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Top 11 Secretly In Love Songs

Loving someone in secret isn’t always wrong. If you are both unattached, there is nothing wrong with it? The secret feelings you may have is not something that is forbidden. But, sometimes, we just don’t dare to tell the other person how we feel. We choose to love them in secret. 

There have been some great secretly in love songs. Some are songs where you know it might be wrong to have feelings for the other person. It might be that you or they are already in a serious relationship or even married.  

Sometimes, it is someone you think might just view you as a friend. They might be where you work or even someone at school. At the time, it felt like such a big decision. What if the feelings aren’t reciprocated?

You won’t know until you find out… 

They might be feeling the same way. If you do nothing, will you always look back and regret not doing something about it? Therein lies the rub, as they say. So, let’s get started with a wonderful song about secret love.

Secretly In Love Songs

Top 11 Secretly In Love Songs

Me And Mrs. Jones by Billy Paul

Let’s start the list with an obvious choice from Paul Williams or Billy Paul as he was known. It is a Soul song that came from the period known as the “Philly Sound.”

These were songs that were given certain studio production techniques with the right artists to create a mood. They weren’t all slow songs, some were also uptempo creations. But the sound was there. A cross between Soul and shiny Pop might be the best description. 

A good example of the Philly Sound might be “Didn’t I Blow Your Mind This Time” from The Delfonics. The music often had a Funk backdrop that was layered with strings and lush arrangements. It lasted from the late-60s to the mid-70s and saw itself as a competitor to Motown.

Me And Mrs. Jones” came from that period… 

It is a relaxed, easy-going track that tells the story of two people, presumably in different relationships, who meet up. They meet at 6:30 every day in a coffee bar, hold hands, and talk.

They are caught in a difficult place, “We got a thing going on – We both know that it’s wrong – But it’s much too strong to let it go now.” It reached #12 in the UK and #1 in America.

If Only You Knew by Patti LaBelle

Patti LaBelle is an interesting artist. Great voice and was always seemingly on the edge of success. She had her moments but never seemed to quite get to the heights she was capable of.

With her group, Patti LaBelle and The Bluebelles, later just LaBelle, she only had one big success. That was the 1975 song “Lady Marmalade,” sometimes known as “Voulez-vous Coucher Avec Moi?” That reached #17 in the UK and #1 in America. 

Patti was always a great singer… 

But she couldn’t seem to find the right songs. Having said that, she spent years in the business, so isn’t that some sort of success? I think so.

If Only You Knew” is the complete opposite style of “Lady Marmalade.” It was taken from her album, I’m In Love Again.

She sings about a woman who is very shy and has feelings for a man but is scared to tell him. It is a tender secret love song. Although it has some very simple, almost naive lyrics, the emotion comes across. “If only you knew – How much I do – Do love you.”

Got To Get You Into My Life by The Beatles

The album Rubber Soul started the movement of creativity in The Beatles, and the album Revolver carried it on. “Got To Get You Into My Life” was another step forward with its brass and Soul-music-like feel. They were a little ahead of the “British Soul” music faze. 

British Soul commenced the year after with Geno Washington and the Ram Jam Band, as well as Jimmy James and The Vagabonds. For a while, Geno was the most popular.

This song was written by Paul McCartney… 

The plan was to try and get the Motown sound. Instead, they ended up with more of a “Stax” sound. Due to its brass-oriented production, it was covered by the popular British Soul band Cliff Bennett and The Rebel Rousers.

Cliff Bennet’s version reached #6 in the UK. The Beatles didn’t use it as a single because they had a policy that they didn’t release singles from albums. Other countries where they had no control did release it but not until years later after the band had split.

The song is about someone taking a ride and seeing someone, and wanting to meet them. It did have an alternative interpretation that involved the use of marijuana. However, I am sticking with the boy-sees-girl theme. Whatever the meaning, it’s one of the more well-known secretly in love songs.

Talking In Your Sleep by Crystal Gayle

Let’s look at a song about secret lovers from another angle now, a third-party view. This is a song from American Country singer Crystal Gayle. It was co-written by prolific British songwriter Roger Cook and was first released by the band Marmalade in 1978.

However, their version failed to chart…

Subsequently, it was released by Gayle in the same year. It was taken from her excellent album When I Dream. The single reached #11 in the UK and #18 in America.

The song is about a girl listening to her partner talk in his sleep. She assumes it is about another woman who he appears to be involved with, though she isn’t sure. “You’ve been talking in your sleep – Sleeping in your dreams – With some sweet lover.”

Crystal Gayle was the sister of another Country music singer Loretta Lynn, and in some ways, they do sound quite similar. This, though, is an excellent track and representative of the new County/Pop genre that was emerging.

Saving All My Love for You by Whitney Houston

This song was written by Gerry Goffin, the ex-husband of Carole King. The song was included in the successful album Whitney Houston.

It was a cover of a song originally recorded by Marilyn McCoo and Billy Davis. It became Houston’s first #1 record in the UK and America in 1985.

The song tells the story of how she loves a man who is already in a relationship with another woman. And how she is going to save her love for him despite advice from friends.

Secret Lovers by Atlantic Starr

Released in 1985, this was a song that helped to promote the band internationally. It reached #10 in the UK and #3 in America. It was taken from their album, As The Band Turns, the first of their albums that included the excellent Barbara Weathers as lead singer.

This is a song that talks about two married people…

They form a relationship because they think they are better suited for each other than their current spouses. But, the feelings aren’t quite strong enough for them to leave their marriages. 

They, therefore, continue with an affair that has no future but hiding it away from everyone. They even try to justify the affair by imagining that their partners might be doing the same thing. “Can they tell – What’s in our minds? – Maybe they’ve had secret loves – All of the time.”

