20 Best First Dance Wedding Cover Songs

Sometimes the original is just too predictable. Here's a list of familiar first dance songs with a twist.
by Nicole Piquant & Anja Winikka
Bride and groom reception dance
photo by Sara Logan Photography

Searching for your first dance wedding song? Can't seem to find one that's just right? Look no further than this list of our favorites—with a twist. You know, just because your first dance song is popular doesn't mean it has to be exactly the same as everyone else's. Have your DJ or band play one of these cover songs. They're the perfect mix of familiar and original (and a little surprising too, which is always a good thing!). Check out the best cover songs below and scroll all the way down for our Spotify playlist.

  1. "L.O.V.E" by Joss Stone (original by Nat King Cole)

    photo by James Christianson Photography

    Nat King Cole was one of jazz's most famous and celebrated pianists. He rose to popularity in the 1940s and '50s with timeless hits like "Unforgettable" and "Nature Boy." "L.O.V.E" was recorded toward the end of Cole's life, and the song's melody has lived on ever since. The sweet, classic lyrics coupled with Joss Stone's airy voice make this a great pick for a couple looking for a no-fuss first dance song.

  2. "I Melt With You" by Nouvelle Vague (original by Modern English)

    photo by Carlie Statsky Photography

    The band Modern English was formed in Colchester, England, so it's no surprise that their name honors the country. The band has tons of hits, but "I Melt With You" is one of their most well known. The lyrics are all about how time stops when you're in love—we think that's pretty spot on for first dances too.

  3. "No Ordinary Love" by Deftones (original by Sade)

    photo by Jacob Arthur

    "No Ordinary Love" spent 27 weeks on Billboard's Hot 100 chart after its debut in January 1993. It's been featured in pop culture a lot as well. Given that your wedding is no ordinary day, Deftones rendition is no ordinary first dance song—even with the heavy metal influence, it's still sensual and romantic.

  4. "The Way You Look Tonight" by Harry Connick Jr. (original by Fred Astaire)

    photo by Susie Sefcik Photography

    "The Way You Look Tonight" was originally featured in the 1936 movie Swing Time. The ballad made such waves that it won an Oscar for Best Original Song in 1937. Its glamorous, old-Hollywood sound make it one of the best cover songs for a more formal wedding.

  5. "Is This Love" by Corinne Bailey Rae (original by Bob Marley)

    photo by Ned Jackson Photography

    "Is This Love" was released in 1978. Since then, it's been covered by everyone from Allen Stone to Rihanna. One of our favorite versions is the one by Corinne Bailey Rae. The beautiful, soulful singing coupled with the simple refrain upgrade this tune from a beach anthem to the ultimate sentimental first dance wedding song.

  6. "The Best Is Yet to Come" by Tony Bennett (original by Frank Sinatra)

    photo by James Christianson Photography

    Frank Sinatra sang "The Best Is Yet to Come" countless times throughout his career. Lyrics about love, hope and celebration make this song perfect for our list.

  7. "At Last" by Beyonce (original by Etta James)

    photo by Marta Locklear Photography

    In 1999, "At Last" was finally inducted into the Grammy Hall of Fame. We can't think of a more fitting first dance lyric than the last line of this ballad: "And here we are in heaven/For you are mine/At last." (And needless to say, Beyonce absolutely nails it.)

  8. "Wild Horses" by The Sundays (original by The Rolling Stones)

    photo by Jenna Walker Photography

    "Wild Horses" is on Rolling Stone's Greatest Songs of All Time list, so you know there's something special about this track. It's easy to get lost in the moment dancing to this cover by The Sundays. The melodic singing and soft guitar are a good fit for a rustic wedding.

  9. "To Love Somebody" by Damien Rice and Ray LaMontagne (original by the Bee Gees)

    photo by Shipra Panosian Photography

    Judging by the long list of people who've covered "To Love Somebody"—including Janis Joplin, Nina Simone and Michael Buble—it's pretty obvious the Bee Gees created a pop classic. Damien Rice and Ray LaMontagne's version brings a ton of soul to the already passionate lyrics: "I live and breathe for you/But what good does it do/If I ain't got you."

