Top Funeral Tunes 2016 by Category

2016 Top Funeral Tunes

  • ‘My Way’ tops the charts after a break in 2014.
  • Wiz Khalifa, Rihanna and Adele tracks are new entrants for the Contemporary Pop #FuneralMusic charts.
  • Game of Thrones theme could make future charts as UK consider it for their funeral.

Co-op Funeralcare has today released its 2016 funeral music charts, based on a study of over 30,000 funerals in the UK.

Funeral Plan Quotes

Funeral Plan Quotes

The charts, which first launched in 2002 and have been released bi-annually since, see Frank Sinatra’s ‘My Way’ top of the funeral pops,  knocking off Monty Python’s ‘Always look on the bright side of life’, now placed at number eight.

The full #FuneralMusic top funeral tunes for 2016 is as follows.

No.Song nameArtistMovement since last chart
1My WayFrank SinatraUp 4 places
2Time to say goodbyeAndrea Bocelli and Sarah BrightmanUp 12 places
3Over the rainbowEva CassidyUp 15 places.
4Wind beneath my wingsBette MidlerNew entrant
5The lord is my shepherdPsalm 23/ CrimondDown 3 places
6We’ll meet againVera LynnNew entrant.
7All things bright and beautifulTraditionalDown 1 place
8Always look on the bright side of lifeMonty PythonDown 7 places
9Abide with meTraditionalDown 6 places
10UnforgettableNat King ColeNew entrant.


Kate Thornton, Broadcaster and former Smash Hits Editor commented:

“There’s a lot of surprises on the chart, and it’s a real chart with a difference but it’s good to see that people are putting so much thought and personality into what will be their swansong, as a way of making loved ones smile, shed a tear or laugh out loud.

“I’ve been agonising over what song I’d choose, but the one I keep going back to is my favourite song of all time, ‘Love and Affection’, by Joan Armatrading, simply because it’s beautiful and a lovely open letter to love in all its guises.”

A further study conducted by Co-op Funeralcare among UK adults, reveals the popular TV series Game of Thrones’ theme song may make it into funeral charts, with 1 in 20 UK adults voting it as a song they would consider for their own funeral.

Humour is a key consideration for UK adults when choosing their funeral music. Over two fifths (42%) said they ‘want to raise a laugh’ amongst guests at their funeral.

This holds true as 1 in 10 UK adults said they would consider having ‘another one bites the dust’ (Queen) at their own funeral. 1 in 20 said they would have ‘going underground’ (the Jam) and a further 1 in 15 said they’d opt for ‘Highway to hell’ (ACDC).  Others said they would consider ‘stayin alive’ (The Bee gees) and ‘disco inferno’ (Trammps).

When delving further into specific music genres, new entrants to Contemporary Pop funeral music charts include Wiz Khalifa’s ‘See you again’ dedicated to the late Paul Walker, now placed at number 3, Adele’s ‘Hello’ (from the other side) now placed at number 7 and Rihanna’s ‘Diamonds’ now placed at number 8.

The full Contemporary Pop top funeral tunes.

1Robbie WilliamsAngels
2WestlifeYou raise me up.
3Wiz KhalifaSee you again
4WestlifeFlying without wings.
5Ellie GouldingHow long will I love you
6WestlifeI’ll see you again.
9Sam SmithLay me down
10BoyzoneNo matter what.

Just outside of the top 10 is David Bowie’s ‘Ashes to Ashes’, Pharrell Williams’ ‘Happy’ and Justin Bieber’s ‘love yourself’.

David Collingwood, Head of Funeral Operations said:

“Funerals are very much about personal choice and reflecting the personality, hobbies and interests of a person. More so than ever we’re seeing people pre-plan their funeral music and in the last 12 months, 42% of our funeral directors and arrangers have received ready-made pre-planned funeral playlists.

“Personalisation doesn’t stop with the music; hearses, flowers, coffins and memorials can all be uniquely personalised to ensure a funeral reflects the unique personality of a person.

“Whilst ‘My Way’ is back at number one, it’s really interesting that the passing of celebrities and artists is having an effect on the music charts. Wiz Khalifa’s track ‘See you again’ dedicated to the late Paul Walker has made it into the Contemporary Pop charts whilst, the late David Bowie’s ‘Ashes to Ashes’ has also been requested by clients in the last 12 months.”

Oasis have stolen the show in the Indie group charts, with four of their tracks including ‘Wonderwall’, ‘Don’t look back in anger’, ‘Live forever’ and ‘Champagne Supernova’ securing places.

Liverpool FC’s ‘You’ll never walk alone’ is top of the sport category having overtaken the Match of the Day theme tune and popular TV Soap Coronation Street’s theme tune is top of the funeral TV charts.

