Friday, September 12, 2008

First dance

So when the guy in charge of our music asked what our first dance was going to be, Nick said, "Safety Dance," without hesitation.

The truth is, we had talked about it. And if we had a DJ, we just might have. Even though it would've made all the "old people" my parents keep referring to (including themselves in the group falling under this rubric) less than delighted.

However, a band playing an instrumental version of Safety Dance? Not so much.

Plus, of course, we have enough of the romantic, traditional in us that makes us both want to have something much less, um, surprising.

What we are currently thinking is "I Can't Help Falling in Love With You." You know, with the lyrics, "Wise men say only fools rush in..." We particularly like this, since one could say that about us.

But there are just so many pretty songs. They're old favorites - which means songs you've heard as first dance songs at a ton of weddings.

So how do you choose one that isn't exactly what everyone else has chosen before you? Or do you just say, whatever, it's lovely and we like it, who cares if we're not being original?


  1. personally, I like "at last"

    and damn the critics, you should dance to the song that makes you swoon, original or not...

  2. at my wedding we had our first dance to "yellow" from coldplay. i loved that song, the band, the whole feeling and our interpreted meaning of it at the time, and i think it's fit well, you need to be the one who loves the song and the whoe setting, go for it, no matter what the "old people" or anyone else says...

    Have fun,

  3. On the plus side, choosing a song that other people have chosen means you're that much more likely to have unexpected opportunities to dance together down the road, and the world needs more of those.

    Don't you think?

  4. The first dance at my wedding was At Last. Since you know how that turned out, I am not suggesting that. However, at the best wedding I have ever attended the first dance was Barry White's Can't Get Enough of Your Love. It was just perfect because it truly fit the couple and thier individual and collective personalities.

    This is a really long winded way of saying I agree with SD - the soung should make you two swoon.

  5. I sooo know what you mean. I recently put together a video of photos to music for a friend's wedding and did some research on the music. It's all the same.

    Then I looked a little further and found uncharted territory. Look to your own music and you would be surprised what you find.

    Here are a few favs:
    My Beloved - Ben Harper
    Heavenly Day - Patty Griffin
    Feeling Good - Nina Simone
    When We are One - Gabriel Mann
    All My Friends - Amos Lee

    Let me know if you need any help I love this part. It always gets me in all sorts of interesting conversations with people.

  6. I agree with everyone here- you've got to play whatever you're more feeling. Plus, other peeps will be feeling it more if it's one of their old faves! Although then you might encourage some unwanted karaoke. (Good thing I won't be there.)

    I also LOVE Jessica's note that you'll have more chances to look at each other all starry-eyed, probably at some perfect moment when you're in the middle of a silly tiff and he reaches out and wraps you up in his teddy-bearness arms, and all is right with the world...

    Yes, I DID watch Say Anything last night. Why?

  7. We shared traditional vows in our wedding ceremony. There was something about so many others before us saying the same words to eachother....the word "tradition" doesn't quiet explain. I feel the same way about the First Dance.

    One of my favorte 1st dance songs is "Let's Get It On". Our song was "Remember When", although country music isn't my favorite, we both love Alan Jackson and the lyrics fit.

  8. I say, choose one that makes the two of you want to give each other gooey smiles. And who cares if it's the first dance at 12 other weddings that same day? Your 1st dance is about the two of you.

    Hopefully, your band has sense about what's "wedding appropriate." At one wedding I attended, the DJ actually played "If you can't be with the one you love (love the one you're with)." We were so appalled my husband insisted on giving the DJ an "approved" list of music to be played at the reception.

  9. obviously you should do what is all about the two of you. if you do decide to go with a traditional/classic song the great thing about that is you can change it up a little. all of these songs have been remade by so many people that you'll have a few versions you can choose. that's really my issue when i think out my imaginary first dance... we already know the song, just who's version??
    good luck, can't wait to hear what you pick!

  10. Go with what you like. Who cares if it's been used a million times? Jason and I danced to At Last at the first (Australia) wedding, and then to Besame Mucho at the Atlanta wedding because we had a Cuban band and we took rumba lessons and wanted to have a little fun. Both were way fun and way romantic and we loved it.

  11. I say choose whatever you are feeling. Why overanalyze? Also, wouldn't you hate it, if 15 years from now, you were kicking yourself in the ass for choosing a song that didn't mean as much just so you could feel original? Sometimes, song are famous and popular because they speak a universal truth.

    "God Only Knows" is super popular, yet can still move me to tears.

  12. you say whatever, choose what you like, who cares what other people think. :-)

    we wanted something not as common and traditional since we also had a band. we chose 'i only have eyes for you'.

    but we also didn't have a song that meant a lot to us either. so if you have on that you both like, i say go for it!

  13. You are all sooo wonderful and thoughtful!

    Slightly Disorganized - At Last is very pretty. And you nailed it - we need to swoon, more than anything.

    Nina - That's a lovely song. You're exactly right - it's the meaning and the fit. Thank you!

    Jessica - Oh! Such a good point! Of course we will be all, "that's our song!" at every opportunity from here on out. Best argument for using one we will hear again.

    RestaurantRefugee - Yes, you make a good point. It has to fit our personalities. And make us all swoony.

    Red - I only know the Patty Griffin song, but I'll look into these, and I appreciate your offer of help - I may take you up on it! I had never given wedding music a second of thought before. But I can see how it would make for interesting conversation!

    LivitLuvit - Ha! So happy to be having NO karaoke at the wedding! I know - Jessica's thought is such a good one. And Say Anything makes me swoon...

    HKW - I think I understand what you mean. It is nice to feel like a part of something larger, or something like that. Or maybe it's pulling the past into your present and future?

