The Heart Speaks for Love: 11 Songs for Valentine's Day
NRT's Paul Phillips shares happy, sad, worshipful, heartwarming, and heartbreaking songs for love day 2020.

AN EXCLUSIVE EDITORIAL, The Heart Speaks for Love: 11 Songs for Valentine's Day
Posted: February 13, 2020 | By: PaulPhillips_NRT
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Happy Valentine's Day! ‘Tis the season for roses, chocolate hearts, Valentine's Day cards, and other things red and 'hearty.' Oh, let's not forget those very delicious red cinnamon heart candies. Man, I'm getting hungry just thinking about them. But, for me, it's all about the music: happy, sad, worshipful, heartwarming, heartbreaking–you get the idea. If you're here reading this article, you're most likely looking for song ideas for Valentine's Day. Well, I've got some for you.

However, I'm taking a different approach. I will suggest songs that are happy, sad, heartwarming, etc. But, I want to share grown-up songs that tackle mature themes. The selected songs below are more than just "hello, I love you." These songs stay with the times: good times, bad times, wedding times, struggle times, old times, long times, and so much more.

I hope you get as much out of the songs as I did. Enjoy.

Tauren Wells "Love's Worth The Fight"

Tauren recently released his new album, Citizen of Heaven. And, similar to his previous album, Hills And Valleys, Tauren delivers some solid tunes. One, in particular, is the ballad, "Love's Worth The Fight." In the lyrics, Tauren sings about how fighting for the one you love is worth the fight. It's definitely worth adding to your playlist.

What if we live? What if we die?/What if we cave in not knowing why?/'Cause we both lose if we don't try/What if we believed love's worth the fight?

Dan + Shay, Tori Kelly "Speechless"

"Speechless" is a wedding song, written by Dan Smyers and Shay Mooney. Watching their brides walk down the aisle is the inspiration for this song. Dan tells People Magazine: "I had this title 'Speechless' in my phone–you're at the altar waiting for your bride to walk down the aisle, then that moment happens and you have nothing to say. I remember being up there on our wedding day. [My wife] walked up and I was at a loss for words." Dan + Shaw recently released a new version of the song, with Tori Kelly. It's definitely worth a listen.

You already know that you're my weakness/After all this time I'm just as nervous/Every time you walk into the room/I'm speechless

Mac Powell and the Family Reunion "Red On a Rose"

I can't lie. I miss Third Day: their music, their lyrics, and so on. But, former lead singer Mac Powell is still around putting out music. This means that we still have Third Day's voice. Mac put together his own band, Mac Powell and the Family Reunion, after Third Day called it quits in 2018. And, Mac's band recently released its first album, Back Again. Included on this debut release is the gentle ballad, "Red As A Rose." Mac has always had that country-rock sound. It shows in his music and his voice. By the way, did you ever notice that Mac's voice sounds similar to music veteran Cat Steven's?

I'll be your blue sky when it's raining/The green grass under your feet/When the world gets complicated, you can count on me/I'll be your shelter when you need one/When the winds of winter blow/I will hold you close and never let you go like red on a rose/Like red on a rose

The Color "The Kind of Man"

Since I was a kid, I've been a sucker for love songs: Celine Dion's "The Power of Love," Edwin McCain's "I'll Be," you get the idea. But, when I got married, my perspective on love songs changed. Of course, the aforementioned songs are still relevant, but they're told from a very high-level point of view. Nothing specific.

As a new husband, I asked myself, "What does a love song between husband and wife look like?" Ironically, that question was answered at my wedding with Sanctus Real's "Lead Me." Ever since then, I've looked for other songs, similar to "Lead Me." I finally found one: The Color's "The Kind of Man." In the song, the married man asks God to help him be a better husband to his wife, and father to his kids. He's asking God to make him the kind of man that he wants to be. By the way, The Color is Canadian, I am Canadian, no bias here.

Lord, make me a man who loves his kids and loves his wife/Lord, make me a man who always stands for what is right/Who's strong enough to fight a war/By falling to his knees/'Cause that's the kind of man/That's the kind of man I want to be

Stars Go Dim "For Worse Or Better"

Stars Go Dim, real name Chris Cleveland, reflects on lost love in this song. It's human nature to miss something—or someone—when it's gone. "For Worse or Better" is definitely not a song to dwell on a sad past. But, rather an opportunity to cherish something—or someone—so that it hopefully doesn't disappear.

