Because sometimes, you just need to jam out while you tie the knot.
When my spouse and I got married, we went the non-traditional route. Wedding planning just wasn’t in our veins, so we kept it nice and simple by hosting a get-together in our apartment.
Though a proper wedding wasn’t in the cards, we did still pay attention to the music that we wanted in our mini-ceremony.
Good wedding songs are ones that really reflect who you are, and that’s why I’m a strong advocate of getting a tune that’s filled with fun, mirth and love. A little bit of modernity can go a long way, and that’s exactly what makes these songs such great songs to walk down the aisle to.
1. “I Gotta Feeling” by The Black Eyed Peas
Monday, Tuesday, Wednesday and Thursday
Friday, Saturday, Saturday to Sunday
Get, get, get, get, get with us, you know what we say, say
Party every day
This song is super-energetic and all about the hope you have for the future. It’s dance-worthy if you feel like jamming down the aisle instead of a more traditional walk. The tune is one that you’ll still hear from time to time on the radio and will never get old.
2. “Uptown Funk” by Mark Ronson ft. Bruno Mars
I’m too hot (hot damn)
Called a police and a fireman
I’m too hot (hot damn)
Make a dragon wanna retire man
I’ll be totally honest here — I have no clue what this song is about. But it’s a fun song. It’s the type of song that makes you want to flaunt yourself, your style, your spouse, and your epic entourage. Weddings that are hyper upbeat will love this one, even if no one really knows what’s going on.
3. “Happy” by Pharrel Williams
Huh, because I’m happy
Clap along if you feel like a room without a roof
Because I’m happy
Clap along if you feel like happiness is the truth
Because I’m happy
Clap along if you know what happiness is to you
“Happy” is one of those very few songs that’s a good all-purpose song, assuming that the purpose is upbeat and celebratory. Pharrel’s song embodies the carefree, all-inclusive happiness that a good wedding should have. That’s what makes it such a good pick for people who are seeking out a good one.
4. “Brown Eyed Girl” by Van Morrison
Our hearts a thumpin’ and you
My brown-eyed girl
You, my brown-eyed girl
Oh, Van Morrison. You know how to make a timeless hit. This song is perfect if you (or your girl) has brown eyes. It’s also perfect for beach weddings. Can I get an amen to that?
5. “(I’ve Had) The Time of My Life” by Bill Medley
The time of my life
And I owe it all to you!
During the early 90s, this song was the go-to tune for companies that were trying to advertise vacations on cruises and distant islands. Now that it’s 2019, this song makes a perfect pick for people who want to add some nostalgia, romance, and beachy vibes to a destination wedding. What more is there to say?
6. “Crazy in Love” by Beyoncé
I look and stare so deep in your eyes
I touch on you more and more every time
When you leave, I’m begging you not to go
Beyoncé’s classic hit is another nostalgia-inducing tune that everyone remembers from their childhoods. It was a song that was played in every single school dance, remains family-appropriate, and also reminds people that love is the reason for wedding season.
7. “A Thousand Miles” by Vanessa Carlton
Cause you’d know I’d walk
A thousand miles
If I could just see you tonight…
If you’re looking for a more traditionally romantic song that still has a modern twist to it, Vanessa Carlton’s “A Thousand Miles” fits the bill. This has that beautifully flowery piano solo at the start, an adorable chorus, and that perfectly tearjerkingly sweet end.
8. “Just the Way You Are” by Bruno Mars
When I see your face
There’s not a thing that I would change ’cause you’re amazing
Just the way you are
Say what you will, but Bruno Mars knows how to make a good wedding song, even if that isn’t necessarily his primary goal when he’s making music. “Just the Way You Are” tells ladies to embrace themselves and their bodies. It’s safe to assume that the lyrics to this song are ones that the groom will agree with wholeheartedly.
9. “Amazed” by Lonestar
Every little thing that you do
I’m so in love with you
It just keeps getting better
Rustic weddings are still popular as ever, and if you are really into the country thing, Lonestar’s option is probably the best on this list. The lyrics and melody both kick the romance up to an 11, all while keeping it country.
10. “All You Need Is Love” by The Beatles
All you need it love
Love is all you need
Hippies at heart will never say no to a Beatles song, so why not use a Beatles song to say “I do”? The Fab Four were notorious for promoting the importance of peace and love, which is absolutely perfect for a wedding. After all, a great marriage really only needs love to make things work, right?
11. “Love Shack” by The B-52s
The love shack is a little old place where
We can get together
Love shack baby
The B-52s were one of the better mainstream punk bands of the 80s, and truth be told, they always knew how to make a fun song. For people who carry on the rebellious spirit of the 80s punk and glam scenes, walking down the aisle to “Love Shack” might be a good option.
