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Best NJ Wedding DJ Playlist Tips and Advice

Your sweetie popped the question (congrats!), and now you’re ready to celebrate! But what songs are right for your wedding? What music will capture the emotion of your love, and keep your guests on their feet? In this post, top NJ wedding DJ Denny Testa shares how you can rock the party all night long!

How to Choose Wedding Songs

Processional, recessional, first dances, oh my! With so many important moments on your wedding day, it can be difficult to choose what songs will complement each. Denny says have no fear; it’s not as hard as it seems! Think about some songs you really like, then place them where they fit best. Hear a song that speaks to you? Write it down, Shazam it, or take a photo of the song title on the radio. Dancing at a wedding and love that track? Ask the DJ for the band name and artist – you can totally steal songs from other weddings!

Wedding Processional Music

Your wedding processional is a wonderful opportunity to play a tender song or two. Denny suggests picking music that is important to you and your fiance. However, if you have no idea where to start, here are Denny’s recommendations:

  • Turning Page Instrumental – Sleeping At Last
  • Halo – Ane Brun & Linnea Olsson
  • Can’t Help Falling in Love – Ingrid Michaelson
  • Rockelbel’s Canon D – The Piano Guys version
  • A Thousand Years – The Piano Guys cover of Christina Perri
  • Better Place – Rachel Platten
  • This Year’s Love – David Gray
  • We Bought a Zoo – Jonsi
  • Over the Rainbow/Simple Gifts – The Piano Guys
  • Everyday – Fiona Apple
  • Wonderwall – Ryan Adams cover of Oasis
  • Luna – Smashing Pumpkins
  • All I Want is You – U2
  • Perfect – Ed Sheeran
  • Sweet Disposition – Stringspace cover of The Temper Trap
  • Any song by Vitamin String Quartet (they have tons of different versions of songs – great to have playing as guests are being seated for the ceremony)

Wedding Recessional Songs

You’re married! You should have a joyful vibe for walking back down the aisle. Choose a song that’s upbeat and fun! Remember to pick tunes you dig – who cares what song so and so used? Here are some ideas from Denny:

  • Happy – Pharrell
  • Signed, Sealed, Delivered I’m Yours – Stevie Wonder
  • No Matter What – Badfinger
  • Love Me Like You Do – Ellie Goulding
  • On Top of the World – Imagine Dragons
  • Thunder Clatter – Wild Club
  • Adventure of a Lifetime – Coldplay
  • Power of Love – Huey Lewis and the News
  • It’s a Beautiful Day – Michael Buble
  • Faster – Matt Nathanson
  • You Make My Dreams Comes True – Hall & Oates
  • Good Old Days – Ziggy Marley

First Dances

Your father/daughter and mother/son dances are some of the most emotional parts of your wedding! Denny says the songs you choose don’t have to do anything with a dad/daughter or mother/son! Think about a time when you were hanging out with your parents and that certain song was playing. It will bring you back to that moment in time just like a smell can. Who cares what the lyrics are? Denny played “Beast of Burden” not that long ago for a groom to dance to with his sisters. Not the most appropriate song if you think about it! But his mom had passed away and that’s the song they would all dance to when it was played. So, it brought back a really happy memory for them all. Keep that in mind when it comes to choosing your parent dances songs.

Just like the others, your first dance song should be special to you and your sweetheart. Denny likes when the couple dances together for a few minutes, then invites family and friends to join. Why? This is a PARTY! The job of the DJ is to keep guests dancing as much as possible. All guests will join you two on the dance floor and then you get a great 10-20 minute dance set before sitting down. This sets the tone for everyone, and they know it will be a great night!

After that dance set, Denny goes into the parent, aunt/uncle, or brother/sister dances, toasts, then any blessings. This keeps your wedding reception moving and gets all the formalities out of the way right in the beginning. The worst thing to do is stop dancing to give a speech, then dance, then stop again. The stop, get up, stop, get up pattern is bananas! Doing everything up front leaves a ton of time to dance!

Cake Cutting

Do you really need to stop the dance party to cut the cake that lasts for 11 seconds? Picture yourself on the dance floor really in the groove – singing, dancing, and having a great time with your friends. Now, I have to stop ALL of that so you can cut the cake. People are ready to dance and party at this part of the night (Usually, the wedding cake is cut around 1 hour to an hour an a half before the reception ends). Denny loves when the bride and groom cut the cake off to the side so the party isn’t stopped. Imagine running on the treadmill at high speed and then someone comes over and just hits the stop button. Yeah, it’s like that 🙂

Wedding Reception Playlists: Avoid Them!

Why Wedding Music is Best Mixed Live

You read that right! Denny doesn’t use playlists at weddings. Why? Because playlists can instantly clear the floor if the wrong song is played! Instead, Denny is an open format DJ who mixes music live. Denny will speak with you before the wedding day to discuss preferences, but a playlist is a no go!

What is an Open Format DJ?

DJ Denny Testa plays what’s called an open format style. This simply means that he plays tunes from all genres. Denny really knows when to throw a song on at the right time! The vibe can change from reception to reception. That’s why it’s super important to know all genres of music. You have guests of all different ages at a wedding reception. If you’re playing the right music and reading the crowd correctly, you will have young and old dancing to any style of music 🙂

There you have it! DJ Denny Testa has shared his favorite wedding music tips and advice. Now, all that’s left to do is to book him for your big day! And check out this article we wrote about how to pick a wedding DJ !

Off BEET Productions is a boutique wedding event group located in the NJ/NY area and serving destination weddings worldwide. We specialize in natural, candid lifestyle photography; fun and playful music videos; unique wedding DJ entertainment; and a stylish, open air photo booth.

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