The wedding music trends I see taking shape in 2021

The opinions expressed are solely those of the author and do not reflect the views of the editors or editors of Rolling Stone.

With around 2.1 million marriages per year in the United States (before the pandemic), several trends are developing in the industry as couples select music for their wedding ceremonies and receptions in 2021 and beyond. Of course, these trends depend on the region of the country you live in, but we know that many large cities are at the forefront of current music trends, while small towns tend to catch up.

From my experience chatting with DJs, following popular streaming music charts, and seeing recent activity on my wedding music suggestions website, My Wedding Songs, I see several trends emerging. in wedding music.

Traditional reception events are out

When planning wedding reception events, many couples forgo more traditional events to create more time for fun. The throwing of the bridal bouquet, removing and throwing the garter, and the spotlight on the cutting of the wedding cake are increasingly ignored.

Many couples still incorporate the parents’ traditional dances, but choose shortened songs – with the help of their DJs – that last less than two minutes for smooth transitions. While money dances are a great way to help honeymooners with their new life together or honeymoon upgrades, the dancing takes away the party atmosphere.

Line dances are back

Now before you start practicing the “YMCA”, “Chicken Dance” or “Achy Breaky Heart” these are still considered taboo and are on many “do not play” marriage couples. lists.

However, TikTok is a platform that has given rise to a lot of excitement for dancing short clips. While many line dance songs are considered “out of date” by couples today, the current dance freaks on TikTok are all the rage. Much like the popularity of Drake’s “Toosie Slide” in 2018, current viral dance hits are gaining popularity at weddings, like Walker Hayes’ “Fancy Like”.

Not only new songs, but classic songs are making a comeback that would make young couples happy, as well as the couple’s parents, including hits like “How Bizarre” by OMC and “Vacation” by Dirty Heads.

Original classical music released

Couples choose to play more modern music instead of the marriage standards of Bach, Mozart, Beethoven and Mendelssohn. Even in the recent past, many modern classical artists have climbed to the top of many wedding ceremony playlists with covers of original songs on piano, guitar, cello, violin and more. Modern classical music artists include Brooklyn Duo, Vitamin String Quartet, 2CELLOS, Daniel Jang, and The Piano Guys.

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Covers are popular

Many musical artists have become famous by producing unique covers of very popular songs. Moreover, these covers may not even be of the same musical style or genre as the original. For example, artists like Anthem Lights, Boyce Avenue, Teddy Swims, Charlotte Ave, and Music Travel Love have become popular alternatives. To take it a step further, you can find covers of popular songs in your favorite genre. For example, Sawyer Fredericks covered “What A Wonderful World” as a folk song, and Kygo and Whitney Houston covered “Higher Love” with their own flair.

Genres and cross cultures are hot

Musical artists at weddings don’t play strictly American pop, rock, R&B and country. Many different styles from other cultures have now made their way into American pop culture. Musical genres like K-pop (Korean pop) with supergroup BTS and their hits “Butter” and “Dynamite”, and Latin music like “Pepas” by Farruko and “Con Calma” by Daddy Yankee & Snow fill the tracks. of dance.

Incorporate the couple’s preferred gender

If wedding couples have a favorite style of music, the best way to incorporate their music into the reception is to have a personalized playlist for cocktail hour or dinner. Do you like boy bands, bossa nova, yacht rock or grunge? Couples choose to incorporate their personality into their personalized reception playlists.

Get guests on the dance floor

As a final thought, it’s the job of the band or DJ to get the guests to the dance floor and have some fun. With their experience, they know which popular songs in a particular region make people dance. One piece of advice I would like to offer here: give them a short “don’t play” list as a guide and give them a short list of songs to play.

However, based on the songs played during the aperitif and dinner, as well as your suggestions, the DJ or band will get an idea of ​​the style of music that caused the guests to stomp and nod their heads. This can serve as a guide for what will bring your guests to the dance floor.

Whether you’re part of a couple planning your wedding, a DJ or wedding band, or a wedding planner helping your couples, the above wedding music trends can help you get started with. customization of wedding day playlists. Whatever genre you prefer, don’t forget to incorporate romance and fun into your musical selections.


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