Thanks @Boogie for sending it back my way 🙏🏼 And thank you @solena & @isabellmae for requesting it too! A few classics that almost made the cut: God Only Knows by The Beach Boys, A Case Of You by Joni Mitchell, & Something by The Beatles. Here's the playlist link:
  1. Big Star - I'm In Love With A Girl
    My favorite simple love song that cuts right to the point and doesn't fuck around. It's also a sweet example of how touched and astonished you can feel not just when someone else actually loves you, but when you realize your own ability to love someone else.
  2. Marvin Gaye - If I Should Die Tonight
    For me, this is the greatest love song of all time. For so many reasons, but especially this - it doesn't leave anyone out. On track 3 of an album that's basically one long come-on, Marvin's most moving expression of love is in sending his heart out to the people who may not (ever) feel the kind of love he feels at that moment: "Millions never have, they never will..." But it's also got the simplest expression of love I've heard: If he dies tonight, why won't he die blue? "Cuz I've known you."
  3. Sade - Love Is Stronger Than Pride
    I'm not sure anything gets more in the way of our love than our pride. I'm glad Sade Adu wrote the perfect song about it.
  4. Leonard Cohen - One Of Us Cannot Be Wrong
    This is one of my ex's favorite songs, & became one of mine during the turbulent end of 2016. Until the experiences I had w/ her, I'd never viewed love the way she claimed to (& that Leonard clearly did too) - as a sort of war zone, where people battle for control, ownership, revenge. A landscape of ghosts & monsters, as depicted in her own creative work, too. LC sings, "the duty of lovers is to tarnish the golden rule." I feel tainted by this view now, but as far as "war zone" songs go, it's 💯
  5. Rose Royce - Love Don't Live Here Anymore
    This brilliant, underrated 70s soul band combines the wildest elements - a mix of synth bass & live drums that sounds like Funkadelic meets Talking Heads, A+ Moog squeals, simmering strings, &cutting (I mean TRULY cutting - when she goes high in the last few refrains, your ears can barely take the pain coming from that timbre of her voice) torch vocals from Gwen Dickey. It's a confrontational, intense record that perfectly captures the mood of abandonment & betrayal in the song. Feels, y'all. 😂
  6. Placebo - Running Up That Hill (originally by Kate Bush)
    The ultimate song about sacrifice. Or, for brooding while feeling responsible for Marissa Cooper's death at the end of season 3 of The O.C. It's also got some complicated feelings of resentment toward the person with whom you'd trade places. Again, the war zone I never thought about. "Tell me we both matter. Don't we?"
  7. John Martyn - Solid Air
    This is my pick for favorite friendship love song, even though it doesn't sound like one at first. Friends show concern for each other, and I think both the words & the otherworldly, unsettled music of this song perfectly capture John's real-life worry about his friend Nick Drake (see below), who battled depression and eventually died from an overdose of sleeping pills. "I don't know what's going wrong in your mind, but I know you don't like what you find when you're moving through solid air..."
  8. Nick Drake - Place To Be
    He barely hints at love in the words of this song, but you can feel throughout it a sort of knowing acknowledgement that life and love aren't what he thought they would be as his younger self. You can get really similar feels from Both Sides, Now by Joni Mitchell & Ooh La La by The Faces, but for me, Place To Be is the ultimate song about being weary of things not working out. To know what happened to Nick a bit later only makes it more crushing. "Oh, so weak in this need for you..."
  9. Thompson Twins - Hold Me Now
    They weave in and out of so many descriptions of images and problems - of the future, of the past - then continually come back to the present moment's urgency of people just simply needing each other. Needing to be held, to be reassured, to not feel abandoned. It's one of my favorite songs that reminds us about where we are right now and what connects us all.
  10. Stevie Wonder - I Believe (When I Fall In Love It Will Be Forever)
    Only a once in a lifetime being like Stevie Wonder could convincingly get across the sheer will and lust for life behind the dumbest, craziest leap of faith we ever take on this Earth - the leap of actually thinking, "maybe this time. Maybe you. Maybe now. Maybe forever." God bless you, Stevie...💕
  11. Simon & Garfunkel - Kathy's Song
    My favorite lyrical exploration of love. So here they are (written by Paul Simon):
  12. I hear the drizzle of the rain
Like a memory, it falls
Soft and warm, continuing
Tapping on my roof and walls
  13. And from the shelter of my mind
Through the window of my eyes
I gaze beyond the rain-drenched streets
To England where my heart lies
  14. My mind's distracted and diffused
My thoughts are many miles away
They lie with you when you're asleep
And kiss you when you start your day
  15. And a song I was writing is left undone
I don't know why I spend my time
Writing songs I can't believe
With words that tear and strain to rhyme
  16. And so you see, I have come to doubt
All that I once held as true
I stand alone without beliefs
The only truth I know is you
  17. And as I watch the drops of rain
Weave their weary paths and die
I know that I am like the rain
There but for the grace of you, go I