It seems like forever since we compiled some indie wedding music suggestions for the non-cookie-cutter couple, therefore we decided it was about time to put together a new list.
Putting together a playlist for your wedding isn’t easy, especially for music lovers who have dozens of “all-time favorite songs” to pick from. You want to tie in your favorite songs without alienating your grandma, who might just get up and dance if given the opportunity. Odds aren’t great that she’ll hit the dance floor to Foster the People but you can very easily integrate your musical taste into some timeless classics from your favorite decade to keep things moving. Long gone are the days of strictly “At Last” and “The Way You Look Tonight,” though both songs still make their way onto lots of couples’ must play lists.
Sliding a few of these indie tracks into your cocktail hour or dinner are an easy way to integrate your tastes into more traditional track lists to please everyone. For smaller, more intimate weddings consisting mostly of friends with similar musical taste to yours, you can definitely get away with including more obscure songs in your must play list. Either way, it’s your day and music has always been and will always be a great way to express yourselves as a couple.
Remember when you’re out there looking for a wedding DJ that “indie” can mean different things to different people and just because the DJ has played a few “indie weddings,” he may not be an expert in the genre. So if you have certain must-plays (or do not plays!) on your wedding playlist, share them with your DJ! Trust us, everyone will be happier in the end if you speak up.
Remember too that a lot of indie rock is purely undanceable (as it should be), so unless you want your reception to be deader than the dance floor at the Black Cat during a Band of Horses show, try to leave your DJ some room to improvise if your favorite unknown track is a dud. Save impressing people with your extensive knowledge of obscure music for a party or a car ride, your wedding is not the place for showing off how much cooler you are than your friends.
This list is by no means meant as the be all end all of indie love songs, nor is it meant to definitively state that these tracks are indie at all.
Sigur Ros – Hoppipola
Devendra Banhart – Canela
Air – Playground Love
Jenny Lewis – Melt Your Heart
The Stone Roses – I Wanna Be Adored
Golden Dogs – As Long As You Like
Ray LaMontagne – You Are The Best Thing
The Temper Trap – Sweet Disposition
Edward Sharpe & the Magnetic Zeros – Home
Over the Rhine – Go Down Easy
Bon Iver – Skinny Love
Iron & Wine – Love and Some Verses
Bright Eyes – First Day of My Life (our clients Nikki and Josh, who were featured in Washingtonian Bride & Groom, picked this one as their first dance)
Sufjan Stevens – To Be Alone With You
The Bird and The Bee – One on One
800beloved – Everything Purple
The Swell Season – In These Arms
Say Hi – One, Two… One
Papercut – Here I Am
Grizzly Bear – Two Weeks
Filthy Dukes – Don’t Fall Softly
Dark Dark Dark – Daydreaming
Brazos – Day Glo
M. Ward – Never Had Nobody Like You
The Yes Pleases – 70%
Foster the People – I Would Do Anything For You
We are loving this stripped down, simple tune for cocktail hour. The dynamic mix of Jessie’s ethereal sound and Sampha’s raw vocal power makes for one heck of a love song… if only it were two minutes longer.
Jessie Ware and Sampha – Valentine
Under-produced and endearingly sloppy, this song is equal parts quirky, cute and just plain awesome.
Billy Comfort feat. Steffaloo – The Wonder of We
With lyrics like “and if you trust me i can hold you in a new way/till the calculator batteries all melt away,” you just can’t go wrong. Though this song is about unrequited love (“i’m still on your side, but out of sight and out of mind”), it’s still a charming choice.
Absofacto – 80844264@81 (Lovesong)
What indie songs would you love to hear at a wedding or which have you chosen for your own?