Top Wedding Memorial Songs for Honoring Loved Ones

Updated on June 7, 2023 | Written by Matthew Campbell (Editor of My Wedding Songs and wedding DJ)

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Music accompanies all phases of life. Birth. Graduation. Marriage. Holidays. Death.

Music is power. It communicates with our souls — our very beings. Where words fail, music takes the lead.

Here is a list of the best memorial songs to remember loved ones.

New Memorial Songs

  1. “Lift Me Up” by Rihanna (Pop – 2022)
  2. “Let Somebody Go” by Coldplay X Selena Gomez (Pop – 2021)
  3. “Red Bird” by HunterGirl (Country – 2022)
  4. “Beat You There” by Will Dempsey (Country – 2022)
  5. “Paper Airplanes” by Ruth B. (Singer-Songwriter – 2022)
  6. “Lifetime” by Three Days Grace (Rock – 2022)
  7. “Bigger Than The Whole Sky” by Taylor Swift (Pop – 2022)
  1. “Go Rest High on That Mountain” by Vince Gill (Country – 1994)
  2. “I Can Only Imagine” by MercyMe (Christian – 1999)
  3. “When I Get Where I’m Going” by Brad Paisley, Dolly Parton (Country – 2005)
  4. “See You Again” by Wiz Khalifa feat. Charlie Puth (Hip Hop – 2015)
  5. “Somewhere Over The Rainbow/What A Wonderful World” by Israel Kamakawiwo’ole (World – 1990)

Celebration of Life Tracks

Remember Your Dad

  1. “Dance With My Father” by Luther Vandross (R&B – 2003)
  2. “Thank You for Being My Dad” by Jon Barker (Singer-Songwriter – 2006)
  3. “Heaven Right Now” by Thomas Rhett (Country – 2021)
  4. “When I Get There” by P!nk (Pop – 2023)
  5. “Monsters” by James Blunt (Pop – 2019)

Remember Your Mom

  1. “Two Of Us” by Louis Tomlinson (Pop – 2019)
  2. “Bye Mom” by Chris Janson (Country – 2022)
  3. “Supermarket Flowers” by Ed Sheeran (Pop – 2017)
  4. “Mother” by Sleeping At Last (Singer-Songwriter – 2023)

Remember a Child

  1. “Tears in Heaven” by Eric Clapton (Rock – 1992)
  2. “Who’d You Be Today” by Kenny Chesney (Country – 2005)
  3. “Liam’s Song” by Tainted Lyric (Country – 2021)

Remember a Friend

  1. “See You Again” by Wiz Khalifa feat. Charlie Puth (Hip Hop – 2015)
  2. “Drink A Beer” by Luke Bryan (Country – 2013)
  3. “Show Me Around” by Carly Pearce (Country – 2020)
  4. “F64” by Ed Sheeran (Pop – 2023)

Remember a Loved One

  1. “Sad Song” by We The Kings, Elena Coats (Alternative – 2013)
  2. “Lay Me Down” by Sam Smith (Pop – 2014)
  3. “Red Bird” by HunterGirl (Country – 2022)
  4. “If Heaven Had a Landline” by Brian Congdon (Country – 2022)

Remember a Military Person

  1. “The Ones Who Didn’t Make it Back Home” by Justin Moore (Country – 2019)
  2. “Arlington” by Trace Adkins (Country – 2005)
  3. “Some Gave All” by Billy Ray Cyrus (Country – 1992)
memorial songs

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Spotify Memorial Playlist

You will enjoy a list of the most popular and unique memorial songs for a special dedication.

Every couple’s music tastes are different. Thus, we selected memorial songs that include many different eras and music styles.

 

Best Country Hits

Red Bird – HunterGirl

Released in 2022, Genre: Country

The song sings about how every time you see a red bird an angel from above is watching over you.
song on Amazon

Lovable Lyrics:

‘Cause I could use a redbird right now
One from the other side of the clouds
I’m feeling lost and empty
Letting me know that you’re still with me

Beat You There – Will Dempsey

Released in 2022, Genre: Country

The song talks about the listener dying and letting friends and family know that you will be OK and try not to be sad and cherish the memories together.
song on Amazon

Lovable Lyrics:

And just hold on to those moments
And the memories we shared
We’re both headed for the same place anyway
I just beat you there

Bye Mom – Chris Janson

Released in 2021, Genre: Country

This is a song about how a mom loves her child more than herself and knows that his time with her was short but treasured.
song on Amazon

Lovable Lyrics:

And that’s a special kind of love
And it’s only there for a lifetime, then it’s gone
And it’s bye mom

Liam’s Song – Tainted Lyric

Released in 2021, Genre: Country

This song is a tearjerker of a parent losing their baby and hoping they are happy in heaven.
song on Amazon

Lovable Lyrics:

Do you feel pain because I hurt the same
I’d give anything for one more day

Heaven Right Now – Thomas Rhett

Released in 2021, Genre: Country

A song about a boy losing his father and how the world around him reminds him of his dad. The son also thinks about how his dad is doing all the things he loved in heaven.
song on Amazon

