10 Classic and Underrated Love Songs

Truly capturing the intimacy and beauty of love is one of the hardest tasks assigned to every musician.  There's a fine line between endearing and cliche-- and while many artist have jumped fearlessly into the latter, there are still several hidden (and not so hidden) gems that you can count on when you want to feel a healthy dose of butterflies. 


1.  You Really Got a Hold on Me, by Smokey Robinson


This song was originally released as a B-side, but quickly became a hit once people realized the simple and honest genius behind it.  Originally performed by Smokey Robinson, it was later performed by The Beatles, The Jackson 5, Cyndi Lauper and even Haley Reinhart on American Idol.  My personal favorite version was recorded by Percy Sledge. "I don't want to kiss you/ But I need to."  


2.  Our House, by Crosby, Stills, Nash & Young 

Simple, intimate and understated, this song says a lot without saying much at all.  "Come to me now, and rest your head for just five minutes, everything is good/ Such a cozy room, the windows are illuminated by the/ Sunshine through them, fiery gems for you, only for you." 


3.  Love Minus Zero, by Bob Dylan

Bob Dylan, much like wine, is an acquired taste.  Recently honored as the Nobel Prize winner for Literature, his music is true poetry, and it's no surprise that he would write some of the most beautiful love songs to which we have access.  Love Minus Zero is no exception. "People carry roses/ And make promises by the hour/ My love she laughs like the flowers/ Valentines can't buy her."  


4.  Wildflowers, by Tom Petty

I would be surprised if you hadn't heard this one even after Tom Petty died last year, but this is one of my favorite songs of all time.  One of the most tiring cliches of love songs today is the idea that people can't live without one another.  Petty does something different and all the more meaningful here: "You belong among the wildflowers/ You belong in a boat out at sea/ Sail away, kill off the hours/ You belong somewhere you feel free."  


5.  Don't Talk, Put Your Head on My Shoulder, by The Beach Boys


In an overly articulate generation that is totally engrossed in our own anxieties about the future and the present, this song off one of the most famous albums of all time is almost more relevant today than it was in the 60's.  "We could live forever tonight/ Let's not think about tomorrow/ And don't talk, put your head on my shoulder."  CHILLS. 


6.  Songbird, by Fleetwood Mac


Honestly what's most amazing about this song is that Christine McVie wrote it in about a half hour at 3 a.m.  This piano ballad could melt even the most stone-cold of hearts.  Ultimate takeaway lyric: "And I wish you all the love in the world/ But most of all, I wish it from myself." 


7.  Sugar Magnolia, by the Grateful Dead


It doesn't have the same slow, ballad vibe as the others on this list which is what makes it so wonderful.  This song takes the feeling of butterflies and turns them into something you can hear.  "Sweet blossom come on under the willow/ We can have high times if you'll abide/ We can discover the wonders of nature/ Rolling in rushes down by the riverside." 


8.  Going to California, by Led Zeppelin


The perfect breakup song exists and it's this one.  Written about leaving somebody in hopes of finding someone better, it'll give you all the feels. "Someone told me there's a girl out there/ With love in her eyes and flowers in her hair."  


9.  Strangers, by The Kinks


People forget about The Kinks in the shadow of The Beatles, but don't count them out.  Strangers is definitely a good one to put you in your feels.  "Holy man and holy priest/ This love of life makes me weak at my knees/ And when we get there make your play/ 'Cos soon I feel you're gonna carry us away."  


10.  Two of Us, by The Beatles


They wrote a lot of great love songs, but this one never got as much hype as their more well-known tracks.  It's understated and subtle and perfectly captures companionship.  "Two of us riding nowhere/ Spending someone's/ Hard earned pay./ You and me/ Sunday driving/ Not arriving/ On our way back home."   

Do you have a favorite love song that doesn't get enough hype? Tweet us @UConnHC

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