OUR FAVORITE LOVE SONGS
Grant, Jenny, and Reena share their favorite love songs to celebrate Valentine’s Day.
“Soneto de la Noche"
Performed by Conspirare
Grant: “This song starts with Pablo Neruda’s heartbreaking poetry:
‘Cuando yo muera, quiero tus manos en mis ojos…’
‘When I die, I want your hands on my eyes…’
This is a poem about loving someone so much that you want their life to go on, richly and fully, after you have passed. Morten Lauridsen sets this poetry with amazing sensitivity and grace. The Master Chorale has performed this many times over the years. Each of us carries someone close in our hearts as we sing it. This is a love song that reflects real life experience and deep compassion.”
"O Re Piya"
Rahat Fateh Ali Khan
Performed by Saili Oak and Reena Esmail
Reena: “There are so many Bollywood love songs, but for me, ‘O Re Piya’ is the ultimate one. If I had to describe in music that aching feeling of being deeply in love, it would sound like this song. This performance is a cover that I did with Saili Oak for Shastra Music.”
“And So It Goes"
Performed by Stay at Home Choir
Jenny: “I sang this arrangement by Bob Chilcott with my very first a cappella group in my early 20s. This was at a time when love was largely confusing and heartbreaking for me, a hopeless romantic. I still love how Billy Joel simply and intimately illustrates the simultaneous courage and surrender that is required to be in love. This particular performance of the song, recorded during the pandemic, brought together hundreds of singers from around the world, joined together by a connection to music and love.”
"Happiness Is a Thing Called Joe"
Sir Roland Hanna
Performed by Carrie Smith
Reena: “I used to listen to this recording on grey days in my early 20s. In my dreams, love wasn't ever about grand gestures, but about the tiny moments. Love to me is about having that person who brings warmth to the everyday moments in life, over years and decades. I love how effortless this music feels, between two people who have made music together for a lifetime.”
Performed by VocalEssence
Jenny: “This song reads like an intimate invitation to one’s lover. An invitation to be two people, lost in the wonder of the universe on a beautiful summer night, only to find each other.”
"Knocks Me off My Feet"
Grant: “I was a junior at Alhambra High when Songs in the Key of Life came out, and it became the soundtrack of my teenage years. I would sing along with every song at full volume in my bedroom (much to my parents’ bewilderment). I even learned to play ‘Knocks Me off My Feet’ on the piano so I could sing it at parties. Stevie’s songwriting and his incredible voice are literally a wonder (I know, I know), and although this song never became a huge hit, I think it’s one of the most beautiful and sincere love songs ever.”
Image credit: Nicky Pe via Unsplash