Best Songs for Siblings Funeral

What are the best funeral songs for a brother or sister?

Losing a  sibling is very difficult in many ways. When selecting music for the funeral service, you might choose an artist that was a favorite of your brother or sister’s. You could also choose to play their favorite song or a song that somehow connected the two of you – maybe a song from childhood. Even if it is not what some might feel is a traditional funeral song or hymn, it’s important that you select music that you feel is right for the funeral you are planning. Remember, there are no set rules on what music has to be played.

To make it easier for you, The Best Songs.net has come up with a list of appropriate songs for the funeral or memorial service of a sibling. For your convenience, we have compiled the songs in a playlist, making it easy for you to listen to a sample or purchase a song. Additional information about each song, including significant verses and choruses, is provided below the playlist.

Best Songs for the Funeral of a Brother or Sister

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Brickyard Road

Johnny Van Zant wrote this song about his older brother, Ronnie, who died in a plane crash. At the time, Ronnie was the lead singer Lynyrd Skynyrd and Johnny took over for him after his death. The song is perfect for anyone who has lost a sibling or a friend who was like a brother, even though it does contain a lot of specific references to the relationship between Johnny and Ronnie.

Significant Verse:

Brother do you realize what you’ve done
Touched the hearts of everyone
You might’ve died too young
But your songs live on
I know I can’t bring back yesterday
But we’ll be all together, again some day

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Even Now

This song is performed by Linda Eder, whose voice often graces Broadway performances in-between albums. It is very moving song that talks about how two people who love each other are never really apart. The best line of the entire song has to be “Through my tears I still hear your laughter even now.”

Significant Verse:

Stars still shine when they’re gone
Hearts that break will still beat on
Letting go’s the hardest thing to do
‘Cause all those feelings start
And time can’t change my heart
It all leads back to you

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Fields of Gold

While Sting released a more popular version of this song, Eva Cassidy’s version should not be overlooked. About a dozen other versions of it by other artists also exist, but those are probably the best ones. All versions tend to be slow and sweet. Because the lyrics reference an unnamed woman in its lyrics, it is more appropriate for a woman’s funeral than a man’s funeral, especially when it says “So she took her love for to gaze awhile / Among the fields of barley / In his arms she fell as her hair came down / Among the fields of gold.”

Significant Verse:

You’ll remember me when the west wind moves
Among the fields of barley
You can tell the sun in his jealous sky
When we walked in fields of gold

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Forever Young

This version of “Forever Young” is sung both by Rod Stewart and Bob Dylan. Dylan’s version is slower than Rod Stewart’s more upbeat, but newer version. There are slight mentions to both “the good Lord” and heaven, so it might not be appropriate for an atheist’s funeral. Otherwise, the song talks about how the singer wishes the person all the best and how “in my heart you’ll always stay / Forever young.”

Significant Lyrics:

May good fortune be with you
May your guiding light be strong
Build a stairway to heaven
With a prince or a vagabond
And may you never love in vain
And in my heart you will remain
Forever young, forever young

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 Forever Young

This version of “Forever Young” is sung by Youth Group and by Alphaville. It was most recently featured on the soundtrack for Napoleon Dynamite, but the song dates back to the 80s. It is not a traditional funeral song, but it could work for the right person. The lyrics talk about all the person wants to do and why they never want to die. The chorus simply repeats the lines, “Forever young, I want to be forever young / Do you really want to live forever? Forever and ever.”

Significant Lyrics:

It’s so hard to get old without a cause
I don’t want to perish like a fleeing horse
Youth’s like diamonds in the sun
and diamonds are forever.

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Go On

Written and performed by Jack Johnson, this song is about a cousin who died at 19 from a brain tumor. According to Johnson, “It’s about learning how to let go of someone you love, watching them swim away.” This song would be appropriate at the funeral of a friend, but has several references to blood connection, which makes it a better fit for the funeral of a sibling.