12. “Sweet Caroline” by Neil Diamond
Good times never seemed so good
I’d be inclined
To believe they’d never would
Neil Diamond’s music style is one that remains timeless and will strike a chord with just about everyone on the wedding invite list. Why? Because his songs are all about special moments, innocent romance, and the kind of simple things that really matter in life. “Sweet Caroline” is about as pure a love song as you can get.
13. “Don’t Stop Believin’” by Journey
Don’t stop believin’
Hold on to that feeling
Journey is one of those bands that makes entire crowd go crazy, no matter what the occasion is. This is their biggest hit ever, and reminds people to keep believing in the magic that life holds for them.
14. “You Shook Me All Night Long” by AC/DC
She was a fast machine
She kept her motor clean
She was the best damn woman I had ever seen
She had the sightless eyes
Telling me no lies
Knockin’ me out with those American thighs
Another banger that keeps things romantic but wild is AC/DC. This metalhead-approved pick somehow still is considered to be family-friendly, and still adds a nice twist of your own personality to the mix. Sure, Great Aunt Gertie might not approve, but this is your day, not hers.
15. “Iris” by Goo Goo Dolls
And I don’t want the world to see me
‘Cause I don’t think that they’d understand
When everything’s meant to be broken
I just want you to know who I am
This might be one of the darkest songs on this list, but hear me out. “Iris” carries a very powerful melody and mood that’s defiant yet adoring, formal yet modern. It’s an edgy song that will definitely add a unique touch of majesty to walking down the aisle.
16. “Kiss from a Rose” by Seal
There used to be a greying tower alone on the sea
You became the light on the dark side of me
Love remained a drug that’s the high and not the pill
But did you know that when it snows
My eyes become large and the light that you shine can be seen?
I’m not sure there’s been a song in modern history that sounded so classically romantic like Seal’s “Kiss from a Rose.” Seal wrote this song specifically for romance, and it’s just slow enough to make a truly memorable entrance into the wedding hall. How can you go wrong with this one?
17. “Wonderful Tonight” by Eric Clapton
And then she asks me
“Do I look alright?”
And I say
“Yes, you look wonderful tonight.”
Another slow song that makes for a great entrance (or first dance, really) is Eric Clapton’s “Wonderful Tonight.” The song runs through a beautiful first date between two teens going to a party. It’s tender, sweet, and captures the first moments where two people fall in love so beautifully.
18. “All of Me” by John Legend
‘Cause all of me
Loves all of you
Love your curves and all your edges
All your perfect imperfections
If you’re looking for a pop song that is pretty much designed to paint a scene that involves a wedding procession, then you need to think about using this number from John Legend. This works very well for couples that want to keep a more traditional vibe without getting too old school.
19. “Can You Feel the Love Tonight?” by Elton John
Can you feel the love tonight?
It is where we are
It’s enough for this wide-eyed wanderer
That we’ve got this far
Remember that moment with Nala and Simba in The Lion King? It was Elton John’s vocals that brought that super-magical moment to life, and just about every Disney fan will agree. That alone makes it a perfect choice for anyone who wants to have a wedding that reminds them of their favorite Disney movies.
20. “Heaven” by DJ Sammy and Yanou featuring Do
Baby you’re all that I want
When I’m lying here in my arms
I’m finding it hard to believe
We’re in heaven
This is one of the most recognizable techno songs ever written and is all about finally finding love. Do’s vocals are hauntingly beautiful, and I guarantee you, this song will ensure that finding a dry eye in the crowd will be a daunting task.
21. “Hey There Delilah” by Plain White T’s
I’m right there if you get lonely
Give this song another listen
Close your eyes
Listen to my voice, it’s my disguise
I’m by your side
Don’t ask me why, but there’s something incredibly charming about this song being used as a wedding walk background. Maybe it’s the casual vocals that almost sound like a guy thinking to himself, or maybe it’s the adoration-filled lyrics. Whatever it is, it offers up a je ne sais quois that’s hard to ignore.
22. “Isn’t She Lovely” by Stevie Wonder
Isn’t she lovely?
Isn’t she wonderful?
Isn’t she precious?
Retro yet, at the same time, incredibly modern, Stevie Wonder’s classic hit always goes over well at weddings. For those who just want something that’s jazz-infused and innocent enough to work with just about every member of the family, you really can’t go wrong here.
23. “Somewhere Over the Rainbow” by Israel Kamakawiwo’Ole
Somewhere over the rainbow
Way up high
And the dreams that you dream of
Once in a lullabye
There are very few songs that have managed to elicit as many tears as Israel Kamakawiwo’Ole’s rendition of “Somewhere Over the Rainbow.” This incredibly beautifully sung track is known for its incredibly warm, sometimes almost melancholy sound. Its unusually blissful vibe is perfect for island weddings.
