Let's Twist Again!
November 5, 2009 2:06 PM   Subscribe

Help me put together a wedding playlist that will get people dancing!

My friend has asked me to help her put together a wedding playlist (in leui of a DJ). The reception music will be mostly old music in the Sinatra vein. They don't want music that is too modern. I've got that part more than covered, but we need to get a few fast songs in there too, to get people out on the floor. I've considered some swing, and I'm going to put in "Shout" and the Twist, but that's as modern as it will go. Help me think of some other old songs that will get young people up and dancing!
posted by whodatninja to Media & Arts (14 answers total) 19 users marked this as a favorite
Best answer: Glenn Miller's In The Mood. Guaranteed.
posted by Neiltupper at 2:18 PM on November 5, 2009 [1 favorite]

The original version of Just a Gigolo/I Ain't Got Nobody is mid-tempo, instantly recognizable, cheesy fun.
posted by googly at 2:24 PM on November 5, 2009

My wife and I instructed our DJ to play Benny Goodman's Sing Sing Sing (With a Swing) when he saw us enter the reception hall after we were done getting our pictures taken. We walked down between a couple of rows of tables to the dance floor, and started dancing. It was AWESOME.

So I think that's a good song that will get some people on the floor.
posted by Shohn at 2:48 PM on November 5, 2009

Best answer: bill haley - rock around the clock
crew cuts - sh-boom
bo diddley - bo diddley
buddy holly - peggy sue
kalin twins - when
sarah vaughan - broken hearted melody
little richard - rip it up

also, there is johnnie ray, with his song cry, it's just gorgeous, however not such a quick tempo
posted by past at 2:49 PM on November 5, 2009

Bossa Nova never fails.
posted by contessa at 2:49 PM on November 5, 2009

Best answer: To get more people up and dancing, remember to have stuff that the bitter singles can get up and boogy to without needing a partner.

The twist is good because anyone can shuffle their feet around by themselves or in a group. How about Something to Conga to?

There are heaps of crazy songs that have dance moves to them, but I doubt many people will know them! Unless you have someone to show people how it's done, you won't get people up and dancing.

Just go with something fun, fast and bouncy.
posted by titanium_geek at 2:59 PM on November 5, 2009

"Why Do Fools Fall In Love?"
posted by essexjan at 3:04 PM on November 5, 2009

Ain't That a Kick in the Head, Dean Martin. Guaranteed.

You might already have the Sinatra version, but if not, try the Bobby Womack version of Fly Me to the Moon.

Peggy Lee, Alright, Okay, You Win (forward to about 2:10)

Sammy Davis Jr., "Thou Swell," "Guys and Dolls," or "Let There Be Love," all available on the awesome The Wham of Sam.
posted by scody at 3:04 PM on November 5, 2009

Boogie Woogie Bugle Boy
posted by canoehead at 3:06 PM on November 5, 2009

Girl from Ipanema

Or just about anything in the Getz Gilberto/Jazz Samba vein.
posted by hangashore at 4:05 PM on November 5, 2009

What'd I Say
Runaround Sue
Good Golly Miss Molly (or any Little Richard, for that matter)
Oh Marie
posted by emeiji at 9:23 PM on November 5, 2009

Nina Simone's version of "My Baby Just Cares For Me"

"Agua de Beber" and "One Note Samba" - Stan Getz and Astrud Gilberto

"Funkallero" - Bill Evans

"Nice Work if You Can Get it" - Peggy Lee

This is probably too "modern," but "Spooky" - Dusty Springfield. Also, James Brown ("Cold Sweat," "Give It Up or Turnit Loose") and certain Supremes songs ("Love is Like an Itching in My Heart") can make anyone's ass shake, and The Ronettes' "Be My Baby" is my favorite fairly upbeat oldies love song of all time probably, but all of those probably are too modern too?
posted by ifjuly at 9:43 PM on November 5, 2009

At our wedding, we asked guests on the invite what song was most likely to get them into the dancefloor. When they RSVPed, we vetted (very lightly) the suggestions and then created a playlist for the DJ to work with. It worked a treat.

Failing that, here is a forum where wedding DJs actually discuss their playlists.
posted by MuffinMan at 12:31 AM on November 6, 2009 [2 favorites]

nancy sinatra - these boots are made for walking

martha and the vandellas - jimmy mack

ray charles - doin the mess around

and most of all, the shangri las - give him a great big kiss
posted by WeekendJen at 2:52 PM on November 6, 2009

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