So you’ve planned a romantic getaway with your special someone. Whether you’re looking forward to spending weeks on a sun-drenched beach or a few nights flirting on the dance floor, nothing sets the mood for a just-us holiday quite like the right tunes.
1. Sade – “Cherish The Day”
Led by singer-composer Sade Adu, the English band has managed to create a signature sound since forming over 30 years ago. This 1992 track, which samples Sly & The Family Stone’s “Sing a Simple Song,” is a timeless mix of soul, R&B, jazz, soft rock, and funk.
2. Weezer – “Island In The Sun”
The band’s 2001 ode to blissful isolation has become a summertime classic. It’s romance with a relaxed Southern California spirit.
3. Wings – “Silly Love Songs”
Paul McCartney wrote the 1976 song in response to music critics accusing him of writing only “silly love songs.” Disco strings, saxophones and vocal harmonies embellish a very simple sentiment.
4. Talking Heads – “This Must Be The Place (Naïve Melody)”
When Talking Heads frontman David Byrne started dating costume designer Adelle Lutz in 1982, the new relationship inspired Byrne to write a love song. Of this single, released in 1983, he has said that it’s “a love song made up almost completely of non sequiturs.”
5. Rufus feat. Chaka Khan – “Sweet Thing”
The soul single was a hit for the American funk band in 1975. Khan co-wrote the track with Rufus guitarist Tony Maiden for her then-husband, Richard Holland. “I told all of my boyfriends around that time that it was them that inspired the song,” said Khan.
6. Frank Ocean – “Thinkin Bout You”
Released in 2012 as the lead single from the American recording artist’s debut studio album Channel Orange, the song finds Ocean pondering about his girl as he drives to see her after receiving a text message. The atmospheric track sounds mushy, but its lyrics actually explore regret and heartbreak.
7. Tom Waits – “Little Trip To Heaven”
Waits’ unique voice – smoky and husky – turns this otherwise sentimental composition into an earnest blues song you’d probably hear at a piano bar. Lines such as “And before I know it, I'm in orbit around you / Thanking my lucky stars that I've found you” present a tale of a man who genuinely has these feelings, conveying them in a heartfelt, not hackneyed, manner.
8. Daft Punk – “Something About Us”
The French electronic music duo released the song as the sixth and final single from the 2001 album Discovery. It’s the love theme to their 2003 animated feature film Interstella 5555: The 5tory of the 5ecret 5tar 5ystem, set on an alien planet inhabited by blue-skinned music stars.
9. Aqualung – “Brighter Than Sunshine”
The 2003 indie pop ballad is triumphant and uplifting, and was featured in the 2005 romantic comedy A Lot Like Love.
10. The Zombies – “This Will Be Our Year”
While the English rock band group – led by Rod Argent and Colin Bluntstone – are best known for their 1968 single “Time of the Season,” this other gem from the Odessey and Oracle album also deserves your full attention. Propelled by simple, piano-driven chords, the song’s take on domestic bliss makes it a perfect anthem for New Year’s Eve or a marriage proposal.
11. Adele – “Make You Feel My Love”
The British singer-songwriter recorded her version of this Bob Dylan original in 2008, for her debut studio album 19.