Take That's 20 greatest songs – ranked! (2023)

20. Hold Up a Light (2008)

An overlooked single from The Circus, Hold Up a Light transcends its slightly hokey desire to provoke live audiences to, well, hold up a light, thanks to Mark Owen’s slightly doleful vocal, a lovely string arrangement and an unexpected burst of Queen-y double-tracked guitar.

19. Once You’ve Tasted Love (1992)

Understandably overshadowed by their later hits – including the disco cover versions It Only Takes a Minute, Could It Be Magic and Relight My Fire, not included in this list of original compositions – Take That’s second single is both a great little song and a charming period-piece snapshot of early 90s British pop. The bleeping analogue synths and samples of cheering crowds are audibly influenced by the KLF’s 3am Eternal.

18. Love Love (2011)

Take That were never weirder than on Progressed, the EP of offcuts appended to their 2010 album Progress. The Stuart Price-produced Love Love is appealingly off the wall – squelching synthesisers, a bizarrely stentorian Gary Barlow vocal, an octave leaping chorus. It’s clearly not what most Take That fans buy their records expecting to hear, which is part of its appeal.

17. Wooden Boat (2006)

With the best will in the world, Take That are no one’s idea of a great albums band, but, just occasionally, something worth salvaging slips into the bits between the hits. So it is with the beautiful, acoustic Wooden Boat, which sounds oddly like the Lilac Time, the folk-rock band fronted by Robbie Williams’s solo collaborator Stephen Duffy.

Take That's 20 greatest songs –ranked! (1)
(Video) Top 20 Greatest Pop Songs of All Time

16. Pretty Things (2010)

Progress – which saw Robbie Williams temporarily return to the fold – is, by some distance, Take That’s best album: surprisingly experimental, devoid of their trademark big ballads. Pretty Things is a low-key highlight: subtle electropop, over which Williams self-deprecatingly ruminates on ageing, marriage and the loss of youthful charm.

15. Giants (2017)

Since the departure of Jason Orange and Williams, Take That’s releases have tended towards the serviceable rather than the spectacular, an excuse to tour rather than an end in themselves. That said, they are sometimes better than you might expect, as demonstrated by Giants, a slice of super-hooky, thoroughly modern arena-ready pop.

14. When We Were Young (2011)

The re-formed Take That were never afraid to tug at their long-term fans’ heartstrings by writing about the band’s tumultuous past. Which brings us to the prosaically titled When We Were Young, an affecting giant-chorused song with a distinctly Abba-esque melody. “We were the foolish, fearless … We didn’t know it wouldn’t last.”

13. A Million Love Songs (1992)

The first sign that Barlow had ambitions beyond fleeting pop fame, A Million Love Songs was written when he was 15. It’s audibly influenced by Elton John – the Elton of the mid-80s, rather than the 70s – but tricked out with Mellow Magic sax and vaguely doo-wop-ish backing vocals.

(Video) Top 20 Eminem Songs

12. Sure (1994)

One of those No 1s people seem to have forgotten was a No 1 – and swiftly overshadowed by its follow-up, Back For Good – Sure was Take That’s last single in pop-R&B mode. It’s a sweet example of type, although Q magazine’s 2003 suggestion that it was the second greatest pop single ever made is pushing it a bit.

Take That's 20 greatest songs –ranked! (2)

11. The Flood (2010)

Williams’s return to Take That was announced in pitch-perfect style with portentous verses, singalong chorus and lyrics that commented on the improbability of their reunion – “They said we’d never dance again”. There was also a hint of promo for the forthcoming tour stirred in: “We will meet you where the lights are.”

10. Kidz (2010)

The improbable, thoroughly enjoyable sound of Barlow and Owen in Goldfrapp-esque electro-glam stomp mode. Simon Cowell considered its lyrical content too politically provocative for The X Factor, which tells you more about him than the harmless lyrics, although Owen’s sneer of “What yer lookin’ at?” is priceless.

9. Everything Changes (1993)

The Everything Changes album crowned Take That as British pop’s biggest band; it was the bestselling album of 1993 and home to four consecutive No 1 singles. There’s a hint of prime-time Stock Aitken and Waterman about its title track’s cantering rhythm and joyous retro soul melody, although the production is far lusher than SAW’s cheap and cheerful approach.

8. Greatest Day (2008)

For a band whose ex-members’ solo careers had seemed out of step with musical trends – Williams excepted, of course – the re-formed Take That had a canny understanding of how mainstream 00s pop clicked. Hence Greatest Day, which beat Coldplay at their own game: pounding drums, slow buildup to epic, arena-sized chorus.

