Popular Funeral Songs To Remember Loved Ones

Choosing funeral songs can be an emotional time. Getting that music right for the walk-in and departure, as well as any special songs to be played during the ceremony all matter a lot. Memorials songs are often hotly debated in the pub – you might wonder what song will be your funeral song – but when it comes down to it, often wishes aren’t left. We see incredible Collection Pots set up to honour a loved one’s memory, and often a funeral song is referenced. Perhaps it was a fitting lyric or tune. Or from a time that evoked memories of the person now departed. 

We have gathered some of the best funeral songs and top 10 funeral songs to help guide you at this difficult time, but our main advice is to go with what you know, what brings them to mind, or what would have made them smile. 

Here’s our round-up to make it super simple for you. 

Field of poppies at sunset.

The UK’s Top 10 Funeral Songs: 

There are many opinions as to the best songs for funerals, but the Co-op ran a full survey and discovered the top 10 best funeral songs. The business has been compiling the charts for over 20 years, meaning this is a pretty comprehensive list. 

1. Time to Say Goodbye by Sarah Brightman and Andrea Bocelli

It’s a searing classic, and it speaks to something we all have to face, saying goodbye. The beautiful operatic tones make this feel traditional and respectful, appropriate for any setting. 

2. My Way by Frank Sinatra

The lyrics are all about doing life in your own unique way. Many of us know someone who has done things differently, who never compromised on their beliefs or who chartered a new path for themselves in their life. This could be the perfect song. 

3. Supermarket Flowers by Ed Sheeran

Ed Sheeran’s poignant tribute to a departed loved one captures the essence of nostalgia and reminiscence. The song’s heartfelt lyrics and gentle melody provide solace to those left behind.

4. Wind Beneath My Wings by Bette Midler

5. We’ll Meet Again by Vera Lynn

A war time song that never date, ‘we’ll meet again’ speaks to the unknown, that you will meet them again, and while the when and where aren’t clear, there is confidence that it will happen. 

6. Somewhere Over The Rainbow by Eva Cassidy

Eva Cassidy’s rendition of this classic captures a sense of longing and hope for a better place. Its gentle melody and lyrics evoke the idea of finding peace and contentment beyond life’s struggles.

7. You’ll Never Walk Alone by Gerry and The Peacemakers

This might be a great one if it suits their favourite football team – or because of the great lyrics. Symbolizing solidarity and support, this song offers encouragement to those enduring difficult times. It reminds mourners that they are not alone in their journey.

8. All Things Bright and Beautiful – Hymn

This traditional hymn reflects on the beauty and wonder of the natural world, providing a sense of serenity and acceptance in the midst of loss.

9. Abide With Me – Hymn

“Abide With Me” is a hymn of solace and spiritual comfort. Its lyrics express a plea for divine presence and guidance during times of darkness.

10. Dancing In The Sky by Dani and Lizzy

“Dancing In The Sky” offers a delicate and comforting perspective on the afterlife. The song’s lyrics evoke a sense of tranquility and hope for a joyful reunion beyond the earthly realm.

Popular Funeral Songs 2023

For 2023, there are plenty of pop songs that are chosen, but the classics in the genre (Robbie Williams) still holds up as a classic. Westlife are to be spotted in many funeral song compilations – and with good reason. You Raise Me Up and Flying Without Wings perfectly capture the sentiments many feel. 

Forget me not flowers in a field.

Popular Alternative Funeral Songs and Their Lyrics 

Not everyone is into the same music. If the deceased was more into punk and mental than Westlife or Abba, then you may be stumped at how to honour that for them. To help, we took a look at Reddit to see what popular funeral songs were listed there to pick up not only non-UK variants but also people with a wide range of ages and tastes. 

  1. These Days by Foo Fighters

“I’m a new day rising,

I’m a brand new sky to hang the stars upon tonight.”

  1. Hear you me by Jimmy Eat World 

“What would you think of me now?

So lucky, so strong, so proud?

