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Friday, August 10, 2007

Top 20 Songs About Love: Songs 20-16

Ahh, the love song. It's without a doubt the most common of all songs in popular music, and yet a good one can still feel fresh and poignant. That's because love is so complex that it can take on many forms. One love song could be about how blissful life is with your loved one at your side, another could be about how much pain and sorrow is involved in loving another person. The love song is so often defined as the former, with complete disregard to the latter. So today, I'm introducing a new series which will last the next four weeks. Every Friday, I'll reveal to you my Top 20 Songs About Love. Because there are so many love songs out there, I had to find some way to narrow it down. Therefore, only songs on my computer will be eligible. Granted, there are a lot on there (around 6,000 or so, I believe), so while not completely comprehensive, it's at least a good starting point. Here are songs 20-16:

#20: Tegan and Sara - "I Know, I Know, I Know" - This song was one of the few on "So Jealous" that toned down the fast-paced chick rock. It was all the more effective because of it. It tells the story of two lovers, one moving away and the other staying behind. Or at least that's how it's supposed to go. As they're driving to the one's new destination, one trys to convince the other to stick around and vice versa. They argue, cry, laugh, scream...and it's all out of love. The sisters sing, "The same as I love you, you'll always love me too. This love isn't good unless it's me and you." I'm down with that. This is a great song, and one of Tegan and Sara's best.

#19: Buddy Holly - "Everyday" - This is one of those carefree lovesongs, the kind that infect your soul and force you to inexplicably whistle it's tune to no end. Buddy Holly doesn't get as much love these days as he used to, but this song is one that everyone should listen to. It's not complex or deep, but a short, simple pop song. As such, it's one of the most enjoyable on this list, even if it is towards the bottom.

#18: Incubus - "I Miss You" - Before it was every 15-year-old girl's Myspace profile song, "I Miss You" was just a sidenote on Incubus' 1999 album, "Make Yourself." Then the band blew up, and before you know it, every dumb, aviator-wearing girl was blaring this out of their Mercury Cougars. Brandon Boyd is no lyrical genius, to be sure, and this song is evidence of that. However, he has never sounded more passionate or earnest than he does here. We all know what it's like to have someone we love leave for a prolonged period of time, and Boyd captures it almost perfectly here ("You have only been gone ten days, but already I'm wasting away"). In the end, it's an absolutely beautiful song; one that is universally relatable and timeless in it's presentation.

#17: Rilo Kiley - "Rest of My Life" - I believe it's safe to say that while many people heard Rilo Kiley's "Takeoffs and Landings," very few people paid much attention to this song. After all, it's been Jenny Lewis who has always had the spotlight pointed at her, so this short little song by Blake Sennett at the end of the album was rarely noted by critics or fans. Truth be told, I've always preferred Blake Sennett to Jenny Lewis, and this song is a large part of that. It's about being in love with someone that you can't have. Blake sings, "There are worse ways for a guy to spend his time than to sit and think of you. I think I'd marry you. Just your smile leaves me satisfied, though you're not mine. So for the rest of my life, I'm gonna search for someone just like you." It's an absolutelty heartbreaking song, but one of my favorite Rilo Kiley songs of all time. You should hear it.

#16: My Brightest Diamond - "Gone Away" - Like Incubus' "I Miss You," this song is about being in love with someone who has gone away. However, unlike that song, this one shows almost no hope of seeing that person again. Shara Worden sings, "You've gone away where there isn't a telephone wire, still I wait by the phone. You don't even write to say goodbye." I guess that really makes it a song about loving someone who doesn't love you anymore, and in that sense it's really one of the more depressing songs on the list. Still, you can't really go wrong having this song (or album, for that matter) on your iPod or computer. Sure, it may make you want to sit in a corner and cry, but that's part of what makes it a great love song.

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