We’ve all been there. You see a text from your crush and a wave of excitement washes over you. There’s a fluttery, butterflies-in-your-stomach anxiety that sometimes accompanies it. You’re nervous about how things might go, but enjoying the attention and the affection you can give each other while the feelings are fresh.
Whether puppy love or the initial phase of a committed partnership, new relationship energy is a real thing. And what better way to enjoy that giddy state than with the perfect playlist?
Read on to discover the 20 best songs about new relationships that will encourage your heart to skip a beat.
Top Songs About New Relationships
“For Once In My Life” – Stevie Wonder
This feel-good song with soul is hard not to dance to. Complete with piano, catchy guitar riffs, tambourine, and Wonder’s iconic harmonica lead, it’s an instrumental treat for the ears.
The song’s upbeat drive mirrors the feeling of relief and happiness when you finally meet the person who you can love. Wonder sings of the reciprocal feelings he and his sweetheart share, and lets go of past times when he believes he didn’t know what true love was.
“Like a Virgin” – Madonna
In her typical suggestive way, Madge brings us a story of a girl who was lost and discouraged before finding her current love. She describes the sensation of feeling brand new when you finally connect with someone who you can love and trust.
The music video for “Like a Virgin” is an iconic bit of fashion imagery and cinematography. Madonna dresses in a wedding gown, symbolizing her newness to the relationship, while scenes of a man in a lion mask juxtapose with shots of an actual lion. The lovers float down the canals of Venice, dancing in a gondola in an exuberant honeymoon display.
“At Last” – Etta James
We all know the feeling of being sad and lonely, wanting to find someone to be with. An old jazz standard, “At Last” celebrates a relationship that the singer can sink into as being safe and fulfilling.
Complete with sweet orchestral strings and a slow rhythm that’s perfect for dancing, James croons a romantic melody that has become popular at weddings. Her soulful voice soaring over perfect instrumentation makes it easy to luxuriate in the expression of new love.
“I Want To Know What Love Is” – Foreigner
Nothing screams passion quite like an 80s power ballad. Straddling the line between despair and hope, this song perfectly encapsulates the feeling of meeting someone new. The singer, backed by a gospel-style vocal ensemble, tells the object of his affection that he’s letting down his guard so she can take him from loneliness to meaningful connection.
The idea of being vulnerable is scary, but Foreigner believes that it’s worth overcoming our fears to experience the fulness of what love is. This one’s undoubtedly among the best of the rock songs about new relationships!
“Underneath the Stars” – Mariah Carey
Mimi is the queen of R&B romance, and ”Underneath the Stars” is a prime example. The lyrics illustrate the idea of new love in its carefree and adventurous phase. She takes her honey out to lay in the grass beneath the wide sky and stare up at the stars as a warm breeze blows.
The repeated phrase of “young love” implies that this is a past relationship that didn’t last. Even so, it paints a cute picture of infatuation before things turn sour.
“You Had Me From Hello” – Kenny Chesney
Titled after Renee Zellweger’s famous line from Jerry Maguire, this country tune was written after Chesney saw the movie and was inspired. “You Had Me From Hello” went gold and reached #1 on the Country Billboard charts.
The singer tells his sweetheart that she captured his attention right when they met, and pledges his love forever onwards. This is a song good not only for new relationships but also for enduring ones.
“Head Over Feet” – Alanis Morissette
This sweet pop-rock ballad is a departure from Morissette’s usual angry-girl fare. She sings of a lover who sweeps her off her feet and surprises her with his affections. No matter how hard she tries to resist, his kindness wins her over despite herself.
A poignant anthem of unexpected love, this is a great song to sink into on a summer evening – perhaps with the object of your desire holding your hand next to you.
“First Day of My Life” – Bright Eyes
Sometimes love drops into our lives and we can’t believe we ever saw anything before. That’s the sentiment expressed in “First Day of My Life,” a tribute to the singer’s girlfriend. He uses allusions to waking up and starting over to convey the freshness of these feelings towards her.
A soft pop-rock guitar strums underneath the vocals for a light and sweet tune, perfect for a summer romance or to play when just waking up in the morning next to your significant other.
“Call Off the Search” – Katie Melua
The old-fashioned feel of this song, supported by strings and woodwinds, makes it perfect for a contemporary crooner like Melua. It’s got a lazy but soulful vibe, with the music video portraying her on stage just as Sinatra performed back in his day.
Lyrically, “the search” refers to the hunt for a romantic partner. Now that the singer has found the one she can love, there’s no more wishing and dreaming of some distant day in the future. Though maybe a bit idealistic for a new relationship, we appreciate Melua’s trust in and affection for her newfound love.
