Valentine’s Day is a divisive holiday.
For those lucky couples to have a special someone in their lives, it’s a glorious day devoted to romantic dinners, sensuous sweets and the symbolic (and literal) consummation of the fact that if the world spontaneously combusted tomorrow, at least you wouldn’t die alone. And if that thought isn’t appealing enough on its own, it’s tough to argue with the infallible voice of Barry White.
For the other group, Valentine’s is a day of cynicism, commercialism and statistically high suicide rates – a day you consider bringing a barf bag to work for fear of losing your lunch from watching fools get worked up over delivery flowers and teddy bears holding hearts. For the really unlucky, February 14 comes too soon after your last breakup, when your heart is still bleeding.
Most of us have been in both boats at some point, and the cycle has a way of repeating itself.
Perhaps Etta James demonstrated the paradox best. The Queen of Love and Heartbreak typified love at its most joyous (“At Last”, “My Dearest Darling”), as well as at it’s most agonizing (“I’d Rather Go Blind”, “All I Could Do Was Cry”).
To address these warring factions, we’ve made two separate playlists collecting classic songs that either celebrate, How sweet it is to be loved by you, or ask, What becomes of the brokenhearted?
Both perspectives have long served as fruitful soil for some of the most beloved and universal songs of our time. If anything is for certain, love is a topic that we can all deeply relate to in our lives.
And if neither of these don’t embody the mood you’re looking for, check out our other romance- and heartbreak-themed playlists in our Moods section.
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