53 Best Funeral Songs Ever


“How Long Will I Love You” by Ellie Goulding

Song Year: 2013

The folk band Waterboys originally wrote “How Long Will I Love You,” but this Ellie Goulding recording comes from her 2013 album Room to Roam. Goulding’s vocals do a fantastic job of capturing the tension between love and loss in the lyrics.

“I’m No Stranger to the Rain” by Keith Whitley

Song Year: 1989

Keith Whitely recorded the track “I’m No Stranger to the Rain” for his 1989 album Don’t Close Your Eyes. The song has lyrics about processing tragedy in a positive manner, and Whitley’s bright vocals help express this hopeful emotion.

“My Immortal” by Evanescence

Song Year: 2003

You will probably recognize Evanescence’s tune “My Immortal” from its haunting piano opening. From the 2003 album Fallen, the highlight of this song is the slow build to a powerful chorus. This emotional tune captures the seriousness of dealing with loss and tragedy.

“Just a Dream” by Carrie Underwood

Song Year: 2007

Released on the 2007 album Carnival Ride, Carrie Underwood’s song “Just a Dream” has lyrics that take on the painful topic of a woman attending her husband’s funeral. The mid-tempo ballad mixes gentle verses with intense choruses that highlight Underwood’s passionate singing.

“Time to Say Goodbye” by Sarah Brightman and Andrea Bocelli

Song Year: 1996

If you do not recognize the name, you will likely know the opening string instrumental riff of this popular song. Recorded as a duet by Sarah Brightman and Andrea Bocelli, “Time to Say Goodbye” comes from the powerful Italian song “Con te partirò” written by Francesco Sartori and Lucio Quarantotto.

“Take Me Home, Country Roads” by John Denver

Song Year: 1971

While the lyrics of John Denver’s “Take Me Home, Country Roads” are explicitly West Virginia and missing one’s home, they work beautifully as a metaphor for accepting death in a peaceful spirit.

“The Dance” by Garth Brooks

Song Year: 1990

The song “The Dance” by Garth Brooks is his signature song from his 1990 self-titled album. The gentle music backs up lyrics about dealing with loss. Soft strings balance Brooks’s vocals to create bittersweet emotion.

“Angel” by Sarah McLachlan

Song Year: 1998

Sarah McLachlan released the track “Angel” on the 1998 album Surfacing, and it is a song with sad lyrics and a painfully somber musical texture. The lyrics specifically center around the death of Smashing Pumpkins’ keyboard player Jonathan Melvoin, but the music works more generally as a slow and gentle way to grieve someone’s passing.

“Butterfly Kisses” by Bob Carlisle

Song Year: 1997

Bob Carlisle and Randy Thomas wrote the track “Butterfly Kisses,” which appeared on the 1997 album Butterfly Kisses (Shades of Grace). While the lyrics are ambiguous and not strictly about someone’s passing, the gentle singing and musical accompaniment will put you in a calm mood as you reflect on the love this narrator has for their daughter.

Top Funeral Songs Of All Time, Final Thoughts

As you can see, there are many songs from a range of musical genres that can help you process the difficult emotions associated with death and funerals. Sometimes even upbeat songs have a strange way of fitting into these difficult moments.

Hopefully, you found tracks you like. But for a more general theme of sad music, check out this collection of the saddest songs of all time.

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