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S3, EP7: What music you need for your big day!

CategoriesMusic tips.Wedding tips.
14 Jan, 2023

On this episode of Project Engaged, we go through all of the music needed to create your wedding soundtrack, with some hot insider tips and examples from our real couples and weddings!

You may not realise how many parts of your wedding actually require carefully curated music. It’s not just about the dance floor! As soon as guests arrive for your ceremony, the atmosphere is being set for the rest of the day.

You can read more in our blog, which has links to some inspirational playlists too. PS – it goes without saying (and we’re completely biased), but having a DJ instead of just a playlist means you’ll have music expertly tailored for each part of your big day.
If you’d rather leave all the music to an expert, consider booking a DJ for the whole day, from setting the pre-ceremony vibe through to the final song at your reception!
For our Mixcloud mixes, please Google “Mixcloud One More Song DJs”.

Full episode transcription

Eddy: Welcome to Project Engaged, a podcast for fun loving couples planning their non traditional wedding.

Aleks: We’re wedding DJs Aleks and Eddy Mac from Melbourne. We run a business called One More Song, and our tagline is No More Nutbush.

Eddy: In this podcast, we’ll share our wedding experiences and chat to some of our past couples.

Aleks: We’ll also interview bold wedding suppliers who share our philosophy of your wedding being a celebration of you as a couple and one epic party.

Eddy: Let’s get into today’s episode. Welcome back to another episode of Project Engaged. We are your hosts. My name is Eddy Mac. .

Aleks: And I’m Aleks Mac.

Eddy: How are you, Aleks?

Aleks: Happy new year.

Eddy: Happy new year. 2023. Pretty exciting.

Aleks: Yeah, it is exciting. Although I don’t know if you can say Happy new year. It’s the 13 June.

Eddy: Well, yeah, it really depends. I think you kind of have all of January to wish people a happy new year, personally, but I think different strokes for different folks.

Aleks: Yes, very good.

Eddy: And how has your break been?

Aleks: Well, I’ve spent it with you, so it’s been lovely, obviously.

Eddy: Well, you know, we had some time off. We’ve. We’ve got this weekend off of gigs we’ve had last weekend off. We have been to Adelaide. That’s been fun.

Aleks: Yeah. So we got back earlier this week and we were away for four days in the Adelaide Hills, which was lovely. Absolutely. It was actually really relaxing, which I really say.

Eddy: Yeah. To really switch off, we switched off between us. We did 140 weddings last year. Or weddings and events. There are a few corporate events. Kind of snuck in there, like last minute and engagement parties, etcetera. But 140, that’s a pretty nice task. I think I’ll give ourselves a round of applause for that. And what was the breakdown for the year? Well, you know.

Aleks: Oh, yeah. Well, I think the main thing has been how excited people have been to be at weddings and. Huge party vibe and a bit of a. Bit of a, you know, screw the tradition more than ever because I guess people have had time to reflect and that sort of thing.

Eddy: That was a very good answer to that question. Wasn’t the correct answer. I meant the breakdown between us in terms of how many we did each.

Aleks: What did I say? Break down of the year. Oh, okay. Well, there you go. No one wanted to hear that. Yeah. So the other day you claimed that you had done more gigs.

Eddy: I did. I did claim that.

Aleks: And then I went into Tarvay, our CRM, our booking system, and we’ve done. We did 70 each.

Eddy: Exactly. Yeah, exactly 70 each. So there you go. At least that claim that I made. At least he didn’t do more than me. I would have felt even worse.

Aleks: Yeah. Yeah. So, yeah. Nice and even. Yeah. Really good year. I don’t think we talked about the last couple of weddings that we had, as in the. Can’t remember them now.

Eddy: What are we gonna do? Are we gonna do the weekend roundup?

Aleks: Oh.

Eddy: Wait for it. Wow.

Aleks: I always forget what it’s called. Weekly. Yeah.

Eddy: Rapper.

Aleks: When was it? Three weeks ago. Two weeks ago.

Eddy: So I’ll go first. I had a New Year’s Eve wedding. It was at Brighton Middle baths. Great wedding overall. When it came to the countdown to the end of the year, everyone was on the balcony, so I almost had an empty dance floor. Hey, it’s happens sometimes.

Aleks: Well, because you’re. You were. Yeah. You had a view of the city, so people. Yeah. And nice night.

Eddy: To be completely honest, if I was a guest at that wedding, that’s where I would have been as well. To welcome in the new year to watch the fireworks. But, hey, we got him back eventually. I was joined by Kenny on the saxophone.

Aleks: Whoo.

Eddy: That was really fun. Yeah. But I think I’m gonna take this news eve off.

Aleks: Yeah. I think you’ve worked every news Eve for the last, like, four years.

Eddy: Yeah.

Aleks: So definitely you need to take it off. I had one the night before on the 30th, and it was a banger. It was actually beautiful. As you know, I don’t like outdoor weddings because of bugs, weather, etcetera. But it was. The weather was perfect. And it was at Gardens house, smack bang in the middle of the botanical gardens.

Eddy: It looked beautiful.

Aleks: It was so beautiful. It was just, you know, one long table. And I think it was about 50 guests. Was just perfect. Very intimate, just really relaxed. Toby, Toby, Toby. Toby was there kind of setting the mood, and everyone was sort of up and dancing while they were playing some acoustic tunes, obviously. Sound beautiful, as always, so that was really fun. Yeah. And also I had Kenny, so he worked with us. What a legend.

