Music has the power to move people, and choosing the right songs to play at a memorial or funeral is important. If you happen to know what music your loved one wanted to share at their funeral, then lucky you. Because the seemingly simple task of choosing the best songs can be overwhelmingly difficult at any time. But during the early stages of deep grief, selecting funeral songs can feel impossible.
At Tomorrow, we work closely with our families to help them create truly personal memorials and believe that taking time and doing what you believe is the best job possible, can feel like an act of love. The process itself can also be healing and help get you started on the oftentimes difficult job of saying goodbye.
Better than listing songs here, we have developed a range of Spotify playlists for different eras and styles, so that you can flick through the songs, creating your own shortlist as you go. The links are for each are below.
Whatever style of funeral or memorial you choose – whether that’s traditional or something modern and different, we often suggest playing the slower and most moving songs at the beginning of the ceremony.
Sadness is an emotion we are often not comfortable sharing. For some, it can even seem frightening. Culturally, crying is something we tend to hide, yet when mourning a loved one, coming together in sadness is both expected and understood. In fact, there can almost be a sense of relief when music connects us with the feeling of loss. This is especially true if shock or disbelief about the death has been present prior to the ceremony.
We feel that playing emotional music, especially at the beginning of the ceremony can be helpful and a beautiful way to set the tone of the ceremony.
Of course, music like all art affects everyone differently. Age groups, different cultures and social groups gravitate towards a diverse styles. This is why we’ve developed a range of Spotify playlists to inspire you. Feel to download ours or make your own.
Here is our ever-growing list of moving, slower songs – ones we’ve seen work really well at funerals and memorials.
A good ceremony will shine a light on a person’s life and probably feel a bit like an emotional roller coaster. One minute you might be crying and moments later, you’ll laugh knowingly at a unique quirkiness of the person you are farewelling.
Despite the very natural sadness that is likely to be present, it can feel good to end things on that high point of the ride. So, we often suggest choosing the most uplifting song from the ones you have shortlisted to play at the very end of the memorial.
An uplifting song might simply be one with a faster tempo, it could have inspiring words or it might be a song that your loved one loved to ‘rock out’ to when they were young (or old) on the dance floor after midnight. This might mean something cute and folky. It could mean big band, or we at your special person’s memorial we might all be swaying to heavy metal or punk!
Here is our Spotify playlist of songs to end a funeral or memorial. Feel to download ours or make your own.
You can view our entire Spotify funeral playlist here, we are constantly updating it with songs that move us.
There are also lists for: