Best R&B Wedding Songs

You want your special day to be just that – special. You’ve decided all the preliminaries, and now it’s time to figure out the type of music to play. If you love soul music, you may need help choosing the best R&B wedding songs for your big day. This article lists the most soulful, melodious songs for the bride, groom, and all your guests to take the dance floor.

1. “Ribbon in the Sky” by Stevie Wonder

Song Year: 1982

Wonder wrote “Ribbon in the Sky” after a near-death experience, but he meant it to speak about a change of focus. This favorite R&B wedding song not only celebrates love but it speaks of uniting people in the face of extraordinary challenges. The greatest love survives all of life’s challenges.

2. “Always and Forever” by Heatwave

Song Year: 1976

Released in the 70s, “Always and Forever” by the popular R&B Funk band Heatwave became popular with a younger crowd in the 90s, where it was played at proms and echoed in the street on hot summer days. It’s a great song to bring some nostalgia for the bride or groom.

3. “Love Ballad” by L.T.D

Song Year: 1976

Jeffrey Osborne’s smooth mid-range bass vocals and gender-neutral lyrics make this love song that some just won’t understand a beautiful one for everyone. It lives up to the band’s name L.T.D which stands for “Love, Tenderness, and Devotion.”

4. “The Closer I Get To You” by Roberta Flack and Donnie Hathaway

Song Year: 1977

Roberta Flack and Donnie Hathaway’s single “The Close I Get To You” features sensual vocals and a plotline that is much sweeter than their first hit, “Where is the Love?” The pair didn’t initially design the song to be a duet, but we’re thrilled that they decided to do it this way. Flack and Hathaway make it work as one of the best R&B love songs ever.

5. “A Love of Your Own” by Average White Band

Song Year: 1976

One of the coolest, smoothest, and soulful R&B bands of the 1970s, Average White Band sings about breaking through hesitant love by giving before you receive with lines like ‘Don’t you be afraid to give your heart.’

6. “Straight From the Heart” by Confunkshun

Song Year: 1981

Formerly known as Project Soul, Confunkshun (Con Funk Shun) hit it big with this beautiful ballad that embodies soul. It will make you – and everyone else – fall in love all over again and question the magic that weaves between two people in love.

7. “You’re My Latest Greatest Inspiration” by Teddy Pendergrass

Song Year: 1981

Teddy Pendergrass, known as Mr. Ballader, sings this song to his love and confesses that despite seeing the sights of the world, she is still the most beautiful sight for him. He vows to give her the world in exchange for her inspiration, and his beautiful voice shows his sincerity.

8. “When Somebody Loves You Back” by Teddy Pendergrass

Song Year: 1977

Another hit by Mr. Teddy Pendergrass, but this time with an uptempo beat that speaks of the happiness you feel when someone returns your affection as strongly as you give it. This song believes someday you’ll find the one to love you back for life.

9. “You and I” by O’Bryan

Song Year: 1983

Plenty of R & B love songs talk of unrequited love, but the reverse is true in this one. Two is better than one, O’Bryan sings, and in “You and I,” it’s him and his love together, side-by-side, and being able to conquer the world together.

10. “You Are My Starship” by Norman Connors

Song Year: 1976

This song starts with a beautiful blend of percussive sounds that sounds like you’re in a starship taking off, leaving the world’s woes behind. Connors sings that love can feel like going into space. That romance can make you feel like you’re in a starship, safe thanks to the other person in your life, and guided on the right path with the love of your life.

11. “The Best Thing That Ever Happened To Me” by Gladys Knight and the Pips

Song Year: 1973

Gladys Knight’s voice is powerful, and the background vocals of the Pips bring it all together for a very soulful sound about true, everlasting love. Many often believe that this chart-topper was supposed to be about a higher power, but the loving lyrics seem to be far more down-to-earth than that.

 12. “Love and Happiness” by Al Green

Song Year: 1972

Al Green is the quintessential R&B soul singer with that down-home, soulful, southern sound.

The song isn’t all happiness, it features a jealous girlfriend who calls at 3 AM, but there’s hope between them. After they fight, they make up and happiness, as the song says, is when you feel good about somebody. It’s clear to them that you need to put in the effort for love.

13.  “You’re the First, the Last, My Everything” by Barry White

Song Year: 1970

Barry White, and his signature bass vocals, underline the soul-filled lyrics of the song. In the first part of the song, White questions his love, and then in his distinctive baritone, he confesses how much he loves them; they are his sun, moon, and stars – his everything.

