Love songs are as ancient as human life itself and sorry Paul McCartney, but love songs are not silly at all.
As a genre, love songs manifest the type of generation we have and the brand of love that we describe in each of these generations. And speaking of genre, love songs are expressed in almost all music genres such as soul, R&B, pop rock, alternative rock, modern, literally all genres.
Top 10 Love Songs
Each one of us would have our own top ten list of the best love songs ever written. As such, our rundown of the top ten love songs of all time is based on a thorough comparison of some music charts and the songs that are consistently in their top ten love songs of all time and here they are:
1. Unchained Melody
Who would ever forget that signature slow, orchestral music with the baritone voice of the Righteous Brothers while Demi Moore and Patrick Swayze have their moment with the clay pot?
This timeless love song first made its hit in 1965 in the album Just Once in My Life but was immortalized through the movie Ghost.
2. I will always love you
This is perhaps one of the most belted out songs since the 90s and up to now. It was originally written by Dolly Parton in 1968 but was however, immortalized by Whitney Houston in 1992 for the film The Bodyguard. It is one of the most covered songs in the world and one of the best-selling singles of all time thanks to its very emotional runs and lyrics.
3. Your song
This song by Sir Elton John won the hearts of many people because of its uncomplicated tone, and simple lyrics especially that it was written in 1970 for his now husband, before the world even knew that he was gay. It was one of the singles included in his best-selling album Take Me to the Pilot which won Sir EJ his Grammy Hall of Fame.
4. The way you look tonight
This song made its debut in 1935 for the film Swing Time and was sung by Fred Astaire and won an Academy Award for Best Original Song in 1936. It would be covered by various artists but Frank Sinatra’s version in 1964 gained the most fame. In 2002, the song was included in the Great American Songbook released by Rod Stewart.
5. How deep is your love
Bee Gees is known for many timeless love songs but this song is one of their super hits. It was first heard in 1977 in the film Saturday Night Fever and stayed in the top 10 hit chart of both the US and UK hit charts for 15 years. It was ranked 22nd in the Billboard’s All Time Top 100 during its 55th anniversary.
6. Endless love
It was written by Lionel Richie in 1981 to be the official theme song of Franco Zeffirelli film of the same title. Zeffirelli wanted the song to be a duet and so Diana Ross came in the scene. The song became a major hit and was nominated for an Academy Award for Best Original Song in 1982 and was then covered by famous artists including Luther Vandross and Mariah Carey. The song later on became tagged as the greatest song duet of all time by Billboard.
7. I just called to say I love you
It is Stevie’s biggest hit song which he recorded in 1984. It was originally written as the theme song of the film The Woman In Red but ended up topping the charts of over 19 countries for six months. Aside from that, it also won an Oscar and a Grammy for best original song and gave Stevie his fourth Grammy.
8. When a man loves a woman
The raspy-sweet voice of Percy Sledge in 1966 and of Michael Bolton in 1991 belting out how men change when they love women made this song is one of the most famous love songs ever written. The Sledge version was included in the 500 Greatest Songs of All Time by the Rolling Stones and the Bolton version won Michael a Grammy.
9. I’m gonna be (500 miles)
This song by the Scottish duo, The Proclaimers, talks about what a man would do including walking 500 miles back and forth for the woman he loves. It made its hit debut in the UK in 1988 and was on the top spot for eight weeks. It was also number one in Ireland, Australia and New Zealand in 1990 and made its way to the US in 1993 for the film Ben and Jerry. It was re-released in 2000 in the US and Canada.
10. My heart will go on
This iconic song will forever remind us of Jack, Rose and the movie Titanic. It is considered as Celine Dion’s breakthrough power ballad as it became an instant international hit in 1977 in more than 20 countries. It is included in the Greatest Songs of the Century, sold more than 18 million copies and is hailed as the eight overall best-selling single by a female artist.
Soul Music Love Songs
These love songs can range from jazz soul to blues soul with their signature saxophone and piano instrumentals. Some of the most unforgettable soul music love songs are Let’s Stay Together by Al Green, Let’s Get It On by Marvin Gaye and contemporary songs such as All of Me by John Legend and Make You Feel My Love by Adele.