(Video) ELO Greatest Hits Full Album - Best Songs Of ELO Playlist 2021

Take That's 20 greatest songs –ranked! (3)

7. Babe (1993)

A soap opera plotline condensed into five minutes of strings, darkly atmospheric synths and quivery lipped Owen vocals. Man tracks down long-lost love, and discovers her living with – OMG! – his hitherto-unknown child. It was very nearly the Christmas No 1, but something about the churning climax suggests the story doesn’t end well.

6. Pray (1993)

Boybands in the 90s tended to major in pop-R&B, but Take That’s first No 1 offered pop-R&B of a noticeably superior standard. The strings recall classy mid-70s soul and it has the kind of chorus that superglues itself to your brain. Its famous, pecs-out video didn’t do its success any harm, but Pray could sell itself.

5. Shine (2006)

Shine’s familiarity has bred a certain contempt – its jauntiness now grates on the nerves a bit – but it started turning up everywhere for a reason. Both its melody and its 60s-pop-by-way-of-the-Scissor Sisters sound were charming, and once you know the lyrics are about Williams’s mental health problems, it’s also oddly moving.

4. Rule the World (2007)

As cinematic blockbuster ballads go, Rule the World – written for Matthew Vaughn’s star-studded, largely forgotten fantasy movie Stardust – is hard to beat. Its chorus basically defies you not to punch the air; it might have been designed to be performed, as it eventually was, at the epic closing ceremony of the 2012 Olympic Games.

Take That's 20 greatest songs –ranked! (4)
(Video) Top 20 Greatest Country Songs of All Time

3. Never Forget (1995)

Williams left after its release, but from its You Can’t Always Get What You Want-esque kids’ choir intro to its smiling-through-tears chorus, Never Forget offered the perfect roll-credits closing theme for Take That’s initial career. Extra points for the bizarre production credits, featuring Meat Loaf mastermind Jim Steinman and UK house duo Brothers in Rhythm.

2. Patience (2006)

“The greatest comeback single of all time,” said the Manic Street Preachers’ Nicky Wire of Patience. “If Neil Young had written it, people would be calling it a masterpiece.” Certainly, it’s a brilliant, hugely assured and completely unforced-sounding piece of songwriting, a signal that Take That’s reunion was going to be about more than mere nostalgia.

1. Back for Good (1995)

A song so great people refused to believe Barlow had written it. Unfounded rumours claimed it was the covert handiwork of Barry Gibb, repaid for his efforts when Take That subsequently covered How Deep Is Your Love. In 2013, Gibb told the Guardian he had “never even heard” Back for Good, although you can see how people might think he was involved if you imagine the chorus’ backing vocals sung by the Bee Gees. Perhaps Barlow could console himself with the thought that he had written something of such quality, it belonged in one of the greatest songwriting catalogues in pop history; certainly, its swooning, bittersweet loveliness is on a different level to anything you might reasonably expect a 90s boyband to have produced.


What is the number 1 greatest song of all time? ›


What was Take That's most successful song? ›

After the first single "Sure" was released, the second single from the album, "Back for Good" became their biggest hit single reaching number one in 31 countries around the world. In the summer of 1995 band member Robbie Williams left the band.

What is Steely Dan's biggest hit single? ›

Track listing
No.TitleOriginal album
1."Do It Again"Can't Buy a Thrill (1972)
2."Reelin' In the Years"Can't Buy a Thrill
3."My Old School"Countdown to Ecstasy (1973)
4."Bodhisattva"Countdown to Ecstasy

Who is the richest member of Take That? ›

Mark Owen – US$40 million

Although he still works closely with the band, Owen is also known for his solo career and has released five studio albums to date. He also told The Oldham Times that he moved to Los Angeles with his family to record new music and for a change of scenery before the pandemic.

What is the most legendary song ever? ›

The Top 50 most iconic songs of all time
  • Smells Like Teen Spirit - Nirvana (1991)
  • Imagine - John Lennon (1971)
  • One - U2 (1992)
  • Billie Jean - Michael Jackson (1982)
  • Bohemian Rhapsody - Queen (1975)
  • Hey Jude - The Beatles (1968)
  • Like A Rolling Stone - Bob Dylan (1967)
  • I Can't Get No Satisfaction - Rolling Stones (1965)
Nov 23, 2022

What was the first #1 song ever? ›

The first number-one song of the Billboard Hot 100 was "Poor Little Fool" by Ricky Nelson, on August 4, 1958. As of the issue for the week ending on June 24, 2023, the Billboard Hot 100 has had 1,149 different number-one entries.

