Billboard has published their take on the top 50 love songs of the last 55 years, but with a twist.
The song couldn’t just be about love. It actually had to have the word (or a form of the word) “love” in the title to qualify for the list.
While this may seem limiting at first, there were literally thousands of candidates that had charted on the Hot 100 that used that very favorite of words. Billboard took all their chart performances, analyzed the numbers, and came up with the very biggest.
Topping the list is Diana Ross and Lionel Richie’s Endless Love, a song that you could not get away from during the summer of 1981. It stayed at number 1 for nine weeks and lingered on the charts much longer.
Endless Love is followed by Boyz II Men’s I’ll Make Love to You and Rihanna Featuring Calvin Harris’ We Found Love, both which stayed number 1 longer (14 and 10 weeks respectively) but had less spectacular chart runs, overall, adjusted for the era.
What makes this list interesting is that, even though a song has “love” in the title, it doesn’t necessarily mean that it is a “love song.” Some are about love lost. Some are about respect (To Sir With Love) and one, Sara Bareilles’ Love Song (#50) is a rebuke of record executives and their demands for a specific type of material from an artist.
Here is the top ten followed by all songs by veteran artists that made the lower portion of the chart. To see and hear all of the songs, go to Billboard.
- 01. Endless Love – Diana Ross and Lionel Richie
- 02. I’ll Make Love to You – Boyz II Men
- 03. We Found Love – Rihanna Featuring Calvin Harris
- 04. How Deep is Your Love – Bee Gees
- 05. Silly Love Songs – Wings
- 06. I Will Always Love You – Whitney Houston
- 07. Let Me Love You – Mario
- 08. Because I Love You (The Postman Song) – Stevie B
- 09. Best of My Love – Emotions
- 10. I Can’t Stop Loving You – Ray Charles
- 12. My Love – Paul McCartney and Wings
- 14. Crazy Little Thing Called Love – Queen
- 15. To Know Him Is To Love Him – Teddy Bears
- 16. Love is Blue – Paul Mauriat
- 17. Woman in Love – Barbra Streisand
- 19. It Must Have Been Love – Roxette
- 21. To Sir With Love – Lulu
- 23. Roses Are Red (My Love) – Bobby Vinton
- 24. Love Will Keep Us Together – Captain and Tennille
- 25. I Wanna Dance With Somebody (Who Loves Me) – Whitney Houston
- 26. Love Rollercoaster – Ohio Players
- 27. I Think I Love You – Partridge Family
- 28 (Love Is) Thicker Than Water – Andy Gibb
- 29. She Loves You – Beatles
- 30. What’s Love Got to Do With It – Tina Turner
- 31. I Want to Know What Love Is – Foreigner
- 33. Can’t Help Falling in Love – UB40
- 34, Love Hangover – Diana Ross
- 36. The Power of Love – Huey Lewis and the News
- 37. Greatest Love of All – Whitney Houston
- 38. I Just Called to Say I Love You – Stevie Wonder
- 41. That’s the Way Love Goes – Janet Jackson
- 42. Justify My Love – Madonna
- 44. This Guy’s in Love With You – Herb Alpert
- 45. You’ve Lost That Lovin’ Feeling – Righteous Brothers
- 46. Lovin’ You – Minnie Ripperton
- 47. Part-Time Lover – Stevie Wonder
- 49. Baby Love – Supremes