Top 40 Bridal Waltz / First Dance Songs

Your wedding waltz/ first dance is one of the most anticipated moments on your big day, so make sure that it’s nothing short of spectacular and memorable. The right song will everyone in all the feels – happiness, love, nostalgia, maybe a touch of sadness (hello, tearjerker!), and above all else – true romance.

What is the best waltz to dance to?

The best wedding waltz songs truly encapsulate the sentimental and romantic journey that you and your partner have been on – from the beginning of your relationship all the way up until your wedding day.

The right song will perfectly reflect how you feel about each other at this moment and will stay with you long after your wedding day is over. It should make you feel all the feelings, bring tears to your eyes, and, most importantly – make you want to dance the night away with your new spouse!

What should the first dance song be?

When finding the perfect waltz for your wedding, there are a few things to keep in mind. First, think about what kind of mood you want to set for your first dance. Do you want something lighthearted and fun? Or something more slow and intimate?

Once you have decided on the kind of mood you are going for, it’s time to start thinking about the specific song. Consider the lyrics and decide if they reflect how you feel about each other. Also, take into account the melody and whether or not it will be easy to dance to.

You want a song that is both meaningful and fun to dance to – after all, you’ll be spending most of your time moving around the dance floor, so you might as well enjoy it!

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Bridal Waltz / First Dance song
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Bridal Waltz / First Dance
Bridal Waltz / First Dance
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Bridal Waltz / First Dance song

Best First Dance Songs of All Time

If you’re reading this, of course, you haven’t picked your first dance song yet. You’re on a hunt for the best of the best, something that will make everyone in the room swoon.

Luckily for you, we’ve got just the list. These are some of the most popular, romantic, and all-around great first dance songs out there. We divided it into genres so you can taste-test until you find the perfect flavour for your wedding day!

Classic First Dance Songs

These oldies but goodies classic tunes from popular hit makers and belters are sure to set the right mood for your first dance. They are tried and tested and will never go out of style, perfect for couples who want something timeless and romantic.

1.

At Last – Etta James

Starting with this go-to first dance favourite. It has been covered by multiple artists throughout the years, but Etta James’ version remains to be the most popular. There’s something magical about her delivery of the lyrics that just hit differently.

Listen: At Last – Etta James

2.

Your Song – Elton John

Oh, this timeless ballad. Elton is truly a versatile performer! From feet-tapping anthems to heart-wrenching ballads, he’s got it all. This particular song is perfect for couples who want a classic first dance number that isn’t too sappy or slow.

Listen: Your Song – Elton John

3.

Can’t Take My Eyes Off You – Andy Williams

This too-good-to-be-true love song is sure to make your partner swoon. The perfect balance of sweet and cheesy, it’s a classic for a reason! It melts so many hearts and remains one of the most popular first dance songs of all time.

Listen: Can’t Take My Eyes Off You – Andy Williams

4.

The Way You Look Tonight – Rod Stewart

Rod Stewart’s voice is like butter, and this love song is the perfect example of that. It’s smooth, sentimental, and absolutely lovely. This is a great choice for couples who want a classical first dance with a bit of an edge.

Listen: The Way You Look Tonight – Rod Stewart

5.

Wonderful Tonight – Eric Clapton

Do you know the feeling when you finally get to see your partner all dressed up and looking dashing? That’s what this song is all about! It’s a sweet and simple ballad that will make your heart feel full.

Listen: Wonderful Tonight – Eric Clapton

6.

This Never Happened Before – Paul McCartney

Fun fact! Paul gifted this song to a masseuse because she had heard the demo. Later on, she used it for her first dance at her wedding! Talk about a serendipitous moment! Now the world is the one gifted with this beautiful ode to eternal love.

Listen: This Never Happened Before – Paul McCartney

7.

Happy Together – The Turtles

This song is all about being content with your partner and enjoying the simple things in life. It’s fun, upbeat, and perfect for couples who want a lighthearted first dance!

Listen: Happy Together – The Turtles

What is the most popular first dance wedding song?

