Traditional hymns drop out of funeral music chart for first time

Funeral provider, Co-op Funeralcare, has today (2 May) released its 2019 Funeral Music Chart.

The hot list, which first launched in 2002, sees Frank Sinatra’s My Way top of the funeral pops, followed by Andrea Bocelli and Eva Cassidy.

Related Articles

Based on data and insights from Co-op’s own funeral directors, who conduct up to 100,000 funerals a year, the latest top 10 revealed the non-movers, risers and new entries of 2019.

The full 2019 Funeral Music Chart is:

No Song name Artist Movement since 2016 chart
1 My Way Frank Sinatra Non-mover
2 Time To Say Goodbye Andrea Bocelli and Sarah Brightman Non-mover
3 Over The Rainbow Eva Cassidy Non-mover
4 Wind Beneath My Wings Bette Midler Non-mover
5 Angels Robbie Williams Re-entry
6 Supermarket Flowers Ed Sheeran New entry
7 Unforgettable Nat King Cole Up 3 places
8 You Raise Me Up Westlife New entry
9 We’ll Meet Again Vera Lynn Down 3 places
10 Always Look on the Bright Side of Life Eric Idle – from Monty Python’s ‘Life of Brian’ Down 2 places

Revealing a shift in music at final farewells, for the first time ever, no traditional hymns have made the cut. Hymns The Lord is my Shepherd and Abide with me were pushed out by debut entries from Westlife and Ed Sheeran.

New requests identified by directors included George Ezra, Wiz Khalifa, Freya Ridings and Stormzy.

Furthermore, the research revealed a trend in more people keeping music in the family, as 32% of people said they would consider asking a relative to do the honour of performing.

It also showed a shift in more people sharing their swansongs as 24%)of UK adults said they have already told loved ones which songs they want playing at their funeral, compared to 19% in 2016.

When it comes to music genres, pop proves to be the most popular with 25% of UK adults revealing they would want such music at their funeral. A further 19% would opt for rock, whilst 20% would choose classical for their final farewell.

Contemporary / Pop top 10

No Artist Track Movement since 2016 chart
1 Robbie Williams Angels Non mover
2 Westlife You Raise Me Up Non mover
3 Ed Sheeran Supermarket Flowers New entry
4 Wiz Khalifa See You Again Down one place
6 Abba Dancing Queen New entry
7 Sam Smith Lay Me Down Up three places
8 Dani and Lizzi Dancing In The Sky New entry
9 Westlife Flying Without Wings Down five places
10 Ellie Goulding How Long Will I Love You Down five places

David Collingwood, director of funerals at the Co-op said: “We all live such unique lives and funerals should completely reflect that. Each element of a funeral is a very personal decision which is why the music choice plays such an important and impactful role.

‘’We’re always encouraging people to be more open about their funeral wishes, making it clear to their loved ones what they would want for themselves when the time comes. Even knowing what song someone would have wanted can bring such comfort at an incredibly hard time.’’

The research also revealed how music affects the mood at a funeral. Some 55% of UK adults said music at funerals made people feel “nostalgic”. A further 34% said it made mourners feel sad while 32% said it made people happy. Just 14% said it made people laugh.

Yet, when considering how UK adults want the music at their own funerals to make people feel, 27% agreed they’d want the music to make guests laugh, highlighting a trend of funerals becoming more of a joyful celebration in the future.

All the charts and other key findings:


No Song name Artist Movement since 2016 chart
1 Abide With Me Traditional Up one place
2 All Things Bright And Beautiful Traditional Up one place
3 The Lord Is My Shepherd Psalm 23 / Crimond Down two places
4 How Great Thou Art Traditional Non mover
5 Amazing Grace Traditional Non mover
6 Jerusalem Traditional Up one place
7 Morning Has Broken Traditional Up one place
8 Old Rugged Cross Traditional Down two places
9 The Day Thou Gavest Traditional Non mover
10 Calon Lan Traditional New entry

Rock top 10

No Song name Artist Movement since 2016 chart
1 Stairway To Heaven Led Zeppelin Non mover
2 Bat Out Of Hell Meatloaf Non mover
3 Don’t Wanna Miss A Thing Aerosmith Up five places
4 Who Wants To Live Forever Queen New entry
5 The Show Must Go On Queen New entry
6 Knocking On Heavens Door Guns and Roses Up three places
7 Wish You Were Here Pink Floyd Down three places
8 Highway To Hell ACDC Down three places
9 Another One Bites The Dust Queen Down three places
10 Bohemian Rhapsody Queen Down three places