Eddy: Yeah, he is. He’s so good. I actually recorded most of that set, and we initially had plugged him into, like, a separate mixer that we use just in case our Djs software falls over. Then we can quickly put an iPad on and keep the party going. But for some reason, it wasn’t working very well through that. So we plugged him into my console, and that meant I actually got all of his captured as well in that recording. So we actually put a portion of that up onto our Mixcloud page, which is where we store all of our mixes. One more song. DJ’s on Mixcloud. I think we’ll put it in the show notes and it’s like a little 15 minutes, like mini set of him jamming out to a bit of disco and things like that. So that was really, really cool.

Aleks: Sounds good. He’s phenomenal.

Eddy: Phenomenal.

Aleks: Yep. So definitely check that out. I think it’s called the sax sampler. It’s the latest.

Eddy: Yeah, yeah. We should throw it up on our website.

Aleks: We should, we should. All right, enough plugging. Let’s get into it. So today we are talking about basically the music that you need for your wedding from the very first guest arriving to the final song of the evening. So, you know, a lot of our couples little bit confused about the what. What music they need for early in the day, particularly around their ceremony. And of course, being DJ’s ourselves, we think there should be music throughout the entire day for every part except for when the celibate is doing their thing. And obviously speeches and stuff, but other than that, there should be no silence, so.

Eddy: And, yeah, yeah, I was gonna say speeches, but you’ve covered speeches.

Aleks: Yep.

Eddy: You’ve covered that off. I agree. You want to set the scene at the very, very beginning as the first feature, get into the venue, wherever you may be, just to set that vibe and paint that picture of what the day is going to be.

Aleks: Yeah, definitely. And we’re going to be talking about it from our perspective. So how we would approach and how our clients would approach or how we would help them approach music for the different parts of their day. But in some cases, you know, you might not have a DJ or you might have, you know, you celebrate looking after music for parts of the day, that sort of thing. Which is fine. The. The tips are still relevant, I think so.

Eddy: Yeah, absolutely. Yeah. I think you’ve hit it on the head there. You don’t necessarily need a DJ to have a think about all of these different types of sections in the day that you need music. So if you’re happy with me capping it off, do it obviously pre ceremony. So let’s just assume.

Aleks: You say obviously, but.

Eddy: Yeah, obvious to us, of course. Let’s just assume that you’re wedding, everything’s happening in the one place. So for this particular example. So your ceremony all the way through to the end of your receptions in the same spot doesn’t really matter.

Aleks: Okay.

Eddy: Yeah, but let’s just assume that for whatever reason. So obviously, couples sometimes forget about the music for this part of the wedding.

Aleks: I would say they often forget.

Eddy: Yeah.

Aleks: About that first half hourish.

Eddy: Yes, so it is. You’re right. It is about half an hour worth of time as people. Well, if you count some of the older people that might be coming. Might be a little bit longer. Like 45. The lights getting early.

Aleks: I use the bathroom.

Eddy: Yeah, I know. That’s all. That’s all good. So what you don’t want is guests awkwardly standing around in. In silence before the ceremony is about to start. So that’s definitely not ideal.

Aleks: Yes.

Eddy: What you do want to do is think about, obviously, the music that you like. But you do want to start off relatively gentle for this part of the day. You don’t want to be throwing down Fisher bangers.

Aleks: You know what? We always pick on Fisher. Shout out to Fisher. No, we. Yeah, I think. I think you don’t want to peek, you know, at that point. I mean, a bit left of the day.

Eddy: Yeah, exactly. So add your flavour, obviously, what you’re into. But, you know, we recommend something like an original acoustic cover. Maybe some slower tempo tunes. I mean, we’ve had things like Rufus and that kind of electronica for pre ceremony before. We’ve had people that have wanted no lyrics. And then the lyrics start as the ceremony starts.

Aleks: So, like instrumental?

Eddy: Yeah, yeah, instrumental stuff. We’ve had all sorts. We had a lot of indie type stuff. And of course, you know, your classic acoustic covers. That seems to be one of the most popular choices.

Aleks: Yeah. Which is cool. And look, with acoustic covers as well, you can get like some more indie alternative, quirky stuff. Definitely check out. Like, you know, triple j is like a version. Yeah, that’s some cool things. But, yeah, I typically, when I’m sort of working with clients and we’re talking about this part of the day, I do ask them, like, are you an acoustic cover type of couple or do you want kind of more chill out electronic stuff? And they seem to fall into those two camps or more classic stuff. And I’ve had some clients have just been super upbeat, like from the beginning. And because it has been in the one spot. So it’s like setting and it’s almost like a cocktail hour at the beginning. They had like a platter, like a cheese platter and stuff. So it depends on what’s going on, I suppose.

Eddy: Yeah, I think it depends on exactly what’s going on. Obviously, the type of couple that you are. Also, if you’re serving drinks beforehand too.

Aleks: Yes. Yeah.

Eddy: And the length of your pre ceremony as well. Sometimes it can push about an hour if you’re doing drinks and canapes, more upbeat. You know, people are probably going to relax a little more with a drink in their hand, have a more of a chat, and then obviously, as you get closer and closer to the ceremony, the celebrate will step in, get everyone ready to go, and we’re off.

Aleks: It’s actually a good point to raise also, just in terms of timing, just to check, because often when I’m speaking to clients, they think the ceremony starts, like, at the beginning of their run sheet.

Eddy: Yeah.

