100 Party Playlist Suggestions
You’ve booked a killer party venue, you’ve invited your friends, you’re all set… but then, your DJ asks if you have any playlist requests… Sure you’ve got few firm faves, some classic songs that are guaranteed to get your friends on the dance floor but we are sure there are plenty you’ve totally forgotten about. Don’t worry, we have compiled a list of 100 solid party jams, you’re sure to rediscover some old faves in here!
So here it is these are the solidest, goldest party bangers in the universe. In no particular order…
‘Right Here, Right Now’ – Fatboy Slim
A majestic party anthem from one of the world’s greatest DJs. Mysteriously, The ‘I’m No.1 So Why Try Harder?’ guy on the album cover has never been identified.
‘Happy’ – Pharrell Williams
2013’s most infectious single of the year does exactly what it says on the tin.
‘Odessa’ – Caribou
An effortlessly cool number from Dan Snaith’s psychedelic dance-pop project Caribou, originally released in 2010.
‘We are Your Friends’ – Justice vs Simian
(Insert next-level bassline here.) “We are your friends. You’ll never be alone again.”
‘Get Up Offa That Thing’ – James Brown
It is impossible not to get up offa that thing when James Brown comes on.
‘Baby’ – Yogi x Maleek Berry x RAY BLK ft. Kid Ink
Dancehall-inspired club banger featuring Ray BLK – one of the most interesting young voices in UK urban music – and a bunch of other people – over a Julio Bashmore sample.
‘Without Me’ – Eminem
“Guess who’s back?”
0% boasting about misogyny, designer labels and expensive cars, 100% good quality rap-based entertainment
‘212’ – Azealia Banks
Regardless of Banks’ recent press rep, this was deservedly one of the biggest hits of 2011. Awkward, atonal and rude – but so danceable. And the breakdown – allegedly dissing Nicki Minaj – is pop genius.
‘1,2 Step’ – Ciara and Missy Elliott
“Ladies and Gentlemen, this is a jazzy fizzle, pro-duc-shizzle.”
Missy Elliot was R&B queen of 2005.
‘Le Freak’ – Chic
This classy, classic all time-hit from disco legends Chic has been on heavy rotation since 1978.
‘Touch The Sky’- Kanye West Featuring Lupe Fiasco
Whatever you may have heard about his politics, controversial pop-prince Kanye knew how to pick a sample back in 2005.
‘No Diggity’ – Blackstreet ft. Dr. Dre, Queen Pen
“I like the way you work it. No diggity. You’ve got to bag it up.” And all that.
This 1998 Grammy winner re-entered the UK chart in 2013 for some reason. Probably because it is great.
Dr. Dre stole the beat intended for ‘Toss It Up’ by Tupac and sampled Bill Withers to make this tune, but was not officially credited as its producer. He was in the process of leaving Def Jam records, somewhat acrimoniously.
‘Thinking Of You’ – Sister Sledge
“…Now I’m livin’ in ecstasy”
One of the greatest tracks in the history of Disco. Chic’s Nile Rodgers pulls another one out of his endless bag of hits, but its the sexy Sister Sledge vocals that are the icing on the cake.
‘Toxic’ — Britney Spears
Those screechy, sliding violins shouldn’t work. But they do. ’Toxic’ was one of Britney’s ‘grown-up’ songs before she err… lost it.
‘Low’— Flo Rida (Featuring T-Pain)
“She hit the flo’. Next thing you know, Shorty got low, low, low, low, low, low, low, low.” Without a doubt Flo Rida’s best tune.
‘Got Your Money’ – Ol’ Dirty Bastard featuring Kelis
“If Dirty wants his money, you’d better give him his money.“
In 1999, ODB added a killer baseline to a Slick Rick drum sample and dropped this monster of a track, featuring one of the two occurrences of Kelis on this list.
‘Burning Down the House’ – Talking Heads
David Byrne and the Talking heads were way ahead of their time.
‘Jump Around’ – House Of Pain
An old-skool hip hop classic, full of scratching and wonderful analogue tape-y noises, from back when all hip hop was about was making people want to jump around.
‘Take Me Out‘ – Franz Ferdinand
Franz Ferdinand’s legendary Rock stomper rides the crest of the indie-dance wave in one of the biggest hits of 2004, inspiring a generation of awkward men to wear pointy shoes.
‘Take on Me’ – A-Ha
An unforgettable 80s hit with an ascending falsetto chorus that’s guaranteed to have all the tanked up geezers howling like a dog does when someone steps on his paw.