Who has most #1 hit songs? ›

The Beatles hold the record for the most number-one hits with 20 different chart leaders. They're followed closely by Mariah Carey, who has had 19 songs reach number-one.

Who made the best song ever? ›

What song has spent the most time in the top 100? ›

4, 1958 inception through the Oct. 22-dated ranking: Most Weeks Spent on the Billboard Hot 100: 91, “Heat Waves,” Glass Animals.

How many number 1 hits did take that have? ›

Internationally the band have had 56 number 1 singles and 37 number 1 albums. Take That have received eight Brit Awards, winning awards for Best British Group and Best British Live Act.

Did paul McCartney like Steely Dan? ›

As time went by, Steely Dan garnered a huge fanbase and several notable fans, including Paul McCartney.

Did Eric Clapton ever have a number one hit? ›

It was 48 years ago today (September 14th, 1974) that Eric Clapton scored his first Number One hit with his cover of Bob Marley's “I Shot The Sheriff.” The tune, which played a huge role in bringing reggae music into the mainstream, was pulled from Clapton's then-recent 461 Ocean Boulevard album, which hit Number One ...

Who is the richest guitarist in the world? ›

1. Keith Richards - $500 Million. At number one, the guitarist for what many have dubbed “The Greatest Rock & Roll Band in the world.” Richards tops this list as his accolades with The Rolling Stones have already been well documented.

Who is the richest kid in the whole world? ›

Princess Charlotte has been refered as "the richest kid in the world" due to her status as a member of the British royal family, which is one of the wealthiest and most prominent royal families in the world.

Who is the richest band in the world? ›

The Rolling Stones are comprised of the richest members of any music group.

What is the most recognized song? ›

The most recognizable songs of all-time
  • Michael Jackson – Billie Jean: 2.97 seconds.
  • Culture Club – Karma Chameleon: 2.99 seconds.
  • Britney Spears – Baby One More Time: 2.99 seconds.
  • Elvis Presley – Devil in Disguise: 3.01 seconds.
  • Boney M – Rivers of Babylon: 3.03 seconds.
  • Elton John – Candle in the Wind: 3.04 seconds.
Mar 1, 2023

Who is the best singer in the world? ›

The 200 greatest singers of all time according to Rolling Stone as of January 2023
Aretha Franklin1
Whitney Houston2
Sam Cooke3
Billie Holiday4
180 more rows
Jan 12, 2023

What is the oldest song ever made? ›

The Hurrian Hymn was discovered in the 1950s on a clay tablet inscribed with Cuneiform text. It's the oldest surviving melody and is over 3,400 years old. The hymn was discovered on a clay tablet in Ugarit, now part of modern-day Syria, and is dedicated the Hurrians' goddess of the orchards Nikkal.

Who has had a #1 hit every decade? ›

Cher's career as a recording artist spans seven decades and she is the only artist to have a number-one single on a Billboard chart in each of the past six decades.

What are the top 3 songs of all time? ›

Top 10 Best Songs of All Time
  • 1 Bohemian Rhapsody - Queen. ...
  • 2 Stairway to Heaven - Led Zeppelin. ...
  • 3 Imagine - John Lennon. ...
  • 4 Smells Like Teen Spirit - Nirvana. ...
  • 5 One - Metallica. ...
  • 6 Hotel California - Eagles. ...
  • 7 Hey Jude - The Beatles. ...
  • 8 Comfortably Numb - Pink Floyd.

Who has the most #1 albums? ›

Most No. 1 albums
  • As a musician, Paul McCartney has the most No. 1 albums, with 27. This includes 19 albums from his work with The Beatles, three solo albums and five albums as a part of his 1970s group Wings. ...
  • Barbra Streisand is the only artist to have No. 1 albums in six different decades.

Who has the most records sold all time? ›

Top-selling artists worldwide as of 2022

Perhaps unsurprisingly, British rock band The Beatles are top of the list for best-selling artists worldwide, with 183 million units certified sales. Second is Garth Brooks with over 157 million units sales, followed by Elvis Presley with 139 million units.

Who has the most #1 hits on one album? ›

Coincidentally, Michael Jackson's Bad and Katy's Teenage Dream are the only albums in US chart history to each score five Number 1s on the Billboard Hot 100.

What was the #1 song of the 70s? ›

1970s US Number 1 Facts

You Light Up My Life by Debby Boone (1977) spent the most number of weeks at Number 1 (10). Consequently, it was the biggest selling single of the decade in the US.

