13 Local Love Songs to Make Your Heart Soar

We’ll be streaming these romantic tunes from artists like Matt Mays, Jenn Grant, and Jill Barber all year long.

You'll fall head over heels for East Coast Music Hour's dreamy playlist of love songs

Do you have a favourite love song? Most of us do, whether it's the song that was playing when we first locked eyes with a loved one, a first dance at a wedding, or a lullaby hummed to a newborn baby in the dead of night. But if you're looking to expand your love songs playlist beyond the tried & true classics—and maybe add a little sprinkle of East Coast flavour—we have just the thing for you. 

(Elana Camille for CBC East Coast)

This year, East Coast Music Hour has created "The Love List". These 13 tracks are lesser-known romantic gems from some of your favourite East Coast artists. And it's streaming now on Listen! Let it be the soundtrack to your candlelight dinner for two, a sappy pizza night with beloved pals, or your solo evening of self-care. These songs are about true love, unrequited love, parental love, a dream of the possibility of love, and everything in between. 

Matt Mays: Let There Be Love (Acoustic Version)

Bill Roach opened the special edition of East Coast Music Hour with an acoustic version of Let There Be Love by Dartmouth, NS, rocker Matt Mays.

Most Romantic Lyric: Dancing through the ghost and glitter of the last parade / Down the same street from once you were afraid to go

The Once: You Lead, I Will Follow

(Tom Cochrane for The Once)

St. John's, NL, folk trio The Once released this quaint love song back in 2014 on their album "Departures". 

Most Romantic Lyric: Your heart's the rarer one, when all is said and done / I'll wear mine on my sleeve, I'll be there when you need 

Tim Baker: Dance

When the East Coast Music Awards recently released the 2020 nominations, Tim Baker and Wintersleep led the pack with seven nominations each. The awards will be hosted in Baker's hometown of St. John's, Newfoundland, this year. His nominations include Album of the Year for "Forever Overhead" and Song of the Year for this song of love lost, "Dance". 

Most Romantic Lyric: I miss our younger years / I stretch to touch them

The East Pointers: If You're Still In, I'm In

PEI's own The East Pointers also took home some ECMA nominations, including Group Recording of the Year and Song of the Year. This love song, "If You're Still In, I'm In" is from last year's album "Yours to Break". 

Most Romantic Lyric: Tell me where you're going, tell me where you wanna be / And is there something missing, is there room in there for me

Jenn Grant: Keep a Light On

(Daniel Ledwell for Jenn Grant)

Jenn Grant's ECMA-nominated album is perfect for this playlist; after all, it's called "Love, Inevitable". This song, "Keep a Light On", comes with a video that will warm your heart. 

Most Romantic Lyric: I keep a light on, even if it's just a moon shining bright / I keep a light on, everything's gonna be alright

Quote the Raven, Golden Hour

Newfoundland duo Quote the Raven's album "Golden Hour" is golden indeed—they're nominated for the Rising Star award at the ECMAs and they just won Group of the Year at the Music NL Awards. 

Most Romantic Lyric: Every streetlight catches your good side / We're chasing the sunrise to the golden hour

Catherine MacLellan, Waiting on my Love

"Waiting on my Love" was one of the first tracks released from Catherine MacLellan's 2019 album "Coyote". On her website, MacLellan said the song is "about being in the moment and appreciating all you have now." That album is up for Contemporary Roots Album of the Year at the Juno Awards in March. 

Most Romantic Lyric: See I've been waiting all my life just to be with you right now / Let's not waste a minute of this, it could all let go somehow 

Ben Caplan, Lullaby

(Jamie Kronick for Ben Caplan)

Bill Roach describes this song from Ben Caplan's Old Stock album as "four minutes of restraint". His vocals certainly live up to the title, and the pared down music lets the lyrics shine. 

Most Romantic Lyric: The moon in the window / The sun in the sea / Now is the quiet, just baby and me

Gabrielle Papillon, Oh My Favourite

This love song takes us back to 2012 and Gabrielle Papillon's album "Little Bug". It's a story of uncertainty and, as Bill puts it, "fight or flight". 

Most Romantic Lyric: I got a mind to leave you on the floor, to hit the ground running / So when I stand still to ponder my flight, wait til dawn for me to see light

Old Man Luedecke, At the Airport

This popular tune from Old Man Luedecke's 2006 album "Hinterland". The Chester, NS, musician shows off his gift for clever lyrics on this track.

Most Romantic Lyric: It's like we've never touched / Kisses long but rushed / And your cheeks have never seemed so serene

David Myles, I Will Love You

(Mat Dunlap for David Myles)

The lyrics from this David Myles song from the 2015 album "So Far" could practically serve as wedding vows. The Fredericton-born musician is best known for sweet folk tunes like this one, but as Bill points out during the show, his first Juno was actually for Best Rap Album—thanks to his beloved collaboration with Halifax rapper Classified.

Most Romantic Lyric: When we're close, when we're far / Over the mountains, under the stars / I will love you, I will love you, I will love you

Jill Barber, Never Quit Loving You

Jill Barber's 2008 album was her first foray into classic crooning, and the result was a romantic album that stands the test of time. The track "Never Quit Loving You" is bluesy and heartfelt, perfect for a Valentine's Day playlist.

Most Romantic Lyrics: There will be days when you get down / And you've got to find ways to keep your feet on the ground / Oh but honey, please remember, even when I'm feeling blue / That I will never, ever quit loving you

Lisa LeBlanc, 5748 Km

In a long distance relationship? New Brunswick artist Lisa LeBlanc feels your pain. She wrote this song about the distance between New Brunswick and Vancouver. It's from her third album, "Why You Wanna Leave, Runaway Queen?" 

Most Romantic Lyric: It's probably the dumbest idea that I've ever had / But I love you, yes, I really do

Bonus: Matt Mays, Let There Be Love (Original Version)

Bill ended the episode as it began, with "Let There Be Love" by Matt Mays. This time, the louder, rockin' version. 

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