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wedding prelude

23 Wedding Ceremony Prelude Songs To Play As Your Guests Arrive

When creating their playlist with first dance and processional songs during the wedding planning process, many couples tend to overlook what kind of music they choose to play before the ceremony actually begins. Wedding prelude songs set the mood for your ceremony!

These romantic songs are definitely important since it creates an idyllic atmosphere as your guests arrive at your wedding venue.

If you’re searching for prelude wedding songs but have no idea what will sound perfect on your special day, we’ve come to the rescue with our list of recommendations! 

Almost every genre has the perfect choice for prelude music! 

If you need help with narrowing down your options, you’ve come to the right place! Find your inspiration for pre-wedding ceremony songs here!


“I Only Have Eyes For You” by The Flamingos

Lyrics: “My love must be a kind of blind love / I can’t see anyone but you”

Bring your retro-themed dreams to life by adding The Flamingos’s “I Only Have Eyes For You” to your wedding day playlist. This wholesome song has pulled at people’s heartstrings since its release in 1959.


“Crazy Love” by Van Morrison

Lyrics: “I can hear her heart beat for a thousand miles / And the heaven’s open every time she smiles / And when I come to her that’s where I belong / Yet I’m running to her like a river’s song”

Switch up your music selection by choosing pre-ceremony wedding songs like Van Morrison’s “Crazy in Love.” His carefree attitude will feel right at home during an espousal with a bohemian theme


“A Case of You” by Joni Mitchell

Lyrics: “I remember that time you told me / You said, “Love is touching souls” / Surely you touched mine”

 When it comes to finding mellow choices for the prelude, Joni Mitchell’s “A Case of You” is hard to beat. The sweet lyrics on this track will surely win all of your wedding guests over.

“Wonderful Tonight” by Eric Clapton

Lyrics: “I feel wonderful / Because I see the love light in your eyes / And the wonder of it all / Is that you just don’t realize how much I love you”

Bring some 70s vibes to your wedding prelude playlist by including Eric Clapton’s “Wonderful Tonight.” Go with this option if you’re looking for music that is heartfelt without being too sappy. 

“Mad About You” by Belinda Carlisle

Lyrics: I’m mad about you / You’re mad about me babe / Couple of fools run wild aren’t we / Pushing the day into the nighttime”

 If you and your future spouse are fans of 80s music, Belinda Carlisle’s “Mad About You” becomes a no-brainer for your playlist of romantic wedding prelude songs. Be sure to use this catchy beat to create an unforgettable moment before your ceremony begins! 


“Next To You” by Paula Abdul

Lyrics: “Love will go on and on / Love’s an everlasting bond / When I’m next to you / Our love flows through”

Set the sentimental tone of your espousal by requesting Paula Abdul’s “Next To You” as your pre- wedding ceremony music. Her passionate words will move everybody’s emotions during your special day.


“Harvest Moon” by Neil Young

Lyrics: “When we were strangers / I watched you from afar / When we were lovers / I loved you with all my heart”

If you’re searching for prelude wedding songs that’ll fit the theme of an autumn ceremony, Neil Young’s “Harvest Moon” will certainly do the trick. This classic tune will definitely bring back some cherished memories for the older people on your guest list. 


“Everything” by Lighthouse

Lyrics: “You are the strength, / That keeps me walking. / You are the hope, / That keeps me trusting. / You are the light, / To my soul.”

Some brides and grooms prefer longer music with a mellow vibe for their pre ceremony wedding songs. If you feel the same way about your potential playlist, Lighthouse’s “Everything” becomes an easy choice. 

“Come Away With Me” by Norah Jones

Lyrics: “And I want to wake up with the rain / Falling on a tin roof / While I’m safe there in your arms / So all I ask is for you / To come away with me in the night / Come away with me” 

Create the ultimate wedding playlist by incorporating Norah Jones’s “Come Away With Me.” This jazz music is simply too delightful to be ignored.


“First Day of My Life” by Bright Eyes

Lyrics: “And so I thought I’d let you know / Yeah, these things take forever, I especially am slow / But I realized that I need you / And I wondered if I could come home”

 If you’re looking for an acoustic song for the prelude of your wedding day, Bright Eyes has got your back with “First Day of My Life.” Your guests will enjoy every minute of listening to this sentimental track.


“Better Together” by Jack Johnson

Lyrics: “Mmm, it’s always better when we’re together / Yeah, we’ll look at the stars when we’re together”

Jack Johnson’s “Better Together” fits perfectly on any wedding playlist with contemporary artists. This wholehearted type of music will make everybody’s hearts soar on your special day!

