Top 10 Happily Ever After Love Songs
1. Ashford & Simpson – “Solid” (1984)
Nickolas Ashford and Valerie Simpson married in 1974. They released this song after ten years of marriage. It is an anthem of commitment between lovers. Ashford & Simpson were successful not only as performers but also as one of the top pop / R&B songwriting teams having written other classics such as “Ain’t Nothing Like the Real Thing,” “Reach Out and Touch Somebody’s Hand,” and “I’m Every Woman.” The pair celebrated their induction into the Songwriters Hall of Fame in 2002. Nickolas Ashford passed away in 2011 at age 70.
“Solid” climbed to #12 on the U.S. pop chart and did even better in the U.K. landing at #3. It was the biggest pop hit of the duo’s long career. The album of the same name reached #1 on the R&B albums chart and earned a gold certification for sales, one of four gold albums released by Ashford & Simpson.
2. The Beatles – “And I Love Her” (1964)
This simple love song was included on the A Hard Day’s Night soundtrack and has endured as a Beatles fan favorite. The lyric “I know this love of mine will never die, and I love her” sums up the enduring sentiment. George Harrison has been given credit for composing the guitar riff in the song despite not being listed on the songwriting credits. John Lennon said he contributed the section, “A love like ours could never die, as long as I have you near me,” but otherwise “And I Love Her” is primarily a Paul McCartney song.
“And I Love Her” charted at #12 as a single with “If I Fell” on the B-side in July 1964. It was the Beatles’ 15th top 40 pop hit of 1964 in the U.S. A solo version of “And I Love Her” by Nirvana frontman Kurt Cobain was released as a single in 2015.
3. Eric Clapton – “Wonderful Tonight” (1977)
Eric Clapton’s depiction of the interaction between a man and woman before, during and after going out for the evening is compelling in its intimacy and also in the praise, admiration, and love expressed. It has been a slow dance favorite for nearly forty years. Eric Clapton wrote the song while waiting for his future wife Pattie Boyd to get ready for a Buddy Holly party thrown by Paul McCartney and his wife, Linda. “Wonderful Tonight” appeared on Eric Clapton’s album Slowhand and reached #16 on the U.S. pop chart.
“Wonderful Tonight” is the subject of multiple cover recordings. The British R&B group Damage released their version in 1997, and it hit #3 on the U.K. pop singles chart. In 1998, country singer David Kersh took his cover of “Wonderful Tonight” into the top 30 on the country chart.
4. Amy Grant – “Baby Baby” (1991)
The joy and happiness of a great relationship bursts from every line of Amy Grant’s breakthrough pop hit. The song was paired with a video that brilliantly depicts the fun of a young couple in love. The video was so convincing that many suspected the actor in the video was actually Amy Grant’s husband. Amy Grant has said her initial efforts to write the lyrics of “Baby, Baby” sounded like, “some overgrown football jock with no vocabulary trying desperately to be romantic.” Amy Grant had been one of the top contemporary Christian artists for over a decade when she released “Baby, Baby.” It became her first solo #1 pop hit single.
“Baby Baby” earned three Grammy Award nominations including for Record of the Year and Song of the Year, but it didn’t win any of the categories. In 2016, Amy Grant recorded an updated 25th-anniversary version of “Baby Baby” featuring singer Tori Kelly.
5. Heatwave – “Always and Forever” (1976)
This smooth romantic classic was written by Heatwave group member Rod Temperton who later wrote such r&b classics as Michael Jackson’s “Rock With You,” George Benson’s “Give Me the Night,” and the Brothers Johnson’s “Stomp.” The lyrics state, “There will always be sunshine when I look at you…” “Always and Forever” was the group’s second top 20 pop hit single following their breakthrough “Boogie Nights.” It went all the way to #2 on the U.S. R&B chart and reached #18 on the pop chart.
