Funeral Songs

January 8, 2009

As I mentioned a few days ago, Andrea and I went to a funeral last week.  It reminded me that Andrea and I have had several conversations about funeral songs over the years.

There are good ones, bad ones, and overused ones. 

Andrea wants Kimberly Hoy to sing I Can Only Imagine at her funeral, and she wants Amazing Grace played on the bagpipes.  I’m not sure what I want.  Nothing overused.  No canned karaoke music.  No organ.

So, I’ve compiled a list of funeral songs that I’ve seen or heard about or that I’m merely suggesting.  There are some good ones and some less stellar ones, so I’ve also added my comments for your reading pleasure. 

Please chime in with your ideas or thoughts.

The list got kind of long as I worked on it for several days and asked a few people for suggestions…

  • I Can Only Imagine – Mercy Me (Getting to be overused?)
  • In Better Hands – Natalie Grant (Not my style, but a great funeral song.)
  • Thank You – Ray Boltz (So 1980’s…  I would strongly advise against not using it.)
  • The Dance – Garth Brooks (If you’re into that sort of thing; I’m not.)
  • Hello Again – Petra (This song could be pretty appropriate.  I only want it at my funeral if John Schlitt will come and sing it!)
  • See You In Heaven – Guardian (I played this at a funeral last year.  Great song!)
  • Wind Beneath My Wings – Bette Midler (I’ve threatened to come back and haunt my wife as a poltergeist for the rest of her life if she has someone sing this at my funeral.  I loathe Bette Midler!)
  • Born to Be Wild – Steppenwolf (Only appropriate at biker funerals.)
  • Amazing Grace (It’s a classic.  Bagpipes get bonus points.)
  • Because He Lives (This hymn is used a lot, but I wouldn’t vote for it.)
  • Home – Daughtry (Andrea’s vote for the perfect funeral song.)
  • Love You ‘Til the End – The Pogues (Andrea wants this one at my funeral.  Nice touch!  I’d be okay with that.)
  • In the Garden (A classic hymn.  I think my grandmother once told me that my grandfather wants this at his funeral.)
  • Candle In the Wind – Elton John (Only if you’re a princess…)
  • Good Riddance (Time of Your Life) – Greenday (An excellent choice!)
  • Who Wants to Live Forever – Queen  (Hmmm… Not sure if it would work or not.)
  • In the Blink of an Eye – Mercy Me (My wife’s suggestion; I can’t stand the song personally.)
  • Tears in Heaven – Eric Clapton (That would be a tough one to pull off…)
  • Come to Jesus – Chris Rice  (My wife’s suggestion.)
  • Go Rest High on That Mountain – Vince Gill (A good one for you country fans.)
  • Don’t Know What You Got (Till It’s Gone) – Cinderella (My friend Dawn says this was used in her brother’s funeral.)
  • Always Look on the Bright Side of Life – Monty Python (Hmmm…  Probably not.)
  • There Will Be a Day – Jeremy Camp (Not a big Jeremy Camp fan, but this could work…)

For more funeral song ideas… check out MyFunkyFuneral.com, this article about an Australian funeral provider, and this post on The Best and Worst Funeral Songs.

And finally, thanks go out to Andrea, Heather, Dawn, and Clara for their suggestions.

Please add a comment with your thoughts on the list or any other funeral song ideas you have!

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