‘Hypnotize’ – Notorious BIG
Hypnotize is one of Biggie’s biggest tunes, with an impossibly filthy bassline and a hypnotic singalong chorus in appraisal of the big man’s greatness.
‘Rapper’s Delight’ – The Sugarhill Gang
The original hip hop hit. Hank, Master Gee, and Wonder Mike sampled Chic and created what is possibly the best bass loop ever laid down.
‘Insomnia’ – Faithless
“Dream of makin’ mad love on the Heath, tearing off tights with my teeth…” Maxxi Jazz’s monologue crowns this throbbing UK dance jewel amidst rising euphoric synths.
‘Supermassive Black Hole’ – Muse
Muse’s dance rock anthem is a strange mixture of gritty blues and girly vocals. And it sounds suspiciously similar to a certain Britney Spears track.
‘Let’s Dance’ David Bowie
“Under the moonlight… the SERIOUS moonlight!”
A middle-aged Bowie’s most crowd-pleasing upbeat track sounds just as fresh now as it did in 1983.
‘Groove Is in the Heart’ – Deee-Lite
The sound of the 90s. A masterful stack of high-calibre samples – Herbie Hancock, Bootsy Collins make way for a super uplifting vocal and one of the most agreeable uses of a slide whistle in the history of recorded music.
‘Single Ladies (Put a Ring on It)’ – Beyoncé
One for all the single ladies. Beyonce’s insanely catchy chanting and booty shakin’ distract from how grinding and ominous the industrial bass noises are, which if anyone had noticed, probably wouldn’t have been allowed.
‘I Feel Love’ – Donna Summer
This euphoric synth jam took Disco well out of its comfort zone. ‘I Feel Love’ still sounds futuristic now. God knows how it sounded in 1977.
‘Tainted Love’ – Soft Cell
Marilyn Manson brought this 1981 song to a whole new generation of young people when he covered it in the early 2000s. A recent meme has done it again. Tainted Love keeps on coming back.
‘Beat It’ – Michael Jackson
Michael Jackson appears on this list (as a singer) more than anyone else. But read on to find out who beats the King of Pop to the top spot.
‘Get Up (I Feel Like Being a Sex Machine)’ – James Brown
James Brown never really needed a good reason to get up, but he usually had one.
‘Mr Brightside’ – The Killers
This 2004 anthem to infidelity is surprisingly popular as a sing-a-long.
‘Hotline Bling’ — Drake
“I know when that Hotline Bling, it can only mean one thing.”
The only track on this list that has inspired an entire meme format, Drake’s mellow millennial groove is as irresistible as a late night booty call.
‘Rock Your Body’ — Justin Timberlake
An early Pharrell mega-hit, and one of his finest. This song was the soundtrack to Janet Jackson’s infamous ‘wardrobe malfunction’ at the Super Bowl.
‘Milkshake’ — Kelis
Kelis’ milkshake has been bringing all the boys to the yard since 2003.
‘Blame It On The Boogie’ – Jackson 5
A suspect has yet to be apprehended, but all reports confirm that the Boogie was definitely involved.
‘Get The Party Started’ — P!nk
Oh no you didn’t…!
‘Crazy’ – Gnarls Barkley
What a voice. Cee-Lo Green and DJ Dangermouse’s neo-soul upbeat banger hits that musical sweet spot that everyone can enjoy, which is probably why it took the charts by storm in 2006.
‘Heart of Glass’ – Blondie
The amazing Debbie Harry’s drawling dreamy vocal is a perfect compliment to the pumping disco bassline.
‘In Da Club’ – 50 Cent
Legendary gangsta pop hit, for which Eminem and Dr Dre were partially responsible, always goes down a treat. Eminem signed Fiddy and Dre produced him.
‘(Your Love Keeps Lifting Me) Higher and Higher’ – Jackie Wilson
The joint 2nd oldest song on this list, along with a few others from 1967. Jackie Wilson has been lifting us higher and higher for over 50 years!
‘I Wanna Dance With Somebody’ – Whitney Houston
An absolutely timeless classic!
‘Get Lucky’ – Daft Punk featuring Pharrell Williams, Nile Rodgers
This song was certainly overplayed in 2013! A triad of future-funk titans teamed up to release a dance pop track that won’t let the party vibe drop.
