15 Love Songs to Get You Through Today and Beyond
I’m on the fence about Valentine’s Day. I love that it enables my appreciation of kitschy pink and red motifs. Anything that makes eating chocolate in bed with champagne less silly is alright in my book, too. But, of course, I hate the waste. Flowers are almost always imported (i.e. flown in from overseas), balloons and glitter haunt the planet for a lifetime, and many greeting cards aren’t recyclable. Basically, V-Day is like the most luscious confection, littered with chocolate chips. Oh, in this scenario, you hate chocolate chips as much as I do. I know, I’m a monster, but let’s focus on the task at hand. I don’t mind taking a few sort-of-tedious precautions to ensure that I can have my cake and eat it, too. In this analogy, that means doing some legwork so that I can join a greater conversation about love.
To quote the seminal works of global icon RuPaul: If you can’t love yourself, how in the hell are you gonna love somebody else? This line of questioning doesn’t just refer to romantic love, either. How do you show love to those around you? To your coworkers, best friends, to Mother Earth. And how is that reflective of the love you ultimately show yourself? Yikes, deep, I know. That’s why we’ve curated 15 songs about love, to help you get down to the bottom of life’s big questions or just play in the background as you get ready to go out this evening. You do you, boo.
Here are just a few of the songs we picked and why:
HUMAN - KIMBRA
The playlist opens up with Kimbra’s latest track from her new album Primal Heart. In it, she confesses that being vulnerable to love is “what it means to be human.” This song basically confirms one of my most favorite personal axioms, stolen from About a Boy: “No man is an island.” It’s also got a sick opening beat.
AFTER THE STORM - KALI UCHIS
Apart from this song being collaboration heaven (Tyler, The Creator and Bootsy Collins), it also serves a lot of truths beneath it’s funky 70’s beat. My favorite line, perfect for today’s theme: “So if you need a hero, just look in the mirror. No one's gonna save you now, so you better save yourself.” Basically, Kali wants you to be your own best friend, and that's advice we can get behind.
THE FACT IS (I NEED YOU) - JILL SCOTT
Quite possibly one the most important tracks of my formative years. Genius storyteller, Jill Scott, asserts that she needs no man: “I can pay my own light bill, baby. Put my own gas in my own car. I can buy my own shoe collection. I could be a Congresswoman or a garbage woman, a police officer, or a carpenter…” And then hits us with this curveball: “And even though I could do all of these things… I need you.” Chills.
‘CAUSE I’M A MAN - HAIM REMIX
This song was originally written and performed by Tame Impala. The track details lead singer Kevin Parker’s infidelity and ultimately, all the ways he avoids responsibility for his actions. It’s an excellent song, but this remix, sung by sisterly trio Haim, makes his words so meta it stings: “‘Cause I'm a man, woman. Don’t always think before I do. That’s the only answer I've got for you.”
THE CHURCH OF WHAT’S HAPPENING NOW - SIA
This one is from Sia’s 2004 album Colour the Small One which, if you’re mostly familiar with only her recent work, will surprise you. This track promotes being unapologetic about loving yourself and becoming a person you can respect completely. The song’s title, which is used in the bridge, really says it all. Sia is going to let go of the past and set herself free.
So, this Valentine’s Day, try to love yourself, eat a little vegan chocolate, and remember that all that glitters is not green.