Aleks: And it’s like. No, that. When do guests arrive, like, check that with your venue.

Eddy: Yeah.

Aleks: Is it? Do they, you know, and with your celeb, I should say, is it a 15 minutes period? Because often it’s more than that. I mean, I haven’t seen anything less than half an hour.

Eddy: No, no.

Aleks: So just suss that out. I always ask, you know, so is that the start time? When do guests actually arrive? Because if you’re looking at, you know, having a DJ or acoustic act for that time, you will need to book them from half an hour before the ceremony starts.

Eddy: Yeah. And we, I mean, we typically quote for half an hour before the ceremony starts, sometimes more, depending on what you need.

Aleks: Yeah. And I would say, you know, and we make the habit of, if we’re looking after pre ceremony tunes, we will put together at least double the amount of music we need. So if we’re expecting half an hour, we’ll put together an hour at least, just in case. Just in case. And look. Yeah, it’s definitely gone over time, so. Or, you know, not because the ceremony started late, but because people have arrived a little bit earlier than expected. So no matter what, whether you have a DJ or whether, you know, you’re looking after that music yourself, make sure you’ve got enough so that it doesn’t run out because you set this nice vibe and then it’s just nothing.

Eddy: Yeah. Yeah. And unless we are positioned inside a room where the ceremony is taking place, where we’re literally behind our decks, we curate ahead of time the ceremony playlist and we run it off, of all things, we run it off an ipod with a piece of DJ software that seamlessly blend the songs in, it can’t replace us, obviously. Let me just say that, no, it’s.

Aleks: Good for earlier in the day, but.

Eddy: It is good for earlier in the day. So that’s why we prepare more than we need in order to cover, just in case people do get there early, because the last thing you want is people walking into a room that’s there’s no music. It’s an absolutely beautiful venue. Let’s call it, let’s say Rupert and Rupert, for instance. Beautiful venue. They walk in, there’s nothing going on. It really starts to chip away at that, that, I guess that vibe that you try to create straight away.

Aleks: Totally. And on that point, a lot of the venues Rupert included in that do actually look after that, that part for you. If you haven’t got someone, you know, if you don’t want to book your DJ for time or whatever, have a chat to your venue and see if they can look after that in house sound system, then you should be able to plug something in easily.

Eddy: You send them a Spotify playlist that can be curated by you. You can be curated by us, and, yeah, you’re. You’re covered.

Aleks: Yeah, definitely. And, you know, there’s so. There’s so many good playlists around on Spotify. We have some specifically for pre ceremony. I think we’ve got one. Like an upbeat ceremony. Pre ceremony one.

Eddy: Yeah.

Aleks: And anyway, so you can have a look at that.

Eddy: So that’s the pre ceremony.

Aleks: If we haven’t drew into enough, we spent.

Eddy: Yeah. Seven or eight minutes on that alone.

Aleks: You need to have music.

Eddy: Yeah. Yeah. So what’s our next. What’s our next part?

Aleks: So, obviously, then we get to the ceremony. So there’s a. I suppose the ceremony itself has a number of kind of key moment songs that you need to prepare, which are your, if you do, if you’re walking down the aisle, your aisle song, that might be one or two songs, depending on whether your wedding party is also walking down and you want a different tune for yourself, then you will have. Depending, again, depending on the structure of the ceremony, certificate signing songs. We recommend two to three. I have gone to three songs. Sometimes it takes a little while. So recommend at least, you know, having two ready for that. And then a kind of recessional end of ceremony song, kind of three key moments.

Eddy: That’s right, yeah. Sometimes you sign after, obviously.

Aleks: Yes.

Eddy: So that can break it down a little bit. But, yeah, it’s at least. Yeah, at least two to three songs, if not closer to four to five, depending on how many signing of the certificate songs that you’re doing and how long it takes.

Aleks: Yeah. And I’ve been asked a lot lately about, you know, recommendations and stuff for aisle song.

Eddy: It’s so difficult to be completely honest with you. And we’ll obviously get to key moment songs for the reception as well. So key moment songs for the ceremony and the reception, they are the most difficult for professionals. Like us to actually choose. In fact, I really try not to have too much influence on those because they’re extremely, extremely personal to you as a couple.

Aleks: Yeah.

Eddy: And we can point you in the right direction, send you some things that have worked in the past or we’ve seen in the past.

Aleks: Yes.

Eddy: But it’s just very difficult because it might be. Could be an in joke or it could be a song like a Calvin Harris tune that was playing when you first met, or just something. It could have been in a nightclub where you met and that was happening at the time, if you can remember it.

Aleks: What I do find with, you know, if you are struggling, at least if we provide some options, it’ll get you thinking about stuff that will work for you. Like, I’ve. And I totally expect that when I send a couple, you know, here are five songs you could think about. They’re like, yeah, okay, we’re not going to use any of those. But it has made us think about always provide some sort of inspiration.

Eddy: Well, one thing that I get asked, or couples are concerned about sometimes are lyrics in songs. Like, I think this song is so beautiful, but the lyrics aren’t great.

Aleks: They’re not romantic.

Eddy: They’re not romantic. And you know what? Like I say, if you like the song, you like the song. Don’t worry too much about the lyrics. If it’s. If that song sounds like, if it’s a you song, not, obviously, the lyrics summing up your relationship, obviously, which wouldn’t be the case. But if it’s a song that you both like, why not choose it?

