic and personal moment for you and your new spouse to sway together and celebrate your next phase in live. That means you will need to find the perfect tune to mark the special occasion. Finding the right song to play can be a tough task, though. Do you want to go classic or modern? Slow or fast? With all the love songs out there, the options are practically endless. "Most couples seem to be choosing very personal songs, either based on the lyrics or a special memory between the couple," shares Cara Samantha, bandleader of Highline for Élan Artists. "Very few opt for mid-tempo and tend to stick with ballads or soulful, slower songs. We really haven't seen any repeats in the past two years for first dances, which keeps us on our toes!"
Jeff Reed, bandleader of the popular wedding band Nation, notes that he also has seen no repeats of songs in the past year. "Even those who picked more commonly played songs were choosing them based on the fact that the song was somehow representative of them and their relationship. It rarely seemed to me that the couples were just going through the motions and just picking something that people knew and liked," explains Reed. "These songs ranged from the classics such as 'Can’t Take My Eyes Off of You,' 'At Last,' and 'Can’t Help Falling in Love with You,' all way to modern classics such as 'You Are the Best Thing.'"
DJ Chris Stiles adds that choosing the most popular song of the moment isn't as a common choice for brides and grooms either. "They understand that in 20 years, will they still like the song or cringe at their choice? Picking a song with meaning and distinctiveness is what I see as the most important trend currently," he says. If there is one standout artist for first dance songs among Gen Z and Millennials, it's Ed Sheeran. According to data reported from Spotify, "Perfect” and “Thinking Out Loud” are the the most-added tracks to user-generated “first dance” playlists for fans in these age groups.
Want some more romantic song ideas to consider for your first turn about the dance floor as a married couple? Ahead, we asked pros from Jordan Kahn Music Company, Élan Artists, Spotify, and our editorial team to share some of the best first dance songs out there today.
"All of Me," by John Legend
Lyrics of Love: "Give your all to me/I'll give my all to you/You're my end and my beginning"
"Like I'm Gonna Lose You," by Jasmine Thompson
Lyrics of Love: "So I'm gonna love you/Like I'm gonna lose you/I'm gonna hold you/Like I'm saying goodbye"
"500 Miles," by Sleeping at Last
Lyrics of Love: "But I would walk 500 miles/And I would walk 500 more/Just to be the man who walked a thousand miles/To fall down at your door"
"Unchained Melody," by The Righteous Brothers
Lyrics of Love: "Oh, my love, my darling/I've hungered for your touch"
"Amazed," by Lonestar
Lyrics of Love: "I want to spend the rest of my life with you by my side/Forever and ever"
"Perfect," by Ed Sheeran and Beyoncé
Lyrics of Love: "But darling, just kiss me slow/Your heart is all I own/And in your eyes, you're holding mine"
"I Don't Want to Miss a Thing," by Aerosmith
Lyrics of Love: "The sweetest dream will never do/I'd still miss you, babe/And I don't want to miss a thing"
"The Way You Look Tonight," by Frank Sinatra
Lyrics of Love: "There is nothing for me but to love you/And the way you look tonight"
"At Last," by Etta James
Lyrics of Love: "At last my love has come along/My lonely days are over and life is like a song, oh yeah"
"There Is No Greater Love" by Amy Winehouse
Lyrics of Love: "There is no greater love/Than what I feel for you/No sweeter song, no heart so true"
"Yours," by Russell Dickerson
Lyrics of Love: "I came to life when I first kissed you/The best me has his arms around you/You make me better than I was before/Thank God I'm yours"
"Kiss Me," by Ed Sheeran
Lyrics of Love: "And your heart's against my chest, your lips pressed in my neck/I'm falling for your eyes, but they don't know me yet/And with a feeling I'll forget, I'm in love now"
"Escapade," by Janet Jackson
Lyrics of Love: "Come on baby, let's get away/Let's save our troubles for another day"
"Sweetest Thing," by Allman Brown
Lyrics of Love: "You're the sweetest thing that I ever did see/Like a bird taking way/Tears that set you free"
"Can’t Take My Eyes Off of You" by Frankie Valli
Lyrics of Love: "You're just too good to be true/Can't take my eyes off you"
"My Best Friend," by Tim McGraw
Lyrics of Love: "I fall in love all over/Every time I look at you"
"Give Me Love," by Ed Sheeran
Lyrics of Love: "All I want is the taste that your lips allow/My, my, my, my, oh give me love"
"Your Song," by Elton John
Lyrics of Love: "I hope you don't mind/That I put down in words/How wonderful life is while you're in the world"
"A Thousand Years," by Christina Perri
Lyrics of Love: "I have died every day, waiting for you/Darling, don't be afraid, I have loved you for a thousand years"
"Marry Me," by Train
Lyrics of Love: "Forever can never be long enough for me/Feel like I've had long enough with you"
"I Am Yours," by Andy Grammer
Lyrics of Love: "Still can't believe it when you say you're mine and/I am yours, I am yours, I am yours"
"Starting Over," by Chris Stapleton
Lyrics of Love: "And it don't matter to me/Wherever we are is where I wanna be"
"That’s When I Knew," by Alicia Keys
Lyrics of Love: "That's when I knew I fell in love/That's when I knew you were the one"
"Have You Ever Been in Love," by Céline Dion
Lyrics of Love: "Have you ever been in love/You could touch the moonlight"
"Moon River" by Frank Ocean
Lyrics of Love: "Wherever you're goin'/I'm goin' that way"
"Falling Like the Stars," by James Arthur
Lyrics of Love: "We're fallin' like the stars, fallin' in love/And I'm not scared to say those words with you, I'm safe"
"Only Wanna Be With You," by Hootie and the Blowfish
Lyrics of Love: "I just want to love you, but you wanna wear my ring/Well there's nothing I can do/I only wanna be with you"
"Thinking Out Loud," by Ed Sheeran
Lyrics of Love: "And darling I will be loving you 'til we're 70/And baby my heart could still fall as hard at 23"
"Can't Take My Eyes off You," by Frankie Valli
Lyrics of Love: "I love you, baby/And if it's quite alright/I need you, baby/To warm the lonely night"
"Can't Help Falling in Love," by Elvis Presley
Lyrics of Love: "Take my hand/Take my whole life too/For I can't help falling in love with you"
"Work Song," by Hozier
Lyrics of Love: "When my time comes around/Lay me gently in the cold dark earth/No grave can hold my body down/I'll crawl home to her"
"XO," by John Mayer
Lyrics of Love: "Your heart is glowing/And I'm crashing into you/Baby kiss me, kiss me"
"This Kiss," by Faith Hill
Lyrics of Love: "It's the way you love me/It's a feeling like this"
"Make You Feel My Love," by Adele
Lyrics of Love: "No, there's nothing that I wouldn't do/To make you feel my love"
"I Won't Give Up," by Jason Mraz
Lyrics of Love: "Well, I won't give up on us/Even if the skies get rough/I'm giving you all my love/I'm still looking up"
"Hold Me," by Stevie Wonder
Lyrics of Love: "So hold me, baby hold me/Say you'll never let me go"
"Teenage Dream," by Boyce Avenue
Lyrics of Love: "My heart stops when you look at me/Just one touch now baby I believe this is real"
"January Wedding," by The Avett Brothers
Lyrics of Love: "I understand because my heart and hers are the same/And in January we're gettin' married"
"Fresh Eyes," by Andy Grammer
Lyrics of Love: "So suddenly I'm in love with a stranger/I can't believe that she's mine"
"You Are the Best Thing," by Ray LaMontagne
Lyrics of Love: "Believe me, you don't even have to try/Oh, because/You are the best thing"
"There Will Be Time," by Mumford & Sons feat. Baaba Maal
Lyrics of Love: "And in the cold light, I live to love and adore you/It's all that I am, it's all that I have"
"Come Rain or Come Shine," by Ray Charles
Lyrics of Love: "I'm gonna love you/Like no one's loved you/Come rain or come shine"
"You Are," by Lionel Richie
Lyrics of Love: "And my love you'll see/We'll stay together, just you and me/I've got so much love"
"Dreams Are More Precious," by Enya
Lyrics of Love: "Come see, close your eyes/Come see, give me your sorrow/And I keep watch for you"
"The One" by Kodaline
Lyrics of Love: "You make my heart feel like it's summer/When the rain is pouring down/You make my whole world feel so right when it's wrong/That's how I know you are the one"
"First Day of My Life," by Bright Eyes
Lyrics of Love: "This is the first day of my life/I'm glad I didn't die before I met you/But now I don't care, I could go anywhere with you"
"Crush," by Dave Matthews Band
Lyrics of Love: "Just as long as you're around/And here I'll be dancing on the ground"
"Home," by Edward Sharpe and the Magnetic Zeros
Lyrics of Love: "Ah, home, let me come home/Home is wherever I'm with you"
"Latch," by Sam Smith
Lyrics of Love: "How do you do it, you got me losing every breath/What did you give me to make my heart beat out my chest"
"Better Together," by Jack Johnson
Lyrics of Love: "Yeah, we'll look at the stars when we're together/Well, it's always better when we're together"
"Let's Stay Together," by Al Green
Lyrics of Love: "Let me say that baby, since we've been together/Ooh, loving you forever/Is what I need"
"Home," by Edward Sharpe and the Magnetic Zeros
Lyrics of Love: "Home, let me come home/Home is wherever I'm with you"
"Lucky," by Jason Mraz and Colbie Caillat
Lyrics of Love: "I'm lucky I'm in love with my best friend/Lucky to have been where I have been/Lucky to be coming home again"
"Never Let Me Go," by Florence + The Machine
Lyrics of Love: "Never let me go, never let me go/And the arms of the ocean are carrying me/And all this devotion was rushing over me"