14. “Sweet Love” by Anita Baker

Song Year: 1986

Anita Baker has several songs on this list. In “Sweet Love,” she talks about how devoted she is to her love, going as far as to say she submits to that sweet love and her love.

15. “Caught up in the Rapture” by Anita Baker

Song Year: 1986

The lyrics of this song talk about dedication to each other and the importance of each side of commitment in a relationship being equal. Baker sings that it shouldn’t just be a guy comforting a girl; it should be a give-and-take.

16.  “You Bring Me Joy” by Anita Baker

Song Year: 1986

This mega R&B hit talks about why people stay together: you bring each other JOY. You help to lead each other down the right path and pick each other up when you feel down.

17. “Angel” by Anita Baker

Song Year: 1983

Anita Baker’s sensual love ballad “Angel” features mesmerizing lyrics and a slow groove with a memorable melody. Her story about wanting to give the world, not just her heart, speaks to that deep and steadfast love.

18.  “Here and Now” by Luther Vandross

Song Year: 1985

Luther Vandross sings this love song for every bride and groom walking down the aisle by echoing parts of a wedding in the music. He even writes the chorus-like vows with Vandross promising to love faithfully forever.

19. “Dance With My Father” by Luther Vandross

Song Year: 2003

“Dance With My Father” speaks of the love in a family and, more importantly, between a father and son. It’s a personal message as when the father dies as Vandross did, he wishes to just dance once more as a family and have it be never-ending.

20. “If This World Were Mine” by Luther Vandross and Cheryl Lynn

Song Year: 1966

A remake of the 1966 song sung by Marvin Gaye and Tammi Terrell alternates between Vandross and Lynn like a call and response. The vocals of each artist tell a story while promising each other their love.

 21.  “Never Too Much” by Luther Vandross

Song Year: 1981

“Never Too Much” was Luther Vandross’s debut song and an excellent R & B wedding song. The lyrics speak about not being able to live without one’s lover and being around them all the time is never too much.

22. “At Last” by Etta James

Song Year: 1960

Etta James’ strong vocals match perfectly with the imagery in the lyrics. Etta uses imagery that isn’t immediately obvious, like singing about her heart being wrapped in clover, presumably referring to how lucky she feels and that she considers her lonely days over now.

23.  “Always” by Atlantic Starr

Song Year: 1986

Atlantic Starr’s “Always” speaks of a long-lasting love that every couple desires, with vocals that alternate between male and female artists to show they’re two sides of the same coin and a perfect fit.

24.  “All My Life” by K.C. and JoJo

Song Year: 1997

This slow song with a strong beat is about praying for someone all your life and finally having them. After all this time, of course, you can’t stop thinking about them, and you wouldn’t want to stop if you could.

 25.  “Forever My Lady” by Jodeci

Song Year: 1991

Jodeci was a famous hip-hop quartet with ballad-style songs, and “Forever My Lady” talks about a wife that you would do anything for and will be committed to for eternity. It’s a simple song with a timeless message.

26. “Lady in My Life” by Michael Jackson

Song Year: 1983

This beautiful ballad is from Jackson’s Thriller, a beautiful R&B wedding song about burning brightly together and chasing away the darkness. The piece shows Michael Jackson’s melodic side with raw and haunting lyrics.

27. “Close to You” by BeBe and CeCe Winans

Song Year: 2009

Although this is a Gospel duo, this song is an R&B wedding signature song. With BeBe and Cece each singing their parts, often within the same stanza, it tells of pure love between two people and their vows to each other.

28. “Endless Love” by Diana Ross and Lionel Richie

Song Year: 1981

This Diana Ross and Lionel Richie hit was named Billboard’s Biggest Duet of All Time in 2011. The pair’s vocals perfectly match Ross’s flawless soprano blending with Ritchie’s smooth tenor vocals as they sing about endless love.

29. “Ain’t Nobody” by Chaka Khan

Song Year: 1983

The influential and iconic Chaka Khan sings this upbeat and good vibes song. In a world full of complex love songs, the content of this song is simple but essential: the true meaning of love when only one person will do.

30. “Best Part” by Daniel Caeser and HER

Song Year: 2017

“Best Part” is a perfect mixture of R&B and neo-soul with dynamic lyrics that liken love to coffee many of us desperately need in the morning and the guiding light of the northern star. Caesar even tells us that his girl is the brightest thing in his life. The best part of true love.

31. “Fortunate” by Maxwell

Song Year: 1999

Maxwell put neo-soul on the map, and he put it firmly on the map with this song. Maxwell sings that when you find your person, you’ll know it, and it’s important to ensure they understand how important they are to you.

