Hailing from Calgary, Alberta, Canada, Jann Arden officially began her entertainment career in 1982 after she was discovered by fellow Calgarian, Neil MacGonigill, She was twenty years old at the time and had worked with MacGonigill consistently until 1998. MacGonigill worked as her manager and executive producer during Arden’s earlier work, which included her first three studio albums, Time for Mercy in 1993, Living Under June in 1995, and Happy? in 1997. All three albums became certified platinum with Music Canada (MC), the most successful being Living Under June as it was certified five times over with MC, as well as certified gold by the Recording Industry Association of America (RIAA). Happy? was certified platinum twice.
After 1998, Jann Arden ceased working with Neil MacGonigill, as well as with the A&M Record label. Now with Universal Music Canada, she has recorded an additional ten studio albums, as well as three compilation albums, and two live albums. To her credit, she has forty-one singles and thirteen music videos. With her most recent material released on January 28, 2022, through her tenth studio album, Descendent, it suggests Jann Arden is still going strong as a recording artist.
Top 10 Jann Arden Songs
#10 – If It Be Your Will
Written and performed for the 1995 album, Tower of Song: A Memorial Tribute to Leonard Cohen, “If It Be Your Will” has also since appeared as one of the tracks featured on Greatest Hurts: The Best of Jann Arden album, which was released on October 30, 2001. While the album received bad reviews from the music critics, Jann Arden’s If It Be Your Will proved to be among the few songs featured on the album that received positive reviews. The talent of Arden’s acoustic guitar paralleled with her harmonic voice that has also found itself a contemporary gospel favorite that has also been gracing churches that practice Christianity as a religion.
#9 – Will You Remember Me
The first single Jann Arden released from her 1993 debut album, Time for Mercy, was “Will You Remember Me.” It was the first time Arden would realize a hit as the tear-jerking ballad peaked at number ten on the RPM Canada Top Singles chart. This served as the first real occasion Canadian music fans received a taste of the melodic talent Jann Arden has been best recognized for.
This song came as inspiration for Jann Arden in regards to raising awareness about the harsh reality of drug addiction plays just as much of a psychological number on a user as it does physically. Years later, when she was caring for her mother, who was diagnosed with Alzheimer’s Disease, as well as her father, who had Dementia before he died in 2015, “Will You Remember Me,” developed a brand new meaning that made it even more heartbreaking than the original.
#8 – Good Mother
At the 1996 Canadian awards ceremony, the Juno Awards, “Good Mother” won Video of the Year, which beat out Jann Arden’s signature single, Insensitive, as it was also nominated for the same award. On the RPM Canada Adult Contemporary chart, the single peaked as high as number four, and on the RPM Canada Top Singles chart, at number nine. The television series, Dawson Creek, featured Good Mother during one of its episodes, which peaked its popularity among music fans who otherwise hadn’t heard of Jann Arden before. Since its heartfelt appreciation of mothers and fathers who’ve been there for their children, it has become a favorite piece to play by family members who simply wish to pay tribute to the key women in their lives that have become important mother figures in their lives.
#7 – Looking for It (Finding Heaven)
From Jann Arden’s second studio album, Living Under June, “Looking for It (Finding Heaven),” was the seventh and final single. On the RPM Canada Adult Contemporary chart, this contemporary gospel ballad peaked at number one and on the RPM Canada Singles chart, it climbed as high as number seven. Although the album was already released in 1994, after the first six singles each shared their run on the charts, Looking for It didn’t release until 1997.
When it did, it was the fourth number one hit that came from the album and has since become one of her top-charting hits. This easy listening classic has since proven to be yet another timeless piece that expressed Arden’s talent and spirituality in a manner that has earned herself a fierce fan following that has so far followed her music and career since the very beginning.
#6 – Unloved (featuring Jackson Browne)
“Unloved” was a tearful ballet performed by the combined vocal talent of Jann Arden and Jackson Browne that was released as the fourth single from Arden’s second studio album, Living Under June. In 1995, Unloved became a number one hit on the RPM Canada Adult Contemporary chart and a number eight hit on the RPM Canada Top Singles chart. In addition to Jann Arden’s vocal talent, she is also a brilliant guitarist that also has a solid devotion to her Christian faith.