Aleks: Yeah. And like you said, if it’s got a special memory attached to it, then it doesn’t really matter. The content of that doesn’t really matter. So, yeah, it’s super personal. And with the key moment songs, I guess, you know, without kind of plugging ourselves too much, it is good to have a professional. I have heard a few horror stories of, you know, family members being nervous and having to press play and kind of, you know, the bride gets to the top of the aisle and the song just abruptly stops. There’s no kind of fade down and that sort of thing. So, look, it is worth getting professional or ask your celebrant if they’re able to play the tunes for you.

Eddy: Yeah, that’s a good point, actually, because some celebrants do feel comfortable and many do not.

Aleks: Yes.

Eddy: And I understand they want to just focus on what they do best rather than, you know, play the music as well as that.

Aleks: Yes. So, yeah, I would say look at, like you said, it’s very personal, but for the finish, the end of the ceremony, we do recommend something really happy and upbeat.

Eddy: Yeah.

Aleks: Because it’s a celebratory moment.

Eddy: Absolutely.

Aleks: The pressures off, it’s time to party like it really signifies the start of that. So, yeah, I think. I think that one is actually one of the few key moment songs that is quite easy to recommend and definitely.

Eddy: Yep, I would agree with that. All right, so you’re married. Congratulations.

Aleks: Thanks.

Eddy: So post ceremony. Yes. Okay, so as you mentioned before, it is party time, so you may be off getting photos, but obviously your guests are ready for a drink to settle in for the night. Tunes for post ceremony cocktail hour can be relatively more upbeat, obviously. Again, no, no, Fisher, you know, unless it’s what you like, but it’s probably going to polarise people. Yeah. You know, you can have fun with. With some vibes, depending on the setting as well. So you could have some tropical vibes if you’re by the beach or, you know, if you’re, you know, inner city Melbourne, maybe you can kind of classify it. Sort of like a cool, hip new bar vibes, you know, some motown throwbacks, some indie stuff like that. It’s yours to play with.

Aleks: Yeah, I like that. I have sort of done the tropical vibes by the beach, you know, while people sipping on cocktails, so that’s really cool. Yeah, definitely keep it upbeat. I would say if you’ve got a sit down dinner. Sorry? Yeah, sit down reception, I should say. I think cocktail hour is more upbeat and then you kind of bring it back down a little bit while people are eating. Obviously not ballads. We’ll talk about that in a moment. But, yeah, definitely, you know, get people in the mood and then. Yeah, no, absolutely. No problem. We can’t bring it back down a little bit in terms of energy levels, but this is a really big part of the day, so, yeah, use it well with the music.

Eddy: There’s definitely a huge surge of energy in the crowd, in your guests after ceremony and we do like to capitalise on that and just really bring the vibes from the music perspective.

Aleks: Yeah. I’ve actually had a few couples who have given me, like three ceremony finished songs. So there’s the end of ceremony as they walk back down the aisle together. And then often they won’t kind of just walk off and take photos. They’ll hang around with their friends and family and take some photos and greet people and that sort of thing. So you have another couple of really up.

Eddy: I really like that idea.

Aleks: Yeah.

Eddy: I really, really like that idea. And you know what, it’s great for us as well because it gives us two more examples of things that the couple likes.

Aleks: Yes.

Eddy: For us to curate further.

Aleks: Exactly. Yeah. I had a really good one where the couple went straight into a champagne tower, was lakesided, what’s it called? Lake House in Dalesford, down by the lake. So they basically went from this ceremony straight into. Yeah. An outdoor champagne lmFAO.

Eddy: Champagne showers.

Aleks: Yeah. No, it was not magician you. No. What am I talking about? You know, anyway. Sunlight. Sunlight. Anyway.

Eddy: Oh, so I wasn’t. That was far away, really.

Aleks: It was. It was a housey tune.

Eddy: Yeah.

Aleks: Super upbeat. Was so much fun.

Eddy: That’s awesome.

Aleks: I loved that. That was really fun.

Eddy: So that’s the post ceremony part. And you’ve, you’ve sort of, you’ve sort of mentioned this as well. So background dinner. Let’s. Let’s break it down. So let’s talk about dinner first.

Aleks: Yeah.

Eddy: And then we can, we can sort of COVID off cocktail style.

Aleks: Cocktail format.

Eddy: Format wedding. You’ve mentioned it before, so we do tend to bring it back just that little bit once people are settled.

Aleks: Yes.

Eddy: Not when they’re going to their seats. I have a bit of fun with that moment, to be honest, musically, as people kind of, you know, the MC might have mentioned, hey, it’s time to sit down.

Aleks: Yeah.

Eddy: And it’s fun to kind of make that a cool little moment as people find their seats sort of thing. Not in a corny way or anything, just to justify.

Aleks: They do take a while because they.

Eddy: Take five to ten minutes.

Aleks: Yeah.

Eddy: Once everybody sort of sits settled, maybe after the MC, if you have one, has sort of welcomed everybody, then we do set the scene by taking it down a notch. And that will probably also include the volume as well as the music choices we make. Would that be.

Aleks: Yeah, depending on the space. Yeah. But I would say you definitely, you know, people want to chat and sit down and, you know, enjoy their food, so. Yeah, bring it back down a little bit. Not too much. And we mentioned, look. No, I mean, every DJ is different, obviously, and every couple is different, but. But we don’t play ballads because I just. They’re just depressing. They’re too slow. Yeah, you’re going in the other direction. You meant to be going towards Fisher, not away from.

