You may not have a karaoke at your wedding, but that won’t stop guests crooning along to their favourite tracks. No wedding is complete without a packed-out dance floor of tipsy guests prepared to sing their hearts out. Therefore, which songs are sure-fire hits that guests of every age know the lyrics to?
We have compiled a Top Ten list of songs below, with videos that you won’t be able to help singing along to.
Queen – Don’t Stop Me Now
“Tonight I’m gonna have myself a real good time…”
Released in 1979, this song is considered one of Queen’s greatest hits, providing their trademark style of multitrack harmony vocals.
Upon initial release, the song only reached number 9 in the UK charts and number 86 in US charts. However, due to its frequent use in adverts, films, nightclubs – and of course weddings – the song increased in popularity over time.
Voted the third best Queen song by the Rolling Stone magazine, it’s hard to not see why it is so popular. The title lyric itself is overflowing in positivity and motivation.
Bon Jovi – Livin’ On A Prayer
“Whooooa, we’re halfway there…”
A song sure to leave your guests with a sore throat in the morning, ‘Livin’ on A Prayer’ is Bon Jovi’s signature song.
The single was released in 1986 and was well received by both pop and rock fans. Garnered over three million digital downloads, it certified Triple Platinum. As a result, it’s considered as one of the greatest songs of the 80s, and it has truly stood the test of time!
The popularity of the song hasn’t dwindled. Perhaps it is the idea of having someone else to struggle through the hardships with? In short, having someone else by your side is worth singing about.
Journey – Don’t Stop Believin’
“Don’t stop believin’, hold on to the feelin’…”
Released in 1981 and becoming popular again through the American teen drama Glee, this song is guaranteed to get both young and old singing along.
Although most songs have their most memorable and singable lines at the chorus, it’s not the case here – and we’re not mad about it.
In fact, ‘Don’t Stop Believin’’s chorus does not appear until the song has just 50 seconds left. Even so, the lyrics are so repeatable that it would be hard not to sing along!
ABBA – Take a Chance on Me
“When I dream I’m alone with you it’s magic…”
Because of the popular film franchise Mamma Mia!, ABBA has once again become a certified hit group that’ll get every guest on the dance floor.
Moreover, the song’s performance in the film makes it ideal for a wedding! After all, who can avoid thinking about Julie Walters exclaiming her love for Stellan Skarsgård, or Colin Firth for Juan Pablo Di Pace, at the wedding reception?
Released in 1978, the upbeat rhythm was actually inspired by Björn’s hobby of running. As a result, it is no wonder that singing it can leave you breathless by the end!
It hit the number one spot in the UK charts, therefore making ABBA the group with the most chart-toppers of the 1970s.
Whitney Houston – I Wanna Dance With Somebody
“Yeah, I wanna dance with somebody who loves me…”
This song is the perfect way to get everyone dancing, and to persuade your partner to get on the dance floor with you. What’s more, the lyrics are so memorable that generations will be singing along together.
Released in 1987, it was Whitney’s first platinum single and even though it received mix reviews at the time, Houston went on to win a Grammy award. Since then it has proved critics wrong by staying popular for years after.
Marvin Gaye and Tammi Terrell-Ain’t No Mountain High Enough
“Ain’t no valley low enough, ain’t no river wide enough, to keep me from getting to you babe…”
The 1966 R&B track was first made popular by Marvin Gaye and Tammi Terrell. Following on, Diana Ross and The Supremes released their own version. The rest, as they say, is history.
The title of the song appears six times in the lyrics and the rhythm and tune are similarly repetitive. As a result, it is a highly memorable singalong!
Fun fact: this version appeared at the end of 2014’s Guardians of the Galaxy. More romantically, the Diana Ross version closed Bridget Jones’ Diary. Who wouldn’t want to sing along to the song that brought Bridget and Mark Darcy together?
The Rembrandts – I’ll Be There For You
“I’ll be there for you, ’cause you’re there for me too…”
For any Friends fans, this is an obvious choice for a wedding song! Even though it’s been quoted as one of the 50 worst songs ever – we’re choosing to ignore that – and it remains, excessively popular. If you can get to the end of the song without anyone having clapped, you may not know your guests as well as you think you do.
Although a wedding is a lot about romantic love, there is a lot to be said for friendship. From bridesmaids to best men, a wedding is a culmination of your favourite people being there for you. Consequently, this song is a thank you to all of your guests, your friends and your family, for making your day special.
Neil Diamond – Sweet Caroline
“Sweet Caroline. Good times never seemed so good…”
Now in the Library of Congress, ‘Sweet Caroline’ is one of the most popular wedding songs ever.
The titular Caroline appears to be Caroline Kennedy, daughter of JFK, who Neil Diamond saw on the cover of a magazine. However, he has since stated that the song is actually about his then wife Marcia…only her name didn’t fit. Sure.
However you understand the history of the song, ‘Sweet Caroline’ is a genuine swaying, soft rock classic. Guests of all ages can add their own “ba ba bam” or “duh duh dum”. In conclusion, this song is what you make of it.
You’re The One That I Want – John Travolta and Olivia Newton John
“You’re the one that I want (you are the one I want), oo-oo-oo, honey…”
Songs from musicals are ever-popular at weddings. This one specifically works well with the theme of love and matrimony from the day.
Having sold over 15 million copies, it’s one of the favourites from the 1978 film musical, Grease. In fact, it was one of only two songs in the film version there were written by John Farrar specifically for the film. Interestingly, both ‘You’re The One That I Want’ and ‘Hopelessly Devoted To You’ did not appear in the original stage musical. However, they are both mainstays in current versions on stage.
It sold over two million copies in the UK alone, making it the fifth bestseller of all time. As a result, it makes an ideal wedding singalong.
Marry You – Bruno Mars
“It’s a beautiful night. We’re looking for something dumb to do. Hey baby, I think I wanna marry you…”
The doo-wop pop ‘Marry You’ is a modern wedding classic. Consequently, couples have been known to strut down the aisle to this tune, but of course it makes a great jukebox song.
Bruno Mars has said the song was heavily inspired by the idea of Las Vegas. Specifically he imaged a couple in a bridal dress and tuxedo running with the wedding party behind them. However, the sentiment of the lyrics doesn’t just work for spontaneous betrothals. On the other hand, with love in the air, many of your guests will be getting in the mood.
As you can imagine, getting the list down to just ten songs was such a struggle! Because of this, we had to sneak in a few that we just love:
- ‘Love Shack’ – The B52s
- ‘Sweet Home Alabama’ – Lynyrd Skynyrd
- ‘I’ve Had The Time of My Life’ – Bill Medley and Jennifer Warnes
- ‘I’m Gonna Be (500 Miles)’ – The Proclaimers
- ‘Walking on Sunshine’ – Katrina and the Waves
So how much do you agree with our list? Should some of the honourable mentions have made the top ten? Did we miss out your favourite entirely? Feel free to let us know below!