Lovable Lyrics:

If you and God get to hanging out
I look forward to catching up when my time comes around
I wonder what you’re doing in Heaven right now

 

Show Me Around – Carly Pearce

Released in 2020, Genre: Country

This is a song about losing a friend and picturing them making plans in heaven for when you arrive.
song on Amazon

Lovable Lyrics:

And we’ll get to spend forever talkin’ ’bout whatever
When I get there, promise you’ll track me down
And show me around

Knowing You – Kenny Chesney

Released in 2020 on the album Here and Now, Genre: Country

The song is about someone special in your life that you had a good life with and being grateful that you got to share your life with them.
song on Amazon

Lovable Lyrics:

Holdin’ my breath ’til the moment
When you were gonna leave me too soon
But I’d do it all over
‘Cause damn, it was good knowin’ you

Drowning – Chris Young

Released in 2019, Genre: Country

A song about having a difficult time over losing a best friend. You even call their old number just to hear their voice on the message.
song on Amazon

Lovable Lyrics:

How you were taken way too soon
It ain’t the same here without you
I gotta say, missing you comes in waves
And tonight I’m drowning

The Father, My Son, and the Holy Ghost – Craig Morgan

Released in 2019, Genre: Country

A song about a dad losing his son and knowing that his son is watching over him along with God.
song on Amazon

Lovable Lyrics:

Pour a cup of wake-me-up and try to rouse up some ambition
Go outside, sit by myself but I ain’t alone
I’ve got the Father, my son, and the Holy Ghost

Heaven Bound Balloons – Granger Smith

Released in 2019, Genre: Country

A song about a family losing a Grandpa and sending him loving messages on balloons and then letting them fly so that he can read the messages in heaven.
song on Amazon

Lovable Lyrics:

Sometimes I guess you gotta see it to believe it
‘Cause right then I knew those blue sky prayers were gettin’ through
When we let go of those heaven bound balloons

 

The Ones That Didn’t Make It Back Home – Justin Moore

Released in 2019, Genre: Country

This song is a tribute to all service men and women who don’t make it home from war or conflicts and that even though they may be gone they are not forgotten.
song on Amazon

Lovable Lyrics:

But they sure left a hole down here
We just go on livin’ and go on missin’ the ones
The ones that didn’t make it back home

I’ll Carry You Home – Trisha Yearwood

Released in 2019, Genre: Country

A song about a person overcome with grief not to worry because they are being watched over by their angel.
song on Amazon

Lovable Lyrics:

But if you wander too far into the great unknown
You know I will find you, I’ll carry you home

Broken Halos – Chris Stapleton

Released in 2017, Genre: Country

A song about knowing that angels do come down from heaven to guide us but wondering where they all went.
song on Amazon

Lovable Lyrics:

Seen my share of broken halos
Folded wings that used to fly
They’ve all gone wherever they go

Forever Loving You – Tanya Tucker

Released in 2017, Genre: Country

A song about wanting to spend more time with a lover after their passing. Even though she can’t, she’s going on loving him.
song on Amazon

Lovable Lyrics:

I don’t know why it has to be this way but there’s nothing I can do
So I’ll go on living, forever loving you

Fishing in the Sky – Travis Smith

Released in 2017, Genre: Country

A song about a man missing his dad and knowing that someday they will be in heaven if they are spending time lake fishing together.
song on Amazon

Lovable Lyrics:

I know my dad is happy
I wouldn’t wish him here
Oh, how I miss him so

 

You Should Be Here – Cole Swindell

Released in 2016, Genre: Country

A song about the loss of Swindell’s brother. The song talks about how wonderful life is but it isn’t because he doesn’t get to share it with his brother.
song on Amazon

Lovable Lyrics:

And you know that if I had just one wish it’d
Be that you didn’t have to miss this
You should be here

Drink A Beer – Luke Bryan

Released in 2013, Genre: Country

A song about taking a moment of solitude to remember a beloved friend or pet.
song on Amazon

Lovable Lyrics:

So long my friend, until we meet again
I’ll remember you

If Heaven Was Needing A Hero – Jo Dee Messina

Released in 2010, Genre: Country

A song about having a hard time coming to grips with someone you cared about passing away and that heaven must have needed them more.
song on Amazon

Lovable Lyrics:

You’re such a part of who I am
Now that part will just be void
No matter how much I need you now
Heaven needed you more

People Are Crazy – Billy Currington

Released in 2009, Genre: Country

This is our oddball pick but one of our favorites. The song is about a man meeting a second man in a bar and the second man passes away.  The chorus of the song is said by the second man at the bar – God is great, beer is good, and people are crazy.  The first man leaves a six-pack on the dead man’s grave out of respect.
song on Amazon

Lovable Lyrics:

And I drop by today
To just say thanks and pray
And I left a six-pack right there on his grave
And I said
God is great, beer is good
And people are crazy

Cryin’ For Me (Wayman’s Song) – Toby Keith

Released in 2009, Genre: Country

The song is about the grief experienced when losing a friend and letting the friend know to wait for him so they can play again.
song on Amazon

