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Our Valentine’s Day Playlist

We are pleased to share with you, courtesy of our contributors, the Rabbit Room’s very own metaphorical mixtape of love songs—forty-eight of them, in fact! So it’s probably more like an epic series of mixtapes, because there’s just that much love in our hearts. Let the warm fuzzies commence.

Since there are so many songs on this playlist, we can’t include what each person said about their song of choice. But seeing as that’s half the fun, we’ve included here a smattering of stories and explanations.

“Hallelujah I Love Her So” by Ray Charles

We love our Genius here in Georgia, and this has got to be one of his best songs. There’s a fantastic pianist at the Jekyll Island Club who always plays—and sings—this classic for us, complete with knocking on the piano at the appropriate moment. Lots of happy memories. —Lanier Ivester

“If We Were Vampires” by Jason Isbell

Because love is a long haul, but it’s not infinitely long: “Maybe time running out is a gift / I’ll work hard ’til the end of my shift.” —Jonathan Rogers

“The Book of Love,” covered by Peter Gabriel, originally by Magnetic Fields

Every line is so direct and unabashed. “The book of love is long and boring…but you can read me anything.” —Chris Slaten

“Somebody” by Depeche Mode

A song of longing for a true love-as-friendship relationship. That goes along with a moment of awkward self-awareness that there’s something a little too precious about such sentiment, even when it’s deeply felt. —Thomas McKenzie

“Hotel Fire” by HEM

This song has a wideness to its lyrics that allows for a fair amount of approachability, but as I approach it, it rings of the wildness of love. The lyrics speak of love as a thing that does what it will, that is willing to obliterate the walls of a comfort zone, and that, in the end, still has the gumption to demand devotion. I hear this, and I think of Rich Mullins saying, “God is a wild man.” —Adam Whipple

“Choosing Teams” by David Mead

This is one of my all-time favorite David Mead songs and that is saying something. I am a huge fan of his writing and could have chosen a number of songs including “Little Boats” and “Sleeping in Saturday.” I love the way he expresses the isolation of being a school-aged child and never feeling chosen, then contrasts it with finally knowing what he wants and feeling safe and wanted with his love. —Jill Phillips

“Take It With Me” by Tom Waits, sung by Jubilant Skyes

The last verse, where the camera pulls in, is the most beautiful image in any song I’ve ever heard. —Andrew Osenga

A beautiful cover of a wonderful Tom Waits song. Sykes lingers over and meditates on every word like a man who’s coming to his last earthly moments with his beloved. The spare arrangement is perfect. —David Mitchel

“Born” by Over the Rhine

Because nobody sings the ache like them. This album (and especially this song) got me through one of the roughest patches of my life. —Jennifer Trafton

“You’re The Reason Our Kids Are Ugly” by Loretta Lynn and Conway Twitty

Because it always makes me laugh. Also because it takes some of the idealism out of marriage. —Rebecca Reynolds

“All I Ask Of You” from Phantom of the Opera

I think one of the most romantic notions of all time is summed up in the line: “everywhere you go, let me go too.” —Hetty White

“I Know Different” by Neil Finn

This song could only come out of a long-term, beautiful relationship. But really, I should just paste the lyrics to the last part of the song: One day, when it’s over All the borders will be open In your honor, for your virtue I never, meant to hurt you I surrender, to the future But I won’t be, taken prisoner And I’ll stay with you, if you’ll let me And the whole world, can forget me I know that, we came closer To believing, that we’re through I know different —Andy Gullahorn

What about you? What are some of your favorite love songs? Please share in the comments section!


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