Now we're stuck in a dark night/Looking for the sunrise/For worse or for better (For better) Don't you remember (Remember)/When we said forever?/If we could make our love right/We can make it our life/For worse or for better

Lukas Graham "Love Someone"

Lukas Forchhammer, the lead vocalist of multi-platinum band Lukas Graham, describes love in their recent single, "Love Someone," as "the kind of love I'm feeling that I've never felt before." Lukas told CelebMix that the song "takes an honest, intimate look at human emotions." There's a sense of "how blessed I am to have you" feeling in the lyrics. For me, my wife could be exercising or working on her computer, I pass by and then I think: "how blessed I am to have her. Thank you, God, for the honor to love her forever." So, moral of the story: cherish your wife or husband on Valentine's Day (although maybe we should do that all year round). 

'Cause you still look perfect as days go by/Even the worst ones, you make me smile/I'd stop the world if it gave us time

Andy Grammar "Don't Give Up On Me"

Andy Grammar's "Don't Give Up On Me," from the flick, Five Feet Apart, tackles a deep and touchy topic: illness. Andy told ABC Radio, "The sentiment of 'Don't Give Up on Me' tends to go towards people who are having a really tough time." Not every love song is a bed of roses. Five Feet Apart is about a couple coping with major health challenges. And, in real life, many marriages fall apart, because of these challenges. The 'til death do us part' aspect is tested. But, there are so many couples who do rise above and survive the struggles. It's not impossible, just hard. If you and your spouse are in this boat, let this be your fight song.

And I will stay/I will stay with you/We'll make it to the other side/Like lovers do/I'll reach my hands out in the dark/And wait for yours to interlock/I'll wait for you

Dan + Shay, Justin Bieber "10,000 Hours"

An interesting observation about this song on PluggedIn: "We don’t have too many songs and videos that focus on happily married couples professing to work through the hard times, and this song not only encourages commitment, but it also shows it." Add to that, you've got hitmakers Justin Bieber and Dan + Shay doing the "professing." "10,000 Hours" reminds of Lonestar's "Amazed," a country chart-topper in the late '90s. Both songs are sweet on the ears and heart and, well, it's a fantastic fit for Valentine's Day.

I'd spend ten thousand hours and ten thousand more/Oh, if that's what it takes to learn that sweet heart of yours/And I might never get there, but I'm gonna try/If it's ten thousand hours or the rest of my life

George Ezra "Hold My Girl"

Australian singer George Ezra released this powerful love ballad as the fourth single from his second album, Staying At Tamara's. George has a raspy voice who delivers a heartfelt performance. It definitely tugs at my heartstrings. For weddings, Nick Reilly, a journalist of The New Musical Express (NME), describes the song as, "one destined to become first-dance material." So, what do you think?

Skylar Kaylyn "May I Have This Dance"

This is an older song. But, it still serves as a dedicated listen for Valentine's Day. Skylar Kaylyn is a Christian singer-songwriter who's married to Bread Of Stone's drummer, Jason Ferris. In "May I Have This Dance," Skylar sings about finding her true love. This song is a definite fit for any wedding.

Some love is confusing; some love is a mess/At times it’s a pleasure but mostly a stress/To find your true love means that all of the guessing is over

Goo Goo Dolls "Boxes"

This song is the title track of Goo Goo Dolls' 11th album, Boxes. AllMusic gives the best description for the album–and this song: "(Goo Goo Dolls) unapologetically embraces their middle age, excising any remaining hints of the raucous rock band of yore." "Boxes" is a different kind of Valentine's song. It's a love–and life–anthem for couples who've been married a long time (maybe 20 years or more).

I've had this song on rotation for a while. And, it chokes me up every time I hear it. If you've been married for a long time, you'll be able to appreciate it. "Boxes" reminds me of my nine-year marriage, my lifelong friendships, as well as my parents and their marriage. Even writing this, I'll say, cherish your parents, because you never know when they'll be gone.

When the answers escape us when we start to fade/Remember who loved you and the ones who have stayed/Cause my body will fail, but my soul will go on/So don't you get lonely/I'm right where you are

Paul Phillips is a Canadian journalist with over 10 years of experience writing and editing digital and print content. He specializes in health, fitness, nutrition, and travel. He loves music, movies, and, of course, living for Jesus.

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