All the charts and other key findings:

Rock Top Funeral Tunes 10:

No.Song nameArtist
1Stairway to heavenLed Zeppelin
2Bat out of hellMeatloaf.
3Live foreverQueen
4Wish you were herePink Floyd.
5Highway to hellACDC
6Another one bites the dustQueen
7Bohemian RhapsodyQueen
8Don’t wanna miss a thingAerosmith.
9Knocking on heaven’s doorGuns and roses
10Spirit in the skyNorman Greenbaum.


Sport Top 10:

No.Song nameArtistMovement since last chart
1You will never walk aloneGerry and the PacemakersUp 1 place
2Theme tuneMatch of the dayDown 1 place.
3Soul Limbo / Cricket Theme tuneBooker T and MGNon mover
4The ChainFleetwood MacUp 2 places
5I am forever blowing bubblesWest Ham UnitedUp 3 places.
6Z Cars ThemeEverton FCNew entrant
7Glory GloryTottenham HotspurNew entrant
8Grandstand themeBBCUp 2 places
9World in UnionDame Kiri Te KanawaDown 5 places.
10Dance of the KnightsSunderland FCNew entrant


Indie Top 10:

No.Song nameArtist
1Chasing CarsSnow Patrol
3Don’t look back in angerOasis.
4ArabellaArctic Monkeys.
5Live ForeverOasis
6Hymn for the weekendColdplay.
7One day like thisElbow
9IrisGoo goo dolls
10Champagne SupernovaOasis.


TV/Film Top 10:

No.Song nameArtistMovement since last chart
1Coronation StreetTheme tuneUp 4 places.
2Last of the Summer WineTheme tuneUp 2 places
3Only Fools and HorsesTheme tuneUp 1 place
4Always look on the bright sideMonty PythonDown 3 places.
5EastendersTheme tuneUp 3 places
6My heart will go onCeline DionDown 5 places.
7EmmerdaleTheme tuneUp 1 place
8Going homeHovis theme tuneNew entry
9Dad’s ArmyTheme tuneNew entry
10Bring me sunshineMorecambe and WiseDown 4 places.


Hymns Top 10:

No.Song nameArtistMovement since last chart
1Lord is my ShepherdPsalm 23 / CrimondNon mover
2Abide with meTraditionalNon mover.
3All things bright and beautifulTraditionalNon mover
4How great thou artTraditionalNon mover
5Amazing graceTraditionalNon mover.
6Old rugged crossTraditionalUp 1 place
7JerusalemTraditionalDown 1 place.
8Morning has brokenTraditionalNon mover
9The day though gavest lord endedTraditionalNon mover
10Ave MariaTraditionalNon mover.


New Country Top 10:

No.Song nameArtist
1I will always love youDolly Parton
2Islands in the streamDolly Parton and Kenny Rodgers.
3Country roadsJon Denver
4I love you becauseJim Reeves
5Annie’s songJon Denver.
6Over the rainbowEva Cassidy
7Ring of fireJohnny Cash
8My best friendDon Williams
9If tomorrow never comesGarth Brooks.
10Blowin’ in the windBob Dylan


Classical Top 10:

No.Song nameArtistMovement since last chart
1Time to say goodbyeAndrea Bocelli & Sarah BrightmanUp 2 places .
2NimrodElgarDown 1 place
3Nessun DormaLucianno PavarottiUp 3 places
4Cannon in DPachelbelDown 2 places.
5Four SeasonsVivaldiDown 1 place
6AdagioBizet/AlbinoniNon mover
7Ave MariaVarious artistesDown 2 places.
8Moonlight SonartzBeethovenNew entry
9Pie JesuFaureDown 1 place
10The Lark AscendingRalph Vaughan WilliamsNew entry.


Top Ten Funeral tunes RnB Top 10.

No.Song nameArtist
1I’ll be missing youPuff Daddy
2Dance with my father againLuther Van Dross.
3One sweet dayBoys 2 Men
4I will always love youWhitney Housten
5FlyR Kelly
7Turn back the hands of timeR Kelly
8Bye ByeMariah Carey
9World’s greatestR Kelly


Jazz Top 10 Funeral Tunes.

No.Song nameArtist
1What a wonderful worldLouis Armstrong
2Moonlight serenadeGlenn Miller.
3Stranger on the shoreAka Bilk
4SmileNat King Cole
5In the moodGlenn Miller
6A place in the sunStevie Wonder.
7Fly me to the moonFrank Sinatra
8Sitting on the dock of the bayOtis Reading
9Mr BojanglesRobbie Williams
10Come fly with meFrank Sinatra.


Other stats:

  • Pop is now the most requested music genre.
  • Over half (54%)of funeral directors and arrangers stated that hymns are declining in popularity the quickest.
  • Almost two thirds, (59%) of Co-op’s funeral directors and arrangers have had requests for music to be played via digital devices including smart phones, tablets and laptops with further tenth (11%) saying they expect to see more of these types of requests in the future.
  • More than a fifth of people who have actually arranged a funeral say they were given explicit instructions from their loved one on what music they wanted, while almost 30% plan on giving our family a CD with our favourite songs on it.