Lovable Lyrics:

I’m going to miss that smile
I’m going to miss you my friend
Even though it hurts the way it ended up
Id do it all again

 

When I Get Where I’m Going – Brad Paisley and Dolly Parton

Released in 2005, Genre: Country

A song about all the things that someone will do and experience when they get to heaven including loving and having no fear.
song on Amazon

Lovable Lyrics:

I will love and have no fear
Yeah, when I get where I’m going
Don’t cry for me down here

Arlington – Trace Adkins

Released in 2005, Genre: Country

This is a great military-themed song. Our soldiers are our heroes and should be remembered and never forgotten.  They have provided us with our freedom.
song on Amazon

Lovable Lyrics:

We can rest in peace, ’cause we are the chosen ones
We made it to Arlington, yeah dust to dust
Don’t cry for us, we made it to Arlington

Remember When – Alan Jackson

Released in 2003, Genre: Country

The song is about reflecting on the life built with a wife including raising children.
song on Amazon

Lovable Lyrics:

We won’t be sad, we’ll be glad
For all the life we’ve had
And we’ll remember when

I Miss My Friend – Darryl Worley

Released in 2002, Genre: Country

A song about missing a lover who is ultimately your best friend and all the little moments of joy together.
song on Amazon

Lovable Lyrics:

The one who knew just what to say to make me laugh again
And let the light back in
I miss my friend

Song For Dad – Keith Urban

Released in 2002, Genre: Country

A song about a son who has the same idiosyncracies as his dad and hopes he can be more like him when he is older such as being a loving family man.
song on Amazon

Lovable Lyrics:

And he did the best that he could
And I only hope when I have my own family
That every day I see a little more of my father in me

 

One More Day – Diamond Rio

Released in 2001, Genre: Country

This is a great generic song for all the loved ones lost too early.  One More Day is themed around having just one more day with a deceased friend or loved one and how that would be your one granted wish.
song on Amazon

Lovable Lyrics:

I’d hold you every second
Say a million I love you’s
That’s what I’d do with one more day with you

Angels In Waiting – Tammy Cochran

Released in 2001, Genre: Country

The song was a way for Cochran to get over the loss of her brothers who were born with cystic fibrosis and died at 14 and 23. The song describes how the brothers were angels waiting for their wings and how she will have their memories live on through her.
song on Amazon

Lovable Lyrics:

They were angels in waiting
Waiting for wings to fly from this world
Away from their pain

Wish You Were Here – Mark Wills

Released in 1998, Genre: Country

The song is a sad love story about a husband dying in a plane crash but before taking off he sent her a postcard wishing that she was with him in paradise.
song on Amazon

Lovable Lyrics:

The weather’s nice, it’s paradise
It’s summertime all year and there’s some folks we know
They say, “Hello, I miss you so, wish you were here”

Holes In The Floor Of Heaven – Steve Wariner

Released in 1998, Genre: Country

A song about grandma passing away and watching over her family through life’s moments through the holes in the floor of heaven.
song on Amazon

Lovable Lyrics:

‘Cause there’s holes in the floor of Heaven
And her tears are pouring down
That’s how you know she’s watching
Wishing she could be here now

Go Rest High On That Mountain – Vince Gill

Released in 1995, Genre: Country

A song about a friend having a troubled life on earth but for them to go to heaven and put all the pain behind them and live in God’s grace.

Gill started writing the song after the death of Keith Whitley and finished it after the death of his brother. Ricky Skaggs and Patty Loveless both sang background vocals on the song.
song on Amazon

Lovable Lyrics:

Go rest high on that mountain
Son your work on earth is done
Go to heaven a-shoutin’
Love for the Father and the Son

 

Angels Among Us – Alabama

Released in 1993, Genre: Country

A song about knowing that angels are all around us to help us get through our darkest hours with love.
song on Amazon

Lovable Lyrics:

I believe there are angels among us
Sent down to us from somewhere up above
They come to you and me in our darkest hours
To show us how to live, to teach us how to give
To guide us with the light of love

Some Gave All – Billy Ray Cyrus

Released in 1992, Genre: Country

A song to remind Americans that many soldiers fought for our freedoms with so many with their lives.
song on Amazon

Lovable Lyrics:

And if you ever think of me
Think of all your liberties and recall
Some Gave All

Unique Indie Hits

Paper Airplanes – Ruth B.

