photographer : Tell Draper Photography | event planner: Life of the Party | venue: Ravinia Green Country Club | entertainment: Flow Entertainment, Inc
The Best of | National | Celebrations

Listen Now, Celebrate Soon: 19 Party Playlists From Top Bands & DJs

Top entertainment companies know that putting on an unforgettable show is just as much art as science. In addition to creating the perfect pacing and flow, our favorite performers know that last minute changes and on-the-spot inspiration is necessary for conjuring the right vibe. They also know which songs are guaranteed to get guests (and yes, even the wallflowers) in the celebratory spirit.

So much goes into selecting the musical roster for any event type. As Kareem “K.W.O.E.” Wells of Flow Entertainment, Inc. tells us, songs should be based on the guest of honor’s likes and dislikes, the vibe of the room, and requests made during the event. “Most importantly,” he tells us, “you were hired because they like what you as a company bring to the table, so they are expecting you to do your very best, and in order to do that, you must follow those three things to be successful in your purpose.”

Dave Calzaretta of Magnificent Events, Ltd. and Maggie Speaks reveals just how much thought goes into choosing the perfect song. The first dance song, for example, “Is typically something very personal to the couple, so while it is hard to pin one down, I often recommend ‘You Are The Best Thing’ by Ray La Montagne because it is modern and hip, but has an old school feel with a nice horn arrangement. It makes it relevant for the younger people but comfortable stylistically for the older generation as well.”

Although events may be postponed, they still loom large on the horizon. As we shelter in place, we are using this time to find inspiration and plan our future celebrations (which will be all the more meaningful once we are reunited with friends and family). So sit back and listen to this Spotify list — inspired by some of our favorite entertainment companies — from the comfort of your couch. It’s time to start dreaming of hitting the dance floor.

Women wearing all black dresses dance in front of a stage band. Purple covers the walls
photographer: Jennings King Photography

East Coast Entertainment

Palm Beach, FL
EastCoast Entertainment, the largest full-service entertainment agency in the country, boasts an extensive and talented artist roster. They produce customized, unforgettable events that feature everything from live music to performance acts. We especially love how their entertainment consultants function as “a personal entertainment concierge.” Their customized lists of entertainment options guide hosts as they plan their perfect celebration.

photographer: Tell Draper Photography

Flow Entertainment, Inc.

Chicago, IL, USA
Kareem K.W.O.E. Wells of Flow Entertainment Inc. is known throughout Chicago and beyond as “The King of the Mitzvahs.” Kareem and the Flow crew of dancers and DJS embody the K.W.O.E. philosophy: Know your genius, work to be unstoppable, own your actions, explore the world. In addition to producing celebratory events, Kareem is also a recording artist and part of the K.W.O.E. Foundation which connects kids to new opportunities in their community through music and motivational speaking.

A man stands with one arm reached out to the audience and the other on an electric guitar. A lady in a gold tight dress dances to the left. A pink wavy backdrop is behind them
photographer: The Day by Ira Lippke

Hank Lane Music

New York, NY
Hank Lane Music is a full-service entertainment provider with an extensive roster of talented performers. We especially love how their unique bands master a wide-range of musical styles — from Rhythm & Blues to Top 40 — for a versatile and high-energy performance. During this unprecedented time, Hank Lane Music has also partnered with the First Responders Children’s Foundation by offering “virtual performance” for those unable to gather for a milestone event.

A man crowd surfs in a dimly lit ballroom
photographer: Sean Cook Wedding Photography

Love in the Mix

San Francisco, CA
Love in the Mix, a full-service event planning and production company, is known for their world-class entertainment and creative lighting designs. We especially love how they integrate sound and lighting to create an immersive experience that wows the senses. Their talented team of experienced professionals offers a wide range of customizable services which include DJs, bands, lighting packages, and more.

A group of performers is onstage with microphones in their hands and singing to the crowd.
photographer: Bob & Dawn Davis Photography & Design

Arlen Music Productions

Evanston, IL
Arlen Music Productions provides customized live music with a six stage planning process for an Effortless Entertainment Experience™️. Their talented roster includes the Ken Arlen Evolution Orchestra, with performances at the Presidential Inaugural Ball and New Year’s Eve at the Bellagio in Las Vegas. We especially love their ability to create a once-in-a-lifetime performance tailored to your vision.