Eddy: No. You still want to keep it upbeat. Yeah, definitely knock back the volume to the appropriate volume. I typically, I mean, we’re as wedding DJ’s or as DJ’s period where people watch us throughout the whole of the day, you know, as the first people walk in the room, they’re sitting down. So I tend to watch if people are struggling to hear each other when they’re talking, that’s a sign for me to knock it back. Just that little.

Aleks: Definitely.

Eddy: But, yeah, I mean, we’ve whipped through that one pretty quickly. But that, obviously is you sit down. Yes. How would cocktail format differ from.

Aleks: Yeah, look, it’s quite different, I think, because obviously, you sort of go straight from cocktail hour into cocktail hours. It’s just one long cocktail hour. But I would say it’s probably more upbeat because people are standing around. It’s actually louder in the room.

Eddy: Yeah, it’s more upbeat. And so it’s a gradual build to the dance floor rather than ebbs and flows.

Aleks: Like you would with a sit down.

Eddy: Like you would with a sit down. And what I mean by ebbs and flows. So obviously, we have our eye on the run sheet the whole time that we are there.

Aleks: Yeah.

Eddy: We’re talking to the MC, we’re talking to the photographer, the venue, etcetera. So we’re pretty much fully plugged into what’s going on at any given time. When we get the kind of ten minute call on. Yes, there’s gonna be a round of speeches. I would then tend to kind of bring the vibes up just that little bit.

Aleks: Yes.

Eddy: To get that energy flowing again as we, you know, we get closer and closer to that speech, rather than, you know, sit at sort of two or three. I’m bringing it up to, like, five or, you know, so. And kind of bringing that vibe up. So by the time those first speeches happen, people are like, oh, they’re up and about and, you know, there’s bright eyed and bushy tailed. After that time, people are getting up and walking around a little bit, going to the bathroom, charging their glasses, all that kind. So those vibes are up a little bit more and then we come down a little bit more as mains are served.

Aleks: Yeah.

Eddy: Does that make sense? Have I explained that?

Aleks: Okay, yeah, yeah, that’s. Yeah, that. Yeah. For sit down, for cocktail. It’s cocktails.

Eddy: Like, it’s more of a. It’s more upbeat in general, and it’s a gradual build up to the dance floor.

Aleks: Yeah.

Eddy: So we’re getting people ready to dance. In fact, we’re hoping to get some sporadic kind of patches of dancing happening when people are ready, you know.

Aleks: Yes. Always a goal. You do tend to get early dancing at a cocktail style wedding, which we love sometimes at a sit down as well, depending on the run sheet and whether people, you know, have, have had their meals, have some time before speeches, they do get up and have a boogie. We love that.

Eddy: Yeah.

Aleks: We encourage early dance. Just don’t. As long as dancing and all the venue. Yeah, yeah, I would say, yeah, I agree with that. I think. I think also kind of after the first round of speeches at a sit down dinner, I would probably bring the vibes up again, depending on the run sheet and how many more breaks you have until, like, the official dance floor kicks off. You don’t. I mean, so we kind of time it. So, like, okay, we’ve got another bracket. Bracket of background music.

Eddy: That’s right.

Aleks: Take it up a little bit more if you’ve got speeches. But, yeah, pretty much by the time you’re gonna hit that first dance or if you’re not doing a first dance, just the kind of official start of the dance floor, you should be kind of at a, you know, dancing tune.

Eddy: That’s right.

Aleks: Yeah.

Eddy: Yeah. So we’re not going like zero to 100.

Aleks: Yeah.

Eddy: And we sort of jumped ahead to speeches, obviously. But let’s talk about wedding party entrances, if that’s what you are doing. So this will generally happen after the MC’s made the housekeeping announcement, all that kind of stuff. And obviously bring. Bring the couple in or the couple in their wedding party and things like that.

Aleks: Yeah, yeah. This is, I mean, this is. It should be really high energy.

Eddy: Super high energy.

Aleks: Yeah, yeah. And your mc should, you know, hype people up as well. Just get them. Get them excited. It makes a great photo. So we always do, you know, encourage, if you. If you’re on the edge, do consider doing the entrances. And in terms of choosing the songs, you can choose one song for the entire wedding party, which works particularly well if it’s a song that kind of has a long build up.

Eddy: Yeah.

Aleks: So you can kind of get to the height, like the most energetic part of the song and the couple comes in and the energy is super high.

Eddy: There are ways to make that happen less organically for us DJ’s. We can, you know, we have. We have a song and we’re able to place in what we call cue points in different parts of that song.

Aleks: Yes.

Eddy: So obviously, you know, I generally, when I’m talking to a couple, I’ll save the best part of the song for you guys.

Aleks: Yeah.

Eddy: It’s the most energetic song and hit that trigger. So it’s seamless and it really happens when you enter and I’ll bump up the volume just that little bit more. For you guys as well.

Aleks: Yeah, look, I don’t have a preference. I think I’ve seen both work well in terms of choosing one song or choosing multiple songs for your wedding party. If you’re choosing multiple songs, it’s fun to let each group choose their own track. Yeah.

Eddy: Yeah.

Aleks: That’s if you’ve got a large group.

Eddy: If you’re a large group, it’s more homework for you guys. There’s a couple, obviously, but it is a lot of fun. I had one, this was the first wedding of last year, 2022. I’m still getting used to saying 2023. And they had a ball with all their songs. There was one that. A couple that came in, like wilburring.