Each features at least once elsewhere on this list. Daft Punk have 2 entries, Pharrell has 4… But although he is only named on this track, Nile Rodgers also appears twice as Chic, produced Bowie’s ‘Lets Dance’, and Sister Sledge and is sampled on Rapper’s Delight!
‘Don’t Stop ’Til You Get Enough’ – Michael Jackson
One of the earlier tracks of Michael Jackson and Quincy Jones’ incredible collaboration, ‘Don’t Stop ’til You Get Enough’ sets the tone for the next few decades of massive hits.
‘Common People’ – Pulp
Jarvis Cocker’s comment on privileged undergraduates of Central Saint Martin’s College of the Arts London’s fetishisation of the working class is more of a crowd pleaser than this description makes it sound – and probably the Britpop song that best stood the test of time.
‘Give Up The Funk (Tear The Roof Off The Sucker)’ – Parliament Funkadelic
“We gotta turn this mother out!”
George Clinton’s Parliament always had the funk, and always knew what to do with it.
‘Strobe’ – Deadmau5 / Sparkee
The only instrumental track on this list. But there are no words for a bassline that funky.
‘Wake Me Up Before You Go Go’ – Wham!
George Michael may not have been planning on going solo, but when he did he sold over 80 million records.
‘Seven Nation Army’ – White Stripes
This song replaced Smoke On The Water as the first thing that every teenage guitar player learns to play. The rousing and ultra-recognisable riff has been given life at many a football stadium, and as the ‘Oh, Jeremy Corbyn!’ chant.
‘Another One Bites the Dust’ – Queen
A contender for The Catchiest Bassline of All Time. Queen and Freddie were always going to figure on this list somewhere, it was just a question of where.
Red Hot Chili Peppers – Higher Ground
Some will disagree, Red Hot Chili Peppers’ slap-bass version of Stevie Wonder’s ‘Higher Ground’ might actually be better than the original.
‘Hey Ya!’— OutKast
“Shake it like a Polaroid picture.” Did anyone ever shake Polaroid pictures? It doesn’t matter. We’ve heard it a million times but we’re still waiting for this song to get old.
‘Welcome To Jamrock’ – Damian Marley
This Dub/Rap party monster from the most musically prolific Son of Bob is an ode to his native land, the home of Reggae music.
54-46 Was My Number – Toots and the Maytals
Toots turned an incident of police brutality into the lyrical inspiration for a timeless reggae jam.
‘Hey Brother’ – Avicii
The late King of Clubs left us with a whole host of hype-music that, despite an omnipresent thump, is tinged with a sadness that gives an emotional depth unparalleled in EDM.
‘If You Want Me To Stay’ – Sly and the Family Stone
Larry Graham’s bass line creeps swaggers in with ease like the coolest guy in the disco. Short and sweet, this song will always revive the vibe on the dance floor, should it be in need of some refreshment.
‘Treat Her Right’ – The Commitments
The Commitments was never a ‘real’ band but their versions of classic Motown for the 1991 movie adaption of Roddy Doyle’s novel about a Northern Irish soul band are some of the finest ever recorded.
‘Sleep Now In The Fire’ – Rage Against The Machine
One of the most sonically creative bands of the 90s, Rage Against The Machine make heavy, angry rock.
Whether or not you enjoy anarchistic political sentiment with your riffs, the groove is unstoppable.
‘Feel Good Inc’ – Gorrilaz
Gorrilaz’s second record solidly cemented Damon Albarn’s reputation as pop-genius-who-could-do-no-wrong, if anyone was unsure. Also, if anyone is unsure.., Gorrilaz are better than Blur.
‘Come On Eileen’ – Dexy’s Midnight Runners
Though this is far from the oldest track on here, its definitely one for the oldies. The go to track for every basic Wedding DJ since 1982. Everybody knows ‘Come On, Eileen…’ but few people know any of the other words.
‘I Want You Back’ – The Jackson 5
Michael Jackson got his first Number 1 Single at just 10 years old. Poor kid never had a chance. Nevertheless, 1968’s ‘I Want You Back’ is a timeless party hit.
‘Got To Be Real’ – Cherly Lynn
Cheryl Lynn’s 1978 disco hit is still a powerful party pumper. Funky bass and soulful singing never go out of style.
‘U Can’t Touch This’ – MC Hammer
1990s Grammy award Record of the Year. Never has a pair of harem pants been so appropriately sported. Hammer sampled Rick James’ ‘Superfreak’ to create this hip-pop classic.