  10. "Heaven" by DJ Sammy (original by Bryan Adams)

    photo by Roey Yohai Photography

    This song, which describes how love grows from childhood crush to lifelong commitment, was practically made for couples who have been together since their "younger years," as Bryan Adams croons. The upbeat techno remix by DJ Sammy is just as heartfelt, which makes it a good choice for your wedding first dance.

  11. "Crazy in Love" by Snow Patrol (original by Beyonce)

    photo by Agnes Lopez Photography

    "Crazy in Love" also has a coveted spot on Rolling Stone's Greatest Songs of All Time list (not to mention, it earned the no. 1 spot on VH1's Best Songs of the 2000s). If you love Beyonce but don't want to bust out any of her signature moves on the dance floor, check out this rendition by Snow Patrol. The mellow tune feels more wedding appropriate—and less like a club hit.

  12. "Across the Universe" by Rufus Wainwright (original by The Beatles)

    photo by Ira Lippke Studios

    John Lennon's lyrical genius produced the vivid imagery that makes "Across the Universe" a truly unique ballad. Even Lennon himself believed that the song may have been one of his greatest, telling Rolling Stone in the 1970s, "It's one of the best lyrics I've written. In fact, it could be the best." As though you needed any more convincing to choose this one-of-a-kind first dance wedding song.

  13. "That's How Strong My Love Is" by The Rolling Stones (original by Otis Redding)

    photo by Aevum Photography

    Tons of legends—including Buddy Miller, Percy Sledge and Seven Mary Three—have covered "That's How Strong My Love Is." If you're looking for a classic-rock-inspired first dance song, look no further than The Rolling Stones rendition.

  14. "Here Comes the Sun" by Nina Simone (original by The Beatles)

    photo by Click Photography KC

    Some say "Here Comes the Sun" is one of the best songs George Harrison wrote for The Beatles. Even though the song was never released as a single, the simple, heartfelt lyrics are definitely worth a listen—and possibly a dance as well.

  15. "Crazy Love" by Michael Buble (original by Van Morrison)

    Couple dancing with Crazy Love lyrics
    photo by Genevieve Leiper Photography

    "Crazy Love"—and Van Morrison—certainly have one music legend's approval: Ray Charles. The two sang a duet of the song at Van Morrison's induction into the Songwriters Hall of Fame. Michael Buble is known for his emotion-filled, dreamy singing, and his version is no different. It makes for a romantic first dance wedding song.

  16. "Grow Old With Me" by The Postal Service (original by John Lennon)

    photo by Caroline Petters Photography

    Inspired in part by a Robert Browning poem, John Lennon and Yoko Ono envisioned "Grow Old With Me" being played at every wedding across the country. The lyrics are absolutely wedding worthy: "Grow old along with me/two branches of one tree/face the setting sun/when the day is done."

  17. "Can't Help Falling in Love" by UB40 (original by Elvis Presley)

    photo by Nancy Ray Photography

    Despite covers by Bob Dylan and the A-Teens, British group UB40 made this song a bona fide hit. Their version reached the no. 1 spot on the Billboard's Hot 100 chart in the early '90s. With its relaxed tempo and reggae feel, the updated version would be one of the best first dance wedding songs for a beach or backyard reception.

  18. "Endless Love" by Glee Cast (original by Diana Ross and Lionel Richie)

    photo by Binaryflips Photography

    If, for some reason, the lyrics of "Endless Love" don't convince you that it's one of the most romantic songs ever written, maybe this will: Billboard proclaimed "Endless Love" the absolute best duet of all time, so of course it had to make our list!

  19. "Your Song" by Ewan McGregor (original by Elton John)

    photo by Mike Larson Photography

    "Your Song" was Elton John's first hit in the United States in the '70s. Filled with heart, Ewan McGregor's rendition is perfect for swaying on the dance floor.

  20. "Make You Feel My Love" by Adele (original by Bob Dylan)

    photo by Cly Creation

    Bob Dylan released "Make You Feel My Love" in 1997, and since then, artists like Adele and Billy Joel have all sang their own covers of the song. Adele's rich vocals add something special to the already sentimental song, making for a first dance wedding song that's absolutely timeless.

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