Throughout Jann Arden’s recording career, she has always included some form of contemporary gospel into her music and she has made it work to win over an audience that otherwise never knew it doesn’t have to be an age-old hymn to pass as beautiful music of Christian praise.
#5 – Sleepless
“Sleepless” was the first single released by Jann Arden in the year 2000, as well as from her fourth studio album, Blood Red Cherry. It was also the first album she recorded with Universal Music Canada and it was an album that became certified gold by Music Canada. As for the single’s chart performance, this easy-listening piece was a number-four hit on the RPM Canada Adult Contemporary chart and a number twenty-two hit on the RPM Canada Top Singles chart. Throughout Jann Arden’s career, her style of music has remained consistent, as well as the perfection behind her combined talent as a guitar player and vocalist.
#4 – I Would Die for You
From Jann Arden’s debut album, Time for Mercy, “I Would Die for You” became her second single that would realize chart success on the RPM Canada Adult Contemporary at number ten and on the RPM Canada Top Singles chart at number thirteen. The beautiful piano ballad performance by Jann Arden, as well as the music video she performed it for, earned the artist her first Juno Award, which is the Canadian equivalent to the American Music Awards. In 1994, she and this single won a Juno for Video of the Year. The start of the music is already powerful, so when Jann Arden’s voice lyrically carries out her proclamation, it added even more soul to one of the most beautiful songs the artist has ever produced.
#3 – The Sound Of
The first single from Jann Arden’s third studio album, Happy?, was “The Sound Of,” which became the fifth and final number-one single for the artist so far, at least on the RPM Canada Adult Contemporary chart. On the RPM Canada Top Singles chart, this emotional, lyrical tale of a lost soul struggling to stand stall peaked as high as number three. Both the single and the album received generally favorable reviews from the critics, as well as the fans. It is also one of the best-performing singles from Arden’s career that is also featured on her Greatest Hurts album.
#2 – Could I Be Your Girl
The first single released from Jann Arden’s second studio album, Living Under June, was “Could I Be Your Girl.” In 1994, it served to be the artist’s first number one hit, at least on the RPM Canada Adult Contemporary chart. In 1995, it won Single of the Year with Canada’s 1995 edition of the Juno Awards. On the RPM Canada Top Singles chart, Could I Be Your Girl peaked at number three and made an appearance for the first time on the US Billboard Adult Contemporary chart, as it climbed as high as number thirty-three.
There is also a dance remix of “Could I Be Your Girl,” which is out of the ordinary, given Jann Arden’s material is usually heartfelt ballads meant for easy listening as opposed to catering to pop-style music that has considerably more beat. In every single Jann Arden has recorded and released, there has always been a hint of gospel. This single was no exception as this wasn’t simply a song of wanting to be someone’s girlfriend. It was about a woman opting to dedicate herself to her personal savior, who in this case was the Christian hero, Jesus Christ.
#1 – Insensitive
In 1994, “Insensitive” was released as the second single from Jann Arden’s second studio album, Living Under June. It was the second time in her career she would realize a number one hit on the RPM Canada Adult Contemporary chart and the first time she’d top the RPM Canada Top Singles chart. It was also the first and only occasion a single produced by Jann Arden would make an appearance on the US Billboard Hot 100, which peaked at number twelve. Also on the US Billboard charts, “Insensitive,” climbed as high as number four on its Adult Contemporary chart, as well as number six on its Adult Top 40, and number nine on the Mainstream Top 40.
The heartbreak ballad of a woman feeling dejected was also a number one hit on the official music chart belonging to Australia and peaked at number forty on the UK Singles Chart. Just like the US Billboard Hot 100, it was the one and only time a single released from Arden made a chart appearance in the UK. Canada’s 1996 Juno Awards awarded Insensitive as Single of the Year. It was also the only single in Jann Arden’s career that earned a certification, which was with the Australia Recording Industry Association. For selling over 70,000 copies in that nation, Insensitive became certified platinum.
Top 10 Jann Arden Songs article published on Classic RockHistory.com© 2022
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