Four women are on stage singing and dancing with drapes behind
photographer: Carasco Photography

The Gold Coast All Stars

Chicago, IL
The Gold Coast All Stars is a talented group of musicians with a standard lineup of 13 to 18 pieces. Their eclectic set lit will get everyone — regardless of age — on the dance floor. We especially love their high energy and perfect pacing that results in show-stopping, unforgettable performances. They work closely with each host to create an unforgettable evening from start to finish.

A woman stands in darkness with a single spotlight on her as she sings into a standing microphone
photographer: Kara Fein Photography

Bob Gail Music

Inglewood, CA
Bob Gail Music brings topnotch entertainment and a wide variety of musical performances to events around the world. We love how this company began with two musicians and a passion for music and community. This family business, now led by the second generation, is renowned for their exceptional customer service — not to mention their prolific roster of talented live bands, ensembles, and soloists.

A man in a navy tux plays the electric guitar dramatically with a micrphone in front of him and a keyboard just below that
photographer: George Street Photo & Video

Maggie Speaks

Chicago, IL
Maggie Speaks is an award-wining cover band that performs at prestigious events, such as Chicago’s ACS Discovery Ball and the NHL Winter Classic at Wrigley Field, across the globe. We especially love how their “Celebrity Sit-Ins” allow guests to experience former and current singers of internationally acclaimed bands. Their customized entertainment options also allow hosts to create an inspired and personalized evening. 

A man in the middle pointing to the camera wearing a baseball hat and sunglasses. Two women on either side of him are singing and pointing to the crowd.
photo courtesy of Mannequin The Band

Mannequin The Band

Denver, CO
Mannequin The Band is an acclaimed Colorado-based band that performs nationwide. Their superb artistic ability and wide range of musical styles win over couples and guests alike. We especially love how this lively band embraces a “party mindset.” They personally engage with guests in the audience and routinely pack the dance floor for evenings of non-stop fun and entertainment.

A mom and son dance together on an all white dance floor. Party guests are dancing around them
photographer: gerber + scarpelli photography

Bizar Entertainment

Chicago, IL
Bizar Entertainment is a Chicago-based entertainment company with over 20 years of experience. They develop strong relationships with their clientele and create a seamless planning process that includes open rehearsals. We especially appreciate their commitment to creating lively entertainment that never prohibits intimate table talk or an enjoyable dining experience, along with their natural ability to engage people on the dance floor. 

Three women spin in circles, causing their dresses to pouf outward. Walls are lit up purple in the background
photographer: Lin & Jirsa Photography

Special Occasions LA

Los Angeles, CA
Special Occasions LA boasts over two decades of experience as a leading entertainment and lighting company for South Asian weddings and other events. Their services include everything from Baraat DJs and multicultural ceremony solutions to event lighting and photo booths. We love how this versatile team works with clients to create a unique experience and seamless planning process.

A full band is set up on a wooden stage. All members are wearing black and are ready to play.
photographer: Caitlin O’Reilly Photography

Vybe Society

Oakland, CA
Vybe Society is a self-managed band of talented performers and musicians. They have experience working with major label artists such Cee Lo and others. They offer a customizable experience —ranging from a soloist to a 20-piece band — along with an eclectic assortment of musical styles. We love their flexibility and willingness to learn new songs that are important to their clientele. 

1.Top Entrance Songs for a Wedding or Bar/Bat Mitzvah

“Good Times Roll” – GRiZ , Space Jam Theme Song

“Signed, Sealed, Delivered” – Stevie Wonder

“Wipe Me Down” – Lil Boosie

“Mo Bamba” – Shek Wes

“The Nights” – Avicii

“Sugar” – Maroon 5

“Marry You” – Bruno Mars

“Let’s Get It Started” – Black Eyed Peas

“All I Do Is Win” – DJ Khaled

“Can’t stop the Feeling” – Justin Timberlake

“Eye of the Tiger” – Survivor

“Shut Up and Dance” – Walk the Moon

“Hold My Hand” – Jess Glynne

“Forever” – Chris Brown

“I Gotta Feeling” – Black Eyed Peas

“Beautiful Day” by U2

“Love on Top” – Beyoncé

“How Sweet It Is (To Be Loved By You)” – James Taylor

2.Top First Dance Songs for a Wedding 

“Beyond” – Leon Bridges

“Shallow” – Lady Gaga and Bradley Cooper

“Because You Loved Me” – Celine Dion

“Ribbon in the Sky” – Stevie Wonder

“For You” – Kenny Lattimore

“Tennessee Whiskey” – Chris Stapleton

“Let It Be Me” – Ray LaMontagne

“This Will Be (An Everlasting Love)” – Natalie Cole

“Can’t Take My Eyes Off of You” – Frankie Valli and The Four Seasons

“Perfect” – Ed Sheeran

“Can’t Help Falling in Love” – Elvis Presley

“Unchained Melody” – Righteous Brothers

“You Are The Best Thing” – Ray LaMontagne

“Stay With You” – John Legend

“If I Should Fall Behind” – Bruce Springsteen

“Lover” – Taylor Swift

“At Last” – Etta James

“XO” – John Mayer (Cover of Beyoncé)