- Could It Be I’m Falling In Love by The Spinners (1973)
- Prototype by OutKast (2001)
- When Somebody Loves You Back by Teddy Pendergrass (1978)
- Fire and desire by Rick James (1981)
- Let’s stay together by Al Green (1972)
- This old heart of mine by The Isley Brothers (1966)
- You’ll Never Find Another Love Like Mine by Lou Rawls (1976)
- Lovin’ you by Minnie Riperton (1974)
- Tonight I Celebrate My Love by Roberta Flack (1983)
- You make me feel brand new by The Stylistics (1973)
- Just My Imagination (Running Away with Me) by The Temptations (1971)
- I’ve been loving you too long by Otis Redding (1965)
- Rock with you by Michael Jackson (1979)
- (If Loving You Is Wrong) I Don’t Want to Be Right by Luther Ingram (1972)
- Distant lover by Marvin Gaye (1971)
- Sweet lady by Tyrese Gibson (1998)
- Ain’t No Mountain High Enough by Marvin Gaye (1966)
- I’ll make love to you by Boz II Men (1994)
- You can’r hurry love by The Supremes (2018)
- I want you back by The Jackson 5 (1969)
- Still water (love) by Four Tops (1970)
- Love don’t love nobody by The Spinners (1974)
- Do I love you by Frank Wilson (2010)
- Love Train (Re-Recorded / Remastered) by The O’Jays (1972)
- End of the road by Boyz II Men (1991)
- Let’s get it on by Marvin Gaye (1973)
- Untitled (How does it feel) by D’Angelo (2000)
- Reach out I’ll be there by Four Tops (1966)
- Can’t get enough of your love, baby by Barry White (1974)
- A house is not a home by Luther Vandross (1981)
- (Your Love Keeps Lifting Me) Higher and Higher by Jackie Wilson (1967)
- When a man loves a woman by Percy Sledge (1966)
- That’s the way love goes by Janet Jackson (1993)
- Reunited by Peaches & Herb (1978)
- Oh girl by The Chi-Lites (1972)
- Woman’s gotta have it by Bobby Womack (1972)
- Always and Forever by Luther Vandross (1994)
- What does it take (to win your love) by Jr Walker All Stars (1969)
- Walk away from love by David Ruffin (1975)
- I’ll be there by The Jackson 5 (1970)
- Never too much by Luther Vandross (1981)
- Love hangover by Diana Ross (1976)
- Who’s lovin’ you by The Jackson 5 (1969)
- Don’t Say Goodnight (It’s Time for Love) by The Isley Brothers (1980)
- Cruisin’ by Somokey Robinson (1979)
- Touch me in the morning by Diana Ross (1973)
- My girl by The Temptations (1965)
- Didn’t I (Blow Your Mind This Time) (aus “Jackie Brown”) by The Delfonics (1970)
- It’s Ecstacy When You Lay Down Next to Me by Barry White (1977)
- I will always love you by Whitney Houston (1992)
- Strawberry Letter 23 by The Brothers Johnson
Rock Love Songs
With those raspy tones, bass guitars and drums, rock love songs give us the feel love too strong or love gone wrong. Famous artists within this genre are Journey, Pink Floyd, Aerosmith, Firehouse and Queen, among others.
- More than words by Extreme (1990)
- Here’s to us by Halestorm (2012)
- Faithfully by Journey (1983)
- I believe in you by Stryper (1988)
- (Can’t Live Without Your) Love And Affection by Nelson (1990)
- You are so beautiful by Joe Cocker (1974)
- Right here waiting for you by Richard Marx (1989)
- Is this love by Whitesnake (1987)
- You’re my best friend by Queen (1975)
- Up where we belong by Joe Cocker (1982)
- Have I told you lately by Van Morrison (1989)
- Wherever you will go by The Calling (2001)
- I Believe In a Thing Called Love by The Darkness (2003)
- Whole lotta love by Led Zeppelin (1969)
- Love of my life by Queen (1975)
- I’ll be there for you by Bon Jovi (1988)
- The luckiest by Ben Folds (2001)
- Fix you by Coldplay (2005)
- Nothing’s gonna stop us now by Starship (1987)
- Wonderful tonight by Eric Clapton (1977)
- (Everything I Do) I Do It for You by Bryan Adams (1991)
- Still loving you by Scorpions (1984)
- Nights in white satin by The Moody Blues (1967)
- You make loving fun by Fleetwood Mac (1977)
- Love of a lifetime by FireHouse (1990)
- Something by The Beatles (1967)
- I’d do anything for love (but I won’t do that) by Meat Loaf (1993)
- Always by Bon Jovi (1994)
- Your song by Elton John (1970)
- You’re in My Heart (The Final Acclaim) by Rod Stewart (1977)
- Crazy Little Thing Called Love by Queen (1979)
- You’re the inspiration by Chicago (1984)
- Fell in love with a girl by The White Stripes (2001)
- I wanna be your boyfriend by Ramones (1976)
- Keep on loving you by REO Speedwagon (1980)
- Waiting for a girl like you by Foreigner (1981)
- Babe by Styx (1979)
- Truly madly deeply by Savage Garden (1997)
- Angel by Aerosmith (1987)
- In your eyes by Peter Gabriel (1986)
- When you love a woman by Journey (1988)
- I Want to Know What Love Is (1999 Remaster) by Foreigner (1990)
- Never tear us apart by INXS (1987)
- No matter what by Papa Roach (2010)
- Heaven by Bryan Adams (1984)
- Total Eclipse of the heart by Bonnie Tyler (1983)
- Love will keep us alive by Eagles (1994)
- Waiting on a friend by The Rolling Stones (1981)
- Love bites by Def Leppard (1987)
- Just the way you are by Billy Joel (1977)
Modern Love Songs
Contemporary love songs are a hodge-podge of different genres. At present, they are dominated by pop/alternative rock, upbeat jams with a fusion of soul, jazz and R&B. Famous modern love songs that truly hit the charts are songs by Adele, Ed Sheeran, Maroon 5, John Legend and Mariah Carey, to say the very least.
Love Songs for Him
Professions of love by women never get old and that is a fact. Mostly soul, R&B and jazz, who would forget Adele’s Make You Feel My Live or Katy Perry’s Unconditionally or Etta James’ At Last? With their raw, smooth runs and high vocals, these songs are so timeless.
Love Songs for Her
It really strikes a different feel when love songs are heard from a man’s point of view. Blues-rock singer John Mayer comes right through with songs like A Face to Call Home and Shawn Mendez’s Treat You Better or the classics by Robbie Williams and country songs by Blake Shelton, Eric Stapleton, Eagles, etc.
Love songs are forever because they tell the universal story of all the kinds of love from being loved back to being not, from being chosen to not being, for taking risks and for being afraid to jump on the love train. There are sub-genres under love songs and that makes it all the more versatile and relatable.