I never said thank you for that

Now I’ll never have a chance

May angels lead you in

Hear you me, my friends

On sleepless roads, the sleepless go

May angels lead you in”

  1. Stars by Grace Potter

“But the stars in the sky,

Look like home, take me home.”

  1. If I Close My Eyes Forever by Lita Ford and Ozzy Osbourne

“If I close my eyes forever,

Will it all remain unchanged?”

  1. See You on the Other Side by Ozzy Osbourne

“I’m dying, I’m crying,

To know just what you are.”

  1. Portrait by Kansas

“And now the picture’s fading,

The shades are all drawn,

And the love that I feel,

Is the love that I wore.”

  1. No Hard Feelings by The Avett Brothers

“And when my body won’t hold me anymore,

And it finally lets me free,

Where will I go?”

  1. Gone Away by The Offspring

“It feels like the end,

We’re not coming back around.”

  1. If I Die Young by The Band Perry

“If I die young, bury me in satin,

Lay me down on a bed of roses,

Sink me in the river at dawn,

Send me away with the words of a love song.”

Should a Funeral Song be Funny? 

In a 2019 survey, 27% of people if people said they would want the music to make guests laugh. 

Here are some ideas for humorous funeral songs sourced from Twitter. Some of these may be considered a little too insensitive if not announced – so read on for advice on how and when to play these. 

Some examples with lyrics: 

  1. Always Look on the Bright Side of Life by Monty Python

“Life’s a laugh and death’s a joke, it’s true.”

  1. Another One Bites the Dust by Queen

“And another one gone, and another one gone,

Another one bites the dust”

  1. Disco Inferno by The Trampps

“Burn baby burn, disco inferno”

  1. Highway to Hell – AC/DC

“I’m on the highway to hell”

  1. I Will Survive by Gloria Gaynor

“Oh, no, not I, I will survive.”

  1. Ding Dong! The Witch Is Dead by The Wizard of Oz Soundtrack

“Ding dong! The witch is dead,

Which old witch? The wicked witch!”

  1. Stayin’ Alive by Bee Gees

“Whether you’re a brother or whether you’re a mother,

You’re stayin’ alive, stayin’ alive.”

“Celebrate good times, come on!

It’s a celebration!”

“All our times have come,

Here but now they’re gone,

Seasons don’t fear the reaper,

Nor do the wind, the sun or the rain.”

Woman releasing memorial lantern onto water.

The Ultimate Master List of Funeral Songs 

We scanned the top 10 funeral songs, forums and social media and have compiled a huge master list for you to look at.  Some are funny, some are sincere – and if you are looking for something out of the ordinary, this may be a great start. 

How to Choose Memorial Songs 

If you are planning a funeral for a loved one, it can be hard to choose a memorial song that feels appropriate. While they may have joked about wanting a humorous song, at a time you feel so sad, it can be hard to honour that wish. 

While the decision is a personal choice, and you must try to respect the wishes of the deceased, it can be a nice idea to combine songs. 

Perhaps a thoughtful song that reflects how much they meant to you and so many others, a song that summarises their life, such as ‘My Way’ – and then at a point in the burial or cremation, perhaps a point to reflect and pause, such as ‘It’s time, to say goodbye.’ After this cathartic moment, the congregation may wish to hear (when explained) a more upbeat song. 

This allows everyone the chance to process their emotions and release them, while ending on a more upbeat or positive note. 

Raising Funds for a Funeral 

If you’re planning the funeral for a loved one or a family member, gather those beautiful memories in one place with a Collection Pot. They are free to set up and an ideal option if you’d also like to collect funds for the family or a charitable cause instead of relying on cash donations at a church or crematorium. 

Take a look and set yours up today.

Elaine Keep

Elaine Keep is an accomplished content writer with over 15 years of experience in the field of marketing and content creation for many leading brands, where she shares her passion for research and helping others through her articles. You can also find her in 'mum mode', walking in the countryside or enjoying the dreamy combo of a new non-fiction book with a tea and chocolate bar to hand.

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