Surprise the crowd, show some personality and create a moment with these not-so-standard first dance bangers.
Your first dance, have you begun to think about it yet? Does it bring you out in cold sweats? Or are you both already waltzing around the living room in anticipation? Either way, dancer or no dancer. Your first dance song needs to be good; otherwise your big moment might fall a bit flat. And it can't just be that same song you've heard at countless family weddings before this, it needs to be unique. And yours. But don't feel the pressure to pick just yet because we've got some suggestions. We've compiled our top list of Unexpected First Dance Songs that will take your wedding guests' breath away in 2023, and beyond.
There is no shame in saying you want something a little bit more unusual for your first dance song – it is important to set your first dance apart from everyone else’s, after all! So scroll down and discover your song.
Unexpected First Dance Songs for a Wedding in 2023
Baby I’m Yours – Arctic Monkeys
If you both spent much of your youth pogo'ing at sweaty indie discos, or screaming your heads off at The Barrowland Ballroom trying to get the attention of Pete Doherty. Why not opt for this romantic, yet wholly unexpected offering from the Arctic Monkeys? As a celebration of your skinny jeaned youth!
This cover of the Barbara Lewis song was the B-side to their 2006 hit ‘Leave Before the Lights Come On’, and it is just the right side of sentimental, without being, you know… a bit much.
“I’ll be yours until the stars fall from the sky, yours until the rivers all run dry – in other words, until I die.”
All Night - Beyoncé
As unexpected first dance songs go, nobody will see this coming. When your guests hear the first bars of this Beyoncé ballad pumping through the speakers, they'll know they're in for a unique treat.
Every wedding has 'Crazy in Love’ on the set list (with good reason!), but on your wedding you're going to step out of the box, and share something different.
This song is perfect if you both prefer something energetic for your first dance. An up-tempo ballad with a groovy illustration of true love. It’s a totally contemporary choice, and we love it!
Sing Together – Train
“We can settle down and watch the world go round,” isn't that lovely!
This upbeat, feel-good number is sure to put smiles on everyone’s faces as they realise the lyrics are all about considering your other half's family, and settling down in a place you are truly content. Here come the waterworks!
Rewrite The Stars – James Arthur & Anne-Marie
For any fans of The Greatest Showman, we've got just the song for you, and it's not as obvious as just putting on the soundtrack!
This cover is a fan favourite from the film. It oozes romance and would be a completely unexpected first dance song!
Some sweet lyrics include, “You know I want you – it’s not a secret I try to hide”, and “Who can stop me if I decide that you’re my destiny?” Ahh…
Stuck With You – Huey Lewis & The News
Everything was more fun in the eighties, and this upbeat number from Huey Lewis is the perfect representation of that.
The song is about surviving the ups and downs of a relationship, and being stuck with each other out of nothing but choice. “We’ve had some fun, yes, we’ve had our ups and downs, been down that rocky road, but here we are still around.” Love this tune!
Cardigan – Taylor Swift
While we all wrestled over which DIY project to start first in 2020, Taylor Swift went and wrote a whole album. Folklore is a critically acclaimed, and beautiful selection of songs, but this has to be our favourite. If you're looking for unexpected first dance songs that are also (fairly) up-to-date, this has to be on your list.
"And when I felt like I was an old cardigan/ Under someone's bed/ You put me on and said I was your favourite."
Me & You Together Song – The 1975
This certainly won't be the kind of first dance song for everyone, but we love it. This song from The 1975 goes out to every couple who started out as friends, and then finally realised they were in love.
"I've been in love with her for ages" is the loveliest refrain and one every romcom fan will relate to.
Bright Eyes - First Day of My Life
Quirky, nostalgic and effortlessly sweet. This Bright Eyes classic may well have been a popular alternative first dance song for many years across the pond, but less so in Scotland.
'First Day of My Life' captures the hope and the happiness that couples share when they begin a new relationship, and celebrates the symbolism behind marriage.
"This is the first day of my life, I'm glad I didn't die before I met you" Dark, but sweet.
Grow Old With You – Adam Sandler
“Adam Sandler?!” you’re probably asking… Yes, Adam Sandler.
His touching and comical short song from The Wedding Singer epitomises everything that goes into cultivating a happy marriage – from fetching medicine to keeping each other warm!
The best part? It has a short duration, making it perfect for couples who want to get away from the spotlight ASAP.
We hope we have inspired your search for unexpected first dance songs, and maybe even found the one for you!
Feel free to share your first dance song in the comments below, and perhaps you'll inspire future couples!