How To Make A Wedding Playlist: Full Guide For You

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How to make a wedding playlist seems easy at first, but once you start you are going to run into some struggles. Playlists are important features to any wedding. They set the mood, inspire dance, and act as the soundtrack to all of the memories being made. A few of these songs are likely to reappear at anniversaries and special occasions.


So, it’s important to get it right.

Follow this guide to create a wedding playlist to ensure that you have enough music to go around and that your choices consist of songs you love and songs your guests will enjoy.

Brides Often Ask

How many songs do you need for a wedding playlist?

Being mindful of the runtime is an important factor in how to make a good wedding playlist. 90 songs will cover the ceremony, first dances, and reception.

What is the number 1 wedding song?

Traditionally, “At Last” by Etta James was the most frequently played song at weddings. More recently, “All of Me” by John Legend has become the trending favorite.


How To Make A Wedding Playlist: Brilliant Ways And Ideas

Finding upwards of 90 wedding songs seems easy enough. However, once you begin you’ll realize that your library isn’t as large as you thought, and many of them aren’t suitable for your wedding. There are many ways on how to make a great wedding playlist. Some of them require time. Some of them require a team effort.

Here’s how to get started.


Make It Together with Fiance

The most meaningful way of how to make a wedding day playlist is to make it as personal as possible between you and your spouse. Dedicate some time for the two of you to sit down and start building. Once the conversation is started you’ll both immediately begin thinking of songs that remind you of each other and significant moments.

Ask Your Guests

Asking your guests to contribute to a wedding playlist lifts a lot of weight off of your shoulders. It also ensures that there will be songs that everyone will enjoy.

Point them towards your wedding website where they can leave suggestions. If they are technologically saving, leave a link to Spotify or another platform where they can add the songs themselves. You are the final decision maker, so feel free to edit the list as you see fit.


Playlist Choosing Party

Weddings are filled with tiny celebrations leading up to the big day. Take advantage of one of these occasions by creating an activity out of building your wedding playlist. Each of these events are likely to have a little background music which you can use to test the waters.

Beyond that, have each guest drop as many suggestions as they want into a hat or directly into your Spotify list. Soon enough, you’ll have a comprehensive wedding playlist inspired by good times.

Use The Help Of Music Platforms

Many music platforms like Spotify, YouTube, and Pandora have wedding playlists that have already been curated. You can play this as it is, filter and edit, or combine a few to make your very own. Whichever version you choose, you don’t have to start from scratch and there will be plenty of inspiration to help you make decisions.


Follow the Theme

Many brides and grooms are borderline cosplaying for their wedding theme. Be it Harry Potter, Star Wars, or the Marvel Cinematic Universe, your modern theme is likely accompanied with a soundtrack. Use the songs from the film, book, or play to complete the theme.

How Many Songs Should There Be?

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Brides and grooms who are researching how to make a wedding song playlist will want to start by categorizing the day. Each event throughout your wedding day is meant to portray a certain energy and emotion. Matching mini-playlists to these events will ensure that you hit the right runtime and hit the right note.

  • Welcome drinks (one hour) – 15 songs
    The ‘welcome drinks’ period is meant to allow guests to get comfortable in the setting and to get excited for the event. Target 15 songs, with the average play length of 3 minutes, that are upbeat. Anything that gets toes tapping is the right choice.
  • Ceremony (15 -20 minutes) – 4 songs
    Choose 4 songs to represent your emotions during the wedding ceremony. These should be happy, sweet songs. However, do your best to avoid anything too lyrical. These typically trigger individual emotions within your guests, and some may even start singing along.
  • Drinks reception (two hours) – 30 songs
    Choosing a wedding playlist for the reception can be difficult. You want guests to settle down, but excited to dance. You want them to eat and talk, but not get bored. This is the best time for familiar songs that aren’t over the top. Choose 30 songs that are fun, but not overly dance oriented.
  • First dance – 1 song
    There’s only one chance at the first dance song, choose wisely. This song is traditionally slow and romantic. However, modern couples are choosing faster songs that allow that impress the crowd as they strut their stuff.
  • Wedding party (three-five hours) – 60-70 songs
    The wedding party is the fun part of choosing your wedding playlist. This is your opportunity to choose a mix of fast and slow, new and old. You will want to leave a little wiggle room, so choose 60 to 70 wedding party songs. This will make sure that you don’t run out of music before you run out of party.


Tips On Creating The Best Wedding Playlist

You may have a particular style or genre of music that you prefer. For your wedding, it’s best to be a little flexible. Yes your priority should be creating memories, but those memories will consist of your guests having a good time. You have to satisfy them as well. Here’s how to structure a successful wedding playlist.

Choose hit songs

Hit songs from past generations will definitely connect with more than a few of your friends and relatives. Golden oldies tend to stir memories of their own relationships, growing up, high school, fun, and a lot more. Harness this sentimental power to trigger smiles and happiness.


90% fast, 10% slow

Every good emotional journey has ebbs and flows to it. Switch up your fast-paced beats with some emotional dance songs every once in a while. This will give your guests the chance to rest and gain some energy. It will also give them the chance to indulge in the romance of the event.

Include top 10 popular songs of the year

Familiar songs are more fun to sing along with and more fun to dance to. Today’s hits also tend to carry emotional attachment with them, reminding listeners of good times and providing energy. This sense of familiarity will keep listeners engaged.


Add different genres

Each one of your guests has their own definition of what good music is. You can’t satisfy everyone, but you can come close. Choose an assortment of music that covers different genres. Two check multiple boxes at the same time, you can’t go wrong with modern covers of vintage songs.

What Songs Shouldn’t Get In Your Wedding Playlist

You probably don’t want your wedding day to be a downer. When creating your wedding playlist, it’s always wise to include a list of music that shouldn’t be played. This would include anything overly negative, lyrics that curse too much, violent themes, and controversial styles.

It’s a good idea to have a discussion with your partner. There could be a song that seems innocent enough, but you or your spouse connect to a time in your life that you do not want to revisit on this particular day.

The most important thing about curating a wedding playlist is to have fun! Create a list of memories that you want to encapsulate. Imagine how you are going to feel when that song hits. Involve your spouse and your closest friends and family members to make it a team event. This guide will take care of the rest.