The Increasing Trend of Choosing Folk Songs for Wedding First Dances
Your first dance as a married couple is a really special moment. It's the first time you dance together after the ceremony, showing off your love and promises for a life together. So, what song will you play for this big moment?
Choosing can be tough. How do you pick just one song that shows off your love, your friendship, and the special things that make your relationship yours? Do you pick a classic or a new hit? Fast or slow? There are so many love songs out there; it might feel like too many choices.
As someone who creates custom song lyric art, I've seen the magic that a well chosen song can bring to a couple's first dance (not to mention the sentimental impact it can have every time you hear it). Recently, I've noticed that more and more couples are picking folk music, loving its ability to capture emotion. Each song tells a story, just like each couple has their own story to tell.
Seeing this trend, I've compiled a list of folk music first dance songs real couples have picked for their dance. This list is here to help you - it might guide you straight to 'your song,' or help you figure out the kind of song you're looking for.
The songs here go from classic folk tunes to new ones - but each one contains meaningful lyrics that may just help you share your special love story.
And remember, your first dance is more than a dance. It's a celebration of your journey together and shows your shared dreams. So have fun with this choice! Don't get overwhelmed - just let the song find you. With this handpicked list, you're ready to find the perfect song that will make your first dance as unforgettable as the journey you two are on. The perfect folk song is waiting.
Discover Your Perfect First Dance Folk Song: Our Top 60 Picks
“In Spite of Ourselves,” by John Prine and Iris DeMent
Memorable Lyrics: "In spite of ourselves, we'll end up a'sittin' on a rainbow / Against all odds, honey, we're the big door prize."
“True Companion,” by Marc Cohn
Memorable Lyrics: "I will be your true companion / When the sky is dark, I'll reach out my hand to you."
“I Knew This Would Be Love,” by Imaginary Future
Memorable Lyrics: "I knew this would be love, but I never knew it'd feel like this / Like the quiet song of your sweet tenderness."
“Forever,” by Ben Harper
Memorable Lyrics: "So give me your forever, not a day less will do / From you."
“Strawberries,” by Caamp
Memorable Lyrics: "Be my soul, look into these eyes like no one before / Be my light, sunrise laughing ’cause we stayed up all night."
“Let’s Be Still,” by The Head and The Heart
Memorable Lyrics: "If things don't slow down soon we might not last / So just for the moment, let's be still."
“Danny’s Song,” by Kenny Loggins
Memorable Lyrics: "And even though we ain't got money / I'm so in love with you, honey."
“Home,” by Edward Sharpe & The Magnetic Zeros
Memorable Lyrics: "Home, let me come home / Home is wherever I'm with you."
“Better Together,” by Jack Johnson
Memorable Lyrics: "It's always better when we're together / Yeah, we'll look at the stars when we're together."
“Favorite Place,” by Humbear
Memorable Lyrics: "In your arms, in your eyes / I found my favorite place."
“Into the Mystic,” by Van Morrison
Memorable Lyrics: "And I want to rock your gypsy soul / Just like way back in the days of old / And magnificently we will float / Into the mystic, mmm."
“Heaven's Knife,” by Josh Garrels
Memorable Lyrics: "Like the first man / I was cut so deep by heaven's knife / When I awoke from my sleep / Oh my Lord, she's beautiful."
“Forever Like That,” by Ben Rector
Memorable Lyrics: "I wanna love you, forever I do / I wanna spend all of my days with you."
Sea of Love, by Cat Power
Memorable Lyrics: "Come with me, my love / To the sea, the sea of love."
“Out Loud,” by Dispatch
Memorable Lyrics: "Would you be the wind to blow me home? / The rain to wet my skin when I'm alone."
“Make You Feel My Love,” by Bob Dylan
Memorable Lyrics: "I could make you happy, make your dreams come true / There's nothing that I wouldn't do / Go to the ends of the Earth for you / To make you feel my love."
When I Get My Hands on You, by The New Basement Tapes
Memorable Lyrics: "Everywhere on earth you go / You're gonna have me as your man."
