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Top Ten Love Songs

Read Richard Gehr's Top Ten Love Songs.

2. "Ev'ry Time We Say Goodbye," Cole Porter

Written for a 1944 revue, "Ev'ry Time We Say Goodbye" offers one of the Great American Songbook's more magnificent musical moments. When the lyric observes, "but how strange the change from major to minor," whenever the couple must part, the music solemnly follows suit. I like Ella Fitzgerald's and John Coltrane's interpretations, but who hasn't sung this Cole Porter masterpiece?

1. "God Only Knows," Brian Wilson

"I believe that music is God's voice," said Brian Wilson, whose "God Only Knows," is on the 1966 Beach Boys album Pet Sounds. Love and spirituality blend in brother Carl Wilson's angelic falsetto. Accordions, harpsichord, and flugelhorns provide counterpoint to Tony Asher's underpromising couplets ("If you should ever leave me/Though life would still go on, believe me") and immediate reversals ("The world would show nothing to me/So what good would livin' do me?"). A heavenly choir seals the deal.

They may be many things, but silly these songs are not. And we would love it if you’d suggest your own favorites in the Comments section below.

Still in the mood for love? Join our Romantic Cooking for Two group in the AARP.org Community! And from chocolates to chilies, these eight aphrodisiacs  will keep you healthy in the bedroom and beyond. 

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