Even though there was and is a lot of darkness as a result of COVID (awks), there were some silver linings. Artists were still dropping some of the greatest songs of the year. Here are a few of our favorites that should not go unnoticed.
1. Folklore by Taylor Swift
Taylor Swift broke records after dropping her eighth studio album, Folklore. That’s why we included her entire work of art, not just one song in particular. Written during quarantine, we and many others believe this is her best work yet. Swift herself calls it “a collection of songs and stories that flowed like a stream of consciousness.” These are stories that have emerged from her imagination into song that’s unlike anything she has ever done before. Folklore is at the top of our list for a reason. If you haven’t listened, it’s time you do so. If you’re not a Taylor Swift fan, Folklore may pleasantly surprise you.
2. Freedom by Kygo
Created by Norwegian DJ Kygo (Featuring Zak Abel), Freedom is a song that will be stuck in your head for days to come. Not only is it catchy, but the lyrics hit home ~especially since we’ve all been stuck at home~. We can all relate to Freedom when we’re feeling that lack of control as a result of the pandemic. Kygo is always able to inspire and provoke hope, happiness, and a sense of freedom with his music. This is a song you do not want to miss.
3. Better Days by OneRepublic
OneRepublic has been around for a while. And that’s because they’re pretty damn good at what they do. If you have heard some of his most recent work, Better Days is a good place to start. They knew they needed to create a song that will relate to many of the people who have lost their loved ones, health, jobs, and security. Ryan Tedder said that “[they] write about real experiences and events that happen to [them] – this is what happens when you write a song during a crisis.”
4. Bigger Love by John Legend
Bigger love is the name of John Legends’ 7th studio album. It’s also the name of the song that has inspired so many of us across the globe. His hope from this album was to bring joy and light through all of the darkness we have been experiencing as a whole these past few months. If you decide to watch his music video, you’ll be showered with cuteness, as many loved up couples, and Legends’ family themselves grace the screen. It will make you appreciate your family a bit more and want to call those you haven’t spoken to in a while. The album as a whole is a perfect listen when you need some inspiration in your life.
5. Bloody Valentine by Machine Gun Kelley
Machine Gun Kelley’s Bloody Valentine music video basically broke the internet when it dropped. Even if you haven’t heard of the song, you may have heard about the drama between MGK, Meghan Fox, and Bryan Austin Green. A week after announcing their divorce (Fox and Green), MKG and Fox were spotted out together. A few days later, this chemistry explosion dropped. This song was his first single for his fifth studio album. If this genre isn’t for you, check out the acoustic version. MGK’s vocal skills truly come to light in his recent works.
6. Lay Your Head On Me by Major Lazer
Major Lazer does it again with Lay Your Head On Me featuring Marcus Mumford (of Mumford and Sons). It was released as the fourth single for Major Lazer’s fourth studio album. It eventually rose to the charts, claiming the number one spot for Lazer’s third time. There is an acoustic version that is just as good. Whether you prefer upbeat or a little bit of a more mellow vibe, there’s a version of this song we know you will like. If you’re like us, you’ll get chills the first few times you listen. It really highlights the importance of being there for others and having a shoulder to lean on.
7. Perfect Way To Die by Alicia Keys
Perfect Way To Die is an incredibly moving work of art written and sung by Alicia Keys. This song is a “heartbreakingly moving tale of a mother’s grief” and hits very close to home given the climate of today’s America. When you are ready to sit down and get in your feels, this is the song to pick. It truly is one of the most moving songs on this list.
8. Thousand Faces by Don Diablo and Andy Grammer
Thousand Faces, a “chill future-verse song”, is one of the most personal releases that Don Diablo has ever had. After losing his father a few years ago, this song is inspired and dedicated to him. He says that he hopes “this song gives people hope and the strength to turn something very painful into something very positive.” A little bit of positivity is something we all need.
9. Little Things by Louis The Child, Quinn XCII, and Chelsea Cutler
This song focuses on – you guessed it- the importance of the little things in life. When things seem to be overwhelming, it’s essential to focus on the little things. Chelsea Cutler, Louis The Child, and Quinn XCII come together and bring each of their individually unique talent and magic to this song.
10. Stuck With U by Ariana Grande and Justin Bieber
Written during quarantine, Ariana Grande and Justin Bieber created a song that we can all relate to during the COVID pandemic. It’s called Stuck With U for crying out loud. Released as a charity song to raise money for scholarships for frontline workers. This is a great song that’s for a great cause. What’s not to love? If you’re not a Bieber or Grande, give this one a chance.