The three greatest love songs in the world

As I have previously written, love poems tend to make me almost (accidentally) burn down my house, but love songs are another matter. There’s something about the combination of instrumental music, singing and lyrics that conveys more emotion than the written word alone.

In honor of Valentine’s Day, I’ve selected a few of my favorite love songs, ones that may not already be in your holiday playlist or mix CD. In order to make the cut, a song needs to have quality lyrics in addition to being sonically pleasing.

Coming in at number three, “Nice ‘n’ Easy” by Frank Sinatra.

In today’s society, it seems like such a foreign concept to take a relationship slowly and enjoy the blossoming of romance – to make “all the stops along the way,” as Ol’ Blues Eyes puts it, rather than dashing to the finish line.

(Once upon a time, “the finish line” referred to marriage. Regrettably, this is no longer the case.)

Imagine being told that you’re too precious to rush things. Gentlemen, take note. This is not old-fashioned; it’s refreshing.

In second place, “Perfect” by Alice Cooper.

This is probably one of Cooper’s lesser-known songs about love, but it’s definitely one of his sweetest.

Some people have a list of requirements for their significant other that’s so lengthy, you might confuse it with a five-year-old’s Christmas list. How wonderful to hear someone sing about a woman who’s not perfect with such affection and humor.

Though there are other songs out there that attempt to pull off this feat, most of them don’t strike that delicate balance – the woman ends up coming across as shallow because her imperfections are too slight, or her imperfections are so glaring that it’s hard to understand why the singer is enamored of her in the first place. Mr. Cooper, I salute you.

And last, but absolutely never the least – my all-time favorite love song, “Everlasting Love” by Howard Jones.

I have adored this song since I was in high school. I used to stay up late to listen to “Back to the ‘80s Friday Night” on the radio in hopes that I would hear it, and I would write out the lyrics in my notebook when I got bored in math class.

The lyrics are still hands-down some of the best I’ve encountered on the subject of love. Here’s the first and second verse and the chorus:

He wasn’t looking for a pretty face
She wasn’t searching for the latest style
He didn’t want someone who walked straight off the TV
She needed someone with an interior smile

She wasn’t looking for a cuddle in the back seat
He wasn’t looking for a five minute thrill
She wasn’t thinking of tomorrow or of next week
This vacancy he meant to permanently fill

I need an everlasting love
I need a friend and a lover divine
An everlasting precious love
Wait for it, wait for it, give it some time

Rather than diminishing the importance of physical attraction in a relationship, I believe this song puts it in its proper place. What does a pretty face matter, after all, if you and your significant other aren’t also compatible in terms of personality, faith, interests, values and so forth? Such a relationship would become boring and frustrating rather quickly.

I love that “Everlasting Love” emphasizes the importance of substance in a relationship – having not just a lover, but a friend – as well as the need for a deep love that lasts a lifetime rather than leaving you heartbroken in a matter of weeks or months. Isn’t that what everyone wants?

I truly believe that’s the case – it even says so in the Bible. Consider Proverbs 19:22 (NIV) – What a person desires is unfailing love; better to be poor than a liar.

What are your favorite love songs? Will any of these songs make it into your Valentine’s Day rotation?

– Teresa Santoski

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