1. The Smiths, “That Joke Isn’t Funny Anymore”
When the song hits “just might die with a smile on my face after all,” the casket will dramatically swing open to reveal that I do indeed have a smile. —Andrew Gauthier
2. Mika, “Grace Kelly”
I prefer “celebration of life.” It’s a celebration of my fucking life and that life was fun and this song is fun. —Lara Parker
3. Queens of the Stone Age, “I Appear Missing”
Easy. —Justin Carissimo
4. Styx, “Come Sail Away”
As anyone who has seen the Freaks & Geeks pilot knows, “Come Sail Away” starts out slow and contemplative. Just when everyone’s starting to cry — as they no doubt will at my funeral — bam! The fast part about aliens kicks in. Now everyone’s happy and dancing. Above all though I just want to subject everyone who loved me to Styx. —Jeff Rubin
5. Death Cab for Cutie, “I Will Follow You into the Dark”
As a newlywed, I would play I Will Follow You into the Dark because I am madly in love with my wife and cannot imagine a world without her. It’s a beautiful melody and a beautiful message about the importance of love. —Ned Fulmer
6. The Push Stars, “Keg on My Coffin”
“Keg on My Coffin” is about beer, pizza, and friends and I think people would much rather hear about those things than weep over a Sarah McLachlan song. It doesn’t pretend not to be a funeral song, but it’s a happy funeral song. —Kristen McElhone
7. Starship, “We Built This City”
8. The Mountain Goats, “Color in Your Cheeks”
I think this is song is about heaven maybe. —Lizzy Walker
10. Fleet Foxes, “Blue Spotted Tail”
I’d want them to play “Blue Spotted Tail” by Fleet Foxes because I want to force my loved ones to not only be really sad but also contemplate their own existence and mortality! (Morbid, perhaps?) —Mariana Uribe
11. Andrew Jackson Jihad, “Rejoice”
Suggested by Lizzy Walker.
12. Beirut, ”Elephant Gun”
The way it swells is both melancholy and hopeful. I want it played in a procession like they do in New Orleans. A lovely exit it would be. —Justin Abarca
14. Jonathan Richman & The Modern Lovers, “That Summer Feeling”
The perfect song for that funeral feeling everyone secretly hopes for, which is like everyone in the house remembering you when you were young and pretty and there was always a chance for good mistakes. —Summer Anne Burton
16. Stevie Wonder, “Don’t You Worry ‘Bout a Thing”
With a giant horn section and awesome chorus singing along. And of course Stevie would be there. I find it really hard to be sad listening to this song. It’s also pretty decent advice. The end. —Lisa Tozzi
17. The Rolling Stones, “Can’t You Hear Me Knocking”
Suggested by Marie Telling.
18. Band of Horses, “The Funeral”
Too on the nose? I love this song. —Abe Greenwald
19. The Jam, “Going Underground”
Because I figure my funeral will need a joke or two to liven it up. —Tom Phillips
20. Elliott Smith, “I Didn’t Understand”
The choir of layered vocals does everything for me. Honestly one of the most beautiful songs I have heard. —Brad Esposito
21. Carmen Twillie & Lebo M., “The Circle of Life”
Suggested by Heben Nigatu.
22. Dave Matthews, Tim Reynolds & Willie Nelson, “Gravedigger”
With this exact lineup. —Austin Hunt
23. Slayer, “South of Heaven”
Too bad I wouldn’t get to see my family’s reaction just after a quiet prayer… —Justin Dailey
25. Nina Simone, “I Wish I Knew How It Would Feel to Be Free”
Suggested by Naomi Zeichner.
26. Jim Morrison, Music by The Doors, “A Feast of Friends”
The fact that this was recorded posthumously adds to the appeal. It reminds me of a funeral and always has — plus I like the idea of Jim Morrison urging me into the next realm. “Death makes angels of us all.” —Brad Esposito
27. Martha Reeves & The Vandellas, “Dancing in the Street”
Suggested by Heben Nigatu.
28. The Fureys and Davey Arthur, “The Green Fields of France”
It’s a sad-as-hell song that speaks to (sings to?) how what we fight for in life is pretty unimportant in death.
(The rest of the party would be Third Eye Blind’s self-titled on repeat.) —Isaac Fitzgerald
29. Waylon Jennings, “I’ve Always Been Crazy”
I too have been busted for things that I did and I didn’t do. - Deena Shanker.
30. James Taylor, “You Can Close Your Eyes”
For all the tears. —Kristen McElhone
32. Kanyé West, “Hold My Liquor”
“Bitch I’m back out my coma / Wakin’ up on your sofa.” —Christina Lu