Play That Funky Music

Music is one aspect of our reception that we are definitely not taking lightly. Mr. Cupcake and I have been revisiting and revising our play list for months, as we’re determined to have music that (almost) everyone can enjoy.

Choosing music has been a challenge, because a lot of the music that we like just won’t work for dancing. Currently, the six-disc rotation in my car consists of She & Him, Justin Timberlake, Regina Spektor, the Broadway soundtrack to Wicked, Ingrid Michaelson, and The Beatles White Album. Aside from Justin and some earlier Beatles songs, nothing is very danceable. We’ve had to get in touch with our inner dancing queens to compile a list that will (hopefully) have our dance floor packed all night with everyone from my 13-year-old cousin to Mr. Cupcake’s 70-something-year-old grandmother.

First, the “important songs”””entrances, first dance, parent dances, etc.:

We are very, very excited about the song we’ll be introduced to. You may recognize it as the song that is playing towards the end of the movie Notting Hill when Hugh Grant’s character and his friends are racing through London to get to Julia Robert’s press conference. It’s one of those songs that we both love and it always gets us pumped up, as dorky as that sounds. :)

For the rest of the “special” songs, we tried to pick upbeat songs that are recognizable but not necessarily the norm, at least based on the weddings we have been to. We like to be a little different like that.

Next up, we have the cocktail hour and dinner music, in no particular order:

Between our cocktail hour and sit-down dinner, we’ll need about two and a half hour’s worth of music, and if for some reason this list doesn’t cover it, it gives our DJ a great idea of the type of music we are looking for: a mix of Rat Pack, classic rock, and some more current randomness.

After cocktail hour, it’ll be time to shake our groove thangs.

These are, again, in no particular order, with the exception of the first song, “25 Miles”, by Edwin Star. This song will hopefully inspire everyone to get their boo-tays on the dance floor, and the DJ will then be able to get a feel for how the rest of the evening should flow.

Since some of the older folks may head out before the reception ends at 11:00, we thought that later in the evening would be the best time to play the songs that will be more of a hit with our friends:

As you can see, we’re not really including too many current songs, but hopefully some of these selections will get our friends excited and nostalgic. :)

If more dancing songs are needed, we put together a secondary list. Some of these are still up for debate between Mr. Cupcake and I (like “We are Family”, which I insist is a necessary evil, yet he despises), but the DJ will be able to see what the night holds and hopefully will go with the flow depending on the crowd! Even though some of the songs are a little cheese-tastic, sometimes these seem to be the songs that get the most people on the dance floor (and how can we have a September wedding without playing “September” by Earth, Wind and Fire?).

I know that “Band of Gold” isn’t the most appropriate song to play at a wedding reception, but I L-O-V-E the song. I don’t know what it is, but it is one of those songs that I like to belt out in my car, and every time it comes on when Mr. Cupcake and I are together, he cranks it up for me because he knows that “that’s my soooong.”

We also chose a few slow songs that we wouldn’t mind hearing throughout the night, but we don’t care if we don’t end up hearing all of them. Why slow things down if the dance floor is packed, right?

And finally, the totally necessary ‘Do Not Play’ list. I know, I know””some of these are crowd favorites and we’re total meanies for depriving our guests of these songs. But we’re just not fans of organized dances or the super cheese-rific tunes, and we don’t think anyone will miss any of these songs if we’ve successfully chosen some other fabulous selections!

In red, for dramatic effect

Have you gotten really into planning out your play list for the wedding, or are you giving your DJ or band full control? Are any of your favorite party songs missing from our list?


Mrs. Cupcake

Wedding Date:
September 2015
A Wedding Planning Hiatus
Glamnuptials: Le Gateau
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  1. dumpling Member
    dumpling 750 posts, Busy bee @ 1:25 pm

    Yay! for Beatles White Album…its in constant rotation at my house. Great music choices, cupcake! Our wedding is on a Friday Night, or I totally would have used the Bay City Rollers song.

  2. Guest Icon Guest
    Laura, Guest @ 1:29 pm

    My do not play list looked pretty close to yours. And then a relative told me how much she wanted the Cha Cha Slide and I gave in. I’m glad I did because besides the first dance with DH and my dad the Cha Cha slide was the only other time I danced the whole night since most of it was spent trying to talk to everyone.

    I never thought I would admit that I was glad I did the Cha Cha Slide :)

  3. Member
    rebecca 1315 posts, Bumble bee @ 1:31 pm

    OOO I totally forgot “Hot Hot Hot” and “Who Let the Dogs Out” on our Do Not Play list. Adding them now!

  4. Guest Icon Guest
    missk, Guest @ 1:33 pm

    I love 25 miles! It always makes me want to dance!

    Also, based on your love for the Beatles, I would like to suggest Al Green’s cover of “I want to hold your hand”. It is amazing, you have to check it out! :)

  5. Member
    cannotwait 2168 posts, Buzzing bee @ 1:40 pm

    yay for “come on eileen” sisters and I will definitely be dancing to this one!

  6. Guest Icon Guest
    LLKFSU, Guest @ 1:44 pm

    Our do not play list looks a lot like yours…if you aren’t doing the dollar dance you may want to add that. I went to a wedding once where someone requested the dollar dance — the bride was horrified! Also, you have “Moondance” by Van Morrison twice:)

  7. cupcake Member
    cupcake 1456 posts, Bumble bee @ 1:47 pm

    @LLKFSU: I don’t think anyone in my family or any of my friends even know what the dollar dance is, but Mr. Cupcake’s family might as this seems to be a popular thing to do in Central PA, where he is from. I will be sure to tell the DJ that we won’t be doing that :-) Thanks for the reminder!!!