"You Send Me," by Sam Cooke
Lyrics of Love: "All her friends tell me she's got a halo/I think I knew that right from the get-go"
"Every Little Thing She Does Is Magic," by Sleeping at Last
Lyrics of Love: "Every little thing she does is magic/Everything she does just turns me on/Even though my life before was tragic/Now, I know my love for her goes on"
"You & I (Nobody in the World)," by John Legend
Lyrics of Love: "All of the stars, you make them shine like they were ours/Ain't nobody in the world but you and I/You and I"
"Say You Won't Let Go," by James Arthur
Lyrics of Love: "I know I needed you/But I never showed/But I wanna stay with you until we're grey and old"
"You're Still the One," by Shania Twain
Lyrics of Love: "You're still the one I run to/The one that I belong to/You're still the one I want for life"
"Mine Would Be You," by Blake Shelton
Lyrics of Love: "Baby, if I had to choose/My best day ever/My finest hour, my wildest dream come true/Mine would be you"
"From the Ground Up," by Dan + Shay
Lyrics of Love: "And we'll build this love from the ground up/Now 'til forever it's all of me, all of you/Just take my hand"
"Fly Me to The Moon," by Frank Sinatra
Lyrics of Love: "Fill my heart with song and let me sing forevermore/You are all I long for"
"Lover," by Taylor Swift
Lyrics of Love: "Can I go where you go?/Can we always be this close forever and ever?/And ah, take me out, and take me home (forever and ever)"
"Anyone," by Justin Bieber
Lyrics of Love: "Dance with me under the diamonds/See me like breath in the cold/Sleep with me here in the silence/Come kiss me, silver and gold"
"My Girl," by The Temptations
Lyrics of Love: "I've got a sweeter song/Than the birds in the trees/Well, I guess you'd say/What can make me feel this way/My girl, my girl, my girl"
"Coming Home," by Leon Bridges
Lyrics of Love: "Baby, baby, baby/I'm coming home/To your tender sweet loving/You're my one and only woman"
"Black and White," by Niall Horan
Lyrics of Love: "See you standing in your dress/Swear in front of all our friends/There'll never be another/I promise that I'll love you for the rest of my life"
"Conversations in the Dark," by John Legend
Lyrics of Love: "I won't ever try to change you, change you/I will always want the same you, same you/Swear on everything I pray to/That I won't break your heart"
"Find Someone Like You" by Snoh Aalegra
Lyrics of Love: "I've been waitin' my whole life, to find someone like you/Find someone like you/Maybe I, I want this, I want this to last forever"
"Sweet Creature," by Harry Styles
Lyrics of Love: "Sweet creature, sweet creature/Wherever I go, you bring me home/Sweet creature, sweet creature/When I run out of road, you bring me home"
"Never Worn White," by Katy Perry
Lyrics of Love: "No, I've never worn white, no/But I really wanna try with you/Yeah, I've never worn white/But I wanna get it right/'Cause you really wanna say, 'I do'"
"Finally // Beautiful Stranger," by Halsey
Lyrics of Love: "Beautiful stranger, here you are in my arms/But I think it's finally, finally, finally, finally, finally safe/For me to fall"
"Minefields," by Faouzia and John Legend
Lyrics of Love: "Ooh-ooh, maybe I'm just a fool/I still belong with you/Anywhere you, anywhere you are"
"Beyond," by Leon Bridges
Lyrics of Love: "I-I-I-I'm scared to death that she might be it/That the love is real, that the shoe might fit/She might just be my everything and beyond (beyond)"
"Adore You," by Harry Styles
Lyrics of Love: "You don't have to say you love me/I just wanna tell you somethin'/Lately you've been on my mind"
When do we do the first dance at our wedding?
Traditionally, the first dance kicks off the dancing portion of the reception, so it occurs after the meal. Many couples, however, choose to do the first dance at the beginning of the reception during their grand entrance, or even after the cake cutting.
How long should the first dance be?
Your first dance should be around two-and-a-half to three-and-a-half minutes long. Longer can feel awkward, but too short and your videographer and photographer won't be able to properly capture the moment.
How do we pick a first dance song?
There's no one way to choose a first dance song. But to help you and your partner decide, you can narrow it down to a specific genre and look carefully at lyrics of popular first dance songs to find what resonates. Consider things like the pace of the song, your ability to dance to it, and whether it resonates with both of you.
How do we dance for the first dance at our wedding?
There are a few ways you can do your first dance, and it will depend on the song you choose and your skill level. "The sway" is the classic first dance style, along with the Waltz and the Foxtrot. You can also opt for an original choreographed dance.