“Someone Like You,” by Van Morrison
Memorable Lyrics: "I've been searching a long time / For someone exactly like you / I've been traveling all around the world / Waiting for you to come through."
“The Night We Met,” by Lord Huron
Memorable Lyrics: "I had all and then most of you, some and now none of you / Take me back to the night we met."
“Shake the Frost,” by Tyler Childers
Memorable Lyrics: "And I love you like the mountains / Loves the way the morning opens / To a soft and bright greeting from the sun."
“Flagship,” by Jason Isbell
Memorable Lyrics: "I don’t want to be the last man standing / Oh, wait a minute, maybe I do / If you’re here beside me."
“I Choose You,” by The SteelDrivers
Memorable Lyrics: "I choose you and I'll choose you over and over / Without pause, without doubt, in a heartbeat / I'll keep choosing you."
“Bones,” by Michael Kiwanuka
Memorable Lyrics: "Don't you tell me that it wasn't meant to be / Call it quits, call it destiny / Just because it won't come easily / Doesn't mean we shouldn't try."
“Kingston,” by Faye Webster
Memorable Lyrics: "Every time you get a drink and / You get to thinking / Thinking about me."
“Don’t Fade,” by Vance Joy
Memorable Lyrics: "Stay with me / Don't fade, my dear / And wait, you'll see / I'll be, I'll be your light."
“Forever,” by Mumford & Sons
Memorable Lyrics: "And there will come a time, you'll see, with no more tears / And love will not break your heart, but dismiss your fears."
“Harvest Moon,” by Lord Huron (Neil Young Cover)
Memorable Lyrics: "Because I'm still in love with you / I want to see you dance again / Because I'm still in love with you / On this harvest moon."
“Your Smiling Face,” by James Taylor
Memorable Lyrics: "Isn't it amazing a man like me / Can feel this way / Tell me how much longer / It will grow stronger every day."
“Wedding Song,” by Noel Paul Stookey (Peter, Paul and Mary Cover)
Memorable Lyrics: "Well a man shall leave his mother, and a woman leave her home / They shall travel on to where the two shall be as one / As it was in the beginning, is now until the end."
Paul, by Big Thief
Memorable Lyrics: :I was your starry-eyed lover and the one that you saw."
“Such Great Heights,” by Iron & Wine
Memorable Lyrics: "I am thinking it's a sign / That the freckles in our eyes / Are mirror images and / When we kiss they're perfectly aligned."
“Take The World,” by Johnnyswim
Memorable Lyrics: "Baby, I'd buy you the world / Or we can share mine / I know I'm not wealthy / They call us reckless / But we don't mind."
“Let It Be Me,” by Ray LaMontagne
Memorable Lyrics: "If it's a friend that you need / Let it be me / Let it be me / If it's love that you need / Let it be me."
“The Story,” by Brandi Carlile
Memorable Lyrics: "But these stories don't mean anything / When you've got no one to tell them to / It's true... I was made for you."
“We Are On Time,” by Nahko and Medicine For The People
Memorable Lyrics: "We are on time, we are on time, you are sunshine, you are sunshine."
“Sun to Me,” by Zach Bryan
Memorable Lyrics: "I've been out chasing my shadow, I've been in love with the light, you shine on me."
“Crowded Table,” by High Women
Memorable Lyrics: "I want a house with a crowded table / And a place by the fire for everyone / Let us take on the world while we're young and able."
“The Girl,” by City and Colour
Memorable Lyrics: "While I'm off chasing my own dreams / Sailing around the world / Please know that I'm yours to keep / My beautiful girl."
“Bloom,” by The Paper Kites
Memorable Lyrics: "Can I be close to you? / Can I be close to you? / Can I take it to a morning / Where the fields are painted gold / And the trees are filled with memories."
“Mine,” by Zach Bryan
Memorable Lyrics: "And I don't know where I'm supposed to be / But I can feel her breath all over me / Her touch and taste, her breath and skin / I'll never ever ever let her go again."
“Missing Piece,” by Vance Joy
Memorable Lyrics: "You're the missing piece / I need to feel whole."
“I and Love and You,” by The Avett Brothers
Memorable Lyrics: "Three words that became hard to say / I and love and you."
