In addition to cutting down your guest list, choosing a dress, and scheduling a wedding cake test, you should also have the right music for you and your hubby’s first dance! While you could ask the DJ to play any ballad, nothing beats these most popular first dance songs.
“Thinking Out Loud” by Ed Sheeran
Ed Sheeran’s “Thinking Out Loud” is a popular first-dance wedding song, and for a good reason! Its lyrics are romantic and, without a doubt, strike a chord, especially when the chorus hits – “So honey, now, take me into your lovin’ arms. Kiss me under the light of a thousand stars. And place your head on my beatin’ heart, I’m thinkin’ out loud.”
“Lover” by Taylor Swift
Taylor Swift’s “Lover” might be one of the newer songs on this list, but it’s already on its way to being a classic love song because of how sweet and thoughtful its lyrics are. The chorus alone – “Can I go where you go? Can we always be this close? Forever and ever, ah. Take me out and take me home (Forever and ever)” will make all your guests swoon!
“The Way You Look Tonight” by Frank Sinatra
Frank Sinantra’s “The Way You Look Tonight” is another favorite, especially for newlyweds who want their first dance to be mellow and keep guests tapping and singing along.
“Better Together” by Jack Johnson
Did you ever wonder why things are just better with your partner? Jack Johnson hits all the right notes, so to speak, in his laidback but romantic song “Better Together.” From the first verse, “There’s no combination of words I could put on the back of a postcard,” to the chorus, “Mmm, it’s always better when we’re together,” it is undoubtedly an excellent song to dance to in your wedding.
“This Will Be (An Everlasting Love)” by Natalie Cole
Even nearly 50 years after “This Will Be (an Everlasting Love)” was released, this upbeat song from Natalie Colie is still a favorite in weddings because every newlywed wants “everlasting love.”
“I Won’t Give Up” by Jason Mraz
This ballad might already be a decade old, but its lyrics, especially its chorus, “I won’t give up on us even if the skies get rough,” is undoubtedly timeless.
“At Last” by Etta James
Have you ever just waited for your special someone? That’s the gist of Etta James’ 1960 hit “At Last.” You’re going along, minding your own business, and suddenly, pow! You finally found someone to spend the rest of your life with.
“Kiss Me” by Ed Sheeran
Another Ed Sheeran song that is perfect for your first dance is “Kiss Me.” Why? It’s outright romantic and sweet from the very moment Sheeran opens with, “Settle down with me,” all the way to the tear-jerking chorus, “So kiss me like you wanna be loved.”
“Can’t Help Falling In Love” by Elvis Presley
This classic Elvis Presley hit might be just 86 words long, but its thoughtful lyrics and lullaby-like melody make it a popular song at weddings. Plus, it perfectly captures that feeling that you just “can’t help falling in love” with your significant other.
“Lucky” by Jason Mraz and Colbie Caillat
Have you ever had the moment of epiphany that you are “lucky” that you’ve met the right person to spend the rest of your life with? If you did, then this Jason Mraz and Colbie Caillat’s duet should be your first dance song! This song, which won the 2010 Grammy Award for Best Pop Collaboration with Vocals, talks about feeling lucky to be in love with your best friend “in every way.”
“L-O-V-E” by Nat King Cole
Don’t want to play modern pop songs for your first dance? Consider Nat King Cole’s “L-O-V-E.” In this 1965 jazz swing hit, Cole sings about, “Love is all that I can give to you.”
“XO” by John Mayer
Featuring an acoustic guitar, harmonica, slowed-down tempo, and, of course, John Mayer’s soothing voice, this is a sweeter and more intimate rendition of Beyonce’s “XO.” No matter what version you prefer, it’s the sweet lyrics – “In the darkest night, I’ll search through the crowd. Your face is all that I see.” – that truly makes this a popular first dance song.
“From the Ground Up” by Dan + Shay
We all learn from those who went before us, don’t we? That’s the idea behind “From the Ground Up.” Inspired by their grandparents’ marriages lasting over 65 years, the country music duo sings, “we’ll build this love from the ground up. Now, ’til forever, it’s all of me.”
“Coming Home” by Leon Bridges
The world sucks, but nothing beats the feeling of knowing your partner is at home and waiting for you. In Leon Bridges’ upbeat contemporary soul 2015 hit song “Coming Home,” he sings, “The world leaves a bitter taste in my mouth, girl. You’re the only one that I want.”
“Something” by the Beatles
Most of us can’t put into words why we love our significant other. And this 1969 hit from The Beatles perfectly captures that feeling. Penned and produced by George Harrison, “Something” talks about how you just know that you “don’t need no other lover.”
“You Are” by Lionel Richie
Lionel Richie’s 1982 hit “You Are” is another excellent choice for your first dance. The song uses the sun and rain as a metaphor to describe that your significant other can sometimes be your joy and pain. Nevertheless, as Richie sings, you’d “do it all again and again.”
I’m Gonna Be by the Proclaimers
Would you walk 1,000 miles for the love of your life? That’s what this 1993 hit song by The Proclaimers is about: doing everything for your partner. Although it is the only one-hit wonder on this list and only peaked at No. 3 on the US Billboard, its sweet and thoughtful message makes it a popular first dance song.
Other Popular First Dance Songs
- A Thousand Years by Christina Perri
- Make You Feel My Love by Adele
- Chasing Cars by Snow Patrol
- Ho Hey by The Lumineers
- Coming Home by Leon Bridges
- Wonderful Tonight by Eric Clapton
- What a Wonderful World by Louis Armstrong
- Beyond by Leon Bridges
- You and Me Song by The Wannadies
- Mirrorball by Elbow
- Endless Love by Lionel Richie & Diana Ross
- Everlong by Foo Fighters
- God Gave Me You by Blake Shelton
- We Have All the Time in the World by Louis Armstrong
- First Day of My Life by Bright Eyes
- Love Story by Taylor Swift
- Perfect (Acoustic) by Ed Sheeran
- Falling Like the Stars by James Arthur
- All of Me by John Legend
- For Once In My Life by Stevie Wonder
- Let’s Stay Together by Al Green
- I Choose You by Sara Bareilles
- Halo by Beyonce
- Maybe I’m Amazed by Paul McCartney
- For The Both of Us by Dan + Shay
- By Your Side by Sade
- Faithfully by Journey
- I Do (Cherish You) by 98 Degrees
- Baby I’m Yours by Artic Monkeys, The Newell Octet
- This I Promise You by *NSYNC
- Your Song by Ellie Goulding
- I Won’t Let You Go by James Morrison
- Come Away With Me by Norah Jones
- I Will Follow You Into the Dark by Death Cab for Cutie
- You and I by Michael Bublé