Losing someone you love is painful beyond words.
It is one of the hardest things we have to go through as humans.
Perhaps the hardest.
All of us have different ways to grieve and heal from the loss of a loved one.
For many of us, music plays a big role in getting us through difficult times.
Songs about missing someone who died can help you remember that person and begin to heal from their loss.
If music helps you when times are tough, keep reading for a list of beautiful songs to help you when you are missing someone who died.
Table of Contents
- 1 Songs About Missing Someone Who Died
- 1.1 My Heart Will Go On by Celine Dion
- 1.2 Candle In The Wind by Elton John
- 1.3 Un-Break My Heart by Toni Braxton
- 1.4 Gone Too Soon by Michael Jackson
- 1.5 Tears In Heaven by Eric Clapton
- 1.6 How To Save A Life by The Fray
- 1.7 I’ll Be Missing You by Puff Daddy feat. Faith Evans & 112
- 1.8 Ghost by Justin Bieber
- 1.9 Fallen Angel by Three Days Grace
- 1.10 Gone Too Soon by Daughtry
- 1.11 Brendan’s Death Song by Red Hot Chili Peppers
- 1.12 I Grieve by Peter Gabriel
- 1.13 Since You’ve Gone To Heaven by Brandy Clark
- 1.14 You’re Not There by Lukas Graham
- 1.15 For Those Who Can’t Be Here by Tom Walker
- 1.16 Can’t Say Goodbye by Josh Gracin
- 1.17 No One But You (Only The Good Die Young) by Queen
- 2 Songs About Death Of A Loved One: Final Thoughts
Songs About Missing Someone Who Died
I tried to include great songs about missing someone who dies from a number of genres. That way, there should be at least a few songs that really speak to you. If you know a song I missed, please let me know in the comments below.
My Heart Will Go On by Celine Dion
Canadian singer Celine Dion performed this beautiful ballad written by James Horner and Will Jennings. The track was included in the 1997 superhit film Titanic.
My heart Will Go On was a massive hit as well and it topped several international music charts. It also won the year’s Academy Award.
This beautiful love ballad is a tribute to everlasting love. The person you love may have passed away but they will always remain in your heart and you will hold on to their memory forever.
The song suggests that, even though the person isn’t present physically, the love we feel for them remains and will never fade.
Candle In The Wind by Elton John
British singer and songwriter Elton John wrote and performed Candle in the Wind as a tribute to Marylin Monroe. The song’s original version was from John’s 1973 album Goodbye Yellow Brick Road.
Elton John later performed a new version of Candle in the Wind in 1997 as a tribute to Princess Diana. He mentioned in an interview that every time he performed the song, it was extremely painful as if it reopened all the ‘old wounds’.
The earlier version of the song talks about Monroe’s life and how it was cut short by fame. The 1997 version sung for Lady Diana expresses grief and mourning for the loss of the beautiful and beloved Princess.
Overall, Candle in the Wind is a song of love, loss, and grief. It talks about how beautiful, smart, and gorgeous people can be gone too soon, just like a candle is extinguished too soon on a windy day. It also expresses that we should honor and remember all those whose lives are cut short in a similar manner.
Un-Break My Heart by Toni Braxton
American singer Toni Braxton wrote and first sang Unbreak My Heart in 1996. This love ballad describes the intense pain the singer feels when her lover dies. The lyrics plead for the lover to come back and unbreak her heart.
Unbreak My Heart is a heartbreaking (pun absolutely intended) ballad depicting the pain and struggle of losing a loved one.
Gone Too Soon by Michael Jackson
Michael Jackson wrote Gone Too Soon as a tribute to teenager Ryan White. Ryan was diagnosed with HIV/AIDS but was expelled from his school owing to the stigma of the disease.
Jackson was moved by Ryan’s story and met the teenager in 1987. He penned this beautiful song after he heard about Ryan’s death in 1990.
Gone Too Soon went on to be a huge hit in several countries and was in the top 50 lists in the UK and US charts. It was also included in Jackson’s superhit album Dangerous.
The lyrics of Gone Too Soon are a tribute to White who passed too soon, before he could truly live his life and fulfill his dreams.
Tears In Heaven by Eric Clapton
British singer and songwriter Eric Clapton co-wrote this beautiful ballad of love, mourning, and loss, with Will Jennings. Clapton based the song on a heartbreaking tragedy in his own life, when his 4-year-old son fell from the balcony of a high-rise NYC building.
The song talks about a father’s pain and loss upon losing his son and about the hope to reunite with his child in heaven. In a way, it is also a hopeful song in that it talks about the father’s wishful thinking that his son is now in a better place.
Clapton also wrote a song about losing his dad when he was very young. If you have lost a father, check it out. It is one of the best songs about losing your dad I’ve heard and can help you heal a bit.
How To Save A Life by The Fray
This beautiful song may not be about the memory of a dead friend or loved one per se, but it does express the frustration and helplessness people feel when someone close to them dies, especially by suicide.
The song also expresses the fact that we should listen to our loved ones, especially when they are depressed, and intervene and offer support when we see someone sabotage their lives with substance abuse.
