• Ben Boylan

Most popular Songs from NYC Wedding DJ (2022)


Bride dancing to DJ at wedding
Khaki Bedford Photography

Are you planning your wedding? Are you planning your music too?


A lot of couples are worried that they are going to pick the wrong music. They are scared their guests won’t dance.


You don’t have to be scared! I am an NYC wedding DJ who has worked at over 200 weddings. I have the song lists you need!



As we begin the 2022 wedding season… Here are the most popular wedding songs from last season:

  1. Olivia Rodrigo - good 4 u

  2. Dua Lipa - Don't Start Now

  3. Kygo - Higher Love

  4. Doja Cat - Say So

  5. Lizzo - Truth Hurts

  6. Lizzo - Juice

  7. Luis Fonsi - Despacito

  8. Drake - Nice For What

  9. Bruno Mars - 24K Magic

  10. Drake - One Dance

  11. Mark Ronson - Uptown Funk (feat. Bruno Mars)

  12. Taylor Swift - Shake It Off

  13. WALK THE MOON - Shut Up and Dance

  14. Daft Punk - Get Lucky (feat. Pharrell Williams & Nile Rodgers)

  15. Calvin Harris - Feel So Close

  16. Flo Rida - Wild Ones (feat. Sia)

  17. Avicii - Levels

  18. Beyoncé - Love On Top

  19. Rihanna - We Found Love

  20. Pitbull - Give Me Everything (feat. Ne-Yo, Afrojack & Nayer)

  21. Robyn - Dancing On My Own

  22. Taio Cruz - Dynamite

  23. Kanye West - All Of The Lights

  24. JAY-Z - Empire State Of Mind

  25. Miley Cyrus - Party In The U.S.A.

  26. Lady Gaga - Just Dance

  27. Elvis Crespo - Suavemente

  28. Shakira - Hips Don't Lie (feat. Wyclef Jean)

  29. The Killers - Mr. Brightside

  30. Outkast - Hey Ya!

  31. Beyoncé - Crazy In Love (feat. Jay-Z)

  32. Lil Jon & The East Side Boyz - Get Low

  33. Missy Elliott - Work It

  34. Nelly - Hot In Herre

  35. Destiny's Child - Say My Name

  36. Blackstreet - No Diggity

  37. Spice Girls - Wannabe

  38. Backstreet Boys - Everybody (Backstreet's Back) - Extended Version

  39. Mariah Carey - Fantasy (feat. O.D.B.)

  40. Robin S - Show Me Love

  41. Whitney Houston - I Wanna Dance with Somebody (Who Loves Me)

  42. David Bowie - Let's Dance

  43. Michael Jackson - P.Y.T. (Pretty Young Thing)

  44. Daryl Hall & John Oates - You Make My Dreams (Come True)

  45. Earth, Wind & Fire - September

  46. Michael Jackson - Don't Stop 'Til You Get Enough

  47. ABBA - Dancing Queen

  48. The Isley Brothers - Shout, Pts. 1 & 2



Top 10 most requested wedding songs from 2021


A lot of great music was released in 2021. While oldies get a lot of play at weddings, people like to hear new music too.


The 3 biggest tracks were “good 4 u” by Olivia Rodrigo, “Levitating” by Dua Lipa, and “Pepas” by Farruko. I played these songs at most of the weddings I DJed in 2021.


But that’s not all. There were other songs that were popular last year.



Here is a list of the top 10 most requested wedding songs from 2021

  1. good 4 u by Olivia Rodrigo

  2. Levitating by Dua Lipa

  3. Pepas by Farruko

  4. Peaches by Justin Bieber

  5. Up by Cardi B

  6. Friday ft. Mufasa & Hypeman (Dopamine Re-Edit) by Riton

  7. Essence by Wizkid

  8. Do It To It by Acraze

  9. Kiss Me More ft SZA by Doja Cat

  10. Stay by Justin Bieber and Kid Laroi



Couple dancing to DJ at wedding
South Atlanta Photography

Wedding DJ top requested songs of all time


Ok, so now you have the top songs from 2021. But that’s not enough is it? Recent songs aren’t even played at weddings that much.


How about the most popular wedding songs of all time? The songs that your guests will hear and immediately rush the dance floor.