Released in 2022, Genre: Indie

The song is about a feeling of loneliness and sending messages to someone special who has passed on through paper airplanes to heaven.
song on Amazon
Lovable Lyrics:

And I’ll spend the rest of my days
Lost in this craze for you
Sending paper airplanes to the moon

One More I Love You – Alex Warren

Released in 2021, Genre: Indie

A song about needing a deceased lover and thinking there is nothing you wouldn’t do to hold them again and tell them you love them.
song on Amazon

Lovable Lyrics:

‘Cause there ain’t nothing in this world
Nothing in this world I wouldn’t do
To say one more I love you

Sad Song – We The Kings featuring Elena Coats

Released in 2013, Genre: Indie

This is a song about losing a lover and having a feeling of brokenness and loss.
song on Amazon

Lovable Lyrics:

Without you, I feel broke
Like I’m half of a whole
Without you, I’ve got no hand to hold

 

Beautiful Rock Tunes

Lifetime – Three Days Grace

Released in 2022, Genre: EXPLOSIONS

A song about thinking that you would get to love someone for a lifetime but now after they are gone you have a feeling of being alone and lost.
song on Amazon

Lovable Lyrics:

You were the one that I wasn’t supposed to lose
I thought I’d have you for a lifetime

Birds – Imagine Dragons

Released in 2018, Genre: Rock

The song could be about the death of a loved one or about the end of a love relationship and going in different directions to carry on.
song on Amazon

Lovable Lyrics:

Love will never die, die, die
I know that, ooh, birds fly in different directions
Ooh, I hope to see you again

Coming Back Down – Hollywood Undead

Released in 2011, Genre: Rock

The song could be interpreted to be about losing a lover and knowing that they will come back to Earth to watch over you.
song on Amazon

Lovable Lyrics:

So I guess you had to leave
You were born with wings
But you were never happy
Til the angels sing

So Far Away – Avenged Sevenfold

Released in 2010, Genre: Rock

A song about being in pain and trying to move on after the loss of loved ones.
song on Amazon

Lovable Lyrics:

Now and then I try to find
A place in my mind
Where you can stay
You can stay away forever

Goodnight, Travel Well – The Killers

Released in 2008, Genre: Rock

The song is a tribute to one of the band member’s mothers who passed away. The song is about losing someone and in the grieving process realizing there is nothing you can do to bring them back.
song on Amazon

Lovable Lyrics:

There’s nothing I can say
There’s nothing we can do now
Goodnight, travel well

 

Go On – Jack Johnson

Released in 2008, Genre: Folk Rock

The song is about letting go of someone you love as they get smaller and smaller in the rearview mirror.
song on Amazon

Lovable Lyrics:

There’s still so many things
I wanna say to you
Just go on

Call Me – Shinedown

Released in 2008, Genre: Rock

Even though the song is about the end of a love relationship it has similarities to the death of a lover and how you have to let them go even though you love them.
song on Amazon

Lovable Lyrics:

I’ll always keep you inside
You healed my heart and my life
And you know I’ve tried

Tangled up in You – Staind

Released in 2008, Genre: Rock

This is a love song about being apart from your lover but still getting comfort from their memory.
song on Amazon

Lovable Lyrics:

In this world
Where nothing else is true
Here I am
Still tangled up in you

 

The Last Song – Foo Fighters

Released in 2005, Genre: Rock

This is a song that Dave Grohl wrote and dedicates to his friend Kurt Cobain and made peace with his passing.
song on Amazon

Lovable Lyrics:

This is the last song (This is the last song)
That I will dedicate to you
Made my peace and now I’m through
(This is the last song) That I will dedicate to you

In Loving Memory – Alter Bridge

Released in 2004, Genre: Rock

The song is about losing a loved one and about getting through life with them being there as a guide.
song on Amazon

Lovable Lyrics:

But now I come home and I miss your face
So smiling down on me
I close my eyes to see

When I Look To The Sky – Train

Released in 2004, Genre: Rock

The song is about having a guardian angel that is there to help you through life’s struggles.
song on Amazon

Lovable Lyrics:

‘Cause when I look to the sky something tells me you’re here with me
And you make everything alright

Keep Me In Your Heart – Warren Zevon

Released in 2003, Genre: Rock

A song that Zevon wrote near the end of his life before dying of cancer to remind his loved ones not to forget him and to remember him as he will be there.
song on Amazon

Lovable Lyrics:

When the winter comes
Keep the fires lit
And I will be right next to you

An Original Man (A Song for Keith) – Yardbirds

Released in 2003, Genre: Rock

The song is about a band member that passed away who was a good man and the sadness felt from losing a friend.
song on Amazon

Lovable Lyrics:

In many ways
People copy
Take and steal
But my friend he was for real

 

Last Kiss – Pearl Jam

Released in 1999, Genre: Rock

This is a strategic love song about a couple in love getting into a traffic accident and the girl dies after getting a list kiss from her man.
song on Amazon

Lovable Lyrics:

Oh, where oh where can my baby be?
The Lord took her away from me
She’s gone to heaven, so I got to be good
So I can see my baby when I leave this world

August 7, 4:15 – Jon Bon Jovi

Released in 1997, Genre: Rock

The song is a bit morbid telling a story of a young girl getting murdered and that she will no longer be in pain and guide others as an angel.
song on Amazon

Lovable Lyrics:

I know tonight that there’s an angel
Up on Heaven’s highest hill
And no one there can hurt you baby
No one ever will

Tears In Heaven – Eric Clapton

Released in 1992, Genre: Rock

The song was written by Clapton after his son passed away and when they meet in heaven he hopes his son will recognize him.
song on Amazon