Aleks: Oh, yeah, this one.

Eddy: There was another couple that I think they did like the fishing line where they, you know. Yeah, their thing. And another one, my favourite one was a couple came into fireball, that pitbull song, and actually took a shot of fireball as they came in. So you can have a lot of fun with those moments.

Aleks: I had. I had one recently where they had one song, but it was also really, really fun. And each kind of pair came in and there was a, you know, bartender with a tray of whiskey shots, and it was. Yeah, I think it was. I can’t remember now. Love generation. Bob Sinclair song.

Eddy: Nice.

Aleks: Yeah. So one song, everyone came in, did a dance, did a shot, and then everyone, you know, had a boogie on the dance floor once the couple was on there. So, yeah, you can have a lot of fun.

Eddy: You have a lot of fun in the photos. If you do choose to make a moment of it, the photos always come out so amazing.

Aleks: Yeah. So, yeah, that’s. And look there. We do have some playlists with some entrance song ideas that. That our couples have used that we think are particularly good. But again, you know, it’s a personal one, I guess.

Eddy: Not something we see too much anymore. I think it’s about. I used to say 50 50, but to be honest with you, I think it’s like, only 30% of the time these days would be cake cutting.

Aleks: Oh, yeah. Depending on how much money you spend on your cake and how beautiful.

Eddy: And sometimes it’s not a cake, it’s like cheese or, you know, whatever it is, you know, that is something you want to put some music behind. And the reason why we recommend this is only because it can take a little bit of extra time, more time than you think it will. And you don’t want to be kind of posing in silence.

Aleks: Oh, yeah.

Eddy: Super awkward. So you want something kind of rumbling underneath that. It could be something. It could be something like the archie’s sugar. Sugar. Just saying kind of a throwback like that. But yeah. So that’s that’s something that we don’t. We don’t tend to see much of any more, though. Cake cutting. Not at our weddings, no.

Aleks: And I think, look, if you can’t be bothered thinking of a cake cutting song, just leave it to your DJ and, you know, if we can see that the moment is taking longer than expected, then we’ll throw something on that’s appropriate. So.

Eddy: Yeah, absolutely. I always have something ready.

Aleks: Yeah.

Eddy: And I generally put something on kind of, kind of light and then bring it up a little bit more if that needs to happen.

Aleks: Quiet.

Eddy: Like all your aunties get up and want to take a photo and it takes like an extra three minutes. Rest assured there’ll be something underneath that moment.

Aleks: Yeah. And it’s kind of similar with champagne towers and espresso martini towels too.

Eddy: Champagne to us, take a while.

Aleks: Way longer. So you need a couple songs or a long song, you know.

Eddy: Yeah, yeah. What’s next?

Aleks: Yeah, so we talked about this a little bit. This is more for us than couples to think about, but just to be aware of that kind of building towards the dance floor, this is basically, you know, say, after the first bit of formalities, after the first round of speeches or whatever, we’re bringing that energy up. So we’re thinking about what to play. Then. I think it’s important for couples to think about this part because this is when people have had a few drinks.

Eddy: Yeah.

Aleks: So you want to get that energy up. You want to get people excited about dancing and, you know, bring up the tempo and the energy and the volume and everything. So I think when you’re thinking about artists that you like, that might not be appropriate for dance floor just because, you know, the songs aren’t really that high energy, but they’re still upbeat. This is a good time to put in those requests. Like Rufus is a good example. You can spin a couple of tunes for dance floor for a cool crowd, but Rufus works really well for like, upbeat background. So, yeah, if you’ve got any tastes like that or any like more obscure songs from artists that you like, it’s a good time to kind of throw that in.

Eddy: Definitely requests. Yeah, I honestly don’t have anything to add to that. I think you sum it up perfectly.

Aleks: We’ve kind of talked about it. Anyway. 1st.

Eddy: First dance okay, mixed reviews on this one. Well, again, not everybody opts for a first dance look, but if you are doing one and obviously the thought of you dancing or standing or trying to dance in front of all of your crowd, it can be pretty daunting.

Aleks: Oh, totally.

Eddy: To most people. Some people thrive, but most people, it’s like my nightmare.

Aleks: Nightmare.

Eddy: So a full three minute dance is quite tricky. But we do tend to tell couples it doesn’t have to be that long.

Aleks: It doesn’t?

Eddy: Yeah, it can be a minute, a minute and a half. Honestly, I think about how much time your photographer is going to need to capture that moment. And it runs it to about 1 minute ish, maybe a bit longer.

Aleks: Another trick, because normally you would get your MC, whether that’s, you know, a friend or your DJ or whoever, you normally get your mc to get everyone up standing and gather around the dance floor area for your first dance. So if you don’t want to dance for that long and your. The song that you’ve chosen has a long intro, you can actually. The DJ can actually start playing that as people get towards the dance floor.

Eddy: Yeah. Or as you walk onto the dance floor.

Aleks: As you walk on. Yes. There’s little tricks. There are little tricks avoiding dance.

Eddy: Yeah. And you know, you might say no more than. No more than 30 seconds to a minute. We don’t want to be in the spotlight. If that is the case, then as you mentioned, Aleks, having people around you is great because at the right time, minute, minute and a half, your mc can jump on the microphone, say, hey, if anyone wants to join for a slower dance, looking at you older crew who absolutely adore doing that makes the best photos. So it’s really cool they can come in and finish off that song with you guys.

Aleks: Yeah.