8.

I Can’t Help Falling In Love With You – Elvis Presley

We couldn’t have a classic first dance list without The King himself. Perhaps the most popular first dance song of all time, “I Can’t Help Falling In Love With You”, is a timeless ballad that is sure to make your partner weak in the knees while you sway along to the dreamy melody.

Listen: I Can’t Help Falling In Love With You – Elvis Presley

Country First Dance Songs

For couples who want a rustic, country-inspired first dance, these songs are perfect. They range from sweet and sentimental to fun and flirty, so take your pick!

9.

I Swear -John Michael Montgomery

I swear this ’90s hit will make you feel all the feels. It’s a touching country must-have song that is perfect for couples who want to keep it classic with a bit of southern flair.

Listen: I Swear -John Michael Montgomery

10.

Die a Happy Man – Thomas Rhett

This soulful country love song is all about being grateful for your partner and cherishing every moment you spend together. And, of course, Thomas Rhett’s velvety voice doesn’t hurt either.

Listen: Die a Happy Man – Thomas Rhett

11.

Johnny Cash Heart – Caleb Lee Hutchinson

Break out those cowboy boots for your first dance as husband and wife to this song! The lyrics are so sweet and will definitely make you feel the love.

Listen: Johnny Cash Heart – Caleb Lee Hutchinson

12.

Lost in This Moment- Big and Rich

This is such a feel-good, romantic song that will have you and your new spouse spinning around the dance floor all night long! And the chorus will give you all the southern feels.

Listen: Lost in This Moment- Big and Rich

13.

Come A Little Closer – Dierks Bentley

A spicy first dance choice, this song is sure to get you and your partner moving! With a fun beat and suggestive lyrics, it’s perfect for couples who want to let loose and have a good time.

Listen: Come A Little Closer – Dierks Bentley

14.

Bless the Broken Road – Rascal Flatts

And blessed, be the first dance you have to this song! The song is perfect for any couple who has had a long, winding journey to find each other. And the lyrics are so beautiful and will definitely make you shed a few tears.

Listen: Bless the Broken Road – Rascal Flatts

15.

It’s Your Love – Tim McGraw

No country love playlist would be complete without this Tim McGraw iconic ballad! The twang energy and sweet sentiments make it a perfect first dance choice.

Listen: It’s Your Love – Tim McGraw

16.

Speechless – Dan + Shay

Need we say more?…

Listen: Speechless – Dan + Shay

Bridal Waltz / First Dance Song
Bridal Waltz / First Dance
Bridal Waltz / First Dance Song

Folk and Alternative First Dance Songs

Are you into eclectic idyllic vibes? These first dance songs are for you! They range from well-known hits to hidden gems, and each one will give your first dance an ethereal quality.

17.

The Weight – The Band

This classic song is all about carrying the weight of the world on your shoulders. But it’s also a great metaphor for marriage and the commitment that comes with it.

Listen: The Weight – The Band

18.

You Are My Sunshine -Johnny Cash

Jonny Cash is a master of heartwarming ballads, and “You Are My Sunshine” is one of his best. The melody is on par with stripped-down folk songs, and the lyrics are some of the most beautiful ever written. It’s perfect for couples who want a first dance that is equal parts sweet and sentimental.

Listen: You Are My Sunshine -Johnny Cash

19.

Here Comes the Sun – The Beatles

It’s impossible to listen to this song without smiling, or maybe that’s just the Beatles’ effect in general. But either way, this feel-good track is perfect for a first dance that radiates positive vibes only.

Listen: Here Comes the Sun – The Beatles

20.

Into the Mystic – Van Morrison

A truly mystical first dance song, “Into the Mystic”, is perfect for couples who want an ethereal and otherworldly quality to their first dance. The lyrics are super fit for a mystical and romantic vibe.

Listen: Into the Mystic – Van Morrison

21.

Ho Hey – The Lumineers

There is no cure for the first dance blues like this song! The Lumineers’ “Ho Hey” is an infectiously happy track that is perfect for couples who want a light and fun first dance.