HAIM – Falling
Californian sister act HAIM channel the sounds of the 80s in this epic, euphoric tune from 2013.
‘Around the World’ – Daft Punk
French duo Daft Punk dress up as robots and make funky dance music that sounds like its from outer space. This track was released in the mid 90s and it sounds no less futuristic now.
‘You Can Call Me Al’ – Paul Simon
Like much of Simon’s 1986 album ‘Graceland,’ ‘Call Me Al’ borrowed much of its instrumentation from African music. The lyrics are possibly the jolliest exploration of depression, isolation and existential angst in the history of pop.
Rumour has it that the title of of the song, and the names in the chorus, came from Paul and his wife Peggy’s names being misheard at a party by a famous French painter.
‘Swish Swish’ – Katy Perry ft. Nicki Minaj
2017 dance-pop perfection from two of the current queens of the mainstream. The only thing more bizarre than the lyrics is the music video.
‘Bodak Yellow’ – Cardi B
Something strange has happened to pop music recently. But so long as you can handle sub-bass that will make your eyeballs vibrate, and you aren’t too easily offended by rude words, its good for dancing…
‘Africa’ – Toto
“It’s gonna take a lot to drag me away from you…!”
There are a few songs on this list that have made it to the weird and wonderful world of internet memes. ‘Tainted Love’, ‘Hotline Bling’, and Kanye have all climbed that cult pinnacle. But none have reached the heights of this one.
Released in 1982, the same year as eternal hits, Bowie’s ’Let’s Dance,’ and MJ’s ‘Billie Jean,’ you’d never have thought such an exultantly earnest, nonsensically naive soft-rock ballad would have a shot at immortality.
But against the odds, at the time of writing, ‘Africa’ by Toto is the internet’s favourite song – as sure as Kilimanjaro rises like Olympus above the Serengeti. (Unless you count ‘Darude – Sandstorm’, or maybe even this…)
‘This Must Be The Place’ – Talking Heads
The second Talking Heads track to make the list. There’s something a little sad within the joyous, jaunty melodies of this weird and wonderful tune that’s likely to cause a moment of reflection on the dance floor.
‘Song 2’ – Blur
Blur’s attempt to mock Nirvana’s approach to songwriting became their biggest hit to date back in 1997. It’s full of energy and catchy as hell.
‘TNT’ – AC-DC
This chugging classic-rock juggernaut from Australian legends AC-DC is only cheesy because it is so darned iconic. Guaranteed to satisfy dads all over the world – and anyone who enjoyed the Tony Hawk’s Pro Skater series on the Playstation.
‘Uptown Funk’ – Mark Ronson and Bruno Mars
This unstoppable stomper has racked up over three BILLION views on YouTube. Which is nearly as many times as it was played on the radio in 2014.
‘It Wasn’t Me’ – Shaggy
The truth is, it probably WAS Shaggy. And yes, this song is a joke, but it’s a funny joke.
‘Louie Louie’ – The Kingsmen
First released in 1962, this is the oldest song on the list. Everybody knows it. Nobody can understand the words.
‘Just Dance’ – Lady Gaga
The first single from a young Lady Gaga was very clear about its intention. We could tell she was going to be big.
‘Lust for Life’ – Iggy Pop
Some know this song as the soundtrack to Rent Boy’s choosing life at the end of Trainspotting. Others know it as the title track from Iggy’s 1977 record of the same name, or the song that Jet ripped off for ‘Are You Gonna Be My Girl.’ Its a generational thing.
‘Move On Up’ – Curtis Mayfield
This tune from a yellow-trousered Mayfield is so good that it appears on our list twice. Once as the fantastically long, incessantly bongo-ing original, and again as a sample in Kanye’s ‘Touch the Sky.’
‘Fire’ – Jimi Hendrix
“Move over, Rover, and let Jimi take over…”
Supposedly, this is a song to a dog; Jimi wanted a space next to the fire after a chilly night on tour. Some suspect that Jimi may have been alluding to something else. Believe what you want to believe.
First recorded in 1967, ‘Fire’ is one of the oldest songs on the list.
‘This is America’ – Childish Gambino
2018’s greatest music video is not all style over substance. Donald Glover maximally right-on and this choppy, challenging arrangement pushes the creative envelope of art-pop. And that bass-drop is DUH-RTY!
‘Float On’ – Modest Mouse
This slacker rock stomper is an anthem to optimism in the face of adversity, and the truth is, you can’t fail to feel uplifted when that cheeky guitar riff begins.