“You’ve Got a Friend,” by James Taylor
Memorable Lyrics: "You just call out my name, and you know wherever I am / I'll come running to see you again."
“Crush,” by Dave Matthews Band
Memorable Lyrics: "Lovely lady / I will treat you sweetly / Adore you / I mean you crush me."
“Collide,” by Howie Day
Memorable Lyrics: "Out of the doubt that fills my mind / I somehow find / You and I collide."
“Come Monday,” by Jimmy Buffett
Memorable Lyrics: "But come Monday, it'll be alright / Come Monday, I'll be holding you tight."
“Blackbird,” by The Beatles
Memorable Lyrics: "Blackbird singing in the dead of night / Take these broken wings and learn to fly / All your life / You were only waiting for this moment to arise."
“Landslide,” by Fleetwood Mac
Memorable Lyrics: "But time makes you bolder / Even children get older / And I'm getting older too."
“Steady As We Go,” by Dave Matthews Band
Memorable Lyrics: "In the darkest times, you shine on me / You set me free and keep me steady as we go."
“Love Like This,” by Ben Rector
Memorable Lyrics: "I never knew that love like this was in the plans."
Everywhere, by Fleetwood Mac
Memorable Lyrics: "I want to be with you everywhere."
“Friday I’m in Love,” by The Cure
Memorable Lyrics: "It's Friday, I'm in love / I don't care if Monday's blue / Tuesday's gray and Wednesday too."
“Your Song,” by Elton John
Memorable Lyrics: "I hope you don't mind / I hope you don't mind / That I put down in words / How wonderful life is while you're in the world."
“Love and Luck,” by Jimmy Buffett
Memorable Lyrics: "Better to have loved than never loved at all / That's what matters when you answer the call."
Simply the Best, Noah Reid
Memorable Lyrics: "You're simply the best, better than all the rest / Better than anyone, anyone I ever met."
January Wedding, The Avett Brothers
Memorable Lyrics: "True love is not the kind of thing you should turn down / Don't ever turn it down."
Flowers in Your Hair, by The Lumineers
Memorable Lyrics: "When we were younger, we thought / Everyone was on our side / Then we grew a little, and romanticized / The time I saw flowers in your hair."
Home, by Josh Beeman
Memorable Lyrics: "I will always find my way back home / Because home is where you are."
Let's Go Build a House, by Justin Fouts
Memorable Lyrics: "Let's go build a house on the mountain, my love / Where the wild winds blow and the eagles rove."
Raindrops on the Kitchen Floor, by Mason Jennings
Memorable Lyrics: "And you know that it's true / This heart was made for you."
The Sweetest Song: The Lyrics of Your First Dance
As you've been reading through these folk song recommendations, I hope you've found one that sings your love story aloud. Remember, this is only the start of an incredible journey together, a journey that's set to its unique soundtrack.
Back in 2012, my husband and I tied the knot, and even now, over a decade later, our first dance song still holds a special place in our hearts. Every time it plays, it transports us back to that intimate moment, our first dance as a married couple, surrounded by fifty of our closest friends and family.
Curious about our song? It's "Raindrops on the Kitchen Floor" by Mason Jennings, a tune that always brings a smile.
We've walked the path you're on—picking out a first dance song, sweating through dance lessons, and experiencing the joy of that wedding day dance. Even 10+ years later, our song makes our hearts skip a beat whenever it comes on. It's a soundtrack to our love story, just as your song will be to yours.
That's the essence of what we do here at Designed With Meaning. My husband, Eric, and I love celebrating the love two people share. Your first dance isn't just a dance—it's a milestone, a memory you'll keep with you. That's why we're passionate about turning this precious memory into a physical keepsake—a piece of custom song lyric art that embodies your unique love song.
Love art that tells a story? Let us create your wedding day gift or your first anniversary gift using the song lyrics from your first dance.
Want to make your song lyric art even more sentimental? We can add the arrangement of the stars and constellations from the moment the music started playing.
The first dance is a moment in time, but with this unique keepsake, your love song will keep playing on.