Photo by Scott Bacon Photography
When we start thinking about music for our wedding, we of course think of walking down the aisle and the first dance.. but did you know there are a lot of other places throughout the day that you need to plan music for!
It can be a little overwhelming to think of all of the times and places you need to have covered with music throughout the day, so we've created a checklist to help you to plan for every moment.
While guests arrive for the ceremony, you should plan 30-60 minutes of music.
You should have 1-3 songs to walk down the aisle to. One for the wedding party and
one for the bride is the most popular, but you can make it your own!
- Music During Ceremony (if any)
Sometimes couples like to have a song in the ceremony. Sometimes music during the
unity ceremony is a good idea to fill the time when no one is speaking. Other traditions
or religions may have parts of the ceremony that include music.
One song that the wedding party exits the ceremony to.
As guests exit the ceremony and go through the receiving line, it's good to have about
15-30 minutes of music planned.
- Social Hour
This can be house music from your venue, a musician, or your DJ, but it is good to
have something planned to set the mood and not have awkward silence here.
- Grand Entrance
Usually 1-2 songs to introduce the wedding party into the reception. However, you
may chose to have up to one song per couple.
Plan for at least an hour of music during dinner, quiet enough that people can still
talk. The music will go until speeches, but may need to resume after speeches until the
- First Dance
A song for the couple to dance to as their first dance is usually thought about a lot.
Some couples chose to shorten the song a little bit, because 3 minutes can get a little
long when you are dancing in front of everyone.
- Father/Daughter Dance
- Mother/Son Dance
Both parent dances are one song each but some may want to shorten the song here
- Any other special or planned dances
Any other dances with family, dollar dances, who has been married longest dance,
maybe someone is doing a choreographed dance, or even just the first song to get the
wedding party out on the dance floor - just have these songs picked out.
- Any slideshows/videos
If you have any slideshows or videos you'll need to decide the music for them and also
make sure the sound works through the video or if you need your DJ/Band to play the
- The actual dance
You will usually work with you DJ or Band to plan what songs and types of music you
will want played at the dance. It's important to consider your guests and what they will
like as well. You can approve your DJ to take requests from guests as well.
Music throughout your day can change the whole vibe of your day. It can change the feel of the room, make people feel more relaxed, give your event a more luxurious feel. And it's something you can do within budget, it doesn't have to cost a lot or be super complicated. Just a little time for planning and you're all set! You can download the checklist for your own use right here: