Scourge of high school literature classes Alexander Pope once wrote, "To err is human -- to forgive, divine." If you're anything like us, you probably find yourself on the erring side of that equation more often than on the side of the divine. This means that you may often, due to extenuating circumstances (such as not knowing when to put the whiskey bottle down or not knowing it's a bad idea to comment on the attractiveness of your life partner's best friend) in a position of seeking forgiveness. Everybody makes mistakes sometimes, so we need to be able to apologize in a sincere manner. Your apology should also be a bit charming and emotionally moving. And what could be more charming and emotionally moving than a song that says you're sorry? With that in mind, we’ve put together the Perfect Apology Playlist (For That Stupid Thing You Did).
Nirvana's 'All Apologies' is perfect for conveying the message, "I was wrong, and I admit it. Also, "I love you." You might say, "But the lyrics don't really say that. The lyrics kinda don't say anything." That's the point! The lyrics are vague, so you can sing along while emoting regretful conviction.
When you're pleading for forgiveness, often a big helping of pathos, along with a dash of logos, does the trick. No other song combines these two ingredients quite the same way as 'So Sorry' by Feist. She tells her lover she always realizes too late to say she's sorry, and she follows that up by insisting that they're both slaves to their impulses.
Did you know that Sebadoh's Lou Barlow wrote one of the saddest song ever? Well, it's sad in a I-feel-sorry-and-a-little-embarrassed-for-that-dude sorta way. 'Willing to Wait' is a song for a special occasion, like trying to win your wife back from your former lawyer. It goes well with a bottle of cheap whiskey and unlimited texting.
'Swallow My Pride'The Ramones
If you're not quite ready for that last track, then the Ramones may be able to help. 'Swallow My Pride' is the perfect way to apologize sincerely while looking extremely cool. You'll want to have a large milkshake ready, served in a classic shake glass and two straws. And a bag of glue.
Sometimes you find yourself in a robust vocal exchange with your better half. If emotions spiral out of control, things may be said, lamps may be thrown and you may find yourself sleeping on the couch. At your friend's house. Before the situation gets to that point, sometimes it's best to apologize no matter how strongly you feel. Let Husker Du help you out with their song 'I Apologize.'
'Walking After You'Foo Fighters
Often a softer touch is called for. Let the Foo Fighters croon the message you're nowhere near clever enough to say as well as they do. You might counter by pointing out that the song is a little cheesy -- and the video is incredibly cheesy. While you'd be correct, sometimes cheesy is what's needed most. If he or she is on the cusp of forgiveness, this may just tip things in your favor.
Speaking of soft and soothing, here's a special live version of Weezer's 'Butterfly.' Singer Rivers Cuomo pleads for forgiveness while accompanied by a lovely harp. This is another niche tune, to be used only after doing something really, really bad. We don't wanna know what you're apologizing for -- just take this song and go think about what you've done.
'I Don't Believe in the Sun'Magnetic Fields
Every once in a while, your best bet is getting a little huffy. This method is definitely not to be abused, and the potential for backfire is high. But if being a pathetic sack of lumpy sad person seems like the right move to you, the Magnetic Fields have you covered. Just hit your unhappy beloved with 'I Don't Believe in the Sun' and your best puppy-dog eyes.
'So. Central Rain' by R.E.M. is the No. 1 choice for apologizing via karaoke. If you happen to offend your significant other while out with friends during karaoke night, just down a whiskey shot or three, jump up onstage and embarrass the hell out of yourself. You don't even need to know the verses. Just croon deeply, look sad, and belt out that chorus with drunken gusto. "I'm soorreeeeeeeeeey!"
'I Don't Want To Hurt You (Every Single Time)'Frank Black
This song earns its spot because it works two ways. It's a really cool, sweetly sincere way to apologize. And the video can serve as motivation for you to fight to keep your relationship, lest you find yourself alone, eating cans of peas while thinking of what you used to have. Also, you'll probably have to start shaving your head bald with a straight razor for some reason.