Lovable Lyrics:

Beyond the door
There’s peace, I’m sure
And I know there’ll be no more
Tears in heaven

100% – Sonic Youth

Released in 1992, Genre: Rock

The song was dedicated to a band’s roadie who was murdered before he became a star and wanted to seek vengeance against the murderer.
song on Amazon

Lovable Lyrics:

A 100% of my love up to you true star
It’s hard to believe you took off, I always thought you’d go far

I’ll Be There – Escape Club

Released in 1991, Genre: Rock

A song about someone you treasure dying and all you need to do is think of them and they will be there by your side.
song on Amazon

Lovable Lyrics:

Because I’m on your side
And I still care
I may have died
But I’ve gone nowhere
Just think of me
And I’ll be there

 

The Living Years – Mike + The Mechanics

Released in 1988, Genre: Rock

A song about a son who had to perform against his dad’s high expectations and the son wishes he could have set his ego aside to tell his dad he loved him while he was alive.
song on Amazon

Lovable Lyrics:

I wasn’t there that morning
When my Father passed away
I didn’t get to tell him
All the things I had to say

One Tree Hill – U2

Released in 1988, Genre: Rock

The song was dedicated to a friend who died in a motorcycle accident and named after a majestic volcanic peak in Auckland, New Zealand where they all had a beautiful moment together.
song on Amazon

Lovable Lyrics:

The moon is up
And over one tree hill
We see the sun go down
In your eyes

Afterimage – Rush

Released in 1984, Genre: Rock

The song is about a friend who lost his life and sees the world through their eyes of having a love for life.
song on Amazon

Lovable Lyrics:

I learned your love for life
I feel the way that you would
I feel your presence
I remember

Wish You Were Here – Pink Floyd

Released in 1975, Genre: Rock

A song about a friend who loses mental capabilities and physical health and wishes the friend was there to share life with again.
song on Amazon

Lovable Lyrics:

What have we found?
The same old fears
Wish you were here

Popular Pop Tracks

Bigger Than The Whole Sky – Taylor Swift

Released in 2022, Genre: Pop

The song talks about mourning and trying to get on with life after the death of someone close to you.
song on Amazon
Lovable Lyrics:

Goodbye, goodbye, goodbye
You were bigger than the whole sky
You were more than just a short time

 

Let Somebody Go (Piano Version) – Coldplay X Selena Gomez

Released in 2022, Genre: Pop

Even though the song is about the end of a love relationship it could also represent the end of a relationship when one of the lovers dies.
song on Amazon

Lovable Lyrics:

Now turn off all the stars, ’cause this I know
That it hurts like so
To let somebody go

Visiting Hours – Ed Sheeran

Released in 2021, Genre: Pop

The song can be interpreted as a parent figure passing away and wanting to have visiting hours in heaven so that you can catch up on what’s going on in your life and let them talk to their grandchildren.
song on Amazon

Lovable Lyrics:

I wish that Heaven had visiting hours
And I would ask them if I could take you home

Million Miles – Angelina Jordan

Released in 2020, Genre: Pop

The song is about losing someone close to us and the fear of being alone. However, you never will because the living will always hold those lost close to our hearts.
song on Amazon

Lovable Lyrics:

He said I’m watching you from the moon
I’m everywhere, see everything you do
I can’t see you but I know your here
It’s like you’re in my tears

Not Far Away – Love Street Lovers

Released in 2020, Genre: Pop

A song from a wife that lost her husband and how he still lives within her so that she can carry on with him being there physically.
song on Amazon

Lovable Lyrics:

Even after you’re gone
Your smile remains
Everyday

Two Of Us – Louis Tomlinson

Released in 2019, Genre: Pop

The song is a dedication to his mom who passed away and about how he will be a good man and that she will be there to guide him through life.
song on Amazon

Lovable Lyrics:

So I will keep you, day and night
Here until the day I die
I’ll be living one life for the two of us
I will be the best of me

 

Heaven’s Not Too Far – We Three

Released in 2018, Genre: Pop

The song is about a mother getting cancer and knowing they are going to die. The parent wants to leave a final message to her children and let them know when will always be there to talk in spirit.
song on Amazon

Lovable Lyrics:

But Heaven’s not too far away
I know someday you’ll visit
And I didn’t think it’d go this way
Can I please have one more minute?