    Mommy Writes - Heh. Gooey smiles.:) We will have them. And our music guy is great, so I am not worried. Although a wedding band that "love the one you're with" song absolutely cracks me up, as horrifying as it may have been in the moment.

    notsojenny - That is true. Even with the Fools Rush In one there are different versions. And then the particular band will make it a little different.

    Wendy - Both awesome songs! We have Besame Mucho on our Must Play list...but not for our dance. Neither of us are bold enough to rumba.

    Lemmonex - YES, I would absolutely hate it. Such a good point.

    MrsMac - Yah, we haven't had an "our song" - so we are trying to figure out something we like that we think suits us.

  14. I really like Dean Martin's Ain't That a Kick in the Head. And Nina Simone's My Baby Just Cares For Me.

  15. Or what's that hokey proud to be an American song? Y'all could just stand for three minutes and salute one another.

    You have to admit, it would be unique.

  16. Okay, and Sade: By Your Side. That's a slow groove, which might work out well.

  17. I was at a wedding recently and their song was "This Will Be (An Everlasting Love)" by Natalie Cole. It was so upbeat and unexpected and gave way to lots of ridiculous twirling, I loved it.

    On the sappy side - Crazy Love by Van Morrison. Short, sweet and slow. Gotta love Van.

    Anything you choose will be wonderful - you can't go wrong on this. Happy Dancing! :)

  18. If I ever get married, these will be on my short-list:

    1. Allison Moorer's version of Ring of Fire
    2. Shelby Lynne's version of I Only Wanna Be With You
    3. 'Cause I Love You by Johnny Cash
    4. Three Little Birds by Bob Marley
    5. Hell is for Children by Pat Benatar (you know, just for shock value and an excuse to make devil horns in the pictures!)

  19. Hee, hee. I'd still do the Safety Dance.

  20. As a lurker who randomly found your blog and reads you everyday, I try to refrain from my urge to comment. But like every hopelessly romantic girl, I can't hold back sharing my opinion.

    "Stay with you" by John Legend will, if I ever get married, be the song I choose or at the very least a song that must be played some time that night.

    Listen to the lyrics. They'll make you weepy.

    Good luck! I'm sure whatever you choose will be perfect!

  21. We are going with We Belong by Pat Benetar, 'cause it's cheesy and silly and always cracks us up. I think you ought to go with something that fits your personalities, everybody else be damned. My dad & I will dance to the version of Puttin' on the Ritz from Young Frankenstein, complete with top hats and canes, and I'm walking down the aisle to Walk on the Wild Side by Lou Reed.

    You've got to make sure it's a night that YOU will love to remember!

  22. Pick the song that's best for you guys, and screw whatever everyone else does/doesn't have playing. Do keep in mind, though--if you dance for the entire song, try not to pick one that goes on for eternity. :) Otherwise, it can go from sweet to boring to uncomfortable on all sides.

  23. Totally agree about doing what is meaning to YOU TWO. We danced to Dave Matthews "Crush" - very untraditional, but that song was playing the first time we kissed so it meant a lot to us.

    One that was played at a friend of mine's wedding that has become one of my favorite songs since is "Power of Two" by the Indigo Girls. The lyrics are amazing!!

    It's getting close - yay!

  24. "All I Need to Know" by Aaron Neville

    "I Swear" Various Artists

    "You Say it Best When You Say Nothing at All" (The lyrics are actually awesome.) Various Artists

  25. it's whatever you both want. if you both really love safety dance, have your DJ play it instead of the band.
    We danced to:
    How sweet it is by Marvin Gaye

    some of the other finalists were:
    ice cream- Sarah Mclaughlin
    Best of my love- Emotions
    *You're making me high- Toni Braxton (great if you wanna grind on the dance floor ;-)
    the rainbow connection-Kermit
    Dream a little dream-Diana Krall
    crazy little thing called love- Queen

    see? anything you want!

    I have 60Gigs of music and can send you anything you want. I also have playlists for cocktail hour.

    love to you, don't stress too much.

  26. I agree with everyone and give my pro advice: Go with something that always makes you two feel a connection to each other.

    The wedding I was at last night had this gorgeous Ray LaMontagne song that my best friend and her now hubbie love because its beautiful and because they both really feel it fits them.

    I LOVE "Better Man" by James Morrison...its a gorgeous love song.

    Also--mine and Chef's is "Lay Your Lights Down Low" By Bob Marley in the version with Lauryn Hill singing in (tribute album).

    So that is slow reggae...but it means something special to us both.

    I also love Paolo Nutini's A Million Faces...amazing love song.

    Good luck!

  27. Don't they say every artist is a cannibal, and every poet a thief? I think no matter what song you pick, it will be original to you and Nick, and that will make it unique and special. But HOW funny would it be, a photo of Nick in that jacket, doing the Safety Dance??? ;-)

  28. I read frequently and never comment...and btw I am so caught up in happy for you and Nick even though I don't really know you. I'm all for "I can't help falling in love with you" but I have to say I like the Elvis version best. Some other songs I like and think would be awesome for a first dance:
    Happy ever after in your eyes - Ben Harper
    Better Together - Jack Johnson
    Bless the Broken Road - Rascal Flatts (Country, but a great song nonetheless)
    Too marvelous for words - Frank Sinatra
    Nothing can Change this love - Sam Cooke

  29. I really, really want to thank all of you. We were in a quandary, not only about the first dance, but about the whole evening, and we have so many fantastic suggestions here that we can play throughout!

  30. I am also a lurker and have never commented before, but I love your blog and have a suggestion.

    There is a song by the Dave Matthews Band called "Steady As We Go", and, while it is a newer song (circa 2005 maybe?), it has a good combination of classic sound & meaningful lyrics. Maybe check it out on iTunes? :)


Tell me about it.