Sad tearjerker songs stick in the memory forever.
The song that stands alone at the top is… Alone Again (Naturally) by Gilbert O’Sullivan. It has a great title, self-pitying lyrics, whiny vocal and an infuriating catchy tune (which forms the basis to any true tearjerker) all with the backing of a lush orchestra.
Three of my top four choices are sung poignantly by one hit wonders. (Gilbert O’Sullivan, Eric Carmen, Terry Jacks) There are others that are sung by truly tragic figures. (Karen Carpenter, Roy Orbison, Maurice Gibb) And there are maudlin offerings by some of the top artists. (Beatles, Elton John) Plus there are some truly touching melodies. (Vincent, Faded Love, Are You Lonesome Tonight?)
So here are my Top 20 cringe-worthy, teeth-curling, fingernails-on-the-blackboard, depressing, heartbreaking, ripe, maudlin, sentimental, self-pitying, self-serving, irritating, tasteless and sad anthems of the Me Generation.
1. Alone Again (Naturally) Gilbert O’Sullivan
2. All By Myself Eric Carmen
3. Vincent by Don MacLean
4. Seasons in the Sun Terry Jacks.
5. Where Have all the Flowers Gone? Kingston Trio (wr. Pete Seeger)
6. At Seventeen Janis Ian
7. Eleanor Rigby Beatles
8. Goodbye to Love The Carpenters
9. Honey Bobby Goldsboro
10. Faded Love Patsy Cline
11. My Eyes Adored You Frankie Valli
12. Patches Clarence Carter
13. How Can You Mend A Broken Heart? Bee Gees
14. Without You Harry Nilsson
15. Are You Lonesome Tonight? Elvis
16. Candle in the Wind Elton John
17. Crying Roy Orbison
18. Fire and Rain James Taylor
19. Green Green Grass of Home Tom Jones
20. Mr. Bojangles Nitty Gritty Dirt Band (wr. Jerry Jeff Walker)
If you have any I missed, please check in!