24. “Beautiful Day” by U2
It’s a beautiful day
Don’t let it get away
U2’s alternative rock hit is one that helps remind us about how gorgeous the world around us is, and how we should celebrate every moment in it. Its high-energy kicks and carpe diem attitude is contagious and uplifting in the best way possible. For a rock and roll wedding, you really can’t get better.
25. “Hanging by a Moment” by Lifehouse
I’m closer to where I started
In chasing after you
Lifehouse’s lyrics literally read like a wedding vow, and if you take a look at how the song’s set up, it sells itself as a wedding march. There’s something about the vocals that make it seem like it’s an earnest plea to stay together for the rest of time. This one was a hit for good reason.
26. “When I Say I Do” by Clint Black and Lisa Hartman Black
When I said I do, I meant that I will
Til’ the end of all time
Be faithful and true, devoted to you
That’s what I had in mind, when I said I do
For many people, a wedding is considered to be a mostly-religious ceremony. This song adds a little country, a little romance, and, yes, a couple of words about the big guy in the sky, too. If you are a person who takes faith seriously, it’s not a bad song to choose.
27. “A Whole New World” from Aladdin
I’ll show you
A whole new world
A new fantastic point of view
Disney magic is a real thing, you know. It’s that magic that brings a sparkle to your eye and makes you believe in the old stories you watched involving true love saving the day. Aladdin’s “A Whole New World” is one that everyone falls in love with while reminding people that a certain happy couple will be building a new world together.
28. “Here Comes the Sun” by The Beatles
Little darling, it’s been a long cold lonely winter
Little darling, it feels like years since it’s been here
The Beatles made a number of songs that work well for wedding processions and walking down the aisle to. The way that John Lennon sings on this track will make most people start to cry, and if the vocal’s don’t start tears, the lyrics will.
29. “What a Wonderful World” by Louie Armstrong
I see skies of blue
And clouds of white…
Man, did that jazz man know how to make a good love song! Though “What a Wonderful World” isn’t technically a love song in the traditional sense of the word, it is a beautiful ode to living life to the fullest. I can’t think of a better way to encourage people to look at what a great day it is for a wedding.
30. “At Last” by Etta James
My love has come along
My lonely days are gone
Aand life is like a song
The velvety voice of Etta James is known for being seductive most of the time, but here, it takes on a duality. Her voice sounds grateful, relieved, and just a little spicy. This song celebrating finding love at last is a classic go-to at weddings, and that kind of staying power speaks for itself.
31. “Make You Feel My Love” by Adele
When the rain is blowing in your face
And the whole world is on your case
I could offer you a warm embrace
To make you feel my love
Yes, yes, we all know that Adele is famous for her breakup songs. However, she also knows how to belt out some amazing love lyrics too. This song is chock-full of emotion and class, which is what makes it such a great choice for walking the aisle.
32. “Dear Future Husband” by Meghan Trainor
You got that nine to five
But, baby, so do I
So don’t be thinking I’ll be home and baking apple pies
I never learned to cook
But I can write a hook
Sing along with me
Sing-sing along with me (hey)
Though this track has gotten the ire of certain people for being a little bossy at times, it’s hard to ignore how absolutely adorable it is. This entire song is all about the little things that make a marriage work, along with some cheeky commentary. Its bubblegum pop vibes will be sure to please.
33. “I Don’t Want to Miss a Thing” by Aerosmith
I don’t want to close my eyes
I don’t want to fall asleep
‘Cause I miss you baby
And I don’t want to miss a thing
Did you ever have a moment that you wanted to last forever? Aerosmith definitely understood that feeling. This tender rock ballad is a favorite among metalheads, rockers, and pop fans alike for its touching lyrics and incredibly soulful sound.
34. “Born to Run” by Bruce Springsteen
I want to guard your dreams and visions
Just wrap your legs ’round these velvet rims
And strap your hands ‘cross my engines
Together we could break this trap
We’ll run till we drop, baby we’ll never go back
Delightfully blue collar, and capable of sparking up visions of the rebellious couple that runs away to a better future via motorcycle, Bruce Springsteen’s “Born to Run” is a perfect wedding song for rebels without a cause. It’s got that high energy Jersey Shore flair, that subtle nod to romance, and the free spiritedness everyone can adore.
35. “I Knew I Loved You” by Savage Garden
I knew I loved you
Before I met you
If you’re looking for a song that really nails the “meant to be” theme, then this old 90s track is the right choice. It literally says, “I knew I loved you before I met you,” and is a perfect tribute to love at first sight.
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Ossiana Tepfenhart is a writer based out of Red Bank, New Jersey. She writes primarily about lifestyle, food, finance, and relationships. You can follow her Twitter.