Sport top 10:

No Song name Artist Movement since 2016 chart
1 Theme Tune Match of the day Up one place
2 Soul Limbo / Cricket Theme tune Booker T and MG Up one place
3 You Will Never Walk Alone Gerry and the Pacemakers Down two places
4 The Chain (F1 theme song) Fleetwood Mac Non mover
5 I Am Forever Blowing Bubbles West Ham United Non mover
6 Blue Moon (Manchester City theme song) Frank Sinatra New entry
7 Golf Theme Tune BBC New entry
8 Bolton Wanderers Songs New entry
9 Bring Me Sunshine Morecambe FC New entry
10 Racing Theme Tune C4 New entry

Indie top 10

No Song name Artist Movement since 2016 chart
1 Chasing Cars Snow Patrol Non mover
2 Wonderwall Oasis Non mover
3 Don’t Look Back In Anger Oasis Non mover
4 Live Forever Oasis Up one place
5 One Day Like This Elbow Up two places
6 Bittersweet Symphony Verve New entry
7 Fix You Coldplay New entry
8 Mr. Brightside The Killers New entry
9 Paradise Coldplay New entry
10 Clocks Coldplay New entry

TV/ Film:

No Song name Artist Movement since 2016 chart
1 Only Fools And Horses Theme tune Up two places
2 Last Of The Summer Wine Theme tune Non mover
3 Coronation Street Theme tune Down two places
4 Match Of The Day Theme tune New entry
5 Always Look On The Bright Side Monty Python Down one place
6 Bring Me Sunshine Morecambe and Wise Up four places
7 Cricket Theme tune New entry
8 Going Home Hovis theme tune Non mover
9 EastEnders Theme tune Down four places
10 Emmerdale Theme tune Down three places

Country chart:

No Song name Artist Movement since 2016 chart
1 I Will Always Love You Dolly Parton Non mover
2 Islands In The Stream Dolly Parton and Kenny Rodgers Non mover
3 Country Roads Jon Denver Non mover
4 9-5 Dolly Parton New entry
5 If Tomorrow Never Comes Garth Brooks Up four places
6 Annie’s Song Jon Denver Down one place
7 Ring Of Fire Johnny Cash Non mover
8 When I Get Where I’m Going Dolly Parton and Brad Paisley New entry
9 Stand By Your Man Dolly Parton New entry
10 The Gambler Kenny Rodgers New entry


No Song name Artist Movement since 2016 chart
1 Nimrod Edward Elgar Up one place
2 Time To Say Goodbye Andrea Bocelli and Sarah Brightman Down one place
3 Canon in D Pachelbel Up one place
4 Ave Maria Franz Schubert Up three places
5 The Lark Ascending Ralph Vaughan Williams Up five places
6 Pie Jesu Faure Up three places
7 Adagio For Strings Samuel Barber Down one place
8 Air On A G String Bach New entry
9 Four Seasons Vivaldi Down four places
10 Claire De Lune Claude Debussy New entry


No Song name Artist Movement since 2016 chart
1 I’ll Be Missing You Puff Daddy Non mover
2 I Miss You Beyonce New entry
3 One Sweet Day Boys 2 men Up one place
4 Dance With My Father Again Luther Van Dross Down two places
5 It’s So Hard To Say Goodbye To Yesterday Boyz II Men New entry
6 Killing Me Softly The Fugees New entry
7 Because I Got High Afrojack New entry
8 Blinded By Your Grace Stormzy New entry
9 Call Out My Name The Weeknd New entry
10 I’ll Be Missing You Chaka Demus New entry

Jazz top 10:  

No Song name Artist Movement since 2016 chart
1 What A Wonderful World Louis Armstrong Non mover
2 Ain’t No Sunshine Bill Withers New entry
3 In The Mood Glenn Miller Up 2 places
4 Smile Nat King Cole Non mover
5 When The Saints Go Marching In Various New entry
6 At Last Etta James New entry
7 Take 5 Dave Brubeck New entry
8 Unforgettable Nat King Cole New entry
9 The Thrill is Gone BB King New entry
10 Begin The Beguine Artie Shaw New entry


Back to top button