A lot of people follow the cliche that "music says what words cannot," and while it may be cheesy, it's often way too accurate. As a kid, my favorite thing to do was make mixed CDs of random songs I liked whether they went together or not. Sometimes, I just wanted to have a dance party in my room and I needed the best bops in one location.
But, mixed CDs and playlists quickly became a token of romantic affection as I entered high school and now college. Here are 11 of the best romance songs I have on repeat on my Spotify mixes:
1. "Smoke" by Medic
Summarizing the idea of back and forth in a relationship, "Smoke" has a sexy tone that makes you want to dance in your living room with the person of your dreams at three in the morning by a fire (how appropriate). There's this call to be in love when you listen to this song. When I listen to it, I can see the movie scene where hands cross over skin in a way that's almost sexual, but it's more intimate than anything. Intimacy equals playlist!
2. "There's No Way" by Lauv and Julia Michaels
OK, OK, OK, hold up!
If you're going to listen to this song, you have to make sure it's the live from Box Fresh, London version. It captivates young love in it's purest form — messing up but choosing love over pain. Every time I hear this song, I smile and I perk up because it's such a light song. I have never, ever skipped this song. Even in those nights of denying love in every form, if this song made it through the shuffle, it traveled through my earbuds to comfort me.
I think it's very common to give love this very serious and foreboding image because anyone we meet could be "the one," and that's pretty terrifying. Love and romance don't have to be scary, and this song is an excellent reminder of the love that is simply passing notes in elementary school.
3. "See Through" by The Band CAMINO
"You're good at looking at me like I'm see through." Wow.
This song is open to a number of different interpretations so I'm sure you're asking, "HOW does it make it on a romance playlist?" Well, it goes to show that we can meet someone and know them to such an extent that you can't hide anything. I believe that you can have a relationship with a best friend and a relationship with a significant other, and those connections have such different capacities. You can tell both figures the same exact story, and they will individually know you in separate ways.
People have the ability to know you so deeply if you allow them. I know how easy it can be to guard yourself off from relationships. What if they lead you on? What if they hurt your heart? What if X, Y, and Z?
The best way to know someone is to be vulnerable, and sometimes that means being "see through."
4. "Gimme All Your Love" by Alabama Shakes
Similar to "Smoke," this song has such a romantic, dance-with-your-lover vibe. It makes you wanna feel their skin on your skin. I remember countless times I played this song in my aunt's car, and she was genuinely concerned. It's a little different than the other songs in its style, but it's one of those songs you feel deep in your bones.
It makes you want to believe in love and nothing else.
5. "Official" by Charli XCX
Charli XCX is a phenomenal lyricist, vocalist, and performer. All of her music keeps us on edge, and it never sounds the same. It also strays from Top 40, but it still carries that lovely pop vibe.
"Official" takes us back to high school where it was such a big deal to be that known couple — the one everyone voted for homecoming king and queen. Charli takes it even further though, and reminds us that behind a high school hallmark, there's still a very real, very true relationship.
6. "Keep On Loving You" by Cigarettes After Sex
It's like a heartbreak anthem but as a proponent for love instead. It's so mellow and subtle, but the song is so significant. I know I would lie on my floor and stare at my fan while listening to this one. It demonstrates such a saturated love that it's subliminal.
7. "Once Upon A Dream" by Lana Del Rey
Why in the world is there a Disney-Pixar soundtrack piece on this love playlist?! Well, romance is just such a fairytale that there has to be at least one song. Effortless vocals and a simple concept, "Once Upon A Dream" gives your heart-emoji playlist that Cinderella feeling — or should I say Sleeping Beauty?
Everyone has had one of those vivid dreams where they meet their prince or princess in a castle. You know, the "Romeo and Juliet" scene? Each relationship needs that little bit of Prince Charming and Fairy Godmother flair for it to be complete.
8. "Is There Somewhere" by Halsey
This is the "cute" song. I try really hard to stay cautious with new relationships because like I said earlier, there's a lot of theoreticals that send me directly to the worst outcome possible. While they are unlike scenarios, I think about them so much that I expect them to happen, and then, it hurts me before it even does — IF it even does. So, this one is just about being in love.
9. "Novocaine" by Tim Schou
Here's to the "significant" in "significant other." Sometimes we meet people, and they're never going to leave our lives. Even if they physically leave, they're here for good.
10. "Love song" by Lana Del Rey
Yes, she was so astounding that she made it on here twice. Lana Del Rey just gets it.
From the first time I heard it, I felt "Love Song" is exactly how real love should feel. I remember not knowing what it was called, but I asked my friend to immediately get me the name of this song. Now, I listen to this song every day in hopes that the next time I fall in love it will feel half as good as this song. If none of the other songs qualify for your madly-in-love-mix, let this one be the one you save.
11. "Anybody Else" by JP Saxe
Finally, the sexiest song of all is "Anybody Else." Sometimes, we don't want to be friends, and we know that. This song is a "fast-slow song" that gives you those grinding-at-a-party vibes, but you love it anyway. My favorite line is "you look less and less like a friend."
Any party NEEDS this song on its soundtrack. It creates a pining for physical touch, for affection, for something! It does an excellent job of portraying physical attraction in musical form.
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