30 Best Modern Rock Songs For Your Wedding Playlist

02 April 2017

Brides and grooms frequently ask me what types of music I play? Well, I love to play all types of music, but are totally interested in helping you make the perfect playlist for your wedding day which results in memories that are sure to last a lifetime. I just said "totally" so does that mean I am showing my 80s side? I might be and I certainly would not turn down an 80s infused wedding playlist. I grew up in the 80s and love all 80s music. I have had lots of couples book me for my forte in 80s music. Recent consultations though with brides and grooms have seen a bit of a different approach with creating their playlists. Brides and grooms I speak to these days want something different. They don't want their wedding to sound like all the other weddings they have been to. How about a modern rock playlist spanning from the 80s through the mid 2000s?

Download These 30 Modern Rock Songs From Spotify Right NOW
"Different" is good. Consider some of these modern rock hits from the 80s through the 90s and into the 2000s. Perhaps these great tracks will give you more ideas of more tracks to add into your wedding playlist.  As one of the top Charleston Wedding DJs, I am always trying to think of ways to make the job easier for my clients as it pertains to hleping them create the best playlist for their wedding. Head over to Spotify now and do a simple search for DJ Mike Bills, and you'll find this playlist, and many, many others designed to help you plan the music for your big day.


"Again" | Lenny Kravitz | 2000  
One of my favorite more "ballady" tracks from Lenny. Catch it on his greatest hits album from 2000. "Again" would be the new song that would be released on his Greatest Hits compilation back in the fall of 2000.

"Are You Gonna Be My Girl" | Jet  | 2003  
Oh how good modern rock sounded in 2003 and 2004. So many bands were breaking in those years, including this one from Australia. This track from Jet is a great modern rock track to add into your wedding playlist "Are You Gonna Be My Girl" was the first song to be released from their 2003 album Get Born and would climb all the way to #3 on the Alternative songs chart. "Are You Gonna Be My Girl" has also been a choice for the bridal party inroduction song as well.

"Everlong" | Foo Fighters | 1997  
A true classic from the Foo Fighters. I actually have a copy of this song performed by the Vitamin String Quartet ;) Dave Grohl and The Foo Fighters would release the album The Colour and the Shape back in 1997. "Everlong" was the second song to hit radio and would top out at #3 on the Alternative songs chart.

"1979" | Smashing Pumpkins | 1996
Released from the Mellon Collie and The Infinite Sadness album, this is 90s alternative at it's finest. Add it into your playlist for your Cotton Dock at Boone Hall wedding or Historic Rice Mill wedding.  "1979" would peak at #1 on the US Alternative songs chart.

"Girl You'll Be A Woman Soon" | Urge Overkill | 1994 
Originating from the great city of Chicago, Urge Overkill would record a cover of the classic song by Neil Diamond, "Girl, You'll Be A Woman Soon." The cover would be used on the iconic 90s movie Pulp Fiction. The song would peak at #11 on the Modern Rock Tracks chart.

"Lazy Eye" | Silversun Pickups | 2007
"Lazy Eye" is one of my favorite songs from the album Carnavas.  "Lazy Eye" was released  in the fall of 2007 and would end the year in the Top 20 on the Billboard Hot Modern Rock chart.

"Something So Strong" | Crowded House | 1987
The follow-up to their breakout song "Don't Dream It's Over", this track would be a great feel good track for your cocktail hour. "Something So Strong" would  be released in the spring of 1987 and climb all the way to #7 on the Billboard Hot 100 chart.

Sour Girl" | Stone Temple Pilots | 1999
From their album "Four", this is recently forgotten light classic from STP, and could be put into the ballad category. I've always looked back at "Sour Girl" as more of a ballad from STP, which makes it perfect for the addition on a wedding playlist. The song would peak at #3 on the Billboard Alternative songs chart.

"No One Knows" | Queens Of The Stone Age | 2002 
With Dave Grohl sitting in the drums, this track was the first from this group from their album "Songs For The Deaf". "No One Knows"  would be the only song by Queens Of The Stone Age to make it all the way to #1 on the Modern Rock chart.

"Just Like Heaven" | The Cure | 1987 
An integral part of any 80s mixtape that includes alternative music, this song has a great beat to it and will definitely create that different sound to your wedding that you are looking for. "Just Like Heaven" would peak at #40 on the Billboard Hot 100 chart.

"New Sensation" | INXS | 1988
With the release of their album Kick in 1987, INXS was on the top of the world. "New Sensation" was the third song to be released from the album and would peak at #3 on the Billboard Hot 100.

"There's A Light That Never Goes Out" | The Smiths | 1986

A true classic from one of the great alternative albums from the 1980s, it'd be great during your cocktail or dinner hour. The song appeared on the 1986 album The Queen Is Dead, but was not released as a single until 1992.

"Santa Monica" | Everclear
 Nothing wrong with a little bit of a flashback to the 90s with some grunge. Sure, it's not too abrasive and would go well with your other modern rock and alternative selections. For the 90s nerds, you can find "Santa Monica" on the 1995 album Sparkle And Fade.  "Santa Monica" would eventually top the Billboard Mainstream Rock chart. Looking for some more 90s Alternative Songs For Your Cocktail hour? Click the link.

"Inside Out" | Eve 6
I played this track recently and the floor filled up rather quickly. "Inside Out" was released in the spring of 1998 and would become one of the most popular modern rock songs of the year.  "Inside Out" would make it all the way to Number 1 on the Alternative songs chart.