Well, ask and you shall receive. These might not be the coolest or cutting edge songs, but they are loved by almost everyone.


Note: I didn’t include line dances, because my couples hate them



Wedding DJ top 10 requested songs of all time

  1. I Wanna Dance with Somebody by Whitney Houston

  2. Mr. Brightside by The Killers

  3. September by Earth, Wind and Fire

  4. We Found Love by Rihanna

  5. Uptown Funk ft Bruno Mars by Mark Ronson

  6. Respect by Aretha Franklin

  7. Levels by Avicii

  8. Shout by The Isley Brothers

  9. Hey Ya! by Outkast

  10. You Make My Dreams by Daryl Hall & John Oates



How to choose what songs to play at your wedding


Your dance party music should be made up of music that your guests know and love. And your personal favorites.


It should be split 80/20. 80% of the songs played during your dance set should be known to your guests. 20% of them should be songs that you and your friend group like that not everyone else will know.


If the songs are so obscure that only you and your partner have ever heard them before, then they should be only 5% or 10% of the songs played.


Most people only dance to songs they know. Work with your DJ to come up with a list of songs that your guests will like but also will represent you.



Bride and groom dancing to DJ at wedding
Katherine Marchand Weddings

Who should choose your wedding music? You or your DJ?


This is a trick question. The answer is both. You should work with your DJ to plan the music for your wedding.


What I usually do is ask my couples to send me a playlist or a list of songs. Then we discuss what they sent me and what their desired outcome is.


Most of my couples want a really fun dance party. So I’ll go through the songs with them and guide them towards which songs would be better for their dance set and which ones would be better for dinner or cocktail hour.


Some songs are amazing, but they don’t translate so well to dancing. Those songs are great for cocktail hour and dinner.


There is also a 30 minute part of the wedding call the prelude. This is when your guests are finding their seats for the ceremony. It’s a great time for slow songs.



How to pick the right wedding DJ


Choosing the right DJ is important. You can qualify your DJ in your initial meeting with a couple of important questions.


The first question is, “what songs would you play in our favorite genres?” This is a question I never get asked by couples. It’s a great question!


If your favorite types of music are EDM and old-school hip-hop then your DJ should be very familiar with them. A good DJ for you would be somebody who could rattle off five or 10 songs in each one of those genres.


Tell the DJ you are interviewing your top 2 or 3 genres. Then ask them what songs they would play in those genres.


And listen for the tone of their response. If they get excited, start asking questions, and rattling off names of songs - that’s a great sign.


The other question has to do with experience. Ask the DJ how many weddings they have worked total. And how many they worked last year and the year before.


Somebody who has worked 100 or 200 weddings is likely to be good at making people dance. Not always, but it certainly helps.



Bride and groom dancing to DJ at wedding
Katie Osgood Photography

Where did these lists come from?


I am a wedding DJ who works between 60 and 80 weddings per year in the New York City area. The songs from the main list were requested at five or more weddings that I DJed in 2021.


Each one of my couples fills out a music questionnaire. In the questionnaire they put a link to a playlist or they just write names of songs and artists.


Some couples gave me long playlists and some only contributed a few songs. I only used the songs chosen by my couples, not the ones chosen by me.


I took all that information and put it in a spreadsheet. The songs that were mentioned at five weddings or more were the ones that made it into this list.



Are these typical wedding dance songs?


Yes and no. New York City is a little different than the rest of the country.


And taste in music is somewhat regional. If these lists were made in Nashville, San Antonio, and San Francisco, you would probably have different lists.


I also specialize in couples whose taste in music is a bit different. Perhaps there are less traditional wedding songs and line dances on these lists.



Are there polarizing songs on these lists?


Yes! Many of the most popular wedding songs are hated by many couples. There are songs like that on these lists.


For example, there are two songs on the main list by Bruno Mars. I always receive do-not-play lists from clients. Bruno is regularly at the top of the list.


There are also some older songs on the list. About eight songs are from pre-1990. Some couples love oldies. Some specifically asked me to avoid them.



Conclusion


Planning the music for your wedding is time consuming. That’s why a lot of couples in your position hire a DJ.


Wedding DJs know all the most popular songs. They will do the work for you and get all your guests on the dance floor.


Are you getting married in the NYC area and looking for a DJ? Click here to learn more.