Listen: Ho Hey – The Lumineers

22.

I Will Follow You Into the Dark – Death Cab by Cutie

It may sound like a goth ritual chant, but “I Will Follow You Into the Dark” is actually a pretty sweet love song. It captures the feeling of being absolutely devoted to your partner, come hell or high water, in light and in dark!

Listen: I Will Follow You Into the Dark – Death Cab by Cutie

23.

Home – Edward Sharpe and the Magnetic Zeros

This anthemic indie Folk song is all about finding your way back home to the one you love. It’s perfect for couples who have a long-distance relationship or have travelled far and wide to find each other.

Listen: Home – Edward Sharpe and the Magnetic Zeros

24.

The Luckiest – Ben Folds

What are the odds of meeting your lifetime partner in the game of searching and finding love? This song posits that you must be the luckiest person alive if you’ve found your significant other. It’s a reflective tune to that LUCKY feeling when you find the one.

Listen: The Luckiest – Ben Folds

Rock First Dance Songs

Guitar riffs and vocal cracks aplenty, these rock-first dance songs are perfect for couples who want an alternative to the norm! So gear up your electric guitars and get ready to headbang your way down the dancefloor with your do-or-die love.

25.

Marry Me – Train

State your big love with this massive rock ballad! The over-the-top romantic lyrics and airy melodies make it perfect for a first dance that is both dreamy and epic!

Listen: Marry Me – Train

26.

Better Together – Jack Johnson

A free-spirited and feel-good song, “Better Together” by Jack Johnson is perfect for couples who want a light and easy first dance. The lyrics are about being grateful for finding your true love and showing them that you are one…together.

Listen: Better Together – Jack Johnson

27.

Thinking Out Loud – Ed Sheeran

If you’re looking for a first dance that is both touching and incredibly romantic, look no further than Ed Sheeran’s “Thinking Out Loud.” This modern love song has all the elements of a perfect first dance: beautiful lyrics, an easy-to-follow melody, and a slow build that culminates in a stunning crescendo.

Listen: Thinking Out Loud – Ed Sheeran

28.

Fade Into You – Mazzy Star

This 90’s rock ballad screams nothing but raw emotion. The song is for couples who want a first dance that is both sensual and deeply intimate. The lyrics are about two people who have seen each other through thick and thin, and the melody will stay with you long after the song is over.

Listen: Fade Into You – Mazzy Star

29.

I Will Wait – Mumford and Sons

Mumford and Sons’ “I Will Wait” is a patient and hopeful love song great to commemorate your first dance! No one beats this band when it comes to anthemic folk-rock, and the lyrics are about being devoted and loyal to your one and only.

Listen: I Will Wait – Mumford and Sons

30.

Here Comes Your Man – Pixies

A classic 90’s alternative rock song, “Here Comes Your Man” by the Pixies, is perfect for couples who want a first dance that is a little bit off the beaten path. The song is about young love on the run, and the lyrics are both sweet and mischievous.

Listen: Here Comes Your Man – Pixies

31.

nobody else – LANY

This modern rock song is all about being madly in love with your partner and nobody else! One thing’s for sure when it comes to LANY,  and that’s their ability to write catchy and rock craze romantic songs.

Listen: nobody else – LANY

32.

The Middle – Jimmy Eat World

Life is messy! And that’s okay! This rock ballad by Jimmy Eat World is all about being in love despite the chaos and craziness of the world.

Listen: The Middle – Jimmy Eat World

Soul and R&B First Dance Songs

Have a spoonful of sugar with your first dance, and add a little soul! These R&B and soul-first dance songs are for couples who want their first dance to be smooth,  sweet, and oh-so-sexy!

33.

 If I Ain’t Got You – Alicia Keys

Some people live for fortune, some for fame, but we live for Alicia Keys’ powerful vocals and this soulful ballad! The lyrics are about what truly matters in life, and that’s love. If your partner is your everything, then this song is for you.