Eddy: And the spotlights not just on you.

Aleks: Yeah. And that’s obviously. Look, the choice is completely yours whether you choose like a ballad or whether you choose something more upbeat. I had one recently. They did. Heaven must be missing an angel. That disco tune, it’s so much fun. Really, really fun. Really long tune. So they dance for about an everyone join for another minute and then we transition something else. Another thing that we’ve seen quite often, which can work well, is choosing a like broken down or acoustic version of a song. One really good example is latch, you know, Sam Smith playing the acoustic and going into the original and getting everyone to join you.

Eddy: Yeah.

Aleks: When that happens.

Eddy: I think I’ve had that before.

Aleks: Yeah, it’s really good. It works really well. I have seen popular, popular, but I love it. And I’ve had other, you know, like r and b tunes and stuff, broken down versions into the original. So that’s. That’s kind of a good idea for.

Eddy: Yeah. And we’ve, um. It’s probably no surprise to some of our listeners that have been listening to us for a while. We’ve got a blog on all of this and we’ve actually got a whole bunch of playlists, Spotify playlists that take you through different genres of first dance ideas.

Aleks: Yes.

Eddy: So we’re going to put this blog on the show notes and you’ll be able to access that. And it’s. There’s some really good stuff. I was actually surprised when I. When I looked at this blog.

Aleks: I’m impressed.

Eddy: I’m impressed.

Aleks: Yeah. We’ve got different types of first answer. Again, very. I mean, this one’s the most personal, I would say, but.

Eddy: Yeah, exactly. Exactly. So it might. It might give you some ideas of what you don’t like and it might push you in the right direction.

Aleks: Yeah. You know, I successfully picked out a tune from one of these for a couple recently and the bride’s like, I love it. Let’s do it.

Eddy: Oh, great.

Aleks: So there you go. You never know. You never know.

Eddy: That’s awesome.

Aleks: All right. Yeah. But definitely, you know, if you don’t want a first dance, something to kick off the dance floor, even just an announcement from the MC guys and you, you know, the couple on the dance floor for that first song, no matter what it is, doesn’t. And you and your wedding party, your parents, your family, you know, word some.

Eddy: People up and it might be worth sort of touching quickly on if you’re not doing a first dance at all.

Aleks: Yeah, that’s what I meant. Yeah, yeah, yeah, yeah.

Eddy: So that’s what you meant.

Aleks: Yeah. So, like, there has to be some sort of announcement, right, if it’s particularly for. To sit down.

Eddy: Yes. Yeah, I think. I think moving on from that. And I was clearly checked out when you mentioned. Good. I was looking at the next thing we’re going to talk about. So, my mistake to our listeners, you know, if you are doing it like that, you’re not doing first dance. G up your. If you have a wedding party, g them up or just rush the dance floor. Closest friends or your closest friends, some of the family members that you know, that advice is usually what I give.

Aleks: Yeah, totally. Yeah. Just something. It’s weird. I always say to couples, like, people need structure and need to be told what’s happening next and almost need to be given permission to dance officially, so.

Eddy: Okay. And that’s the other trick. Right? So people have this weird. We’ve spoken about this probably on. On past podcast episodes, but there are instances that were not all weddings. Some weddings where, you know, the guests are a bit. Should I go on the dance floor? Couples not there? I’m not sure.

Aleks: Yeah.

Eddy: So, yeah, so I think coming back to what you said, Aleks, is perfect. Like, get your mc to command the guests. It’s time to party now, guys.

Aleks: And you as a couple, wave them on, encourage them.

Eddy: Yeah.

Aleks: Give them permission. I think that’s really important. Just forget making sure that the dance floor starts off with a bang, whether you’ve got a first dance or not.

Eddy: Yeah, yeah, yeah. Absolutely. Okay, so this is why I miss what you said before. I was. I just saw that word dance form. My eyes lit up. Okay, here we go. All right. It’s time to officially time to party, generally. Yeah, that’s right. So obviously you want to get your mc to announce it at the first dance, all that kind of stuff. Of course, we’re going to recommend super up, super fun stuff that will just really get everybody partying. Not all DJs do this, but we actually like to start the dance hall with maybe a couple of throwbacks. Like, you know, an obvious example is like, ain’t no mountain high enough. Yeah, maybe spinner September, something that.

Aleks: Dancing in the moonlight.

Eddy: Yeah. Everyone’s gonna know these songs and it really just starts to dance on such a high and awesome note.

Aleks: Yes, absolutely. And similar to what I was saying before about the ceremony finished songs. I’ve had couples who’ve given me like, three dance floor starter songs.

Eddy: Yeah.

Aleks: Which is good because I. I know they’re gonna put at least be on the dance for the first three and not run off to get a photo or whatever. So you’ve kind of got people on there and committed and, you know, dancing with you, which is awesome. So. Yeah, I agree to start with some classics because if you get. If you’ve got quite a large group of oldies, you don’t get them offside straight away, straight off the bat. No, you try and get them back.

Eddy: Yeah, I know. And you want. You definitely want. It’s funny that we always, always mention the oldies. We always mention the oldies when we’re chaining clients this scary. But you want to, like, show them that, you know, it was all good. I got this. I see, like, I see you. I, you know, I know you’re there. You are heard. You will enjoy the music that I’m playing. So. Yeah, it’s like the best thing ever when some, like, a more mature guest comes up to you at the end of night, says, this was awesome.

Aleks: Yes.