 32. “At Your Best” (You Are Love) by Aaliyah/Isley Brothers (Original)

Song Year: 1974

Originally recorded and released by the Isley Brothers, this beautiful love ballad begins with her confusion over whether her guy loves her at all. The tempo is slow, but the lyrics speak of true love. When her guy confesses his love, Aaliyah talks about her willingness to remind him that she’ll always love him. She’ll keep loving him even if she has to tell him a hundred times.

While the Isley Brothers wrote and first performed the song, Aaliyah’s cover is a haunting and memorable version in its own right.

33. “Spend My Life With You” by Eric Benet

Song Year: 1999

Another neo-soul artist who mixes contemporary R&B and soul to make beautiful love songs, Eric Benet and Tamia come together in a deep love song full of metaphor and lovely imagery. The pair sing of feeling complete with their love’s heart beating within him.

 34. “Every Time I Close My Eyes” by Babyface

Song Year: 1996

Babyface (Kenneth Edmonds) was the R&B picture of love ballads in the 1990s, with his music frequently filling the top 10 love song lists. This song will make you fall in love because you can feel the love in his songs.

He doesn’t just sing about love. He brings the listener in with his lyrics, so they feel the passion between two people by comparing it to Christmas in June or spring in winter.

35.  “Whip Appeal” by Babyface

Song Year: 1989

Another classic song by Babyface and arguably the most popular of his string of romantic love ballads, “Whip Appeal,” was his first R&B hit. A slightly untraditional love song, the lyrics remind us how love can be an escape from life rather than just a part of it. When daily errands bring us down, love can lift us back up.

36.  “Exceptional” by Babyface

Song Year: 2015

You can hear the influence of neo-soul in this Babyface song and its uptempo beat that makes it great for dancing. However, the words of the song are just as important. Love fills up his soul, Babyface sings, until his cup overflows.

The lyrics continue and speak of dedication, unconditional love, and ongoing commitment to each other with whatever life brings. It’s a great lesson for everyone, whether they are getting married or not.

37. “Candy” by Cameo

Song Year: 1986

This upbeat song by one of the best R&B and funk bands around could be about a girl, or some say it’s about a particular drug that was rising in popularity in the 80s.

It works so well as an uptempo love song, though, with great illusions of tossing and turning in bed because you can’t sleep and can only think about seeing your love.

38.  “I Believe In You and Me” by Whitney Houston

Song Year: 1996

Whitney Houston’s strong, smooth, flawless, and sensual vocals make this song a sensual R&B hit.

The lyrics speak to what every marriage and relationship vows, to love each other unconditionally and to be the guiding light when the other is lost. It’s a beautiful love ballad that will have you falling in love all over again.

39.  “Cherish the Day” by Sade

Song Year: 1992

Sade is a popular musical artist that hails from London, U.K., with a solid fan base in America. The lyrics speak of one deeply in love and cherishing the one they love and the relationship. She goes so far as to compare her partner to her heaven on earth that she prayed to have this, and she won’t be running away from him any time soon.

40.  “Nothing Even Matters” by Lauryn Hill and De’Angelo

Song Year: 1998

De’Angelo’s seductive and romantic sound, paired with Lauryn Hill’s seducing vocals, makes this an excellent blending of talent from two unique artists.

The lyrics are deep and speak on how many couples in love feel that their love can never stop and that nothing can damage what they have, all paired with a strong beat. It’s a great song to slow dance to, and the repeating “nothing even matters” really drives home a great message of never-ending love.

41.  “All of Me” by John Legend

Song Year: 2013

John Legend is famous for his mixture of R&B, neo-soul, and alternative musical sound. This song is a beautiful ballad that is very personal, most likely directed to his wife, Chrissy Teigen.

He talks about his love of her sarcasm, his overwhelming happiness whenever he is around her, and his surprise that he feels so strongly about just one person. It’s a very romantic and truthful song that feels so personal because it’s sung to someone so close to Legend. He loves her flaws and all, which is something we can all (hopefully) relate to.

Top R&B Wedding Songs, Final Thoughts

You want to include the best romantic songs in classic, formal, retro, or modern, regardless of your wedding style. This list of best R&B wedding songs ranges from classic to contemporary, from slow-dance tunes that accentuate your love for each other to uptempo jams that will turn your wedding into a real party.

Choosing the right wedding songs will enhance the feel of romance, delight your guests, and add to your big day’s intimacy, the special romantic atmosphere, and memories.

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