Listen: If I Ain’t Got You – Alicia Keys

34.

Beyoncé – Love On Top

From one queen to another, this R&B bop by Beyoncé is perfect for couples who want a fun and flirty first dance. The melody just goes higher and higher, and so will your energy on the dance floor!

Listen: Beyoncé – Love On Top

35.

Nothing Can Change This Love – Sam Cooke

Nothing can change our mind when we’re in love, and this song by Sam Cooke is the perfect first dance for couples who feel exactly that way! The sentiment and amazing vocal performance make this song a timeless soul classic.

Listen: Nothing Can Change This Love – Sam Cooke

36.

Adorn – Miguel

This modern R&B song grooves from start to finish, and it’s perfect for couples who want a first dance that is both sensual and fun! Have your partner “adorn” you with all their love on the dance floor to this Miguel hit.

Listen: Adorn – Miguel

37.

Without You – Otis Kane

“Without You” by Otis Kane is a reminder to your partner that they are the face you want to see every morning when you wake up. It’s a beautiful sentiment, set to a slower R&B melody that is perfect to describe the feeling of being amazingly in love.

Listen: Without You – Otis Kane

38.

 Luckiest Man – Chris Brown

How dare we make a soul and R&B first dance list without the one and only Chris Brown! “Luckiest Man” is a smexy and soulful tune that transcends time. It’s perfect for couples who want to heat up the dance floor with some major R&B first dance moves!

Listen: Luckiest Man – Chris Brown

39.

Today I Do – Tamia

I do to this song! “Today I Do” by Tamia is a modern soul classic that is a Spotify staple for many couples. The lyrics are nothing but lovely and sweet, which is perfect for your first dance as newlyweds!

Listen: Today I Do – Tamia

40.

Say You Won’t Let Go – James Arthur

Last but certainly not least is “Say You Won’t Let Go” by James Arthur. This soul-stirring ballad is perfect for couples who want a tearjerker of their first dance song! Saying I do is never the same without this song.

Listen: Say You Won’t Let Go – James Arthur

How can you tell if a song is a waltz?

The tempo: 

A waltz is typically played at a slow to moderate tempo, around 60-90 beats per minute.

The time signature: 

A waltz has a 3/4 time signature, meaning that there are three beats in each measure, and each beat is equal to a quarter note. But if you’re gonna ask if all 3/ 4 songs waltzes,  the answer is no, but all waltzes are in 3/4 time.

The feel: 

Waltzes have a smooth, flowing feel that is perfect for couples who want to glide across the dance floor!

Anyway, there is no stopping you from waltzing to any song you want, as long as you and your partner are enjoying yourselves! Happy dancing!

What is modern waltz?

The most popular bridal waltz songs are what we would consider modern waltzes. These are songs that were written in the 20th century or later and have a distinctly different sound than the classical waltzes of the 19th century. Modern waltzes often have a bouncier feel and may even incorporate elements of pop or rock music. No matter what your taste in music, there is sure to be a modern waltz that you and your partner will love!

So, What is a good first dance song for a wedding?

Choosing a first dance song can often cause a World War III level argument between couples. There is much debate and discussion about what is a good first dance song for a wedding. Whether it’s too cheesy to be a good first dance or it’s not romantic enough to make the cut, there are a lot of factors to consider! You’re stressed enough thinking about the 101 other things you have to do to plan your wedding, so we’re here to help take the guesswork out of choosing your first dance song!

Melbourne Entertainment Company has the best first dance songs of all time that are guaranteed to get you and your partner out on the dance floor weepy-eyed with love and nostalgia. From dazzling classical waltzes to heart-melting ballads, we have the perfect song for your first dance as newlyweds! Browse our talented DJs to find the perfect musical accompaniment for your first dance!

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Pleasure of having Nathan DJ and MC at our wedding. Nathan was incredibly professional throughout the entire process, from our initial consultation to the day of our wedding.

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18 April 2023

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08 December 2023

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26 February 2023

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21 March 2023

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25 December 2023

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