Chorus:

Just go on, just go on
There`s still so many things
I wanna to say to you
But go on, just go on
We`re bound by blood that’s moving
The moment that we started

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Goodbye for Now

Performed by Kathy Troccoli, this song is very melodic and slow. The lyrics are very sweet and poignant, but generic enough to be appropriate at almost any funeral. The song talks about how difficult it will be to let the person go and refers to the time when they will be together again. One of the best lines in the song is “How can it be that the world would go on / When something has died within me” or “I can’t imagine my life without you / You held a place all your own”

Chorus:

But there will be a time
When I’ll see your face
And I’ll hear your voice
And there we will laugh again
And there will come a day
When I’ll hold you close
No More tears to cry
‘Cause we’ll have forever
But I’ll say Goodbye for now

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He Ain’t Heavy, He’s My Brother

Several versions are available of this song from legendary artists such as The Osmonds, Neil Diamond, Ronan Tynan, and many more. While this song is featured on many lists of people’s favorite funeral songs, the lyrics feature no references to a person being gone or having passed. Instead, they talk about how one man does not consider his brother a problem no matter what has occurred.

Significant Lyrics:

It’s a long, long road
From which there is no return
While we’re on the way to there
Why not share

And the load
Doesn’t weigh me down at all
He ain’t heavy, he’s my brother

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 Into The West

This song was performed by Annie Lennox over the ending credits on the third part of the Lord of the Rings: Return of the King. It is partially inspired by the early death of Cameron Duncan, a New Zealand filmmaker, and was first performed at Duncan’s funeral. Two other singers, Hayley Westenra and Yulia Townsend, have also recorded versions of this song. The song is very moving. Some of the best lines include “Why do you weep? What are these tears upon your face? Soon you will see. All of your fears will pass away.”

Significant Verse:

Don’t say, we have come now to the end.
White shores are calling.
You and I will meet again.
And you’ll be here in my arms,
Just sleeping.

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Love Is Stronger Than Death

Matt Johnson, of The The,wrote this song after the death of his brother. The title comes from Song of Solomon 8:6 “Set me as a seal upon thine heart, as a seal upon thine arm: for love is strong as death; jealousy is cruel as the grave: the coals thereof are coals of fire, which hath a most vehement flame.” Other than that, the song has no overt religious overtones. Rather, it talks about grief and mourning.

Significant Verse:

In our lives we hunger for those we cannot touch
All the thoughts unuttered & all the feelings unexpressed
Play upon our hearts like the mist upon our breath
But, awoken by grief, our spirits speak

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Never Without You

Ringo Starr wrote and recorded this as a tribute to fellow Beatles band mate George Harrison, who died on November 29, 2001. However, it is generic enough that it could be used at almost any funeral. It does make reference to how “we were brothers through it all.”

Significant Verse:

And your song will play on without you
And this world won’t forget about you
Every part of you was in your song
Now we will carry on… Never Without you
(Without you Without You) Within you without you
Here comes the song, it’s about you

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One More Day

This song is performed by Diamond Rio. The lyrics talk about what everyone would like after a loved one has gone — one more day — and what he would do with that added time. Diamond Rio is a country group and this song has a slight country feel.

Chorus:

One more day, one more time
One more sunset, maybe I’d be satisfied
But then again
I know what it would do
Leave me wishing still, for one more day with you

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A few other songs you might consider…


“In My Life” performed by The Beatles or Bette Midler

But of all these friends and lovers
There is no one compares with you
And these memories lose their meaning
When I think of love as something new
Though I know I’ll never lose affection
For people and things that went before
I know I’ll often stop and think about them
In my life I love you more
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“In This Life” performed by Collin Raye or Bette Midler

Let the world stop turning
Let the sun stop burning
Let them tell me
Love’s not worth goin’ through
If it all falls apart
I will know deep in my heart
The only dream that mattered
Had come true
In this life I was loved by you

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“Through the Years” performed by Kenny Rogers

I can’t remember when you weren’t there
When I didn’t care for anyone but you
I swear we’ve been through everything there is
Can’t imagine anything we’ve missed
Can’t imagine anything the two of us can’t do

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