First things first: You really can’t go wrong with your first-dance song. That said, we’d like to meet the wedding guest who isn’t expecting a newly married couple to take the traditional path and sway to classics from Etta James, Adele, or John Legend. For this very reason, trying something unconventional almost always pays off. So here are 9 unexpected first-dance songs that should be on your radar.
1. “XO” by Beyoncé
Queen Bey is a no-brainer when it comes to a wedding playlist. But before you kick off the dance party, try her dreamiest tune for your first spin around the floor. We can pretty much guarantee that your guests will sing along, too.
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2. “I’ll Try Anything Once” by The Strokes
Meet the slower, more Sofia Coppola-friendly version of The Strokes’s classic “You Only Live Once.” It’s positively lovely, with a touch of that dirty rock ‘n’ roll flavor thanks to Julian Casablancas’s vocals.
3. “I Found You” by Alabama Shakes
So you want a classic slow song that’s not overplayed? Got it. Listen to Alabama Shakes’s track ASAP. Lead singer Brittany Howard croons and wails about finally finding her forever—a new classic.
4. “This Will Be Our Year” by The Zombies
For some, the first dance is more frightening than the actual ceremony. That’s where this song comes in. It’s literally two minutes long and is jam-packed with happiness from its swing-y beat to its optimistic message.
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5. “You Make My Dreams Come True” by Hall & Oates
It’s probably the happiest song in existence and very choreography-friendly should you and your S.O. feel the urge to create a whole number. Not a bad way to kick off the night (slash a lifetime together).
6. “Baby It’s You” by The Shirelles
Hands up if you tend to be the couple blasting The Weeknd, Justin Bieber, The Chainsmokers, and the general Top 40 gang on any given night. Throw your guests a curveball with this oldie but really goodie.
7. “Just Like Heaven” by The Cure
One of those songs that’s not quite slow and not quite fast either. Perfect for the couple who’s not overly schmaltzy but appreciates romance and ’80s instrumentals.
8. “Fell in Love with a Girl” by The White Stripes
Calling all slow-dancing haters. This rock ‘n’ roll track lets you and your S.O. totally jam out for two minutes much like Bradley Cooper and Jennifer Lawrence in Silver Linings Playbook. Sure, their routine wasn’t pretty but they definitely had a blast while doing it.
9. “Heroes” by David Bowie
You found the only other person on the planet who answers to your everything. So yeah, you’re heroes. Embrace the anthem.