Wedding Dancing

3 Songs Everyone Can Dance to at a Wedding

I’m just going to come right out and say it without sugar-coating it: the Macarena is the Chicken Dance of the 21st Century. Even though we’ve been crossing our arms, patting our hips, and hopping for 20 years now, it shows no signs of fading away as the dance of choice for a wedding reception. Maybe it’s the infectious melody or the insightful lyrics; nope. It’s because it’s the simplest dance you can do and still call it dancing. So Macarena at your wedding if you must, but please consider these other dance songs as well.

Freak Nasty, “Da Dip”

The song: A minimal 90’s hip-hop jam with a nice laid-back groove and a couple of MCs who don’t seem like they’re trying very hard. “Steppin’ it off with the next verse / and it’s all clean, ‘cause I’m not gonna curse” is about as clever as they get. Still, for all its “tossed off at the end of a bong-rip session” quality, it’s charming.

The dance: Couldn’t be simpler. “I put my hand upon your hip, when I dip you dip we dip / You put your hand upon my hip, when I dip you dip we dip / You put yours and I put mine and we can dip down low and roll and grind.” So there’s going to be a lot of hip-touching, and a lot of dipping. Even Aunt Marge can handle those instructions.

Digital Underground, “The Humpty Dance”

The song: kind of a novelty hit for the Digital Underground, this rap tune has a pretty healthy sense of self-deprecating humor. The closest it gets to a “gangsta” feel is when Humpty threatens to “eat up all your crackers and your licorice.” So just keep him away from your snacks, and you’re good.

The dance: The genius of the Humpty Dance is that it describes exactly how people who don’t know how to dance look when they try to dance: “It’s supposed to look like a fit or a convulsion / Anyone can play this game …No two people will do it the same / Ya got it down when ya appear to be in pain.” So odds are even if you haven’t heard the song, you already know how to do the dance.

Chubby Checker, “The Twist”

The song: If your parents and grandparents are getting tired of the hip-hop music the kids these days seem to like, throw them a bone with this classic rock ‘n’ roll tune. Even now, Chubby Checker’s enthusiasm for twisting can inspire a dance floor to fill up with hip-swiveling fools.

The dance: The funny thing about the Twist is everyone just seems to already know how to do it. There aren’t explicit instructions in the song. “It goes like this,” Chubby says, but that’s not helpful. “Round and round and up and down it goes,” he claims, but mostly it’s just rotating your hips side-to-side. Still, its’ one of those innate things all humans know how to do.

There are plenty of songs out there for mid-to-expert-level dancers: The Electric Slide, the Achy Breaky, the Hustle, the Dougie, to name a few. But for those not as sure of their move-busting capabilities, one of these three light-hearted, easy-going charmers is a godsend on the dance floor.

Awkward Moments to Avoid at Your Wedding

Garter TossYour wedding day is going to be one of the most memorable days of your life. You’ll be looking your absolute best, you’ll proclaim your love for your partner, and then you’ll dance the night away. It’s going to be awesome. Provided, of course, you avoid a few traps that can turn that awesome day into a cringe-worthy event. Here are four awkward moments that can happen during a wedding and how to avoid them.

The Garter

In the Year of Our Lord Two Thousand and Fifteen, isn’t it mystifying that we still do the whole garter thing? It’s a tradition that started back when people would rush the bride and rip off her dress, leaving her in tears and barely dressed. I guess we’ve made some progress since then, but here we are: every wedding, the groom goes up the bride’s dress, pulls off a garter, and tosses it to the crowd.

Avoid it by: Just don’t do the garter toss. If you absolutely must do it, have the groom remove the garter in a little private couple time before the toss. If you absolutely must have the groom remove the garter in company, at least don’t make him use his teeth.

The Kiss

Your first kiss as a married couple is a super-romantic moment that should make the whole audience swoon. But if the kiss goes on too long or is, shall we say, a little too enthusiastic, suddenly you’re playing tonsil hockey in front of your parents and grandparents. Then it goes from “awe” to “awkward.”

Avoid it by: Of course we’re not going to suggest that you skip the kiss. Just keep it sincere but brief. No tongues and no butt-grabbing.

Drunken Speeches

There’s nothing wrong with a heartfelt wedding toast, or speeches from the happy couple’s parents. But when someone’s had a little too much to drink, that hilarious roast speech can turn nasty, and the heartfelt speeches get weepy and unintelligible. Most people are unaccustomed to public speaking anyway; add too much alcohol and it just gets worse.

Avoid it by: Having a dry wedding with no alcohol served. Just kidding! You can’t stop people from getting a little tipsy, but you can have the speeches before dinner, before people have had a chance to really hit the bar.

Rhythm-Challenged Guests Attempting to Dance

Let’s face it–folks over 35 or so probably aren’t hitting the club on a regular basis. You’re going to see a lot of people dancing who don’t frequently dance, and they’re not going to be very good at it. Expect a lot of awkward feet-shuffling, and then the one wacky uncle who is ironically attempting to break dance.

Avoid it by: well, you can’t really avoid it. So you might as well embrace it. As long as your guests are happy and having fun, and no one’s in immediate danger of injuring themselves, you’re doing fine. Just try not to judge the bad dancers.

Do your best to avoid these awkward moments, but definitely keep in mind that awkward moments are bound to happen during even a very well-planned wedding ceremony. A few little glitches will make the whole thing more memorable for everyone involved. So plan to avoid the awkward, but don’t be too upset if a few awkward moments sneak in anyway.