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Flying solo this Valentine's Day? This playlist's for you.

Frank Ocean performs at Terminal 5 on July 26, 2012, in New York City.
Jason Kempin
Getty Images
Frank Ocean performs at Terminal 5 on July 26, 2012, in New York City.

You know what? Upon further consideration, we actually have had enough of silly love songs. For Valentine's Day this year, we're embracing the single life with a cathartic mix of songs about everything except ooey, gooey, romantic love.

Be warned: This mix is for the sad girls — those of us who find strange comfort in self-inducing tears by playing some of the most heartbreaking tunes ever created.

Included are aching odes to the one-man cult that is unrequited love, like Frank Ocean's "Bad Religion" and Arlo Parks' "Eugene." There are paeans to solitude, like Mitski's "Nobody." Songs that gently whisper about what could be, like Fiona Apple's "Valentine." Songs excoriating what's long gone, like SZA's "Drew Barrymore" and American Football's "Never Meant."

It's not a total pity party, though. There are also lovely tributes to friendship, like Indigo de Souza's "Hold U," and self-love anthems from Kendrick Lamar's "i" to Nicki Minaj and Beyonce's cocky back-and-forth on "Feeling Myself."

So cry a little. Dance a little. Do both at the same time? Happy Valentine's Day.

Copyright 2023 XPN

Miguel Perez
Miguel Perez is a radio producer for NPR's World Cafe, based out of WXPN in Philadelphia. Before that, he covered arts, music and culture for KERA in Dallas. He reported on everything from the rise of NFTs in the music industry to the enduring significance of gay and lesbian bars to the LGBTQ community in North Texas.
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