This week is St. Joseph’s Day, or more commonly known as Father’s Day (some Josephs miss out on well-wishes that day for not being fathers, poor souls…). And as if it were a plague, one can’t stop seeing and hearing advertisements with possible gifts for our fathers, and year after year, the same stereotyped ideas. And we don’t learn, hey, just a few days ago, we celebrated International Women’s Day, which among other things fights against gender roles, and yet here we are, tools for dad and a depilator for mom. Great.
Aside from repetitive and worn-out gift ideas that probably won’t be liked much or will be redundant or never used, where is the originality? Does a father really need to know that his child loves him a lot because he got him a wonderful car vacuum? Remember those picture frames made of macaroni that we made in school as best we could? What a delight they were, weren’t they?
What’s better than a personalized gift chosen with care? It might cost money, but sometimes money isn’t needed to show someone how much you care. So, from our blog, we suggest a fail-proof gift, the list of the best Father’s Day songs. Get your music players ready to make this day enjoyable and spend a good time with your family (and no one else, because visits to non-cohabiting households are still prohibited, for the forgetful ones in 2021).
As usual, we’ve divided the post into songs for Father’s Day in English and in Spanish. And you know, if you have a song suggestion in any other language, we’d love to receive it and include it in our list of songs dedicated to fathers.
Father’s Day songs in English
Without delving into religious topics, Father’s Day is celebrated on March 19th in some European countries with a Catholic tradition. But there are those who, for whatever reasons (we won’t get into that), decided to celebrate this day like the Americans, on the third Sunday in June, similar to France, the United Kingdom, or Ibero-American countries. As a curious fact, these countries celebrate International Men’s Day on March 19th (which is internationally observed on November 19th).
And then there are those countries that celebrate Father’s Day on a random day, because, after all, each one celebrates when they feel like it, what does it matter, as long as fathers can be with their sons and daughters and have a peaceful time.
With this list of Father’s Day music in English, you can liven up an evening, a family gathering full of conversations that, as long as politics isn’t discussed, will be relaxed and enjoyable.
Cat Stevens – Father & Son
Cat Stevens‘ career is divided into two parts since in the late ’70s, he left music, converted to Islam, and dedicated himself to teaching this religion. When he returned to music almost 10 years later, he did so under a different name, Yusuf, although his essence, with that velvety voice, remained the same.
Father & Son, from his first phase, talks about the advice fathers give, the wisdom that seems overwhelming when we’re young and that is really more experience than anything else.
The message is similar to Paul Simon’s song Father And Daughter, where the protection of parents is evident, being our heroes when we think there are monsters under the bed.
Nizlopi – JCB Song
The English duo Nizlopi had a short career, around 7 years, during which they produced 2 studio albums, and a fact that not everyone knows is that Ed Sheeran was their guitar technician. Although later they each went their separate ways, pursuing music or other things, they occasionally came together to perform concerts.
JCB Song is one of the best Father’s Day songs that talks about a dyslexic boy who faces bullying at school and imagines himself as a vengeful tyrannosaurus rex getting back at those mean people. The boy looks up to his father, who picks him up from school every day in his beloved JCB. His father is his hero, just like Bruce Lee.
The Game & Busta Rhymes – Like Father, Like Son
Rappers The Game and Busta Rhymes, with their tough and rugged appearance, teamed up in 2005 to show the world that they could open up and reveal their feelings, talk about the best moments of their lives without stopping to rap.
In Like Father, Like Son, both rappers narrate again that emotion mixed with fear during the birth of a child. The desire for them to have a good life, not make the same mistakes their parents made, and the fear of not knowing if they’ll be good parents, fear of all the external factors that could ruin a person’s life. Oh, if only we had a manual for the perfect parent/child!
Chicory Tip – Son Of My Father
The English band from the ’60s – ’70s Chicory Tip only released one studio album, although there were several compilations, changes in band members, and attempts to keep the band going by reminiscing about better times. Their biggest hit, Son Of My Father, is sung in the stands of football or cricket fields. What have we come to…
Son Of My Father talks about the pressure some children feel to be like their parents, pressure that sometimes ends up achieving quite the opposite. One can have their role models to follow, but they must make mistakes on their own and navigate through challenges, of course, always with the help of parents, but building themselves in the process.
Eminem & Hailie – My Dad’s Gone Crazy
As it couldn’t be any other way, rapper Eminem doesn’t leave anyone indifferent with his songs. His talent for rhyming and speaking at lightning speed is hard to imitate, and his voice tone is recognizable anywhere in the world. And despite all the controversies he’s been involved in, sometimes he lets us see his more sensitive side.
In My Dad’s Gone Crazy, we can hear the voice of his daughter Hailie, who was 7 years old at the time and already knew that her father was a bit crazy, although that was characteristic of him. If he didn’t make these slightly crazy, politically incorrect songs, he wouldn’t be Eminem.
Father’s Day songs in Spanish
As we mentioned, other countries celebrate Father’s Day in June, so if you, dear reader, are in this situation, you have a few months’ head start to avoid having to think about an original gift for your father. We don’t want to advocate for consumerism, everyone gives what they want, but with a little something and without breaking a sweat, we can have an (almost) perfect gift.
Most likely, your fathers are familiar with at least a couple of songs from our selection and have a few anecdotes to share with you, the ones that start with “well, when I was your age…”. And the songs they don’t know, who knows, they might make it into their top Father’s Day music… Let’s get started!
Alejandro Sanz – Ese que me dio la vida
The one from Moratalaz (a district in Madrid) makes it clear on his Twitter account that if he hadn’t become a singer, he could have easily been a poet with profound phrases worthy of any mug with an optimistic message and heart emojis. His lyrics don’t hide many metaphors, have simple rhymes, and are easily memorable in people’s minds.
Ese Que Me Dio La Vida is an example of this, a simple song dedicated to a father with simple interests, like watching a game on the couch with slippers (we imagine, if he’s at home, because otherwise, how uncomfortable). And so, with these unexpected rhyming couplets, we have this charming song that exudes love above all.
Antonio Flores – Alba
With only 33 years old, Antonio Flores left this world bereft of his talent and a musical career (and perhaps also a cinematic one) that showed promise. Everyone can hum along to some of his songs, whether they like his style or not; that’s a fact and something that some established artists can’t boast of.
Alba is one of these songs, dedicated to his only daughter, a beautiful song that talks about what fatherhood meant to him, the emotions that flourished, and those unforgettable first memories upon having a child.
Because, Father’s Day is a day to celebrate the love for our fathers, but as this is a bilateral process, it’s only fair to include songs of fathers or mothers singing to their sons and daughters.
Ismael Serrano – Papá, cuéntame otra vez
We can proudly say that Ismael Serrano is one of the best singer-songwriters in the current music scene for decades. With that inimitable, baritone, vibrant voice (inherited from Serrat), he can transport us to the moments he describes in his songs, which talk about important things, topics that affect us all. He began his career exploring protest songs but has never stopped singing about social issues.
Papá, Cuéntame Otra Vez evokes any ordinary afternoon of a boy or girl who listens attentively to his father as he talks about the history of the world: the post-war period, conflicts in South America, May 1968… And he learns about how unjust life can be, that the powerful always win, and the rest of us are left to keep fighting.
Roberto Carlos – Amigo
The Brazilian Roberto Carlos has accustomed us to his love songs, heartbreaks, various subtleties, and not-so-subtle messages that then turn out not to be so subtle after all, ahem ahem. However, sometimes he puts aside his grudges and indirect messages to ex-partners and sings to us with genuine affection.
Amigo is dedicated to the father figure, that support every boy or girl needs (and not just children, also adults), that reassurance that inspires knowing that a father will be there no matter what, to advise and help us. But always setting limits because when they need to tell us some hard truths, they do so with the right amount of friendliness.
Los Suaves – Palabras para Julia
We mentioned this song on our blog when we talked about the best song lyrics in Spanish, a poem by Jose Agustín Goytisolo that Paco Ibáñez lent his voice to, among many others. And as we said then, it’s a tribute song both to the poet’s mother and his daughter. It’s a sad song, remembering those who are no longer here, yet hopeful, encouraging us to face life, never giving up.
The Galician rock band also sang their own version, showing us that Palabras Para Julia has a strength and a message that can reach everyone, no matter the style. Because in the end, life is a learning process, and not only do we learn from our parents, they learn from us too.
Father’s Day songs from daughter in French (bonus)
We conclude with a bonus track, a happy Father’s Day song in French that, despite being our neighboring country, doesn’t reach us in large quantities through popular radio stations and music programs. So, we take this opportunity to ask radios, TVs, and various blogs: please, a bit more diversity, more French music (or German, Portuguese, Swedish, Greek…).
But well, our loyal readers already know that from our blog, we’ll continue to introduce groups or soloists from other countries that are unknown here, until they appear in a Netflix series, and then we’re all fans…
Mélanie Laurent – Papa
You probably know Parisian Mélanie Laurent, if not for her songs, then for her appearances in some movies, as she is truly versatile. She has a child with Damien Rice, with whom she also recorded her first and only studio album.
From this album comes Papa, a song in which Mélanie praises her father’s virtues and hopes to find someone who makes her feel equally protected (yes, it’s a bit of an Oedipus complex throughout the song). She wants someone who can fix household leaks as well as being a good father, like her father, of course.
(Madrid, 1988). Azahara P. Navas has a degree in Chemical Engineering from the Complutense University of Madrid and currently works as a language translator with knowledge of English, French, German and Greek.