It is sung as a duet between Barbara Weathers and David Lewis.

Do You Want To Know A Secret by The Beatles

Sometimes, we have these feelings for someone else, and we can’t keep them hidden inside anymore. This is a song about that situation. It was included on the first album The Beatles released, Please, Please Me, in 1963. 

It was sung by George Harrison and was mostly written by John Lennon. Although it wasn’t released as a single in the UK, it reached #2 in America. Another Liverpool band of the time, Billy J. Kramer and The Dakotas, released it as a single, and it reached #1 on the New Musical Express chart in the UK.

The song is about someone whispering into a person’s ear who he is infatuated with. The story is set in the first two lines, used as a lyric-only prelude to the song before the band comes in. “You’ll never know how much I really love you – You’ll never know how much I really care.”

Typical of the time…

There is an innocence to the song that was prevalent in the early Beatles recordings. I suppose that also applies to most people of that era.

It saw some notable covers other than the Billy J Kramer version, including Count Basie, Mary Wells, and The Ray Charles Singers

Part-Time Lover by Stevie Wonder

This was a track written and recorded by Stevie Wonder for his album In Square Circle in 1985. Once again, a different twist on a song about loving someone in secret

It tells the story of two lovers who are hiding their relationship from their partners. As usual, some excellent and descriptive lyrics from the man. 

“Call up, ring once, hang up the phone – To let me know you made it home – We are strangers by day, lovers by night – Knowing it’s wrong, but feeling so right.”

But, then the story ends with a twist… 

“And then a man called our exchange – But didn’t want to leave his name – I guess that two can play the game.” The song reached #3 in the UK and topped the chart in America. Stevie not only sang the song but also played the synthesizer and drums. Syreeta was one of the backing singers.

Don’t Stand So Close To Me by The Police

In many ways, secretly in love songs are dangerous to tackle head-on. Especially one that was going to be bought and played by girls of the age of which he is discussing. It was included on the Police album Zenyatta Mondatta. The single reached #1 in the UK and #10 in America.

The song is about a teacher who has an illicit and illegal affair with a young student he is teaching. The song talks about lust and fear, especially when the affair becomes common knowledge. “Loose talk in the classroom – To hurt they try and try – Strong words in the staffroom – The accusations fly.”

When discussing the song… 

Sting recognized that many of his fans were of the same age. However, he said he wanted to write a “Lolita” type song. Lolita is a novel by Vladimir Nabokov about a young girl who seduces men twice her age.

It is a scary song about how easy these relationships can develop if you are not on your guard. Sting himself was an English teacher in the Northeast of England. That was before stardom, and he was probably only too aware of what can happen.

Secret Love by Doris Day

This was, as far as I know, the only record my father ever bought. He quite liked Doris Day, and he played it to death. It was a song from the film Calamity Jane, in which she took a major role, that was written by Sammy Fain and Paul Webster.

The single reached #1 on both sides of the Atlantic. An interesting side story is that Doris Day went to record the song with an orchestra at Warner Brothers studios in Burbank. She went there on her bike.

I had to smile as I thought of some of the modern prima donnas doing that. Today, they probably don’t even know what a bike is, let alone be able to ride one. Many prefer the limo with champagne on ice. 

She recorded the song in one take…

song about a woman who has a secret love but decides it is time to tell all. “Now I shout it from the highest hills – Even told the golden daffodils – At last, my heart’s an open door – And my secret love’s no secret anymore.”

This is an excellent song that she sang brilliantly. Not hard to see why the song and Doris were so popular.

I Honestly Love You by Olivia Newton-John

Onto the last choice now and one of the great love songs of the 70s. And, in my opinion, it is the best song on this list about someone who confesses a secret love. The song was written by Jeff Barry and Peter Allen and was taken from her 1974 album Long Live Love.

In the UK, it surprisingly only reached #22, but it reached #1 in America. It became her signature song for many years and will always be associated with her.

The song is about a woman confessing her love to a man… 

They are both in other relationships, and both know it cannot go anywhere. It is worth including some of the lyrics because they paint such a vivid picture.

“If we both were born – In another place and time – This moment might be ending in a kiss – But there you are with yours – And here I am with mine – So I guess we’ll just be leaving it at this.” Handkerchiefs at the ready.

Want More Great Love Songs?

Well, have a look at our detailed article on the Top Songs about Old Love, the Best Songs About Falling In Love, the Top Songs About Unrequited Love, the Top Guitar Love Songs, and the Best Songs With “Love” In The Title for more incredible song selections.

Also, you’ll need to hear them. So, check out our in-depth reviews of the Best Headphones for Music, the Most Comfortable Headphones, the Best Headphones Under $200, and the Best Headphones with Volume Control you can buy in 2023.

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Secretly In Love Songs – Final Thoughts

Having a secret love is a confusing time that can cause a few nights of lost sleep. In many ways, a sad situation, as we have seen in some of the songs. It rarely works out when there are others involved. 

Nevertheless, we are all human, and those feelings can get to us when we are least expecting them. The songwriters have perfectly captured some of those emotions in these incredible songs about being secretly in love.

Until next time, happy listening.

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About Corey Hoffman

Corey is a multi-instrumentalist who has played in numerous bands over the years, some good, some not so good. He has also written countless songs and recorded five albums in professional studios across America. Today he is a hobby musician but still loves the guitar after over 15 years of playing.

He considers his writing as a way to share what he has learned over the decades with younger generations ad always can't wait to get his hands on the latest gear.

He lives just outside New York with his wife Barbara and their two German Shepherds, Ziggy and Iggy.

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