When planning your wedding you should have complete control over the genres and artists played during all three parts of your wedding reception: cocktail hour, dinner and dancing. Traditionally, DJs will play classical and “Rat Pack” music during dinner and cocktails, which is fine, but don’t forget, the entire reception is an opportunity to showcase your musical tastes and interests. Couples today are including their favorite adult contemporary artists such as Coldplay, U2, Jack Johnson, and John Mayer in the dinner and cocktail must play lists.
Another artist that has become wildly popular due his recent hit “You Are the Best Thing,” is folk singer Ray LaMontagne. “You Are the Best Thing” can be used for dinner and cocktails as well as the bride and groom’s first dance or cake cutting song. “With a voice that recalls a huskier, sandpaper version of “Van Morrison ”, LaMontagne’s song has an upbeat, jazzy sound that will appeal to every age group and has lyrics that lend themselves very well to a wedding. “We’ve come a long way, baby / You know, I hope and I pray that you believe me / When I say this love will never fade away / Oh because / You are the best thing / Ever happened to me.”
The song can be found on LaMontagne’s 2008 album Gossip in the Grain, but is by no means the only song that can work at a wedding reception. His debut album, Trouble, includes the title track “Trouble” as well as “Shelter” and “Forever My Friend”. His 2006 offering Till the Sun Turns Black, is still a great album, however it comes across a little darker and more melancholy – not what you are looking for at a wedding reception.
If you like Ray LaMontagne, be sure to also look into artists like Ryan Adams, Iron and Wine and Damien Rice for your cocktail hour and wedding reception dinner music. Whatever music you listen to, remember this: your wedding reception should reflect your music tastes. Customize the evening to showcase the artists you like and your guests will leave your reception with a unique experience.