Lyrics of love and loss

Playlist of the week 2/10/23

TJ Disabato, Staff Writer

Regardless of what you are snuggled up against—a lover, a body pillow or a bottle of rosé—this is the time to tell that person how you feel. It can certainly feel daunting, and I definitely cannot give you this advice without sounding like a hypocrite, so perhaps it’s best not to be like me. College years are for exploring your interests, whether in the classroom or in the bedroom, and it makes all the difference who you are spending your time with. Perhaps taking care of a large enough check at Mia Bella will demonstrate your interest, or hopefully a playful kiss on the cheek will warrant another chance to spend time together. If finances or excess halitosis are a concern, take comfort and snuggle up with this list of songs that seem to tug on the heart strings of the more realistic types among us. 


“She Loves thCourtesy of Epic Records

“She Loves the Way They Love Her” – Colin Blunstone

On his first solo album, “One Year,” released in 1971, Blunstone included songs reminiscent of the sounds of love and happiness paramount to the free-loving ‘60s. The lead singer of the English rock band The Zombies made his prior presence felt on this piece, containing parts of the psychedelia that the band made a living off of in the previous decade.


Courtesy of Jagjaguwar

“How Can You Really” – Foxygen 

My romantic interest this Valentine’s Day is baroque pop, and Foxygen is providing all the Sweethearts and roses I need. Despite the song describing being trapped in a loveless relationship, the upbeat instrumentals and vocals allow an experience many of us have shared, to be looked at in a more positive light. 


Courtesy of Drag City

“San Francisco B.C.” – Silver Jews

Lead singer David Berman and colleagues were known for their indie songs of tragedy, before departing for a sarcastic comedy in this 2008 hit off their final album, “Lookout Mountain, Lookout Sea.” A song that includes more twists and turns than a Hot Wheels track, it tells the story of living in San Francisco and chasing love during the punk era. Known for going against all things capitalism and materialistic, Berman made waves when he revealed the identity of his father as Richard Berman, a corporate lobbyist, whom David described as a “despicable man.” 


Courtesy of RCA Records

“Blue Moon Revisited (Song For Elvis)” – Cowboy Junkies 

Cowboy Junkies pay homage to Elvis Presley’s “Blue Moon,” (a song that has many other covers) with this slow, sensual ballad of longing for the infrequencies of romance, something occurring as often as a blue moon. 


Courtesy of Jeepster Records

“Seeing Other People” – Belle and Sebastian

A song that often appears on my “On Repeat” playlist on Spotify, this camp upbeat song, telling of gay experimentation between an openly gay man and someone described as “passive,” is possibly the greatest song off an underrated album by an even more underappreciated band. The entirety of the 1996 album, “If You’re Feeling Sinister” is worth listening to, but the piano arpeggio on this song gives it the classic Belle and Sebastian feel of playfulness you don’t get anywhere else. 


Unknown Mortal Orchestra. (Courtesy of Jagjaguwar)

“Multi-Love” – Unknown Mortal Orchestra

Who says you need to have only one person to cherish this Feb. 14? The leading title track off Unknown Mortal Orchestra’s 2015 album focuses on frontman Ruban Nielson, his wife Jenny and a third member of their relationship, given the pseudonym of Laura.


Courtesy of Matador Records

“My Heart’s Not In It” – Yo La Tengo

Yo La Tengo seemed to strike gold in 2015, covering this Darlene McCrea song, which sounds exactly like the melancholic charm of many of their earlier releases, albeit with a country twist. I look forward to seeing the titans of Hoboken perform at the Beachland Ballroom on Mar. 22, a show that is already sold out on most platforms. 


Courtesy of Capitol Records

“Long, Long Time” – Linda Ronstadt

Trying to find facts about this song prior to a month ago would have yielded much less fruitful responses, but it has recently made a resurgence thanks to its inclusion in “The Last of Us.” Prior to progressive supranuclear palsy taking away her singing voice, Ronstadt firmly established herself as the greatest female vocalist of 1970s classic rock, and continues to be the musical crush of many—myself included. 


Courtesy of Asylum Records

“Accidentally Like a Martyr” – Warren Zevon

The first vinyl record I ever bought was Zevon’s 1978 “Excitable Boy,” another album worthy of playing from start to finish. In a 2002 interview with David Letterman, Zevon, who was dying of mesothelioma at the time, quipped his now famous life advice of “Enjoy every sandwich.” The darkly poetic savant is one of 14 eligible nominees for 2023 Rock & Roll Hall of Fame, and his long-standing exclusion shows the faultiness of the institution. 


Courtesy of Warner Records Inc.

“It Makes No Difference” (Concert Version) – The Band

Filmed by Martin Scorsese, “The Last Waltz” is considered to be one of the greatest documentary concert films ever made. Between Rick Danko’s vocals and Garth Hudson’s mournful dirge on saxophone, this is a song about an instance where time does not heal all wounds.


Courtesy of Vertigo Records

“So Far Away” – Dire Straits

“Brothers in Arms” was released in 1985 and this leading track details lead singer Mark Knopfler’s feeling of distance from a loved one because of all his time on the road. The feeling of isolation that often accompanies long-distance relationships is encapsulated in the line, “See you’ve been in the sun and I’ve been in the rain,” speaking both literally and figuratively to the separation. 


Courtesy of Sub Pop

“Your Protector” – Fleet Foxes

Told from the viewpoint of the lover of a resistance fighter who has a premonition about his death, this song is everything that was good and missed about late ‘00s and early ‘10s folk rock, though I can still go a while longer without listening to any Mumford & Sons. 


Courtesy of Columbia Records

“Bobby Jean” – Bruce Springsteen

Bruce masks one of his saddest songs with upbeat music reminiscent of that on other “Born in the U.S.A. tracks, including “Glory Days” and “Dancing in the Dark.” The final verse mentions the hope that a long-lost lover will hear this song on the radio and get his message of not wanting them to change their mind, but just to know that they are missed. It is speculated this song is about Steven Van Zandt’s departure from the band during the recording of the album, an act he was later forgiven for—giving us the character of Silvio Dante on “The Sopranos.” 


Courtesy of Vagrant Records

“Home” – Edward Sharpe & The Magnetic Zeros

I try to avoid songs that sound like they could be featured on a Honda commercial, but I like this one too much to skip. “Home is whenever I’m with you” is a powerful yet simple line and one that everyone should strive to live by when finding someone to spend Valentine’s Day and the other 364.24 days of the year with. 


Courtesy of Merge Records

“Absolutely Cuckoo” – The Magnetic Fields 

The paranoia and nervousness you feel when you see your crush for the first time and wonder if they feel the same way is the first track on the first volume of the 1999 release, “69 Love Songs.” If you are sad this is the end of the article, as the album title suggests, there is this song and 68 others on the concept album, all about various themes and feelings that go along with love.