Selecting Music for Your Wedding Reception

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We often have couples ask about music selections for their wedding reception. When you hire your band or DJ, they will usually provide a long list of songs they can play. Both bands and DJs can usually get/learn songs that are not on their list, given enough advance warning. But the question we hear a lot is, do I have to make a list of every song I want them to play?

Well, yes and no.

Yes – you need to provide a list (typically 4-6 weeks prior to the wedding) of the special songs like your first dance, parents’ dances, final song, etc.

Yes – you need to provide a list of “do not play” songs. Hate the Chicken Dance or the Electric Slide? Is there a romantic song that was “your song” with your ex? Make a list of those so your band or DJ will be sure not to include them.

Yes – you should also make a list of some of your favorite songs from the band or DJ’s song list.  They may not play every one at your reception, but it will give them an idea of the music you like.

No – you do not have to make a list of every single song and when to play it. In fact, I highly discourage any hint of this. You have hired a professional band or DJ for a reason. Let them put together a playlist that highlights their talents. And in the case of DJs, they often read the crowd and will play similar music if everyone is on the dance floor.

When in doubt, ask your band or DJ what their preferences are if it wasn’t stated in the contract or during your consultation.

(photo by Dan Harris PhotoArt of DJ Jeff Bell in action at Tabatha and Dustin’s wedding)