Eddy: Oh, my God. This is.

Aleks: Yeah, you. I did it.

Eddy: Always the toughest customers, I think.

Aleks: Yeah. And look, I mean, you know, it goes without saying that a great DJ will always read the crowd, you know, and, of course, keep the tunes varied and mix things up.

Eddy: Be flexible and be, you know, obviously, keep in mind the brief as well.

Aleks: Yes. We’ll do another. I think we’ll do another whole episode on the music brief because that’s. That’s a big thing. But, yeah, I think there’s so much good music around, but it’s important for DJ to stick with what you like and avoid what you don’t like, but also, obviously, keep everyone happy. So it’s, you know, it’s. It’s a tricky balance, but I think most couples appreciate that.

Eddy: Yeah.

Aleks: And that’s why it’s important to give your DJ, you know, a lot of intel, and they should be drawing out of you, I should say, information about what you like.

Eddy: Yeah.

Aleks: So they know what to do and obviously, you know, taking requests and stuff. A good DJ will handle those with expert flair and, you know, play them or not play them or mark them for later as, you know, as he’s right for that moment.

Eddy: Yeah, that’s right. And. But look, before we get to final song, you know, I’m not. I’ll mention it, but I don’t think we have to discuss it. Bouquet toss. We don’t tend to see it that often, and even if we, like, we might mention how you’re gonna do this. And then, like. No. And then at the end of the night. Okay, let’s do it. So we have songs, like, up our sleeves that we, you know, we can play, but we don’t typically see it much anymore. No, they’re expensive, these bouquets.

Aleks: Why would you want to throw the big, chunky budget? Yeah, your floor budget. I have seen where, you know, the. I think I mentioned this once. A couple, the bride pretended to go and do the bouquet. The groom swooped in and did it.

Eddy: I love that. That’s amazing.

Aleks: I’ve also seen, you know, everyone gets on the dance floor, not just the single females. It’s everyone get on the dance floor. Okay. Everyone stuff. But, yeah, we’re not. We’re not seeing much of that. Moving on.

Eddy: So, final song. So towards the end of your reception, we were hoping that people will be pretty loose, ready for perhaps a sing along or something like that. Obviously, we want your wedding to end on a high note, and you want that too. So, yeah, I typically sort of mention a sing along, something that people can throw their arms around each other with that kind of.

Aleks: Yeah.

Eddy: Thing.

Aleks: Yeah. And we typically do recommend choosing like two songs so that you can do your fake finish. I’m sure you’ve mentioned this many times on the podcast, but basically where, you know, you announce this. Sorry, you announced the final song, but it’s actually the second last song, so you can give people an encore. So, yeah, giving a couple of songs, I think is a great idea for that part.

Eddy: I think so, yeah. Yeah. And if your venue is super strict on timings, obviously we need to be super organised at that point as well. Sometimes venues like. Yeah, no worries, you can play another one. All good. But a lot of the time, particularly post Covid, they’re really, really on the mark in relation to the timing of the night.

Aleks: Yeah, we have seen that a lot. Yeah, definitely. I think it’s good to have one final dancing tune and then the last one to be like a sing along hand around each other. That’s perfect way to finish the night off.

Eddy: And I think, you know, if you do have an MC that’s making announcements until the end of the night, generally the case is we will make the last couple of calls.

Aleks: Yes.

Eddy: Sorry, if your MC’s friend or family, we typically will jump on the mic before that. Sort of first of perhaps two, maybe three songs are being played if anyone has kind of moved away from the dance. So we’re getting back on. Just so there’s heaps of energy for you guys at the end of the night.

Make sure you’re there, the couple, make sure.

Eddy: Sometimes that’s the case. So we kind of have to just hold out for a little while until someone comes back in. But hey, that happens.

Aleks: Yeah, we want to make sure you’re there for that moment. Wow. We whizzed through that, but hopefully it was. It was helpful. As Eddy mentioned, we’re going to put everything in the show notes. Well, there’s a blog, actually, and it’s got links to loads of other blogs and playlists to help you with key moment songs and thinking about music for different parts of your day.

Eddy: Yes. And we’re going to paste this podcast link into that blog as well.

Aleks: Yeah.

Eddy: So everything’s in one spot and hopefully it’s of some use.

Aleks: Yeah. Well, happy new year again to everyone and thanks for listening, and we’d love to hear from you. You know, with podcasts, you don’t always know who’s listening, so please do let us know if you’re interested.

Eddy: Yeah, yeah. It’d be really nice. I heard that happen to me the other day, actually. I was speaking to a potential client who. Who booked, which is awesome. And they’re like, oh, I’ve been listening to your podcast.

Aleks: And you’re like, oh, people listen.

Eddy: Wow. It’s the first time I actually heard that. Oh, this is nice.

Aleks: All right, we have to go feed our cat now.

Eddy: We have to go feed our cat. Until next time.

Aleks: He’s looking at us.

Eddy: Yeah, she’s getting a bit. Yeah, a little bit impatient.

Aleks: She’s angry now.

Eddy: All right, kitty o’clock.

Aleks: See you guys.

Eddy: Thanks.

Aleks: Bye. Thanks for tuning in. If you’re enjoying project engaged, please hit the subscribe button on your fave podcast app.

Eddy: You can also follow us on Instagram, @projectengaged, and @onemoresongdjs.

Aleks: We’ll see you next time. And until then, have fun out there.

Best Wedding Reception Songs For Melbourne DJ

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