3.Top Parent/Child Songs for a Wedding or Bar/Bat Mitzvah

“My Girl” – Temptations

“Brown Eyed Girl” – Van Morrison

“The Way You Look Tonight” – Frank Sinatra

“Song For Mama” – Boyz II Men

“Dance With My Father” – Luther Vandross

“Landslide” – Fleetwood Mac

“My Wish” – Rascal Flatts

“Father and Daughter” – Paul Simon

“In My Life” – The Beatles

“Moon River” – Audrey Hepburn

“Sweet Pea” – Amos Lee

“What a Wonderful World” – Louis Armstrong

“Daughters” – John Mayer

“Your Song” – Elton John

“I Hope You Dance” – Lee Ann Womack

“Always Be My Baby” – Mariah Carey

“My Little Girl” – Tim McGraw

4. Best Songs to Get Gen Z on the Dance Floor

“Truth Hurts” – Lizzo 

“Suge” – DaBaby

“Burn The House Down” – AJR

“Don’t Start Now” – Dua Lipa 

“Old Town Road” – Lil Nas X

“The Box” – Roddy Ricch

5. Best Songs to Get Millennials on the Dance Floor

“Party in the USA” –  Miley Cyrus

“Feels” – Calvin Harris, Katy Perry, Pharrell Williams 

 “Crank That” – Soulja Boy

“Party Rock Anthem” – LMFAO 

“Mr. Brightside” – The Killers 

“Good As Hell” – Lizzo

“Toosie Slide” – Drake

6. Best Songs to Get Gen X on the Dance Floor

“Footloose” – Kenny Loggins

“Sweet Child of Mine” – Guns N’ Roses

“Holiday” – Madonna

“Take On Me” – A-ha 

“Uptown Funk” – Mark Ronson and Bruno Mars

“Poison” – Bel Biv Devoe

7. Best Songs to Get Baby Boomers on the Dance Floor

“September” – Earth Wind & Fire

“Mambo No. 5” – Lou Bega

“Can’t Take My Eyes Off You” – Frankie Valli and the Four Seasons 

“Twist & Shout” – The Beatles

“Signed, Sealed, Delivered” – Stevie Wonder

“Billie Jean” – Michael Jackson

8. Top Songs to Get All the Singles on the Dance Floor 

“I Wanna Dance With Somebody” – Whitney Houston

“Hey Ya!” – OutKast

“Give Me Everything” – Pitbull

“P.Y.T.” – Michael Jackson

“Ignition” – R. Kelly

“Sorry Not Sorry” – Demi Lovato

“Love Like This” – Fatman Scoop, Faith Evans, and Crooklyn Clan

“Cake by the Ocean” – DNCE

“Single Ladies” – Beyoncé

“Mr. Brightside” – The Killers

“Toosie Slide” – Drake

“Lottery” – K Camp and Quavo

“I Love It” – Charlie XCX

“Pony” – Ginuwine

“Good As Hell – Lizzo

“Blurred Lines” – Robin Thicke

9. Top Songs That Gets Couples on the Dance Floor

“My Girl” – Temptations 

“I Want You Back” – The Jackson 5

“Ain’t No Mountain High Enough” – Marvin Gaye

“I Can’t Help Falling in Love” – Elvis Presley

“You Are The Best Thing” – Ray LaMontagne

“Dancing In The Moonlight” – King Harvest

“At Last” – Etta James

“Fight For Your Right” – Beastie Boys

“Smells Like Teen Spirit” – Nirvana

“We Belong Together” – Mariah Carey

“Honey” – Mariah Carey

“Shallow” – Lady Gaga and Bradley Cooper

“Let’s Get it On” – Marvin Gaye

“Give Me Everything” – Ne-Yo and Pitbull

“Ain’t Too Proud to Beg” – The Temptations

“Perfect”- Ed Sheeran

“The Weeknd” – Blinding Lights

“In Da Club” – 50 Cent

“Mo Money Mo Problems” – The Notorious BIG

“Hot in Herre” – Nelly

“Let’s Stay Together” – Al Green

10. Best Songs to Get Girls on the Dance Floor

“Run the World” – Beyoncé

“How Will I Know” – Whitney Houston

“Despacito” – Justin Bieber

