Tips for Choosing Your Recessional Song

Written with love, by Pastor Dave Page


The Recessional takes place immediately after the bride and groom are pronounced husband and wife and presented to the guests - usually right after the big kiss!

Bleudog Fotography

Bleudog Fotography

This is the joyous climax to one of your life’s most memorable moments. I like to have all the guests stand and introduce the couple as “The New Mr. and Mrs.” At that point, the recessional song will fire up, the honored guests will erupt in a wave of applause and hand in hand the couple will head out into their adoring throng.


Selecting Your Recessional Song

While most couples choose a processional song that is traditional, elegant and low-key, the recessional is an entirely different situation. Think of the recessional song as a bridge between the religious reverence and quiet tone of the ceremony and the party that is chomping at the bit just waiting to begin.

The recessional music is usually an upbeat, celebratory tune, full of joy and happiness. The selection of the recessional song is typically more jubilant and upbeat than other music used during the ceremony. It is now time to celebrate and it’s perfectly appropriate to show this in your choice of music.


Tips For Picking Your Recessional Song

·         Pick a song that is familiar to your guests

·         Pick a song that reflects your personality as a couple

·         Pick a song that is NOT offensive to some segment of your crowd

·         Decide if you prefer a contemporary song or a traditional favorite

·         Be sure to cue the song to begin with the chorus and not the introduction

The last tip is a pet peeve for me. I make a point to share with each couple the importance of cuing the recessional song just right so it begins with the upbeat chorus because you only have a few seconds to make a musical impression after the presentation. Most DJs are aware of this potential problem but it’s a good idea to double check.

The possibilities for selecting a recessional song are virtually endless raging from Johann Sebastian Bach to Bruno Mars. I prefer an upbeat contemporary song that celebrates the couple’s new life together.

Below are my top ten recessional songs:


My Top 10 Recessional Songs

All We Need Is Love by The Beatles

Thinking Out Loud by Ed Sheeran

Marry You by Bruno Mars

I Do by Colbie Caillat

Stuck On You by Meiko

Best Day Of My Life by the American Authors

Ho Hey by the Lumineers

Happy by Pharrell Williams

Celebration by Kool & the Gang

Somewhere Over The Rainbow by Israel Kamakawiwo’Ole


Honorable Mention:

Better Together by Jack Johnson

Signed, Sealed, Delivered (I’m Yours) by Stevie Wonder


Traditional Recessional Songs

If you’re looking for something traditional you might consider Mendelssohn’s Wedding March or Beethoven’s Ode to Joy or Clarke’s Trumpet Voluntary.


What’s Your Fancy?

Is there a song you like that I didn't include in my top ten list? Please share it in the comment section below. I’d love to know!