Who wrote most #1 hits? ›

Martin is the songwriter with the third-most number-one singles on the chart, behind only Paul McCartney (32) and John Lennon (26).

Who has 21 #1 hits? ›

Description. Kenny Rogers: 21 Number Ones is back-to-back chart-topping hits that include his greatest duets, 'Islands In The Stream' with Dolly Parton, 'We've Got Tonight' with Sheena Easton, 'Every Time Two Fools Collide', 'What Are We Doing In Love', 'All I Ever Need Is You' as well as 'Lady' and many more.

Why didn t George Harrison like Paul McCartney? ›

According to Boyd, the root of the problem was between Harrison and McCartney. “George saw Paul as difficult. They would tolerate each other, but I think George basically didn't like Paul's personality. I just think they really didn't love each other.”

What did Eric Clapton think of The Beatles? ›

The slickness of the group on-stage took Clapton aback, and he admitted that ever before seeing them live, he “was very, very suspicious about what they were up to.” However, Clapton had to admit he was the one in the wrong and reevaluated his opinion.

Why did McCartney sue Beatles? ›

McCartney ended up suing the band after disagreements with new manager Allen Klein. "The only way for me to save The Beatles and Apple (Records) ... was to sue the band," he told the magazine, explaining he wasn't able to bring a lawsuit against Klein directly because "he wasn't party to it."

Who had 7 consecutive #1 hits? ›

1's. With the release of her single "Where Do Broken Hearts Go" in early '88, Whitney Houston set the record as the only artist ever to reach the milestone of seven consecutive No. 1 hits on the US Billboard Hot 100.

What singer has seven #1 hits? ›

Music historians cite Whitney's record-setting achievements: the only artist to have seven consecutive number one Billboard Hot 100 hits ("Saving All My Love for You," "How Will I Know," "Greatest Love of All," "I Wanna Dance with Somebody (Who Loves Me)," "Didn't We Almost Have It All," "So Emotional" and "Where Do ...

Does Paul McCartney have the most number one hits? ›

As the Beatle with the longest solo career, it's no surprise Paul McCartney has the most solo number one singles.

Who has most #1 hits in all music? ›

The Beatles, unsurprisingly, lead the way with a record 20 No. 1s, all earned between 1964 and 1970.

What was the #1 song of the year? ›

"Heat Waves", the 2020 single by British indie-pop band Glass Animals, topped the Hot 100 in 2022 for five weeks. It became the best-charting song of the year.

Has anyone ever had all top 10 songs? ›

Taylor Swift has once again made music history by claiming every single top 10 spot on Billboard's Hot 100 chart at once. No other artist has ever held all 10 spots at the same time, according to Billboard.

Who has had the most top 10 hits at one time? ›

With seven tracks in the top 10 at once, Drake unseated The Beatles as the act with the most simultaneous top 10 hits, a record the Fab Four had held since 1964.

What is the most popular song? ›

As of June 2023, "Blinding Lights" (2019) by Canadian singer the Weeknd is the most-streamed song of all time on Spotify, while "Dance Monkey" (2019) by Australian singer-songwriter Tones and I is the most-streamed song by a female artist.

What is the number one song in the USA? ›

1. (1)1Last Night Morgan Wallen peak position: 1 – total weeks: 19
2. (3)3Flowers Miley Cyrus peak position: 1 – total weeks: 21
3. (5)5Calm Down Rema peak position: 3 – total weeks: 40
4. (8)8Fast Car Luke Combs peak position: 4 – total weeks: 11
56 more rows


1. Top 20 Greatest Queen Songs of All Time
2. Top 20 Foo Fighters Songs
3. Top 100 Greatest Songs of All Time
(ZtarOZ - Songs)
4. BTS Jimin's 3 Solo Songs Ranked as British 'Masterpieces'
(Kpop Airline)
(Spotify This Week)
6. Top 100 Songs From 2010 To 2020
(Top Culture)


Top Articles
Latest Posts
Article information

Author: Amb. Frankie Simonis

Last Updated: 01/10/2023

Views: 5777

Rating: 4.6 / 5 (76 voted)

Reviews: 83% of readers found this page helpful

Author information

Name: Amb. Frankie Simonis

Birthday: 1998-02-19

Address: 64841 Delmar Isle, North Wiley, OR 74073

Phone: +17844167847676

Job: Forward IT Agent

Hobby: LARPing, Kitesurfing, Sewing, Digital arts, Sand art, Gardening, Dance

Introduction: My name is Amb. Frankie Simonis, I am a hilarious, enchanting, energetic, cooperative, innocent, cute, joyous person who loves writing and wants to share my knowledge and understanding with you.