For somebody with a very diverse taste in music, I have to say — picking 10 songs that are my absolute favorites was no simple task. I dedicate a song to every moment, every person. I have a different playlist for each season of the year, and then separate playlists for every mood, times of the day, and genres. If I tell you, "I LOVE THIS SONG", ask me about the memory behind it.
I am somebody who, while mostly prefers music within the pop, folk, and alternative realm, also genuinely adores country music, classic rock, rap, EDM, and everything else in between. So, this list has a little bit of everything, as well as why it is my favorite song. I listed the songs in a particular order: starting with the one that has a holy spot of being my "favorite song" and as natural of a progression onward as possible.
1. "Renegades" by X Ambassadors
This song holds a very special place in my heart. I connect so deeply to the message of this song. The lead singer of the band, Sam Harris, and his brother, Casey Harris, are members of the band with a special bond. Casey also is blind. His disability is part of what inspired this song- he is a renegade for going against the grain and being a pianist for a rock band.
The first tattoo I ever got was the word "renegade" on my wrist in honor of this song, and it has also inspired so many brave journeys for me through its' empowering lyrics. X Ambassadors is an incredible band, advocating for minorities, producing amazing music, and sounding fantastic live (I once travelled 1,400 miles to see them at Red Rocks in Colorado).
2. "Holocene" by Bon Iver
This song is haunting, chilling, beautiful, sad, and comforting all in one. I always used to love listening to this song when I was sad, or when it was raining outside (if you haven't done this — you should), but it took on a lot of beautiful new meaning for me when I discovered this video, where an in-depth analysis of the song is provided. It takes on a much deeper, more beautiful meaning.
3. "Forest Fires" by Axel Flovent
"Forest Fires" is another song that is simply just beautiful. The best way to listen to this song is loud, with headphones in. It starts slow, but slowly builds into a powerful and amazing melody that (not to be dramatic) echoes within the very corridors of my freaking soul. The lyrics are also amazingly poetic with a hint of sadness. I think this song is a very good, wintertime driving song, or laying in a dark room with headphones in, type song.
4. "10,000 Weight in Gold" by The Head and the Heart
10,000 Weight in Gold is a song that reminds you of things you're sad to be leaving behind, but that you have to because of your greater ambitions. Everybody faces a struggle like this at some point in life. Whether it be being away from loved ones, or simply feeling nostalgia for some time of the past. This is a pretty melancholy song, but it is absolutely beautiful.
5. "GOODMORNING, goodbye" by Frenship
When I first heard this song, I was driving, and all I heard was "you're the closest thing to home for me since my Colorado days" and I instantly connected with it. I am a misplaced Coloradan living in the Pacific Northwest, and this song instantly hit home for me. Plus, the melody is beautiful, and the lyrics are extremely relatable.
6. "Cleopatra" by The Lumineers
This is another song that I absolutely liked with all of my heart, but didn't absolutely love with all of my heart until I watched this video. It tells a beautiful story, and is upbeat while still being considered a ballad. The Lumineers created something so beautiful with their whole album Cleopatra, and since I couldn't fit all of the album on this list, I chose this song that I felt encompassed the whole story. But for the record, Cleopatra is probably my favorite album of all time.
7. "Tennessee Whiskey" by Chris Stapleton
This song doesn't have a super deep meaning for me as to why I love it. It just makes me feel good. It's beautiful, it's a great slow-dance song, and it's a timeless classic.
8. "Red Ragtop" by Tim McGraw
"Red Ragtop" is a song that reminds me of my childhood. My dad is a huge country music fanatic and this is a song that I grew up listening to. In addition to the sentimental aspect, I think the melody of this song is beautiful. It's also very easy to sing to, and tells a nostalgic story.
9. "Hotel California" by Eagles
First of all, I don't trust anybody who doesn't like "Hotel California".
Secondly, this song is amazing. Not only is it very easy to sing to in the car, designating one person as the guitar soloist, but it is also very well written. Every time this song comes on, I ask whoever I'm with what they think the song means. Some people think it's about drugs, some think it's about Hollywood stardom. It's interesting to hear all of the different perspectives.
10. "Power Trip" by J. Cole
J. Cole is the best rapper- and you can't argue with me on that one.
"Power Trip" is such a well-written song. Not only are the melody and the beat amazing, but the lyrics themselves tell a great story. This is one of those songs that endures through the years because it is just that good. I also think this is a pretty good "starter" rap song for some people who may not love rap- because it is pretty melodic and doesn't contain a lot of explicit language.
I could honestly probably make another list of my top 100 favorite songs ever, but this was hard enough to narrow down. Music is something that's so incredibly special to me personally, and I think for everybody.