Supermarket Flowers – Ed Sheeran

Released in 2017, Genre: Pop

A song from a grandson to his grandmother who passed away and he feels blessed to have had an angel on Earth watching over him.
song on Amazon

Lovable Lyrics:

You were an angel in the shape of my mum
When I fell down you’d be there holding me up
Spread your wings as you go

Dancing in the Sky – Dani and Lizzy

Released in 2016, Genre: Pop

A song about the grief felt at the loss of a loved one and hoping they are loving it in heaven.
song on Amazon

Lovable Lyrics:

I hope you’re dancing in the sky
And I hope you’re singing in the angel’s choir
And I hope the angels know what they have
I’ll bet it’s so nice up in Heaven since you arrived

If You Could See Me Now – The Script

Released in 2012, Genre: Pop

The song is about losing a father from the viewpoint of a son and hoping the son will make his dad proud and that the dad is still in his heart.
song on Amazon

Lovable Lyrics:

I’m tryna make you proud
Do everything you did
I hope you’re up there with God
Saying, “That’s my kid”

Gone Too Soon – Simple Plan

Released in 2011, Genre: Pop

A song about how you don’t get to say goodbye or say the things you wish you have said to someone close to you who passes away.
song on Amazon

Lovable Lyrics:

You’re a part of me
And I’ll never be the same here without you
You were gone too soon
Shine on

 

Are You Here – Corinne Bailey Rae

Released in 2009, Genre: Pop

A song from a wife’s perspective of what she feels after losing her husband and wondering if he is with her.
song on Amazon

Lovable Lyrics:

Are you here, are you here?
Are you here ’cause my heart
Recalls that it all seems the same

Bye Bye – Mariah Carey

Released in 2008, Genre: Pop

The song is a conversation between Carey and her deceased father but reminds everyone that if you lose someone close to you that they are still with you in spirit and never to say goodbye.
song on Amazon

Lovable Lyrics:

Still, I’d give the world to see your face
And be right here next to you
But it’s like you’ve gone too soon and the hardest thing to do is say bye

Stop Crying Your Heart Out – Oasis

Released in 2002, Genre: Pop

A song about being very disheartened, drying your eyes, and getting on with your life.
song on Amazon

Lovable Lyrics:

‘Cause all of the stars
Are fading away
Just try not to worry
You’ll see them someday

For Always – Josh Groban

Released in 2001, Genre: Pop

A song about God or someone who has died guiding you through your days now and forever.
song on Amazon

Lovable Lyrics:

Beyond here and on to eternity
For always
And ever
You’ll be a part of me

 

Being Boring – Pet Shop Boys

Released in 1999, Genre: Pop

A song talking about the stages of life with a friend or lover – when young you are living life with wild ambition, later you could rely on each other to not worry how your world would end, and near the end, you are reflecting on a life gone never being bored but now having to continue without your friend/lover.
song on Amazon

Lovable Lyrics:

Time would come to an end
We were always hoping that, looking back
You could always rely on a friend

My Heart Will Go On – Celine Dion

Released in 1997, Genre: Pop

This was the main theme song of the movie Titanic. The song is about how to carry on after the death of a loved one and continuing to love them even though they are gone.
song on Amazon

Lovable Lyrics:

We’ll stay forever this way
You are safe in my heart and
My heart will go on and on

Candle In The Wind – Elton John

Released in 1997, Genre: Pop

A song that is a look back and remembrance of one of the most iconic actresses of her era – Marilyn Monroe.
song on Amazon

Lovable Lyrics:

And I would have liked to have known you
But I was just a kid
Your candle burned out long before
Your legend ever did

Angels – Robbie Williams

Released in 1997, Genre: Pop

The song was written as a tribute to his aunt and uncle and how they are now angels to guide him through troubled times.
song on Amazon

Lovable Lyrics:

I know that life won’t break me
When I come to call, she won’t forsake me
I’m loving angels instead

Angel Standing By – Jewel

Released in 1995, Genre: Pop

A song about a parent letting their child know not to worry because they are watching over them like an angel.song on Amazon

Lovable Lyrics:

So don’t you worry
I’m your angel standing by

 

Time To Say Goodbye (Con Te Partiro) – Sarah Brightman

Released in 1995, Genre: Pop

The song is sung in the Italian language. The song can be interpreted as losing a lover and no matter where you travel that the other will always be with you in spirit.
song on Amazon

Lovable Lyrics:

Time to say goodbye
Countries that I never
Saw and shared with you
Now yes I will live them
I will leave with you

I Will Remember You – Sarah McLachlan

Released in 1995, Genre: Pop

A song about the end of a relationship to remember the good times together and not getting caught up in the past.
song on Amazon

Lovable Lyrics:

I will remember you, will you remember me?
Don’t let your life pass you by
Weep not for the memories

Gone Too Soon – Michael Jackson

Released in 1993, Genre: Pop

This song was dedicated to the memory of Jackson’s friend Ryan White, who was expelled from school and later died from HIV/AIDS.
song on Amazon

Lovable Lyrics:

Born to amuse, to inspire, to delight
Here one day
Gone one night
Like a sunset
Dying with the rising of the moon
Gone too soon

Wish You Were Here – Bee Gees

Released in 1989, Genre: Pop

A song the Gibb brothers wrote after the passing of their brother Andy and the difficulty of saying goodbye.
song on Amazon

Lovable Lyrics:

Ah I wish you were here,
drying these tears I cry
They were good times

Life In A Northern Town – Dream Academy

Released in 1985, Genre: Pop

The song is in remembrance of singer Nick Drake and how everyone would gather around to hear him play and tell him farewell.
song on Amazon

Lovable Lyrics:

And though he never would wave goodbye
You could see it written in his eyes
As the train rolled out of sight
Bye-bye

If your Mom passed away before your wedding, read 5 Ways of Honoring Your Mother’s Memory At Your Wedding.

