Unusual First Dance Songs for Quirky Couples

Not everyone wants to dance to 'At Last' and that's fine! This article is full of unusual first dance song ideas - give them a chance.


There’s no shame in saying you want something unusual for your first dance song. When you have quite a few weddings to attend in a year it makes sense to make sure you have an unusual first dance song. Browse our list of unique first dance songs and then watch our first dance tutorial to make sure it’s a showstopper!

unusual first dance songs

Baby I’m Yours – Arctic Monkeys

If you spent your teenage years dancing to ‘I Bet You Look Good on the Dancefloor’, why not dance to this romantic offering from the Arctic Monkeys? The cover of the Barbara Lewis song was the B-side to their 2006 hit ‘Leave Before the Lights Come On’, and is sentimental without being slushy.

Our favourite lyric: Baby I’m yours/And I’ll be yours until the stars fall from the sky/Yours, until the rivers all run dry/In other words, until I die

Heart-Shaped Box – Nirvana

This is the perfect choice for couples seeking a really alternative first dance song. The lyrics aren’t the prettiest, but underneath the grungy guitar riff and the thumping drums, you’ll find a striking sentiment about forever being in debt to the one you love and some strong imagery about being drawn to them.

Our favourite lyric: I’ve been locked inside your heart-shaped box for weeks/I’ve been drawn into your magnet tar-pit trap

Wonderwall – Oasis

Noel Gallagher, who wrote the Oasis hit, said the song was about ‘an imaginary friend who’s going to come and save you from yourself’. If you’ve found the one who has saved you, consider sharing your first dance as husband and wife to this Brit-pop classic.

Our favourite lyric: I don’t believe that anybody feels/The way I do about you now

There is a Light That Never Goes Out – The Smiths

People often write the Smiths off as a bit depressing – and they can be, but this song is about loving someone so much that even dying by them is a privilege. It’s not the cheeriest of tunes, but if you both love the Smiths, this is perfect for an unusual first dance song. You may recognise it from indie film ‘(500) Days of Summer’ as the song that brings the two lead characters together.

Our favourite lyric: To die by your side/Is such a heavenly way to die

I Walk the Line – Johnny Cash

Country fans should consider the Johnny Cash hit ‘I Walk the Line’. He wrote it when he was newly married and described it as ‘laying out my pledge of devotion’. So many of the lyrics are lovely and perfect for a wedding, whilst still remaining an unusual choice. If you’re planning a vintage wedding, a retro song like this is a great way to stay on theme.

Our favourite lyric: You give me cause for love that I can’t hide/For you I know I’d even try to turn the tide/Because you’re mine, I walk the line

Hey Ya – Obadiah Parker

You may know ‘Hey Ya’ as the Outkast song, but the Obadiah Parker cover is slowed down and makes it more first dance-worthy. It’ll throw a curveball for your guests as they will think they recognise the tune, but will be surprised by the different version of it! Everyone will be ‘shaking it’ by the end.

Our favourite lyric: My baby don’t mess around/Because she loves me so/And this I know for sure

Only Love – Ben Howard

This song was practically written for boho weddings where the newlyweds want to dance barefoot under hundreds of twinkly fairy lights in a rustic wedding venue. The lyrics are basically beautiful poetry and would look amazing framed on your wall after the big day.

Our favourite lyric: And I’ll be yours to keep/A wind in the shadow, a whale song in the deep

Heroes – David Bowie

If you’ve watched ‘The Perks of Being a Wall Flower’ you’ll understand the impact this song can have (If you haven’t watched it, why not?). It’s an empowering song which details how falling in love can make you feel like a king and queen, as though you’re heroes for the day. Everyone will be joining in by the end.

Our favourite lyric: I will be king/And you, you will be queen/…We can be heroes, just for one day

Love on Top – Beyoncé

Those looking for a more upbeat first dance song that isn’t likely to be at anyone else’s wedding, why not consider Love on Top by Queen Bey? It’s a great choice if you want to really get the party started.

Our favourite lyric: Baby it’s you/You’re the one I love/You’re the only one I need/You’re the only one I see

Love Me Like You Do – Ellie Goulding

In a world where everyone is choosing Ellie Goulding’s covers of ‘Your Song’ (I mean, if it worked for Kate Middleton, why not!) and ‘How Long Will I Love You’ (which made it into our top love songs of 2014), why not go for this one? It’s an unusual choice as it was featured in ‘Fifty Shades of Grey’ which gives it a bit of sultry edge.

Our favourite lyric: Fading in, fading out/On the edge of paradise/Every inch of your skin is a holy grail I’ve got to find/Only you can set my heart on fire, on fire

How Deep is Your Love – Calvin Harris ft. The Disciples

This dance club anthem is the perfect choice for couples who love to party! If you spend all your free evenings on nights out, dancing together in clubs, go for this deep house song and see all your guests desperate to join you on the dance floor.

Our favourite lyric: How deep is your love?/Is it like the ocean?/Pull me closer again/How deep is your love?

I Was Made for You – She & Him

Fans of Zooey Deschanel will love this song from her band She & Him. It has a really cool retro sound, which will appeal to couples who love that whole 60s feel. Pair this with a knee length wedding dress and an awesome beehive hairstyle.

Our favourite lyric: When I saw you smile/I saw a dream come true/So I asked you, maybe, baby what you gonna do?

Just Like a Star – Corinne Bailey Rae

You can’t listen to this song and not feel moved. It’s perfect if you want a traditional feel for your first dance but you still want a song that hasn’t been done to death. The lyrics are really beautiful, but also really real – talking about the difference someone you love makes, from changing your life to the way you argue together.

Our favourite lyric: You’ve got this look I can’t describe/You make me feel like I’m alive

Lifeboats – Snow Patrol

Snow Patrol specialise in gorgeously sentimental songs with lyrics that could be poetry all on their own, but if you don’t want to hear ‘Chasing Cars’ again, consider the lesser known Lifeboats. A lifeboat can symbolise hope and can save your life – just like meeting the person you’ve fallen head over heels in love with.

Our favourite lyric: Gliding like a satellite in a broken night/And when I wake you’re there I’m saved

Sway – The Kooks

Lovers of noughties’ indie will probably have everything the Kooks ever did on their iPod, but have you considered ‘Sway’? It’s the perfect unusual first dance song – gentle enough to dance to, not mainstream enough to be overplayed and wonderful lyrics that somehow say everything you want to say but better.

Our favourite lyric: And I, and I need your soul because you’re always soulful/And I, and I need your heart because you’re always in the right places

Candy – Paolo Nutini

Who could resist Paolo Nutini’s delicious tones? It isn’t the first song you’d associate with weddings from Paolo’s back catalogue (that would probably be ‘Loving You’) but that’s why it’s in this list! The video even features a wedding. Perfect.

Our favourite lyric: Darling I’ll bathe your skin/I’ll even wash your clothes/Just give me some candy, before I go

If There is Something – Roxy Music

Go seriously old school and pick this smooth Roxy Music song for your first dance. It’s definitely unusual thanks to Bryan Ferry’s unique voice. You’d be in good company if you chose this song – Kate Moss and Jamie Hince danced to it at their wedding!

Our favourite lyric: I would do anything for you/I would climb mountains/I would swim all the oceans blue

Listen to our Spotify playlist to find your favourite!

We could keep going – there are so many amazing unusual first dance songs to choose from, but if you haven’t found your favourite from the 17 above, why not look at our ultimate wedding DJ playlist, which has plenty of songs from the past 65 years to inspire you. You’re sure to find something there!


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