1961 was a great year for wedding songs with popular love tunes from Elvis Presley, Patsy Cline, Steve Lawrence, and other major music stars. On this list of 1961 wedding songs, you’ll find dance music as well as selections that can be used during a formal wedding ceremony.
1961 Wedding Songs
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Hello, Mary Lou – Ricky Nelson
1961, Hello, Mary Lou
Ricky Nelson was one of the teenage heartthrobs of the 60s, and he was just beginning to embark upon a solo music career that would produce many hits like this one. This song is a catchy love song of the variety that was popular in 1961, and its lyrical declaration of love is something fun to include on a wedding playlist.
I said “Hello Mary Lou
Sweet Mary Lou
I’m so in love with you
Crazy – Patsy Cline
October 1961, Showcase
Gone all too soon after a short but meteoric career, Patsy Cline lives on in timeless classics like this hit written by country music legend Willie Nelson. The song has been covered by hundreds of musical artists, so you will be certain to find a version of the tune that will suit your wedding.
I’m crazy for trying
And crazy for crying
And I’m crazy for loving you
Family Bible – George Jones
December 1960 carry over, Family Bible
Faith plays a role for many newlyweds in the marriage ceremony, and it should come as no surprise that this George Jones hit is included in reception playlists. The song should perhaps be used as the soundtrack to precede a moment of wedding day devotion and prayer shared with close family members.
When from The Family Bible Dad would read
I can hear my mother softly singing
Rock of Ages, Rock of Ages cleft for me
Stand By Me – Ben E. King
April 1961, Don’t Play That Song!
Everyone knows the words to this Ben E. King R&B smash hit, and it has not lost its appeal since being released in 1961. Many couples like to make it the song for their first dance as man and wife, and it has also been used to introduce the new couple to the wedding reception guests.
No, I won’t be afraid
Oh, I won’t be afraid
Just as long as you stand, stand by me
Calendar Girl – Neil Sedaka
1961, Calendar Girl
There is no better way to celebrate the blushing bride on her wedding day than this song by Neil Sedaka, a lively tune that offers unique praise for every month of the year. Those grooms who really want to go over the top will perform this hit for their bride karaoke-style at the wedding reception.
My heart’s in a whirl
I love, I love, I love my little calendar girl
A Girl Like You – Cliff Richard and The Shadows
June 1961, A Girl Like You
Cliff Richard and The Shadows were especially big in the UK thanks to hits like this one, a song that honors a beautiful bride in all her glory. It can be used as a special dedication from the groom to the bride at the reception, but it has also been used for alternative processionals and the seating of wedding guests.
Funny how love can come to a lonely heart
I’m a boy, you’re a girl
I guess that’s a pretty good start
I Love How You Love Me – The Paris Sisters
August 1961, I Love How You Love Me
The Paris Sisters may not be remembered much today, but they were at the top of the charts in 1961 with this love song. Many brides have played this for their new husband on a wedding day, and it also was chosen for that moment before the bride makes her grand entrance to the traditional wedding march.
I love how your heart beats
Whenever I hold you
I love how you think of me
Without being told to
Will You Still Love Me Tomorrow – The Shirelles
1961, Tonight’s the Night
You probably know most of the words to this hit by The Shirelles, and so will all of your wedding guests who want to dance in celebration. You’ll want to include this in your wedding reception mix somewhere near the middle of the party when everyone needs a pick-me-up after a long, emotional day.
Is love I can be sure of
So tell me now, and I won’t ask again
Will you still love me tomorrow?
Can’t Help Falling in Love – Elvis Presley
October 1961, Blue Hawaii
Elvis Presley was so fond of this song from the soundtrack to Blue Hawaii that he closed every concert with it until his tragic passing in 1977. Other versions of the song exist, but none can match the depth of emotion that the King of Rock and Roll was able to convey with his passionate vocals.
Take my hand
Take my whole life too
For I can’t help falling in love with you
Emotions – Brenda Lee
April 1961, Emotions
Country superstar Brenda Lee was one of the first females in the genre to make a successful crossover to pop music with hits like this one from 1961. Emotion is a central theme when it comes to weddings, so this song will fit almost anywhere that you choose to include it on a wedding day.
Emotions, you get me upset
Why make me remember what I wanna forget?
I’ve been lonely, lonely too long
Emotions, please leave me alone
Portrait of My Love – Steve Lawrence
1961, Portrait Of My Love
Steve Lawrence has that Las Vegas lounge style that many old souls prefer when it comes to love ballads, and this song from the height of Lawrence’s career still plays in many Las Vegas wedding chapels today. The best way to use it during your wedding is to have it played just before the bride enters the chapel to her chosen bridal march.
You will never see a portrait of my love
For miracles are never seen
The Way You Look Tonight – The Lettermen
June 1961, A Song for Young Love
Let the bride know how magical she looks when you add this song by The Lettermen to your wedding reception music choices. It’s her special day, and there should be plenty of moments that only serve to celebrate the bride’s splendor.
There is nothing for me but to love you
And the way you look tonight
It’s Gonna Work Out Fine – Ike and Tina Turner
June 1961, Dynamite!
Ike and Tina Turner sing a song of hope and promise for all newlyweds in this ’61 classic, a song that has been covered by Bruce Springsteen and many other music stars. This is a song that the father of the bride or other family members can have played for the couple after the wedding reception speeches are made.
If your love is half as true as the love I offer you
Oh darling I think it’s gonna work out fine
Bless You – Tony Orlando
1961, Bless You and 11 Other Great Hits
There is a desire among many newlyweds to preserve the sacred nature of a wedding ceremony, and this song by Tony Orlando leans heavily on solemn sentiment. Play it during the reception or as you light the unity candle to give everyone a moment to reflect on the importance of true love.
Bless every breath that you take
Bless every move that you make so perfectly
And bless your little heart for loving me
My Kind of Girl – Matt Monro
1961, My Kind of Girl
Let everyone know how you feel about the bride with this Matt Monro hit from 1961, and savor the smile on her face when she hears the emotional lyrics. You can also choose to play this song as an alternative recessional after the vows have been said.
She cooks like an angel cooks
And my mind’s in a kind of whirl
To my mind, she’s my kind of girl
You Must Have Been a Beautiful Baby – Bobby Darin
June 1961, Atco 6206
Well, I can see the judge’s eyes
As they handed you the prize
I know you made the cutest bow
Bobby Darin contributes a nice tune to this list of 1961 wedding songs, and it should not come as a surprise that the song is often chosen for dances between father and bride. It can also be added to the reception music selections as a fun interlude to precede those humorous wedding moments that everyone looks forward to.
Our list of 1961 wedding songs should take you back to a different time and place. If you like this list, be sure to check out our list of the best 1960s wedding songs.