When times are particularly difficult, and you are likely to slip into despair, some of the greatest pop songs can provide true comfort to make it through the pain. This is a list of some of the best songs for those times.
This song kicked off U2's memorable performance at halftime of Super Bowl XXXVI before a nation still grieving from the horrific events of September 11, 2001. The power of this anthem to comfort and encourage perseverance is possibly best represented by the first two lines of the song "The heart is a bloom / Shoots up from the stony ground."
This is one of Mariah Carey's most enduring hits and is centered on the reassurance that ultimately the hero "lies in you." The lyrics are delivered with the power of one of the great voices in pop music.
Beginning with the words "When the day is long and the night is yours alone," and ending with "Everybody hurts. You are not alone," this is a song to provide support that is needed to make it through painful darkness in life. No song has ever been more convincing in assuring you that you are truly not alone.
Although it might seem out of character for much of R. Kelly's sexually suggestive material, his soulful voice soars on "I Believe I Can Fly." This song proclaims the power of all-encompassing love to help you rise out of difficult times by starting internally.
This has been Diana Ross' favorite live anthem for decades. It is a celebration of the power of people coming together to improve the world. The song closes with the simple instruction "Make this world a better place if you can."
There has never been a song that is a more powerful tribute to the value of friendship. Carole King wrote and recorded the original version, but it is James Taylor's gentle performance that is the classic interpretation.
This simple visionary song has given comfort to millions for nearly 35 years. The heart can find great solace in John Lennon's vision of a world living and being "as one."
The spirit is guaranteed to brighten as Art Garfunkel's voice takes flight in the final moments of this classic. At one point during its development, "Bridge Over Troubled Water" was called simply "Hymn," and it does indeed have a hymn-like quality celebrating the power of someone simply being there to help ease troubled times.
There are many times in which the three words "Let it be" are "words of wisdom." Although the lyrics may have originally been written in reference to interpersonal difficulties within the Beatles, the song does possess a universality that makes "Let It Be" one of the great pop songs of all time.
The simple beauty in Sarah McLachlan's lyrics about seeking comfort and refuge "in the arms of an angel" are significantly enhanced by the ethereal beauty of her voice. This song is perfect for providing quiet comfort when the storms of life become intense.