“Wannabe” – Spice Girls

“Dancing on My Own” – Robyn

“Truth Hurts” – Lizzo

“Hold On” – Wilson Phillips

“No Limit” – G-Eazy ft. Cardi B

11. Best Songs to get Guys on the Dance Floor

“Just a Friend” – Biz Markie

“Toosie Slide” – Drake

“Suge” – DaBaby

“Mr. Brightside” – The Killers 

“Blow the Whistle” – Too Short

“Life is Good” – Future ft. Drake  No Diggity – Backstreet Boys

“I Believe In A Thing Called Love” – The Darkness

“Lose Yourself” – Eminem

“Get Lucky” – Pharrell 

“California Love” – Tupac

“Jump Around” – House of Pain 

12. Top Songs for a Dance-Off 

“Bust A Move” – Young MC 

“Blurred Lines” – Robin Thicke

“Tricky” – Run DMC

“Billie Jean” – Michael Jackson

“Truth Hurts” – Lizzo

“Thriller” – Michael Jackson

“Proud Mary” – Creedence Clearwater Revival

“Ice Ice Baby” – Vanilla Ice

“U Can’t Touch This” – MC Hammer

“Flip the Switch” – Drake 

“Crazy In Love” – Beyoncé

“There’s Nothing Holding Me Back” – Shawn Mendes

“Now That We Found Love” – Heavy D & The Boyz

“Apache” – Sugar Hill Gang

“Moves Like Jagger” – Maroon 5

“Stayin’ Alive” – Bee Gees

“Uptown Funk” – Bruno Mars

“There’s Nothing Holding Me Back” – Shawn Mendes

“Now That We Found Love” – Heavy D & The Boyz

“Apache”- Sugar Hill Gang

“Moves Like Jagger” – Maroon 5

“Stayin’ Alive” – Bee Gees

“Uptown Funk” – Bruno Mars

13. Top Songs for Dancing with Friends

“We Found Love” – Rihanna 

“Come On Eileen” – Dexys Midnight Runners

“I Want You Back” – Jackson 5 

“Just a Friend” – Biz Markie 

“Dancing Queen” – ABBA 

“Truth Hurts” – Lizzo 

“Bad Guy” – Billie Eilish

“Taki Taki” – DJ Snake

“Born This Way” – Lady Gaga

“Bodak Yellow” – Cardi B

“Hot Shower” – Chance the Rapper

“Yummy” – Justin Bieber 

“Turbulence” – Steve Aioki and Laidback Luke ft. Lil Jon

“Say So” – Doja Cat 

“Shut Up And Dance” – Walk The Moon 

“I Wanna Dance With Somebody” – Whitney Houston 

“Party in The USA” – Miley Cyrus

“You Shook Me All Night Long” – AC/DC

“Friends in Low Places” – Garth Brooks

“Ain’t No Mountain” – Marvin Gaye and Tammi Terrell

“Doo Wop (That Thing)” – Lauryn Hill

“September” – Earth, Wind & Fire

“I Gotta Feeling” – Black Eyed Peas

“Sucker” – Jonas Brothers

14. Favorite “Oldie But Goodie” Songs That All Guests Will Love

“Dancing Queen” – Abba

“September” – Earth, Wind & Fire 

“Build Me Up Buttercup” – The Foundations

“Stayin’ Alive” – Bee Gees 

“Shout” – Isley Brothers

“Come and Get Your Love” – Redbone

“Proud Mary” – Creedence Clearwater Revival 

“Ain’t Too Proud To Beg” – The Temptations 

“Livin’ On A Prayer” – Bon Jovi

“Twist and Shout” – The Beatles 

“Kiss” – Prince 

“My Girl” – The Temptations

“Don’t Stop Believin'” – Journey 

“It’s Tricky” – Run DMC

“Funky Cold Medina” – Ton Lōc 

“Push It” – Salt-N-Pepa 

“Peaches & Cream” – 112

“Wifey” – Next

“You Make My Dreams Come True” – Hall & Oates 

“Unchained Melody” – Righteous Brothers

“Ain’t No Mountain High Enough” – Tammi Terrell and Marvin Gaye

“Sweet Caroline” – Neil Diamond 

“I Want You Back” – The Jackson 5 

“Come On Eileen” – Dexys Midnight Runners 

