WEDDING BASICS: CROWD PARTICIPATION SONG PLAYLIST
WEDDING BASICS: CROWD PARTICIPATION SONG PLAYLIST
I am writing for the first time Brides who might get overwhelmed when they take on this huge project with hundreds of different opinions out there on what they should do. I deliberately keep things simple, for a number of reasons. First, I start out with the basics, and ask why a lot. I encourage visualization, or specific, detailed daydreaming about what you want out of your Wedding. If you actually see yourself doing these things, it’s a lot easier to make choices.
So I keep it simple on purpose, and I lay things out in a logical order that makes sense based on my experience. I don’t encourage shortcuts – I prefer it when people take their time and do it right. Getting in a hurry, and then having to redo things after you change your mind isn’t fun.
So it's important that you first read this post: START HERE: SAVE THE DATES and then keep those specific people in mind when you begin to think about planning the music for your Wedding Reception.
CROWD PARTICIPATION SONGS: THE BASICS
There’s a certain group of songs that I like to call the “Crowd Participation songs” but other people commonly call them the Wedding songs or even the “cheesy” Wedding songs. You know the songs I’m talking abut – whenever I say “wedding songs” your mind will automatically jump right to them. As a twenty year (and counting) veteran of the Wedding industry, I have heard just about every opinion there is about these Wedding songs. It is definitely a subject I feel like an expert on although you will learn that calling myself an expert doesn’t mean I know all the answers, it means that I know the right questions to ask.
Lots of “experts” will tell you how these songs are very popular across a variety of age groups, (they are) and that DJs can usually get a lot of people on the dance floor by playing these songs (and they do). In a very real way, these songs are kind of like an all-time top 40, the most popular songs of the last 30 years or so, that always get played at Weddings, in real life and especially in the movies and on television.
In fact, they are so popular that another group of “experts” will tell you that a DJ shouldn’t play these at Weddings, because they are “cheesy” and unoriginal. It’s easy to think of these songs as “un-cool” and make fun of the people that dance to them. In my own “expert” opinion, I don’t particularly have or let my personal feelings about these songs stop me from asking the right questions and getting to know what my clients like.
Just to make sure we’re on the same page, here’s a YouTube playlist of Crowd Participation.
WEDDING BASICS: CROWD PARTICIPATION SONG PLAYLIST - YouTube
You can let it play through or fast forward / rewind if there’s a song you want to skip (or repeat)
The Chicken Dance
Village People: YMCA
Marcia Griffith: Electric Slide
Mr. C: The Cha-Cha Slide
Cupid: The Cupid Shuffle
California Swag District: Teach Me How To Dougie
Kool & The Gang: Celebration
Sister Sledge: We Are Family
Bee-Gee’s: Staying Alive
Lloyd Williams: Shout
Van Morrisson: Brown Eyed Girl
Sir Mix-A-Lot: Baby Got Back
Quad City DJs: C’Mon Ride It (The Train)
Meatloaf: Paradise By The Dashboard Light
B-52's: Love Shack
Four Seasons: December 1963 (Oh What A Night)
Clarence Carter: Strokin’
Wilson Pickett: Land Of 1000 Dances
Los Del Rio: The Macarena
Whenever I meet with my clients, one of the first things I do is go over these crowd participation songs. First of all, I have the experience to know that these songs will come up, and it’s just easier for me to know specifically if the client loves these songs, hates these songs, or doesn’t really care. And there’s no right or wrong answer, every client is different. And going through them one by one is also necessary, the different combinations of hate the YMCA / love Staying Alive, etc are impossible to guess.
The deeper meaning to my questions
Secondly, this is what I mean about being an expert by asking the right questions. Since these songs are kind of synonymous with a “traditional wedding reception” the clients opinions about these songs will also let me know a lot about how they feel about “traditional wedding receptions” in general, not just the specific songs.
Liking the traditional Wedding Songs usually goes hand in hand with liking the the traditional wedding activities, and in general I can expect a more family friendly approach, with the music, and everything else. People that don’t like the cheesy wedding songs, usually like their music to be young and hip, with an emphasis on their friends and that kind of party. Or they might still like the traditional activities, they just have a more sophisticated taste in music, which will also usually be reflected throughout the night, especially the decorations.
The point I am trying to make is that I don’t know exactly what people will like ahead of time, But if I ask the right questions, they will tell me what I need to know. A checklist of songs that must be played or must not be played is not the same thing as taking the time to get to know each client. Specifically, these songs are something I need to know about exactly. Indirectly, these songs are how I break the ice and start to learn about the other things I need to know.
Asking people if they like the chicken dance usually tells me quite a bit more than just “if they like the chicken dance”.
And always remember: this is your big day – it’s supposed to be fun.
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The Real DJ Steve is both a Las Vegas Wedding DJ and the owner of United DJs Las Vegas.
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