“Heavenly Day” by Patty Griffin

Lyrics: “The smile on your face, I live only to see / It’s enough for me, baby, it’s enough for me / Oh, heavenly day, ”

Show your love for your partner by playing a romantic tune like Patty Griffin’s “Heavenly Day.” This beautiful choice feels especially appropriate for brides and grooms who are planning an outdoor wedding.


“Ave Maria” by Beyonce

Lyrics: “I found heaven on earth / You are my last, my first / And then I hear this voice inside”

Beyonce’s rewrite of Franz Schubert’s “Ave Maria” is an essential for any couples who are exchanging their vows during a Catholic wedding day. This song is equally as emotional for secular ceremonies thanks to her powerhouse vocals.

“Only Love” by Ben Howard

Lyrics: “Come on love, come on love / Watch me fall apart, watch me fall apart / And I’ll be yours to keep / Wind in the shadows, whale song in the deep”

It’s no wonder why so many brides and grooms choose Ben Howard’s “Only Love” for their playlist of wedding entertainment. This sweet song hasn’t gone out of style for over a decade. 


“Turning Page” by Sleeping at Last

Lyrics: “Your love is my turning page / Where only the sweetest words remain / Every kiss is a cursive line / Every touch is a redefining phrase”

Sleeping at Last’s “Turning Page” has the romantic lyrics that you expect from listening to wedding prelude background music. It’s hard to imagine a better option for your nuptial!


“How Long Will I Love You?” by Ellie Goulding

Lyrics: “How long will I love you? / As long as stars are above you / And longer if I may”

Inspire tender feelings among your guests by playing Ellie Goulding’s “How Long Will I Love You?” as one of the songs before the wedding ceremony. This track is ideal for any couples who prefer a stripped-back melody instead of an over-the-top sound.


“I Knew This Would Be Love” by Imaginary Future

Lyrics: “When I saw you waiting at your place / Something felt familiar in your face / Oh, you smiled as if to say / I knew my heart was yours from the first day”

Imaginary Future’s “I Knew This Would Be Love” was made to be included on playlists consisting of modern wedding prelude music. This song certainly deserves some airplay during your espousal!

“Grow Old With Me” by Tom Odell

Lyrics: “Grow old with me / Let us share what we see / And oh the best it could be / Just you and I”

Tom Odell’s “Grow Old With Me” is a solid addition to any prelude playlist with popular wedding songs. He doesn’t hold back for a moment when expressing his profound emotions on this track. 


“Oh, What a World” by Kacey Musgraves

Lyrics: “ All kinds of magic all around us, it’s hard to believe / Thank God it’s not too good to be true / Oh, what a world, and then there is you”

If you’re looking for popular songs that won’t feel out of place during a rustic wedding day, Kacey Musgrave has got covered with “Oh, What a World.” Her sentimental ideas on this country music will surely bring all of your guests to happy tears!


“I’m With You” by Vance Joy

Lyrics: “I was just coasting till we met / You remind me just how good it can get / Well I’ve been on fire, dreaming of you / Tell me you don’t / It feels like you do”

Spruce up your playlist of modern wedding prelude music by adding indie rock favorites like Vance Joy’s “I’m With You.” Even if your attendees aren’t the biggest fans of this genre, they’ll still appreciate the romance of this song! 


“Love You For a Long Time” by Maggie Rogers

Lyrics: “ I found the reason I’m not giving up / I felt the fever and I knew he was mine / Oh I, I’m gonna love you for a long time”

When thinking about what to play as your pre-wedding ceremony songs, Maggie Rogers’s “Love You For a Long Time” is never the wrong choice. Her thoughtful ideas will definitely create the ambience that you want to experience on your special day.


“Falling Like The Stars” by James Arthur

Lyrics: “And I need you to know that we’re / Fallin’ so fast, we’re fallin’ like the stars, fallin’ in love”

Give your guests the full experience of a celestial ceremony by requesting James Arthur’s “Falling Like The Stars.” This acoustic version will definitely leave your entire wedding party in amazement. 

“Conversations in the Dark” by John Legend

Lyrics: “And you say that you’re not worth it / You get hung up on your flaws / Well, in my eyes you are perfect / As you are”

John Legend’s “Conversations in the Dark” never fails as a popular wedding prelude song. His sweet but honest lyrics will surely become a crowd-pleaser. 


“Godspeed” by James Blake

Lyrics: “I will always love you how I do / Let go of a prayer for you / It’s a sweet word / The table is prepared for you”

James Blake’s “Godspeed” is a must-have for anybody curating their playlist of pre wedding music. His stripped-down cover of Frank Ocean’s song will certainly become a favorite among the hopeless romantics on your guest list.


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Lauren Peterson

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