When working with a client who has experienced the loss of a loved one, music therapists may use interventions including improvisation, songwriting, singing, listening, and lyric analysis to help the client express themselves and process their grief. Using precomposed songs can have a particular meaning, as it is often so hard to put into words how one feels when they are experiencing loss - yet, sometimes a song will say it perfectly and will help the client to experience and express their emotions. Often the client will have songs that they bring forth in sessions that remind them of their loved one and moments they have shared. However, it is important to have songs prepared on the topic of loss to be able to pull from in sessions in order to best support clients.
Here are 10 songs about loss and grief to add to your repertoire.
1. Tears in Heaven - Eric Clapton
Would you know my name If I saw you in heaven? Would it be the same If I saw you in heaven? I must be strong and carry on 'Cause I know I don't belong here in heaven
2. One Sweet Day - Mariah Carey, Boyz 2 Men
Sorry I never told you all I wanted to say... And now it's too late to hold you 'Cause you've flown away so faraway Never had I imagined your living without your smile...
3. Last Kiss - Pearl Jam
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.
4. Only the Good Die Young - Billy Joel
Aw, but they never told you the price that you pay For things that you might have done Only the good die young That's what I said Only the good die young
5. I'll be Missing You - Puff Daddy ft. Faith Evans & 112
Every step I take, every move I make Every single day, every time I pray I'll be missing you
6. Candle in the Wind - Elton John
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
7. Who You'd Be Today - Kenny Chesney
I see your smile, I see your face I hear you laughing in the rain I still can't believe you're gone
8. See You Again - Wiz Khalifa ft. Charlie Puth
It's been a long day without you, my friend And I'll tell you all about it when I see you again We've come a long way from where we began Oh I'll tell you all about it when I see you again
9. Dancing in the Sky - Dani, and Lizzy
'Cause here on earth it feels like everything good is missing since you left And here on earth everything's different, there's an emptiness
Oh-oh, I hope you're dancing in the sky
10. Fire and Rain” - James Taylor
I've seen fire and I've seen rain I've seen sunny days that I thought would never end I've seen lonely times when I could not find a friend But I always thought that I'd see you again