A Charming Playlist for Your Cocktail Hour

Kick off your wedding celebration with these well-loved tunes.

Have you thought about what should play in the background of the cocktail hour? Probably not.

Photo: Callaway Gable

If you’re planning a wedding and are also interested in music, you have probably spent hours agonizing over the perfect processional song, first dance tune, and even painstakingly creating a “must play” and “do not play” list for the DJ or band for the reception. But have you thought about what should play in the background of the cocktail hour? Probably not.

playlist for your cocktail hour, songs to play during your cocktail hour
Photo by John Cain Photography; Floral Design by Bella Flora of Dallas; Planning & Design by Emily Clarke Events

The good news is that this is one event where you don’t need to stress too much about the perfect meaning or getting people to dance. A simple selection of pleasant and familiar songs should suffice. The better news is that we’ve put together a cocktail hour wedding playlistwith an hour and 20 minutes (it’s best to be prepared in case it runs long) of tunes. With just enough of a beat to get the energy flowing without getting the party started early, these songs are sure to fill the background with joy as your guests mingle with one another.

"Here Comes the Sun" - The Beatles

"Always Be My Baby" - Mariah Carey

"Can't Take My Eyes Off Of You" - Frankie Valli

"R.E.M." - Ariana Grande

"Such Great Heights" - The Postal Service

"LOVE" - Kendrick Lamar ft. Zacari

"Dancing in the Moonlight" - King Harvest

"I Second That Emotion" - Smokey Robinson & The Miracles

"You Are The Best Thing" - Ray LaMontagne

"Young Blood" - The Naked and Famous

"The Game of Love" - Santana ft. Michelle Branch

"I'm Yours" - Alessia Cara

"The Tide is High" - Blondie

"Fever" - Peggy Lee

"Sir Duke" - Stevie Wonder

"Halo" - Beyoncé

"Into the Groove" - Madonna

For more music inspiration, discover these song ideas ideal for your father-daughter and mother-son dances.