Pop music favoured over traditional hymns in two thirds of funerals

For every one traditional hymn requested at a funeral there will be two pop songs, so says the Co-operative Funeralcare.

Following research, the funeral director found out that pop music was the number one request at over 30,000 funerals over the last 12 months.

Frank Sinatra’s My Way remains the most requested song, a position it has held for the previous seven years.

One of the things highlighted in the study is the apparent demise of hymns at funerals. In 2005, hymns accounted for 41 per cent of all funeral music requests – a figure that has fallen to 30 per cent in 2012.

Abide With Me is the most popular hymn request, whilst Elgar’s Nimrod was revealed as the favoured classical piece of the nation’s departed.

Some of the less conventional requests include Lady Gaga’s Bad Romance; the show tune Smoke Gets in Your Eyes; and the clock from television’s Countdown programme marking the seconds as curtains closed at the crematorium.

Head of marketing at the Co-operative Funeralcare, Lorinda Robinson, said: “Hymns were once the mainstay of a funeral service but pop music plays such an important part in people’s lives that it now acts as the theme tune to their passing. Modern funerals are very much about personal choice, and this is often reflected in the choice of music.

“Song lyrics now provide the poignant words to remember a loved one’s life, either to acknowledge how much they were loved and will be missed or as a reminder of their favourite hobby, pastime or humour.”

Image: Frank Sinatra

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