"Under The Bridge" | Red Hot Chili Peppers | 1992
A slower track off Blood Sugar Sex Magik from 1991, it could be thrown on during your cocktail or dinner hour, but then if you really want to crank it later, we could thrown on "Give It Away" "Under The Bridge" was the second song off Blood Sugar Sex Magik to be released to radio and would make it all the way to #2 on the Billboard Hot 100.

"What I Got" | Sublime | 1996 
Quintessential 90s alternative, and I have the "clean" version of this for your parents and grandparents. Your wedding party over at the Pavillion At Pepper Plantation will love this track. "What I Got" would peak at #1 on the Alternative songs chart.

"I Got You" | Split Enz | 1980 
Written by Neil Finn who you heard earlier in this list with Crowded House, this is another great modern rock song to add into your playlist. While it was not a success in the United States, "I Got You" would peak at #1 in Australia and New Zealand.

"What Have I Done To Deserve This" | Pet Shop Boys With Dusty Springfield | 1987 
An incredible collaboration from 60s music legendDusty Springfield sure to get the crowd dancing over at your Middleton Place wedding. You can find "What Have I Done To Deserve This" on the Pet Shop Boys second album Actually released in 1987. The song would peak at #2 on the Billboard Hot 100.

"Somebody Told Me" | The Killers | 2004
Seems like just yesterday it was the spring and summer of 2004 and "Somebody Told Me" was one of the most popular songs on the modern rock radio stations. "Somebody Told Me" can be found on the album Hot Fuss and climb all the way to #3 on the Alternative charts.

"I Melt With you" | Modern English | 1983 
Classic 80s at it's finest. It's got a great beat to it and will make your wedding playlist sound so awesome. "I Melt With You" was one of the iconic 80s music videos you saw during the early years of MTV. While it did not chart well in America, the song would become one of the most requested 80s songs at weddings.

"We Got The Beat" | The Go-Go's | 1982 
The Go-Go's are the new wave band from the 80s made of girls and I love them and their sound. This might be a perfect song for you to dance with your bridesmaids too. The song would make it all the way to #2 on the Billboard Hot 100.  If you are interested in more of the Best Women In 80s Music, be sure to click over and check this other post out.

"My Sharona" | The Knack | 1979 - 1980  
Another classic from a band who did not put out too many songs, but this one will get the party going. "My Sharona" was the first song to be released by The Knack from their album Get The Knack and it's catchy sound would make it a Number 1 song on the Billboard Hot 100.

"Digging In The Dirt" | Peter Gabriel | 1992
A great song that is cheery and get the party going like only Peter Gabriel can. Just check out the video and smile. "Digging In The Dirt" was the first single to be released from Peter Gabriel's 1992 album So, and would top out at #1 on the Alternative and Mainstream Rock chart.

"We Are The People" | Empire Of The Sun | 2008 
A bit of an electronic modern track here but it'd be great for the dancing portion of your evening. If you like this one, then "Walking On A Dream" might be another one to add into your wedding playlist.

"Life During Wartime" LIVE | Talking Heads | 1984
 The version of this song released on the soundtrack to "Stop Making Sense" is the absolute best to play and another song appears on this soundtrack that I play lots. "This Must Be The Place".  The original version of the song can be found the 1979 album Fear Of Music.

"Electric Feel" | MGMT | 2007 
An Indie alternative from the mid 2000s that is sure to get your crowd going under the tent at Lowndes Grove or the William Aiken House. "Electric Feel"  was the second song to be released from the album Oracular Spectacular. While it didn't chart in the United States, "Electric Feel" would peak at #10 in new Zealand.

"Shiny Happy People" | REM | 1991
Vintage alternative track by REM and features Kate Pierson of the B-52s in the music video and just happy all around and perfect for your modern rock playlist over at Harborside East. "Shiny Happy People" would peak at #3 on the Billboard Alternative songs chart.

"All The Small Things" | Blink 182

"All The Small Things" was released from the album Enema Of The State back in January of 2000. The song would peak t #6 on the Billboard Hot 100 and Number 1 on the alternative chart.

"Virtual Insanity" | Jamiroquai | 1996
If you are a fan of funk, you might want to pick up a copy of the Jamiroquai album Travelling Without Moving. While the song is one of the most popular songs released by Jamiroquai, the song would barely break into the Adult Top 40 chart.

"Beverly Hills" | Weezer | 2005
Weezer would release their album Make Believe in early 2005. "Beverly Hills" was the first song to be released to radio in the spring of 2005. The song would peak at #10 on the Billboard Hot 100, and #1 on the Alternative chart.

This is a few of the many modern rock tracks in my music catalog to wet your appetite and maybe think about creating something different when it comes to the music on your wedidng playlist. Are you just recently engaged? Are you beginning to think about the music for your upcoming wedding in Charleston and need to sit down with a professional wedding DJ? Click HERE to schedule an appointment for a consultation with Mike

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DJ Mike delivered well organized and orchestrated results that made for a great wedding and reception! Couldn't have picked a better DJ to cover our event and truly appreciated his availability to pick up the job and execute in such a short time period. I highly recommend his services, overall great quality.

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Before choosing Mike Bills as our wedding DJ, we looked at several companies and DJs and looked over the reviews for all of them. We chose Mike Bills because of the overwhelmingly great reviews he got and I am so glad we did! They were all spot on! Mike was great to work with, quick to respond, came to our rehearsal to do a run through with us.

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Mike was kind, courteous, professional, and creative! We thoroughly enjoyed working with him for our destination wedding at Folly Beach. We gave Mike minimal guidance and he caught on to our "style" quickly and efficiently. Our guests are still raving about the music selections, and how they were a great balance of new tracks and standards for everyone to enjoy.

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