Ahh, Valentine’s Day. I’m not even sure where the idea for Valentine’s Day came from, but what I do know is that Valentine’s Day is one of the great triumphs of the retail world, their way of saying, “We can get you to feel guilty enough to buy anything — even a diamond necklace, even a brand-new car.”
And though I’m not one to celebrate Valentine’s Day with chocolate and flowers, I am always one to celebrate with music. So here goes — my faves for Feb. 14.
1. “I’m Yours,” Jason Mraz. A lot of songs Jason Mraz sings make you feel as if you’re walking along the beaches of some tropical paradise, feet in the sand, sun on your back — and this song is no exception. Except with “I’m Yours,” Mraz makes you feel as if you’re walking along with that special someone by your side. A perfect example of a positively feel-good love song.
2. “Just The Way You Are,” Bruno Mars. Mars says the song was inspired just by watching his girlfriend get ready to go out. He figured that women everywhere were taking hours to get ready when their men really think they’re perfect already. “When I see your face, there’s not a thing that I would change/because you’re amazing just the way you are.” Who needs flowers and chocolate with lyrics like these?
3. “The Way You Look Tonight,” Frank Sinatra. Originally sung by Fred Astaire to Ginger Rogers’ character while she was washing her hair in the film “Swing Time” in 1936, this song has been recorded and rerecorded by countless artists — everyone from Billie Holiday to Adam Levine (of Maroon 5). A quintessential love song, “The Way You Look Tonight” was recorded by Frank Sinatra in 1964. The big band orchestra coupled with Sinatra’s ever-smooth vocals make this a perfect pick for Valentine’s.
4. “Austin,” Blake Shelton. The song that turned me on to country music, “Austin” relays the tale of a woman who realizes only after she breaks up with the man of her dreams that he is her one true love. Not knowing whether he still loves her, she calls him on the phone, gets his answering machine, and is left breathless when he signs off, “P.S. if this is Austin [the city where she moved], I still love you.” A great song for couples reconnecting on V-day.
5. “I Will Always Love You,” Whitney Houston. I have to be honest, I don’t love this song. (Who am I kidding? I hate this song.) Maybe it has something to do with it being overplayed ad nauseam the summer after seventh grade. But I can’t argue with numbers. Originally recorded by Dolly Parton in 1973, “I Will Always Love You” was re-recorded as a powerhouse ballad in 1992 by Whitney Houston and became a huge worldwide success. Houston’s version has sold over 4.5 million copies to date and became #1 on the Billboard charts in numerous countries (cue excessive radio play).
There you have it folks, Valentine’s Day’s finest. I know there are countless other love songs out there, so please post in the comments below — what are your faves for V-Day?
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