Luther Vandross covered “Always and Forever” on his 1994 album Songs. Released as a single, it hit the top 20 on the R&B chart and #25 on the adult contemporary chart. The recording earned Luther Vandross a Grammy Award nomination for Best R&B Vocal Performance.
6. Modern English – “I Melt With You” (1982)
Although many of their songs were more downbeat, the new wave band Modern English created an all-time classic with “I Melt With You.” The sentiment is best summed up “There’s nothing you and I won’t do…the future’s open wide.” “I Melt With You” was first released on the album After the Snow in 1982. It climbed to the top 10 on Billboard’s rock radio chart. In 1990 the song was re-recorded and returned to the Billboard Hot 100 for the second time. The original lineup of Modern English reunited in 2010.
Robbie Grey, the primary songwriter of “I Melt With You,” says the context of the song is a couple making love while an atomic bomb drops. Singer-songwriter Jason Mraz covered the song for inclusion on the soundtrack for 2004’s 50 First Dates.
7. Orleans – “Still the One” (1976)
It’s been used over and over for commercials, events, and celebrations, but the sentiment is evergreen. This gently rocking hit joyously celebrates long-term relationships in a simple and effective manner. “Still the One” was written by Orleans leader John Hall and his then-wife Johanna Hall. It was the second top 10 pop hit single by the band following 1975’s “Dance With Me.” “Still the One” was the top hit single from the album Waking and Dreaming which reached the top 30 on the album chart. Country artist Bill Anderson took a cover version of “Still the One” to #11 on the country chart in 1977.
8. Sonny and Cher – “I Got You Babe” (1965)
Sonny Bono and Cher almost defiantly continued to sing this song together even when their personal relationship was in tatters. “I Got You Babe” launched their career as a duo and is perhaps the most memorable of their joint creations. It ranks as one of the top pop duets of all time. Sonny Bono wrote the music and lyrics for “I Got You Babe” late at night at home in his basement while working as a songwriter and producer for Phil Spector. In 2021, the song was inducted into the Grammy Hall of Fame.
“I Got You Babe” hit #1 on the US pop chart, spent three weeks there, and sold over a million copies. It helped push Sonny and Cher’s debut album Look At Us to #2. A 1985 cover version by the reggae band UB40 with Chrissie Hynde of the Pretenders returned “I Got You Babe” to the pop top 40.
9. The Turtles – “Happy Together” (1967)
The Turtles created some of the most upbeat hit singles of the late 60’s. This one celebrates finding the perfect partner, “The only one for me is you and you for me, so happy together” with a sunny accompaniment leaving the listener smiling. “Happy Together” was the second top 10 pop hit from the Turtles and it went all the way to #1. They followed it with the #3 hit “She’d Rather Be With Me.”
“Happy Together” holds the distinction of knocking the Beatles’ classic “Penny Lane” out of the top spot on the U.S. pop singles chart. It was the Turtles only #1 hit, and it spent three weeks on top.
Many artists have recorded cover versions of “Happy Together.” T.G. Sheppard took the song into the country top 10 in 1979. Orchestra leader Hugo Montenegro reached the adult contemporary chart with an instrumental version of the song.
10. Stevie Wonder – “You Are the Sunshine Of My Life” (1972)
Commitment and praise for one’s life partner is the sole subject matter of this Stevie Wonder classic. It asks the question only a fulfilled lover can ask “How could so much love be inside of you?” “You Are the Sunshine Of My Life” became Stevie Wonder’s second consecutive #1 pop hit following “Superstition” and his third overall. It also was his first to top the adult contemporary chart. The song earned a Grammy Award for Best Male Pop Vocal and nominations for both Record and Song of the Year. The first lines in the recording are sung by session musicians Jim Gilstrap and Lani Groves.
“You Are the Sunshine Of My Life” is included on the Talking Book album. It was part of the string of albums released by Stevie Wonder in the early 1970s that represented growing artistic freedom. Talking Book reached #3 on the U.S. album chart.