“Marry You” – Bruno Mars
The modern prince of R&B and soul departs from his typical style in this upbeat, positive bit of fluff. A driving drumbeat and cute guitar riff underscore the carefree message. Giddy and impulsive, the lyrics are about two young lovers looking for something to do.
Mars’ admission that he wants to marry the girl is lighthearted fun, but it sounds like he might be proposing to her as well. The effect of wedding bells sets just the right tone for this tune – one that has been a popular inclusion in wedding ceremonies for the past few years.
“Walking On Sunshine” – Katrina and the Waves
This up-tempo song captures the euphoria that you feel in those first stages of infatuation. It seems like your energy reserves are limitless as a new mate fills you with excitement. The contagious beat and catchy chorus practically beg you to sing and dance along!
The singer tells about how she used to be unsure about how her boyfriend felt. Now that she knows it’s real, she wants him around all the time so they can enjoy that buoyant feeling of being so into each other.
“Temperature” – Sean Paul
Anyone who was around in 2005 remembers this reggae-flavored banger, played while lounging at the pool and summer barbecues. It’s a genre-bending hit that incorporates elements of pop, R&B, and afrobeat for a unique soundtrack to your outdoor fun.
Paul sings and raps in a kind of island patois, making the words unclear at times. But the lyrics are about a girl he’s stuck on and wants to prove to her that he can make her happy. Metaphors about weather and temperature abound, as he proclaims himself to be the shelter from her storm.
“Kiss Me” – Sixpence None the Richer
This 90s pop favorite is a trip down memory lane for anyone who fell in love as a teenager. Rich with imagery of the outdoors, like a treehouse in the moonlight, the singer invites a sweetheart to join her in secret places where they can indulge in their adolescent crush.
The music video is just as wholesome, with scenes of fireflies surrounding the band as the singer makes puppy eyes at the camera. We like this one for how innocent it is.
“Getting To Know You” – Rodgers and Hammerstein
For the Broadway fan, this cutesy tune with a beat you can skip to is perfect for new love. The context is an American schoolteacher who begins working in Siam and wants to get to know her foreign students. But we think the appeal to connection is just as pertinent in a new romantic relationship.
Finding out if someone is your cup of tea gets more enjoyable when you have a song that embodies that stage. Sing along with this cute tune and you’ll see what we mean.
“We Found Love” – Rihanna and Calvin Harris
There’s something about this dance-pop track that fills us with energy. Maybe it’s the major-key orchestration that sounds optimistic, or maybe it’s Rihanna’s acrobatic vocals.
We think you’ll appreciate this vibe amid your NRE euphoria – even if the song doesn’t have the deepest lyrics, and does get a bit repetitive.
“It Had To Be You” – Harry Connick Jr.
Though this song isn’t a Harry original, we think his version is the best to sing along to. Connick contributed this and other music for the When Harry Met Sally soundtrack – a story, coincidentally, about a budding relationship.
The music video is just as big-band romantic as the instrumentation, featuring shots of Connick playing on a grand piano interspersed with a dance hall and disco ball.
“The Boy Is Mine” – Brandy and Monica
Among the R&B songs about starting a new relationship, this one is definitely at the top. Superstars Brandy and Monica lend their iconic vocals to the track, which warns an outside girl to stay aware of their territory – a man they’ve just managed to pin down.
Jealousy and possessiveness might be forefront here, but instead, we choose to see it as a testament to passionate new feelings in a partner. Back off, ladies!
“Lovebug” – The Jonas Brother
The metaphor here is real, if a bit silly: “Lovebug” is the feeling of having a crush that the boys have been “bitten” by. They sing about being speechless, head-over-heels, and all the classic symptoms of falling for someone.
Interestingly, the band departs from their regular rock aesthetic in favor of a Jason Mraz-style island guitar sound. But longtime fans will be thrilled when they do go all out for the final chorus.
“Do I Wanna Know?” – Arctic Monkeys
The timeless question of “do they love me?” takes on an edge here, as a square rock beat underscores the lyrics. Full of hesitant curiosity, the singer wonders whether the feelings go both ways and if a relationship is worth pursuing with the object of his affection.
The track is gritty and passionate, letting you imagine that the drum is the thumping of a confused lover’s heart.
“Summer Nights” – Olivia Newton-John and John Travolta
The most well-known song from Grease was a huge hit in 1978, the year of its release. But it didn’t stop there. Even today, it’s a favorite karaoke tune, and most Americans can sing along to at least a few amusing lines.
Puppy love hits full force in the teen duo of Sandy and Danny, opposites in social circles who (of course) fall for each other. Though a little naive, we can overlook the teens’ ignorance of real relationship matters because they’re just plain adorable.
There’s a swirl of emotions that occurs when you first fall for someone new. Whether it’s just a crush or the genuine thrill of marrying your true love, every relationship step has a song or two that can capture the perfect feeling.