Friday, August 7, 2009


There are hundreds of lists of THE MOST ROMANTIC SONGS on-line. I am astounded by how many bad songs people seem to think are romantic. It doesn't give me hope for their idea of romance. So, here is my list. Feel free to tell me all my songs suck, but you'd better come up with your own list.

Alphabetically listed. Click on the song to listen to a sample.

  • A Good Feelin’ To Know – Poco. C’mon! One of the happiest songs I’ve ever heard. Why this song was not a MASSIVE hit in the early 70s is one of the greater mysteries of pop music. If Ritchie Furay never did anything else in his professional life, (and he did a lot more!) he wrote this amazing song about the joys of being in love.
  • Because – The Dave Clark Five. Great 60s rock ballad. Beats any love song the Beatles ever recorded. The answer to every question is “Because, because, I love you.” (Note: the version of the song linked is NOT the original.)
  • Chances Are – Johnny Mathis. Lush and dreamy. Mathis is always good to set a romantic mood.
  • Drunk On Love – Radney Foster. A really fun love song about a man sitting at a bar who realizes he has just fallen in love. Greatest line: “That kiss you just hammered me with, girl/ it’s a staggering revelation.”
  • Fade Into You – Mazzy Starr. Most people first heard this song in the movie “Angus”. Once you hear it, it haunts you. Hope Sandoval’s voice is barely a whisper floating on top of an ethereal beat lush with tambourine, acoustic guitar, a weeping slide and tinkling piano. Lovely.
  • Fooled Around and Fell In Love – Elvin Bishop. Okay, I’m showing my 1970s roots here. But if the music critic on Yahoo can choose ‘Let’s Do It’ by LL Cool J as a romantic song … I can choose this simple love song with a killer guitar solo by Bishop and a yearning vocal by Mickey Thomas. This is the song that makes me forgive Thomas every time I hear him singing “We Built This City” with the Starship.
  • Fools That Dream – Radney Foster. Foster is an amazing songwriter. This is one of his best … a man realizing that sometimes love leads you in a direction that others don’t agree you should pursue. However, the best love stories are when people (fools) are not afraid to take a risk.
  • I Don't Care (Just As Long As You Love Me) – Buck Owens. A bright happy love song that opens with the great line “Well, I don’t care if the sun don’t shine / I don’t care if the bells don’t chime / Just as long as you love me.” Perfect.
  • I Fall To Pieces – Patsy Cline. Almost everyone chooses ‘Crazy’ for a romantic Patsy Cline song. I go against the grain. If you’re in love with someone who does not love you in return, Patsy sympathizes, and she’s got your back.
  • I Knew Love – Nanci Griffith. A bitter sweet ballad about love lost and the enduring hope that it is not forever gone.
  • I’ll Be Around – The Spinners. This may be one of my favorite song from the 1970s. Granted, it’s about a man who loses his love but resolves to be around for her should she ever need his friendship. That’s true romance. Greatest line: “And now it’s up to me / To bow out gracefully.”
  • It’s Magic – Keely Smith. An old fashioned love song, arranged and orchestrated by Nelson Riddle and sung with great emotion by Keely Smith. Riddle’s arrangement makes this version and allows Keely to sing the song twice … first as a slow ballad and then … as a swinging love song. All within 4 minutes!
  • I Saw The Light – Todd Rundgren. Another upbeat, happy love song. One of those songs that always makes me smile and feel good.
  • I’ve Got You Under My Skin – Frank Sinatra. Frank is one of the ultimate make-out artists. I’ve always appreciated this ‘under my skin’ concept. Swingin’ and sexy. Try not to snap your fingers as you listen.
  • I Was Made To Love Her – Stevie Wonder. When compiling a Romantic Song list most people choose Stevie Wonder’s cheesy “You Are the Sunshine of My Life” or the atrocious “I Just Called To Say I Love You.” This song however, is fun, brimming with the joy of being in love.
  • Just My Imagination – The Temptations. Could be the prettiest song I’ve ever heard. Eddie Kendricks’ last song as part of the Temptations is one of the greatest love songs of all time. His voice is fragile and soaring.
  • Let's Pretend - The Raspberries. A classic pop song. Eric Carmen was a musical sponge and this song is a perfect distillation of The Beatles, Beach Boys and the Byrds.
  • Let’s Stay Together – Al Green. A love song about the hardship of cultivating the longevity of a relationship, sung with typical passion by one of the all time great soul singers.
  • Only Want To Be With You – Shelby Lynne. Originally recorded by Dusty Springfield as an up tempo pop song, Shelby Lynne slowed it down and turned it into a smoldering torch song. Absolutely stunning.(This will be our first dance when Rebel and I get married in January 2010.)
  • Our Love Is Here To Stay – Louis Armstrong & Ella Fitzgerald. The last song by George and Ira Gershwin is one of their best. The duet between Louis and Ella is, of course, masterful.
  • Power of Two – Indigo Girls. An amazing love song about the transforming power of a relationship.
  • Return To Me – Dean Martin. Are you kidding me? For sheer romanticism this is tough to beat. Lush strings and Dean singing in his inimitable style, and even breaking into Italian at one point. Also, the title and main song of one of my all time favorite movies.
  • Singin’ In The Rain – Gene Kelly. One of my all time favorite song because this is one of the greatest movies ever. You cannot separate the song from the famous scene of Kelly realizing he is love with Kathy Sheridan and celebrates his joy by cavorting in the street during a heavy rain. Sheer romantic magic! I still get a shiver when he Kelly sings "I've got a smile on my face."
  • Starless Summer Sky – Marshall Crenshaw. Another happy love song. Listen to this and you will have a smile on your face, and tapping your toes. Crenshaw should be an American Institution.
  • Sure Thing – Foster & Lloyd. Another Radney Foster song. Greatest line: “You dream of sure love and I dream of your love / Your dream and my dream are one in the same.”
  • Whenever You're On My Mind - Marshall Crenshaw. One last great pop song. Greatest line: "I leave the world behind / Whenever you're on my mind."

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