‘Electric Feel’ – MGMT
MGMT’s 2007 hit Electric Feel is a bouncy synth-pop banger with a chilled-out vibe.
‘Somebody That I Used To Know’ – Gotye – (feat. Kimbra)
Charming xylophones, a gentle groove, a sense of romantic longing, an exultant chorus. A perfect pop song.
‘TLC’ – No Scrubs
There’s nothing like a party song with a positive message. Here, the ladies of TLC encourage young men to take responsibility for themselves, to get their finances in order, and to show respect for women.
‘Gin & Juice’ – Snoop Dogg
Snoop’s ‘Gin & Juice’ is less of a song, more of a declaration of a lifestyle choice.
‘Elastic Heart’ – Sia
The controversial dance video for ‘Elastic Heart’ with child star Maddie Ziegler was probably Shia Labeouf’s finest work on screen. Though it got Sia in some trouble back in 2013.
Like much of her music, it’s melancholic. But this song is a perfectly structured, pulsating pop masterpiece.
‘Windowlicker’ – Aphex Twin
Richard D James’ music is always avant garde, often disturbing. Windowlicker is the closest he’s ever come to a commercial dance track. It dropped in 1999 and the rest of the EDM scene is still catching up.
Just don’t watch the music video, if you know what’s good for you.
‘R-E-S-P-E-C-T’ – Aretha Franklin
Few are aware that this Feminist anthem was actually written by Otis Redding two years before Franklin sang it in 1967. But never has anyone owned a cover version like Aretha owned this one, earning herself the nickname the Queen of Soul.
‘Better Now’ – Post Malone
Unlikely pop-star Post Malone is not known for his personal hygiene, but he has plenty of face tattoos, and he knows how to write a hook. It’s worth checking out the 80s version of this song by BLANKS
‘Humble’ – Kendrick Lamar
Kendrick Lamar is the thinking person’s trap rapper.
‘I Bet You Look Good on the Dancefloor’ – Arctic Monkeys
These northern indie rockers were only 19 when this, their debut single, was released. Legend has it that their first London show was so packed that some of the crowd fell through the dancefloor. But you can bet that before they did, while they were on it, they looked good.
‘Billie Jean’ – Michael Jackson
One of the greatest pop songs of all time.
‘Freestyler’ – Bomfunk MCs
This 90’s throwback is probably the highest-charting Scandinavian breakbeat track of all time. Time to bust out some Fila tracksuits and upside-down dance moves.
‘Vogue’ – Madonna
Come to think of it, there aren’t enough songs on this list that have dance moves named after them. Perhaps we should go back and do it again.
‘Drop It Like Its Hot’ – Snoop Dogg ft. Pharrell
Snoop Dogg and Pharrell’s collaborations have been numerous, but none will go off at a party like the cool, minimalistic ‘Drop It Like Its Hot.’
‘Wandering Eye’ – Fat Freddy’s Drop
Even though Fat Freddy’s Drop is the soundtrack to every and Trustafarian gathering and WOMAD chai tent, they are a credible act who make very good party music.
‘Can’t Stop’ – Red Hot Chili Peppers
The everyman’s favourite RHCP song, ‘Can’t Stop’ also has one of their most entertaining music videos. An suspenseful rock-riff build-up is followed by plenty of verses of shout-along rap, and a glorious chorus that is radio gold.
‘I Believe In Miracles’ – Jackson Sisters
Not to be confused with the Jackson 5 – even though both had Afros, colourful flares, and there were 5 of them. Or the ‘I Believe in Miracles,’ that is usually followed by ‘…You Sexy Thing.’
The Jackson Sisters were Disco/Funk legends from the Motown era who, sadly, probably aren’t as well-remembered as the horn refrain in this great tune.
‘Out Of Space’ – The Prodigy
Did you think you’d get to the end of this list without hearing a mention of The Prodigy? Well… you didn’t.
‘Brown Eyed Girl’ – Van Morrison
Another song from 1967. This golden oldie is probably the most-played-of-all-time by cover bands and wedding DJs, but the bittersweet, nostalgic feel and simple melodies are usually a winner. Van Morrison himself can’t stand it, but he’s a misery-guts.
So that’s it. 100 irresistible jams. 100 solid gold bangers to get your party on! We could keep going, there are literally thousands. Let us know your thoughts – are there any of these that you hear every time? Any that you wouldn’t dream of playing at your party??