Well it’s Valentine’s Day again, and for many people it may be a cruel reminder of the love and companionship they lack in their lives. Remember, even punks need love! While punk rock music is mostly associated with rage and rebellion, there are also songs about the inescapable issue of love, in all of its many facets. So for any punk rockers out there who are searching for love, or who already have it, here are five punk songs for Valentine’s Day.
One: “Silly Girl” by the Descendents
The Descendents could be called the godfathers of pop-punk, that spawned such mega-popular bands like Blink-182. The Descendents are still the best, creating sweet and catchy punk that makes you feel sixteen once again listening to their songs. And they weren’t afraid to sing about girls, and their relationships with them, like with “Silly Girl” that has the narrator singing about a girl who he’s deeply in love with, young love at its finest.
Two: “I Wanna Be Your Boyfriend” by the Ramones
Johnny Ramone mentioned about lead singer Joey Ramone that his favorite songs were always the love songs, and that he was truly a hippy at heart. And perhaps the only Ramones song that is purely and undeniably a love song is “I Wanna Be Your Boyfriend.” Joey Ramone’s iconic bleat became a soft croon as he sings about the emotion that everyone feels in their life, unrequited love. This song may cement Joey Ramone as an off-kilter sex-symbol, as Debbie Harry of Blondie once said she always found Joey incredibly sexy.
Three: “I Wanna Be Your Dog” by Iggy And The Stooges
At some point, punk rock would have to dig into the darker side of love and sex. And Iggy Pop was the perfect singer and musician to do it with his masterpiece “I Wanna Be Your Dog.”
Four: “Saturday Night” by the Misfits (Graves era)
Michale Graves lead the second-wave of the horror punk band the Misfits. And while Glenn Danzig undeniably was the heart and soul of the Misfits, Graves did a remarkably good job of infusing the Misfits with a new sense of youth and life. A genuinely good singer, Michale Graves created a masterpiece with “Saturday Night,” sung from the point of view of a serial killer who is is love with his victims. Infused with fifties do-wop and well-written lyrics, it’s a song that plays like a drive-in movie inside your head.
Five: “Rock & Roll” by the Velvet Underground
While “Rock & Roll” is not about two people, it’s included because it encapsulates so well what rock & roll has done for so many people, literally saving their lives and bringing meaning and a reason to live to otherwise disillusioned people. Lou Reed has always been a master lyricist and poet, and “Rock & Roll” benefits from his deft lyrics and ability to capture the thriving New York punk scene of his era.