The Father Daughter Dance - Let's Get it Right

Since we've had such an overwhelmingly positive response to our “Tips when planning your first dance” and “15 Unique Mother/Son Dance” posts (over 400 thousand views and shares???…WOW!), we hear your requests and after much deliberating and research, here we go…it’s Daddy Daughter time.  

Let’s focus on arguably one of the sweetest moments of your entire wedding day. Imagine…You’ve just completed your first dance as a newlywed couple, and next the M.C. calls you and your father up for what I have come to appreciate as one of the most heartfelt moments of the evening…The Father Daughter Dance.  

Serving as the M.C. myself for literally hundreds of weddings and having the honor of watching so many of these touching (and some choreographed with overwhelmingly witting excellence) moments unfold, I have come to find the Father Daughter dance as one of my favorite parts of the night.  It can be fun, silly, rock and roll, or something that absolutely cues the waterworks.  Whichever route you choose, The Father Daughter dance is something that deserves the research…because, come on…this is the man who raised you…the one who saw your first tears, your first steps, and helped guide you lovingly through all the major milestones in your life…and now he’s sending you off and entrusting his baby girl into the arms of another man.  This is tough…a big moment for you both…a turning of the page…but don’t worry, we’ve got you covered.

We’ve come up with a comprehensive list of songs for you. We’ve weeded through the hundreds of online sources, the massive lists that have too many songs to even be able to listen to before you say “I Do”, and separated the winners in categories for you to cypher through. Most importantly, we’ve performed these songs (some dozens of times) and can tout their success!  Whichever song you choose, know that the ones below have stood the test of time for a reason.  Rather than flood you with an extensive list of options, I’ve provided choices I personally know will greatly add to this special moment. I also separated them into categories to help narrow your choices to help you create that perfect moment.

I've even set up Spotify Playlists so you can pull them directly onto your phone or computer and try them out. Just click the link at the top of each category to gain instant access to each playlist on your device!

So here they are…backed by performers who have seen their magic at work…some tried and true, and some unique ones you can make your own:  The Music City Sound’s Top Choices for The Father Daughter Dance Song.

Let’s Get Classy

These classic go-to’s have stood the test of time. You may have heard them performed at many a weddings past, but they’ve worked for a reason. Here are some of the top choices for the Father Daughter Dance Classics.

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  1. How Sweet It Is - James Taylor

  2. In My Life - The Beatles

  3. Somewhere Over The Rainbow - Israel Kamakawiwo’ole

  4. Lullabye (Goodnight, My Angel) - Billy Joel

  5. Forever Young - Rod Stewart

  6. God Only Knows - The Beach Boys

  7. Ain’t That Love - Ray Charles

  8. Cinderella - Steven Curtis Chapman

  9. I’ll Be There - The Jackson 5

  10. My Girl - The Temptations

  11. The Way You Look Tonight - Frank Sinatra

  12. What A Wonderful World - Louis Armstrong

  13. The Way You Do The Things You Do - The Temptations

  14. A Wink and a Smile - Harry Connick, Jr.

Crooners for the Win

Let’s be honest…very few can compete with the likes of Sinatra, Sam Cooke, or Ella Fitzgerald. Why fix it if ain’t broken? Here’s a list of tunes sung by some of the best of all time.

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  1. The Way You Look Tonight - Frank Sinatra

  2. What A Wonderful World - Louis Armstrong

  3. I Wish You Love - Sam Cooke

  4. Unforgettable - Natalie Cole

  5. They Can’t Take That Away From Me - Ella Fitzgerald

  6. A Wink and a Smile - Harry Connick, Jr.

  7. I Wish You Love - Dean Martin

Country Life

Country music has a way to tug at the heart strings with its classic way of story telling. Here are a few of our favorite picks.

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  1. My Little Girl - Tim McGraw

  2. God Gave Me You - Blake Shelton

  3. Just Fishin’ - Trace Adkins

  4. I Loved Her First - Heartland

  5. Daddy Lessons - Beyonce and the Dixie Chicks

  6. You Are My Sunshine - Johnny Cash

  7. Butterfly Kisses - Bob Carslile

  8. There Goes My Life - Kenny Chesney

  9. My Wish - Rascal Flatts

  10. Never Alone - Jim Brickman and Lady Antebellum

Tear Jerkers

I mean, we’re not forcing anyone to cry here…but the heartfelt way these songs’ lyrics unfold will undoubtedly cause some tissues to appear…

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  1. Cinderella - Steven Curtis Chapman

  2. Lullabye - Billy Joel

  3. When You Need Me - Bruce Springsteen

  4. Walk With You - Edwin McCain

  5. You Are So Beautiful - Joe Cocker

  6. You Make My Dreams - Tim Halperin


Cue the tambourines! These Motown classics are sure to get people dancing along with you.

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  1. The Way You Do The Things You Do - The Temptations

  2. Isn’t She Lovely - Stevie Wonder

  3. I’ll Be There - The Jackson 5

  4. Ain’t That Love - Ray Charles

  5. I Wish You Love - Sam Cooke

  6. My Girl - The Temptations

  7. That’s How Strong My Love Is - Otis Redding

Fun Ideas

Why not make this a moment to have some fun? I mean Dad’s are a blast! Doesn’t always have to be so serious… Some of these tunes have some funny tongue and cheek lyrics, and some you just can’t stop from bopping along with.

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  1. Don’t Worry Be Happy - Bobby McFerrin

  2. Father and Daughter - Paul Simon

  3. Daddy Lessons - Beyonce

  4. Dancin’ On Daddy’s Shoes - Leon Redbone

  5. Daughter - Loudon Wainwright III

  6. While You Were Sleeping - Elvis Perkins

Current Hits

I mean classics are great right? But what if there’s a current song on the radio that would be perfect? Here are some hits from current artists that would be a perfect Father/Daughter fit!

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  1. One Call Away - Charlie Puth

  2. Count On Me - Bruno Mars

  3. Daughters - John Mayer

  4. Daddy - Beyonce

  5. Sweet Pea - Amos Lee

  6. You Are The Best Thing - Ray Lamontagne

Classic Rock

Who doesn’t remember their early dad…long hair, windows down…singing awkwardly loud along with some Springsteen or Zeppelin. Go ahead and give him what he really wants for the Father Daughter dance. Here are some classic songs that rock!

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  1. Sweet Child of Mine - Guns N’ Roses

  2. Wildflowers - Tom Petty

  3. When You Need Me - Bruce Springsteen

  4. Thank You - Led Zeppelin

  5. Forever Young - Rod Stewart

  6. You’re My Best Friend - Queen

  7. She’s A Rainbow - The Rolling Stones

Let’s be Unique

These songs are a random bunch for sure…but if you’re looking for songs that haven’t been used a million times, or for something to stand as your own, then these unique Father Daughter Dance songs might be the pick for you.

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  1. Kind & Generous - Natalie Merchant

  2. While You were Sleeping - Elvis Perkins

  3. Daughter - Loudon Wainwright III

  4. Father and Daughter - Paul Simon

  5. You Got It - Roy Orbison

  6. Pride and Joy - Stevie Ray Vaughan

  7. Shining Star - Earth, Wind & Fire

Thanks for checking out our list of favorites and for taking the time to make sure your Father Daughter dance will be as special and unique as the two of you. If you haven’t already, be sure to check out our other posts as well to help with selecting your mother-son song and study some useful tips we have for you when choosing the song for YOUR first dance…because I mean it still is YOUR party right?

and as always…

Cheers to a wonderful celebration and to many years of happiness!