How to Say “I Love You” Without the Help of Celine Dion

14 Feb

February 14th has the power to bring out the worst in us. Single and you’re bitter, in a relationship and you can be found wondering in Clinton’s searching for a card without a bear issuing a proclamation of love. But I do not want to take issue with the commercially driven world of Valentine’s day cards, I want to take issue with the commercially driven world of Valentine’s Day music.

For my research for this post, I was drawn to the wonderfully named, www.everythingvalentinesday.com where I quickly lost faith in humanity via a sugar induced coma. That website contains more smiling, perfectly made-up people than Stepford, a whole pack of heavily sedated Bonnie and Clydes. I wanted to suggest a playlist for all those romantics on V-day and the website promised nothing but the finest. Amongst the best/hilarious I found:

Making Love For Fun – Enrique Iglesias

Where Does My Heart Beat Now – Celine Dion

You Belong To Me – Jennifer Lopez

You Belong To My Heart – Elvis Presley

Love Is All We Need – Celine Dion

This proves three things. Firstly, love apparently consists mainly of ‘belonging.’ Indeed, I have often found that clinging possession is one of the more romantic aspects of life if you discount restraining orders (many don’t). Secondly, if Valentine’s day were a company, Celine Dion would be the cruelly calculating, candied CEO. And thirdly, if you’re in love on Valentine’s day, your ears most definitely won’t be. And yet, Can You Hear This intervenes once more. Keep those candles lit, the dimmer switch dimmed because here are my pick of the best longs to save your serenading.

This seems a no-brainer but She & Him are saviours when it comes to infusing love songs with good music (I’m classifying good as not featured in a James Cameron film- take note Leona Lewis and Celine.) In The Sun and Ridin’ In My Car might be the more obvious choices for up-beat love songs but Sentimental Heart is something else. It’s beautiful, touching and full of great lyrics:

Cried all night ’til there was nothin’ more
What use am I as a heap on the floor?
Human Devotion but it’s just no good
taking it hard just like you know I would

And if Valentine’s day is about nothing else, it’s about sentimentality so take a listen:

Next up, one of my favourite songs about love and friendship that is most definitely apt for a Valentine’s day date. It made an appearance on Baz Luhrman’s adaptation of the most famous love story of all time and has a perfect pop hook. The Wannadies’ You & Me Song is the perfect ode to your crush and is easy to sing along to if you’re the brave type (it’s more of an anthem than say the drawn-out My Heart Will Go On, say what you will but Dion’s got pipes.) It’s sweet and full of references to everyday couples and never errs from total affection at any one point. Apologies if this paragraph smacks of saccahrine but the song is undeniably infectious:

On the theme of Romeo and Juliet, Dire Straits produced one of best love songs of all time. It has wonderful lyrics (an essential component in love songs) and can be played with a totally straight-face. Seriously, take a listen and perhaps to The Killers rendition which is just as appropriate. It’s the perfect song to play and could there really be anything more romantic than joint teenage suicide on Valentine’s day? Thought not. Here’s the video:

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=W9MzrirPrCI

Of course, there are many more than three great love songs for Valentine’s. I realise that if you only need three songs to last your entire date you’re either doing things extremely well or you’ve been stood up. For me, Placebo and Radiohead have produced some great tracks about love and relationships but they probably aren’t the most romantic to play to your other half over a bottle of wine. Other honourable mentions must go to Regina Spektor’s Us and dare I say it The Cardigans’ Love Fool? Afterall, on February 14th, a little bit of corniness goes a long way. It would be fantastic to hear your suggsetions about great love songs, or alternatively use our comment section to rant about your relationship frustration. If you are at all confused about my stance of Valentine’s, I take the view of (500) Day’s Of Summer‘s Tom Hansen when he wrote:

Roses are redviolets are blue… F*** youwhore

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