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Monday, 5 August, 2002, 11:49 GMT 12:49 UK
Midler and Dion top funeral chart
Celine Dion
Celine Dion's theme from Titanic is a funeral favourite
Songs by Bette Midler, Celine Dion and Robbie Williams are among the most popular being chosen to play at funerals in the UK according to a new report.

The Co-Operative Group's Funeral Service, which has 560 outlets across the UK, says 68% of its branches have reported an increase in the number of requests for pop songs.

The number one choice in the top ten is Bette Midler's Wind Beneath My Wings, from the film Beaches.
Funeral Songs Top Ten
1. Wind Beneath My Wings - Bette Midler
2. My Heart Will Go On - Celine Dion
3. I Will Always Love You - Whitney Houston
4. The Best - Tina Turner
5. Angels - Robbie Williams
6. You'll Never Walk Alone - Gerry And The Pacemakers
7. Candle In The Wind - Elton John
8. Unchained Melody - Righteous Brothers
9. Bridge Over Troubled Water - Simon And Garfunkel
10. Time To Say Goodbye - Sarah Brightman

Celine Dion's My Heart Will Go On, the theme from Titanic, is at number two in the chart, with Whitney Houston's I Will Always Love You completing the top three.

Others in the top ten include Angels by Robbie Williams, and Elton John's Candle In The Wind, which the singer performed at the funeral of Diana, Princess Of Wales.

"We are receiving more and more requests for popular music as people attempt to personalise funerals and choose songs that are relevant to them," said Lorinda Sheasby of the Co-op.

"Perhaps mourners want to recreate the emotion of their favourite films and ensure their loved ones receive a funeral worthy of a star."

However, some songs are less obvious than others.

More unusual requests include Firestarter by dance group The Prodigy, Queen's Another One Bites The Dust and the Village People's YMCA.
Village People
The Village People's YMCA is an unusual choice

Other odd choices include Wham!'s Wake Me Up Before You Go Go, She'll Be Coming Round The Mountain and the theme from ITV's News At Ten.

"What may seem wacky to one person can make perfect sense to another who sees that song as the ideal way to remember a partner," Ms Sheasby commented.

Over two million songs are played at funerals in the UK every year, including more traditional hymns and classical pieces.

See also:

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