The official student newspaper of University of Wisconsin-Eau Claire since 1923.

The Spectator

The official student newspaper of University of Wisconsin-Eau Claire since 1923.

The Spectator

The official student newspaper of University of Wisconsin-Eau Claire since 1923.

The Spectator

Spectator Sing Along Power Hour

Beyond romance: A Valentine’s Day playlist for all types of love

When I was little, my mom would always tape paper hearts to my bedroom door on Valentine’s Day. We would put a lace cloth on the table and make heart-shaped pancakes for breakfast. My family and friends made the day special. 

Because of this, it always surprised me when people said they disliked the holiday. I have heard opinions on this ranging from mild annoyance to deep loathing. For some, Valentine’s Day is a time wrought with high romantic expectations and loneliness. 

To me, the day is about remembering all types of love — not just romantic. To celebrate this Valentine’s Day, I made a playlist with songs honoring different kinds of love. Here are some standouts:

“How to be Alone” by Rachel Grae

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Released in March of 2022, this upbeat pop single highlights the joys of solitude. It explores the process of self-discovery and introspection through smooth backing vocals and light string pizzicato. The lyrics tell a story of self-love and acceptance, disarming fears of missing out and getting left behind. 

Best line: “Angels have always been on my shoulders / Finally listening as I get older.”

“Friends” by Ella Henderson

This song is an ode to platonic love. With an understated guitar and tambourine behind her, Henderson writes a lyrical love letter to her childhood best friend. She comments on the good times and the bad, noting how her friend has been a constant through it all. 

Best line: “And the boyfriends may change / And so will our second names / But one thing stays the same is us.”

“Walk” by Griff

Most of Griff’s album, “One Foot in Front of the Other,” is a tribute to unique types of love, but this final track is an exemplary example. The production is flashy, but it does not overpower the lyrics and lends itself to the message of the song, especially in the live version.

The singer addresses an unidentified person with words of encouragement and acceptance. This could be interpreted as romantic or platonic, but it is almost better than neither. 

Best line: “All the countless times in the dead of the night / You were with me when no one else would be / I’d call you whenever, yeah / You would pick up like you weren’t even tired.”

“hope ur ok” by Oliva Rodrigo

On the final track of her debut album, “Sour,” Rodrigo reminisces about two of her childhood friends and the hardships they faced as adolescents. A soft guitar strums as she reflects on their experiences and wishes them well. 

Best line: “Her parents hated who she loved / She couldn’t wait to go to college / She was tired ’cause she was brought / Into a world where family was merely blood.”

“You’ll be in my Heart” by Phil Collins

This ballad exhibits the type of familial love rarely found in contemporary pop music. Featured on the 1999 “Tarzan” soundtrack, Collins originally wrote it to be a lullaby for his daughter, Lily Collins. It won the prize for Best Song at the 2000 Academy Awards and Best Original Song at the 2000 Golden Globes. 

Best line: “Don’t listen to them / ‘Cause what do they know? / We need each other / To have, to hold / They’ll see in time / I know.”

You can find the full playlist here.

Svendsen can be reached at [email protected].

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