Ah yes, the music.
He's a little bit country, she's a little bit rock 'n roll.
Mom's big on Sinatra, but she married the original doo-wop daddy.
The aunts and uncles prefer polkas, chicken dances and similarly embarrassing spectacles.
And then there are the friends from college...
How do you select reception music that fits everybody? It's an intimidating question, since the entertainment plays no small role in the success of a wedding reception. Years from now, your wedding reception guests will remember few details of your reception, but they'll certainly recall whether they danced, laughed and enjoyed themselves. The entertainment is the make-or-break factor in producing a memorable special occasion.
Now, the first question that may come to your mind is, "How much music do I have to select?" Aside from your special songs, it is important for you to work with whomever you hire for your entertainment to set a tone for your reception. We all know of songs that we want to have for sure played, and at the same times, ones that we do not want to have included in your reception.
We're committed to working with you to producing a music program that reflects your preferences, rather than working off a standard playlist that works "most of the time." Obviously, careful planning is essential. Together, we can develop a program that balances your taste and the desires of your audience. However, some flexibility is essential in the planning process.
So, returning to the main question, of how much music do you need to select. From a purely logistical point of view, during your average 4 hour wedding reception, you can get between fifty and sixty songs. But, you have to keep in mind: how much of this event belongs to you, and how much belongs to your guests? Frequently we're asked to not play the Macarena, the Chicken Dance, YMCA, or "Anything from the GREASE Soundtrack." These requests are quite understandable, as these songs are so overplayed that they audibly illustrate the word "trite."
It's also understandable that many guests will want to dance to these songs. They expect them. And you can prohibit them. It is important for you to decide how much of the reception you're willing to trust in the hands of your guests.
An associated issue is how much you trust your DJ to gauge the crowd's reaction and adapt the program to their tastes. A skilled DJ will be able to select the music that motivates the crowd without turning a classy affair into a truck pull.
For these reasons, you need to work closely with your DJ to share a common vision. Build upon your preferences, your guests expectations and your DJ's insights to produce a musical program that makes your reception a memorable event.
So, with all of that said... here are some lists of various songs for different portions of your reception. By all means these lists are not conclusive-- you may want to consider songs that have a special meaning for just the participants. Maybe that song you heard on your first date. They are provided to give you a starting point, as the possibilities are limitless!