 

R&B Favorites

Lift Me Up – Rihanna

Released in 2022, Genre: R&B

A song about a loved one being there with you in spirit to give you comfort and love in a time of weakness.
song on Amazon
Lovable Lyrics:

(Lift me up) Lift me up in your arms
(Hold me down) I need love, I need love, I need love
(Keep me close) Hold me, hold me

A Mother’s Prayer – K. Michelle

Released in 2013, Genre: R&B

This a message from a mother to her child that to not worry when you are hurting because everything will be okay and she is right there with you.
song on Amazon

Lovable Lyrics:

Last night I prayed on a fallen star
That you never have a broken heart
Though the world is cold, please remember who you are

Dance With My Father – Luther Vandross

Released in 2003, Genre: R&B

A song dedicated to Luther’s father about how he loved him and his mother. If he had another chance Luther would dance with his father again to a song that never ended.
song on Amazon

Lovable Lyrics:

Another walk, another dance with him
I’d play a song that would never ever end
How I’d love, love, love to dance with my father again

It’s So Hard To Say Goodbye To Yesterday – Boyz II Men

Released in 1991, Genre: R&B

The song is typically interpreted as a song of trying to move on after a breakup but the same could be said when a loved one dies.
song on Amazon

Lovable Lyrics:

How do I say goodbye to what we had?
The good times that made us laugh
Outweigh the bad

Missing You – Diana Ross

Released in 1984, Genre: R&B

The song is a tribute to Marvin Gaye after his death – thinking of all of the memories shared and missing him terribly.
song on Amazon

Lovable Lyrics:

All those dreams we shared together
Where did you run to, boy?
I’m missing you

 

Hip Hop Songs for Funerals

See You Again – Wiz Khalifa featuring Charlie Puth

Released in 2015, Genre: Hip Hop

The song pays tribute to actor Paul Walker who was in the Fast & Furious film series. The song describes how a living person will catch up with their life when they see each other again in heaven.
song on Amazon

Lovable Lyrics:

We’ve come a long way (yeah, we came a long way)
From where we began (you know we started)
Oh, I’ll tell you all about it when I see you again (I’ll tell you)

Dance – NAS

Released in 2002, Genre: Hip Hop

A song that NAS dedicated to his deceased mother. He wishes he could have one more dance with her but will have to settle for her dancing with Jesus.
song on Amazon

Lovable Lyrics:

But mom you could never be replaced
I’d give my life up
Just to see you one more day

I’ll Be Missing You – Puff Daddy & Faith Evans

Released in 1997, Genre: Hip Hop

The song was created in memory of fellow music artist Christopher “The Notorious B.I.G.” Wallace after his death and trying to carry on his legacy. It samples the song “Every Breath You Take” by The Police.
song on Amazon

Lovable Lyrics:

Every step I take, every move I make
Every single day, every time I pray
I’ll be missing you

Tha Crossroads – Bone Thugs-N-Harmony

Released in 1996, Genre: Hip Hop

The song is about you remembering your family and friends who are no longer living and to live a good life so you can get to heaven.
song on Amazon

Lovable Lyrics:

While you laughin we’re passing, passing away
So y’all go rest y’all souls
‘Cause I know I’ma meet you up at the crossreads

Folk Tunes To Honor Loved One

Jealous of the Angels – Jenn Bostic

Released in 2021, Genre: Folk

A song in memory of her dad and being in disbelief that he is gone but happy he will be an angel watching over her.
song on Amazon

Lovable Lyrics:

God must need another angel
Around the throne tonight
Your love lives on inside of me
And I will hold on tight

 

21 Days – Brian Fallon

Released in 2020, Genre: Folk

A song talking about how it takes 21 days to stop missing someone after a relationship ended (maybe in death?).
song on Amazon

Lovable Lyrics:

We do the leaving
We do the crying
We do the healing
And they say
21 days ’til I don’t miss you

On Your Side – The Innocence Mission

Released in 2019, Genre: Folk

A song about being in a state of confusion and being lost but not worrying because someone is watching over you and by your side.song on Amazon

Lovable Lyrics:

I have not gone
She’d say, The light is bright around you now
And I’m always on your side

Thank You for Being My Dad – Jon Barker

Released in 2011, Genre: Folk

A song about how sons don’t really show much loving affection to their dads. This song wants to right that wrong in a song to his dad by thanking him for being his dad.
song on Amazon

Lovable Lyrics:

Thank you for giving me life
Thank you for showing me good from bad
I guess I’m only really trying to say
Thank you for being my Dad

Misc Tunes For Slideshow

With Me – Sum 41

Released in 2007, Genre: Punk

A song about the difficulty of starting anew after losing someone you love.
song on Amazon

Lovable Lyrics:

I’ll hold on to this moment, you know
As I bleed my heart out to show
And I won’t let go

Somewhere Over The Rainbow – Israel Kamakawiwo’ole

Released in 1990, Genre: World

The song is all about hoping for better days and that bad days are coming to an end.
song on Amazon

Lovable Lyrics:

Someday I’ll wish upon a star
Wake up where the clouds are far behind me
Where trouble melts like lemon drops
High above the chimney top that’s where you’ll find me

Have a favorite, not on our list? Be sure to share your song at the bottom of the list.

