Beautiful Sad Songs

I’m currently having a love affair with a song – River. It reigns from Leon Bridge’s first album, Coming Home. No matter how many times I’ve heard it recently, I find myself pausing what I’m doing, turning it up loud and just sitting with it. Like any great soulful song, it makes me feel. What it makes me feel exactly, I’m not entirely sure, but its somewhere in the realm of happy melancholy. Although I feel the sadness and the struggle in every lyric and chord, it’s that very sorrow and expression of the human spirit, that makes the song utterly beautiful. And it’s in that space, that moment of temporary connection, between artist and listener, that I can’t deem anything other than magical.

Here is a mix of some of Matt and I’s favorite contemporary soul stopping songs. The full list of track titles and artists is below. Any other songs you would have added to the list? I’d love to hear your thoughts 🙂

  1. River – Leon Bridges
  2. The Blower’s Daughter – Damien Rice
  3. Youth – Daughter
  4. Skinny Love – Bon Iver
  5. Jolene – Ray Lamontagne
  6. All I Want – Kodaline
  7. Gone – The Head and the Heart
  8. Blood – The Middle East
  9. I Can’t Make You Love Me – Bon Iver
  10. Skinny Love – Birdy
  11. The Night We Met – Lord Huron
  12. The Funeral – Band of Horses
  13. Slow It Down – The Lumineers


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  • Reply Britt Wells

    I totally know that unexplainable feeling you’re talking about, especially with Skinny Love! ❤

    June 9, 2017 at 5:58 pm
    • Reply Stephanie

      yesss, skinny love is probably my ultimate. and either version haha Birdy does such a good job with it

      June 12, 2017 at 3:50 pm
  • Reply Latrice

    My Damien Rice song that puts me in that place would be 9 crimes. Bon Iver will never cease to amaze me. I can’t make you love me!?!?! Agh! All the feels. The lumineers are one of my favorite groups. I saw them for the first time at the corn exchange in Cambridge. They opened for another one of my favorites The civil wars ( poison and wine or the one that got away) and they actually did slow it down before they did ho hey (which was pretty much nonexistent to the popular world at the time) and I remember giving my drink to the stranger next to me just so I could get closer and stand their in awe of what I was hearing. I was mesmerized. The way everyone on the stage was entranced and just enjoying this beautiful song. It was phenomenal. I get that feeling everytime I hear it. I think of a big window. A big cup of tea and rain falling oh so gently. Come away with me by Norah jones puts me in that same mood as well. I love this playlist and completely agree with the beauty in a heartbreaking, soul stopping song. Thanks for sharing my gorgeous friend. Xo

    June 9, 2017 at 8:57 pm
    • Reply Stephanie

      ahh I love 9 crimes too, definitely a close second to blowers daughter. I think the only reason is because it’s in the movie Closer, which I love. Can’t believe you saw the Lumineers in such an intimate venue! I would have loved to have gone to that. Sounds like the perfect venue and show! oooh and Norah Jones is way up there for me too, love her bluesy/soulful vibes. I’ll also listen to her while I’m reading. Thanks for reading beautiful! I’ll have to check out some of the Civil Wars new stuff, haven’t heard them in awhile 🙂

      June 12, 2017 at 3:49 pm
  • Reply Corey | The Nostalgia Diaries

    I LOVE your list. This type of music is totally up my alley. Some of my faves: Saturn by Sleeping At Last, Opus 37 by Dustin O’Halloran, Too Late by The Paper Kites, Dust to Dust by The Civil Wars, If I Go, I’m Going by Gregory Alan Isakov…. I could go on and on… 🙂

    June 14, 2017 at 9:43 pm
    • Reply Stephanie

      love all your suggestions too Corey! There area few I don’t recognize the specific songs, will have to check them out. Thanks for the recommendations!

      July 1, 2017 at 3:29 pm
  • Reply Andrea

    Your entire list is fantastic!!! (I’m listening to River as I write this, lol) I have really weird taste in music, as I like a bit of almost every music genre (note I said almost, lol! There’s some I just can’t stand). I will download your list on my Deezer! I loved it! Thanks so much for sharing it! (Still listening to River, haha) 🙂

    June 14, 2017 at 10:34 pm
    • Reply Stephanie

      oh good! Glad you thought so Andrea! Hope you’re still enjoying! 🙂

      July 1, 2017 at 3:30 pm

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