Pop songs are becoming the most popular music played at funerals, with people actually drawing up their own playlists, new research reveals.
Frank Sinatra’s My Way topped a funeral song chart compiled by Co-op Funeralcare, ahead of Time To Say Goodbye by Andrea Bocelli and Sarah Brightman, and Over The Rainbow by Eva Cassidy.
A study among 300 Co-op funeral directors and 2,000 adults showed increasing numbers of people having a playlist ready for their funeral.
Two out of five said they wanted to “raise a laugh” at their funeral, explaining why Monty Python’s Always Look On The Bright Side Of Life remains one of the most popular songs, with one in 10 saying they would consider The Jam’s Going Underground.
Theme tunes from TV programmes such as Game Of Thrones could become more popular in the future, the Co-op predicted.
A list of the most popular funeral songs by pop artists included Robbie Williams, Westlife, Adele and Rihanna.
David Collingwood, the Co-op’s head of funeral operations, said: “Funerals are very much about personal choice and reflecting the personality, hobbies and interests of a person.
“More so than ever we’re seeing people pre-plan their funeral music and, in the last 12 months, 42% of our funeral directors and arrangers have received ready-made pre-planned funeral playlists.
“Whilst My Way is back at number one, it’s really interesting that the passing of celebrities and artists is having an effect on the music charts.
“Wiz Khalifa’s track See You Again, dedicated to the late Paul Walker, has made it into the contemporary pop charts whilst the late David Bowie’s Ashes To Ashes has also been requested by clients in the last 12 months.”
Liverpool FC’s You’ll Never Walk Alone is top of the sport category, having overtaken the Match Of The Day theme tune, and popular soap Coronation Street’s theme tune is top of the funeral TV charts.
Almost two-thirds of Co-op’s funeral directors and arrangers have had requests for music to be played via digital devices including smartphones, tablets and laptops.
Hymns are becoming less popular, although The Lord Is My Shepherd was the fifth most popular request this year.