  8. Guest Icon Guest
    busylizzy, Guest @ 1:50 pm

    I had to check out the cha cha slide at youtube – never heard/saw it here in Germany. I think I didn´t miss a lot :)

  9. Guest Icon Guest
    notsojenny, Guest @ 2:16 pm

    i think i have a crush on you! i’ve recently fallen in love with She & Him.
    and Notting Hill is my all favorite movie, love the soundtrack too. great dance songs on your list too!

  10. Guest Icon Guest
    Lindsey, Guest @ 2:22 pm

    You have an excellent list. Most of the songs I used in my wedding as well!

  11. Guest Icon Guest
    elizabeth, Guest @ 2:39 pm

    Was just at a wedding this past weekend, and the DJ they had was kind of a dictator–he didn’t allow them to pick many songs at all, and he actually pulled out his sax and played/sang, which I found to be super-tacky (not that I fault my friends–apparently he’s distantly related to the groom’s side so they were prodded into using him). He also pulled out some country midway through that cleared the floor (and there were nearly 300 people at this wedding!), but fortunately reverted back to things that got us back on the floor quickly enough.

    We’re using the cocktail hour, dinner hour and the special songs to highlight our personal musical tastes, and just giving ideas to our DJ as to the kinds of things we want to hear during the dancing. That way, we can get our Decemberists, Air and Sigur Ros and everyone can get their Michael Jackson and Motown.

  12. Guest Icon Guest
    guidom29, Guest @ 3:02 pm

    I LOVE that you have Jamiroquai’s Canned Heat….I love that song!

  13. Guest Icon Guest
    twelvetigers, Guest @ 5:47 pm

    I like your do not play list i if I were attending your wedding, I would be very relieved to see it.

    Come on Eileen is quite possibly the catchiest song I have ever heard… I’m sure it will be stuck in my head all day now, just because I thought of it. :)

  14. Guest Icon Guest
    Erica, Guest @ 8:57 pm

    Love your lists! Great tunes.
    Cha Cha Slide will most definitely be on our list – it’s the first song that I’ve ever seen my fiance want to learn to dance to!! Also, I can’t say no to Mambo #5 – any song with my name in it is a winner.

  15. Guest Icon Guest
    alexinwonderland, Guest @ 9:48 pm

    Everything looks great except for one thing- what’s wrong with Summer of 69?! From the comments it looks like I’m alone in thinking thats an awesome classic!

  16. Guest Icon Guest
    Fal, Guest @ 6:58 am

    I’m kind of curious about your reasons for including “Sweet Home Alabama” on your list. As much as it’s a popular song, it’s quite possible to interpret it in a way that… well, I wouldn’t be comfortable with it at a wedding. But then I had a professor in college who liked to talk about protest songs as often as possible…

  17. cupcake Member
    cupcake 1456 posts, Bumble bee @ 8:43 am

    @Fal: two of my cousins went to the University if Alabama, and they are also bridesmaids in my wedding. I just thought it would be a fun song that would get everyone dancing; I don’t think any of our guests will think there is any sort of political agenda :-)

  18. cupcake Member
    cupcake 1456 posts, Bumble bee @ 8:54 am

    @alexinwonderland: Haha, I do sing along to this from time to time, but I have an unexplainable dislike for Bryan Adams! No offense :-)

  19. Guest Icon Guest
    Fal, Guest @ 9:34 am

    @Miss Cupcake: Goodness know the political agenda is not even remotely current; it’s something related to the civil rights movement, and no one really knows if it’s true or not. Definitely sounds like you have a fun reason to play the song though~

  20. Guest Icon Guest
    alaud41, Guest @ 11:26 am

    May I please borrow your “do not play” list? We are TOTALLY on the same page with that and you guys have covered them all. 😉

  21. Guest Icon Guest
    nicole, Guest @ 5:30 pm

    what no spice girls?

  22. Guest Icon Guest
    lindsay, Guest @ 1:15 pm

    I share the same wedding date as you and we have not even come close to putting something like this together.

    THANK YOU for doing the leg-work… I am most definitely bookmarking this!

    Thanks again and best wishes~

  23. Guest Icon Guest
    SugaryRocks, Guest @ 12:32 am

    thank you!

  24. Guest Icon Guest
    Wedding DJ, Guest @ 2:55 am

    One person’s “Do Not Play” is another’s “Guilty Pleasure”. Whether it’s “Come On Eileen”, “Jessie’s Girl”, “Footloose” or “Sweet Caroline”, everybody’s got at least one!

  25. Guest Icon Guest
    Demetrio, Guest @ 8:32 am

    thanks, my wedding film have to be best with this music

  26. Guest Icon Guest
    Ashley, Guest @ 11:45 am

    Hey there! I would love to feature your playlist (along with shots from your wedding!) on my blog, which is all about wedding music :)

    You have a wonderful selection…and I love your do not play list haha!

    Just let me know if you are interested, and I’d love to talk details with ya :)

  27. Guest Icon Guest
    Wedding Dinner Music help!, Guest @ 9:20 am

    […] out our first dance song, so I’ll probably be not much help! What about something from this list? Play That Funky Music | Weddingbee I find the wedding bee boards helpful too Music Jess & Jake & Charlotte […]

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