15. Top Songs That Will Have Everyone Singing Along 

“Party in the USA” – Miley Cyrus

“Living on a Prayer” – Bon Jovi 

“Respect” – Aretha Franklin

“I’m Coming Out” – Diana Ross 

“Despacito” – Justin Beiber, Daddy Yankee, Luis Fonsi

“Tubthumping” – Chumbawamba

“Piano Man” – Billy Joel

“Don’t Stop Believin’” – Journey 

“Sweet Caroline” – Neil Diamond

“Piano Man” – Billy Joel

“I’m Gonna Be (500 Miles)” – The Proclaimers 

“Ain’t No Mountain High Enough” – Marvin Gaye and Tammy Terrell

“Bohemian Rhapsody” – Queen

“Get Low” – Lil Jon & The East Side Boyz 

“Low” – Flo Rida 

“Timber” – Pitbull ft. Kesha 

“Blow” – Kesha

“DJ Got Us Fallin’ In Love” – Usher

“ROCKSTAR” – DaBaby 

“Humble” – Kendrick Lamar

“No Problem” – Chance the Rapper 

“Shout” – Isley Brothers

“Mr. Brightside” – The Killers

“We Are the Champions” – Queen 

“Dynamite” – Taio Cruz

16. Best Songs for Networking 

“Mambo Number 5” – Lou Bega

“I Wanna Dance With Somebody” – Whitney Houston

“We are Family” – Sister Sledge

“Moondance” – Van Morrison 

“Can’t Stop the Feeling” – Justin Timberlake 

“Fly Me to the Moon” – Frank Sinatra 

“Africa” – Toto 

“Valerie” – Amy Winehouse

“Virtual Insanity” – Jamiroquai

“Ocean Drive” – Duke Dumont 

“Latch” – Sam Smith

“Young Folks” – Peter Bjorn and John

17. Great Cocktail Hour Songs for Before the Dance Floor Opens 

“This Girl” – Kungs, Cookin’ On 3 Burners

“Marry You” – Bruno Mars

“This Will Be (An Everlasting Love)” – Natalie Cole

“Drift Away” – Dobie Gray 

“In My Life” – The Beatles

“Island in the Sun” – Weezer

“The Way You Look Tonight” – Frank Sinatra

“Tequila” – The Champs 

“Lovely Day” – Bill Withers 

“Send Me On My Way” – Rusted Root

“I Feel It Coming” – The Weeknd and Daft Punk 

“Crocodile Rock” – Elton John 

“Latch” – Sam Smith

18. Best Last Songs of the Night for a Wedding

“Ain’t No Mountain High Enough” – Marvin Gaye

“Last Dance” – Donna Summer

“Last Dance (Club Remix)” – Donna Summer

“Drunk in Love” – Beyoncé ft. Jay Z 

“Swag Surfin” – F.L.Y.

“Sweet Caroline” – Neil Diamond 

“Manhattan” – Kings of Leon

“Let’s Stay Together” – Al Green

“Don’t Stop Believin’” – Journey

“Piano Man” – Billy Joel 

“Don’t Know Why” – Norah Jones

“Can’t Stop the Feeling” – Justin Timberlake

“Wagon Wheel” – Old Crow Medicine Show

“Like a Prayer” – Madonna 

“We Are The Champions” – Queen

“You Are the Best Thing” – Ray Lamontagne 

“You Shook Me All Night Long” – AC/DC 

“Stand By Me” – Ben E King 

“Hold On, We’re Going Home” – Drake

19. Best Songs for Kicking Off a Fun After-Party 

“You Make My Dreams” – Hall & Oates

“Smooth Sailin’” – Leon Bridges

“Levels” – Avicii

“Treasure” – Bruno Mars

“Ignition Remix” – R. Kelly 

“You Give Love A Bad Name” – Bon Jovi 

“Blinding Lights” – The Weeknd 

“Hey Ya” – Outkast

“We Found Love” – Rihanna

“Get Stupid” – Mac Dre

“California Love” – 2pac ft. Dr. Dre

“Hypnotize” – Notorious BIG 

“Can’t Stop the Feeling” – Justin Timberlake

“Can’t Hold Us” – Macklemore 

“Party Rock Anthem” – LMFAO

“Juicy” – Notorious BIG

“This Is How We Do It” – Montell Jordan

“The Way You Move” – Outkast