How to Save a Life was inspired by a depressed teen named Caleb, whom the lead singer of The Fray, Issac Slade, was mentoring. The song went on to become an anthem of sorts about addiction and mental health issues. Much more on the meaning of the lyrics here.
I’ll Be Missing You by Puff Daddy feat. Faith Evans & 112
P.Diddy (also known as Puff Daddy) wrote this as a tribute to Notorious B.I.G, his friend and fellow rapper who was shot dead in 1997. Diddy recorded the song (with inspiration from the original Sting song written when he was with the band Police) more as a ‘closure’, since he felt he was able to finally converse with Notorious B.I.G.
Ghost by Justin Bieber
In Ghost, Bieber talks about his lover who has ‘crossed the bridge’ and that he cannot follow her. All that remains is their love. He also goes on to say that if he cannot have her physically, he will settle for her ghost.
The singer also says that although he is missing his dead girlfriend, her memory still brings ecstasy to him.
Fallen Angel by Three Days Grace
Fallen Angel is a 2015 song by Canadian rock band Three Days Grace. It was a tribute to the band’s drummer Neil Sanderson’s mother’s grief about her husband and son dying when Neil was just 5 years old.
The song begins with the lines”this song is about losing the people we love and wishing we could have saved them.”
Three Days Grace even had a page on their website for people to leave messages in the memory of the loved ones they have lost. You will love the original version but the Fallen Angel acoustic version takes things to a whole different level.
Gone Too Soon by Daughtry
Daughtry’s songs have so much meaning and depth. It could be because the singer lost his mom to cancer and, a week later, his stepdaughter committed suicide.
It is impossible to listen to Daughtry’s Gone too Soon without breaking down. If you get a chance, do check out the comments left by hundreds of people on the song’s official YouTube video. Many are from people grieving the loss of a child or someone close to them.
Brendan’s Death Song by Red Hot Chili Peppers
This song is RHCP’s tribute to Brendan Mullen, an LA Club owner who gave the band their first break. Anthony Kiedis, RHCP’s front man, got a text about Brendan’s death from a massive stroke on his birthday. When he delivered the news to his fellow bandmates, they just started playing and this beautiful song was the result of that impromptu jamming.
I Grieve by Peter Gabriel
Peter Gabriel’s, I Grieve can take you from grief to hope because it talks about extending love beyond death. Life carries on after death so let it out and move on.
The song was used in the movie City of Angels starring Nicholas Cage and Meg Ryan, which is also famous for the Goo Goo Dolls hit Iris. And for beign a remake of a much, much better German film called Wings of Desire.
Since You’ve Gone To Heaven by Brandy Clark
Brandy Clark wrote Since You’ve Gone to Heaven describing her dad’s death, just a few months before 9/11. The words “since you’ve gone to heaven, the whole world’s gone to hell” describe that incident.
She also talks about her mother becoming a shell of her old self and that she cannot stand going home, but has to for her mom’s and brother’s sake. A beautiful song by a truly talented artist.
You’re Not There by Lukas Graham
Lukas Graham pays tribute to his dad, who he lost in 2012. The lyrics talk about how his dad is no longer there and how much he thinks of him every night.
All those who have lost their dads will surely be able to relate to this beautiful song. Graham aptly says he wishes he had more time with his dad. After all, his dad was there with him every step of the way, but now he has no one to count on.
For Those Who Can’t Be Here by Tom Walker
Walker wrote this song when his maternal grandfather died. He wanted to write something for his mom and based the song on the toast his grandma would give during Christmas.
The Walker family had a tradition of raising their glasses around the table for ‘Those Who Can’t Be Here’. All of us have lost someone and this song is a fitting tribute to their memories.
Walker performed For Those Who Can’t Be Here at Royal Carols: Together At Christmas and the Duchess of Cambridge. Kate Middleton – played the piano for him.
Can’t Say Goodbye by Josh Gracin
Josh Gracin created Can’t Say Goodbye in collaboration with Sears Heroes At Home. Sears had organized a Portraits of Heroes contest for war veterans’ families.
The winner of that contest was a widow named Seana Arrechaga who wanted nothing more than to keep her husband’s memory alive. Army SFC Ofren Arrechaga had died in Afghanistan in 2011. Sears approached Gracin to write a song based on Arrechaga and the result was Can’t Say Goodbye.
No One But You (Only The Good Die Young) by Queen
This is a beautiful tribute by Queen to Princess Diana, but was also written as a eulogy by Queen for Freddie Mercury. The lyrics talk about how only the good die young.
The singer also expresses the band’s grief and their feeling that Freddie’s death will never make sense. And although they will raise their glass to the ‘face at the window’, they will never say goodbye, which means he will always be in their hearts.
Songs About Death Of A Loved One: Final Thoughts
I hope at least some, and ideally several, of these songs about missing someone who died found a place in your heart and can help lessen the pain of loss somewhat.
As mentioned, I tried to include multiple genres of music, but I know there are some I missed. That’s where you come in. If you know of any additional songs that should be on this list, no matter the genre. please let me know in a comment below. I will add good suggestions in a future update.
If you enjoyed this list of song recommendations, we have another one of songs about the death of a friend.