Listen to our podcast about the memorial songs.

 

FAQs

Why have a memorial song at a wedding?

Unfortunately, life is complicated. Yes, a wedding day is one of the most important days for a bride. She has been planning it since her childhood.

However, not every wedding is a fairytale wedding — at least not the Disney kind.

Though you may have wished your father could walk you down the aisle, sadly, he has passed. Maybe you dreamed your mother would help plan all of the wedding details.

More than we’d like, life is not what is expected and special people close to us pass away, whether it be a parent, sibling, special relative, or friend.

Memorial songs allow you to make room on your special day to celebrate the life and memories of your lost loved one.

If your mother passed away, you can choose to have a relative step in for a special dance.

Popular alternatives for a dance or dedication are to play songs about a father and son, songs dedicated to a sister from a sister, and songs dedicated to a brother from a brother. If you have a stepmother that filled the role of “dad”, play a stepmom and stepson song.

If your father passed away, you can choose to have a relative step in for a special dance.

Popular alternatives for a dance or dedication are to play songs about daughters growing up and a sister and brother playlist. If you have a stepfather that filled the role of “dad”, play a stepdad and stepdaughter song.

When can a memorial song be played at my wedding?

At wedding ceremonies or receptions, a memorial song can be played in remembrance of a special person who has passed away. When is up to you? As always, we recommend chatting with your wedding planner and professional DJ.

When remembering a loved one during a wedding, we recommend having a special object at the wedding ceremony and wedding reception in their honor. An example would be to have a lit candle in remembrance.

How do I choose a good memorial song to play at my wedding?

When selecting memorial songs, we suggest finding a song that was special between the wedding couple and the person no longer living. It can be any song you like. It doesn’t have to be a slow or sad song either. It’s a time set aside to honor your parent, friend, or family member. Maybe one of these songs will We have songs from all genres to meet your needs. We have rap, rock, country, jazz, r&b, and much more.

 

Songs of looking down from Heaven

If you would like to think of someone who has passed away looking down on the bride and groom and/or looking over them, we would suggest the following songs: “Holes In The Floor Of Heaven” by Steve Wariner and “Angels Among Us” by Alabama. If it was a child that passed away, we suggest “Angels In Waiting” by Tammy Cochrane or “Tears In Heaven” by Eric Clapton. Eric Clapton wrote the song after he lost his son.

If you would like to remember a soldier, we suggest “Arlington” by Trace Atkins or “Live Like We Were Dying” by Tim McGraw. The song played for Princess Diana, “Candle In The Wind” by Elton John, would be great for remembering a classy woman.

People come and go, but their memories will live on. It is very difficult for you, as the wedding couple, to have a special loved one pass early and not be able to attend your wedding. Honoring them in song helps.

 

What music is appropriate for a funeral?

What songs should you play at a funeral or celebration of life? We have some suggestions for how you can celebrate a loved one’s passing with one of the above memorial songs.

Music Sources:

About Matthew Campbell

DJ, Editor, Music Lover

Meet Matthew (Matt) Campbell, the passionate wedding DJ and music expert behind My Wedding Songs. With years of experience in the industry and a keen ear for the latest trends, Matt knows just what it takes to create the perfect soundtrack for your special day. From classic love ballads to upbeat party anthems, his articles are jam-packed with insider tips and top recommendations that will have you and your guests on your feet all night long.

But Matt isn’t just a music aficionado – he’s also an active member of wedding planning and DJ communities, sharing his expertise and learning from other professionals along the way. Matt is the author of the Wedding Songs Planner and has articles published on Rolling Stone, DJ Life Magazine, and DJ Times. He is a member of the Rolling Stone Culture Council and Vegas Wedding Chamber. You can listen to his tips as the host of the Wedding Songs Podcast. 

12 Comments

  1. I lost my son Michael who was only 18 tragically to a dui driver 2 months ago. Some very good songs are “Call Me” Shinedown “Pieces” Sum 41 Stonesour “Through the glass” “Coming Back Down” Hollywood Undead “Tangled up in you” Staind “Gone too soon” Simple Plan “Stop Crying Your eyes out” Oasis “If you could see me now” The Script “With Me” Sum 41 hope this helps some people out there as much as they’ve helped me.

    1. Hi Charles. Sorry to hear about your son. Prayers for you and your family. Thank you for the song suggestions. We will add them to the list!

  2. These are all really great suggestions but I have another that might be fitting… “if heaven wasn’t far away” by Justin Moore

    1. Hi Donna. Sorry for your loss. Many of the songs above are great. However, I would suggest playing songs more to his personality. For example, If he was an upbeat, fun loving guy, then have happy songs in celebration of his life instead of the stereotypical songs played at memorials. Hope this helps. God Bless.

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