Glee's 21 Best Musical Numbers of All-Time

With Major League Baseball playoffs dominating Fox’s primetime lineup for the next few weeks, Glee fans are holding their collective breath until Season 4 resumes in early November.

Still, everyone knows it’s cathartic to exhale, and with that in mind, we decided there was no better time to update the debate about what songs belong on a list of Glee‘s 21 Best Musical Numbers of All-Time. Our picks include expected suspects like “Teenage Dream” and “Faithfully,” but there are more than a few surprises, too.

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So do check out the full gallery of 21 slides below, then tell us which moments we overrated, which ones we left out, and where we managed to get it exactly right.

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And for all the Glee news, interviews, and commentary you could possibly ever want, be sure to follow us on Twitter @TVLineNews!

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  1. Ann says:

    the best from this list is i want to hold your hand it had me in tears. I also like defing gravity. one thats not on this list that i love is beth

  2. I don’t think MEAN belongs on this list. How about “I will always love you”? Or Raise your glass?”

    How about a list of the top Glee song/dance videos?

  3. Caleb says:

    Hey! How about We are Young? that’s got to be in the list

  4. Red says:

    I want to hold your hand should be up there. Beautiful rendition. I found the sheet music and had someone play it as my bridesmaids walked down the aisle at my wedding

  5. renzo says:

    1 Roots before branches
    2 rumour has it/ someone like you
    3 it’s allí comming back todo me now
    4 shake it out
    5 The scientist
    6 give your heart a break
    7 don’t rain once my parede
    8 my man
    9 loser like me
    10 get it right
    11 songbird
    12 mine
    13 landslide
    14 somebody to love
    15 one less bell todo answer/ a house is not a home
    16 smooth criminal
    17 paradise by The dashboard light
    18 take a bow
    19 la isla bonita
    20 womanizer
    21 i want todo hold your hand

  6. Jessica says:

    You guys, I feel pretty/unpretty it totally #1 . Such a great song.

  7. MaryJane199007 says:

    My top 21 is:

    1. The scientist (I love this song, but apart from this it was an emotional performance and the flashbacks almost made me cry. In my opinion “The break-up” was one of the best episodes of “Glee” ever.)

    2. Get it right/Loser Like me (Two good original songs. “Get it right” is very emotional and “Loser like me” is the song that every loser would like to dedicate to the people that bulled him/her. Two fresh and original performances.)

    3. Songbird (Just one word: Santana! Watching this performance I saw a different side of her. She is not just a bad girl; she is a sweet and sensitive girl, completely in love with Brittany. Naya has got a great voice too, and this amazing performance deserves the third place in this list.)

    4. Cough syrup (Probably the most moving scene of “Glee”. I love this song, and Darren Criss sang it well.)

    5. Imagine (This performance totally made me cry! Besides, Amber Riley is something incredible!)

    6. One (Another moving scene for another moving performance. )

    7. We are young (One of the best things of the third season. “We are young” is a beautiful song and a perfect youth anthem!)

    8. Bohemian rhapsody (This scene is pure drama! I do think that Jonathan Groff did justice to this amazing song! The best performance of the “Vocal Adrenalins” ever!)

    9. I will always love you (I already wrote above that Amber Riley is something incredible. By the way this scene was so emotional. A perfect tribute to Whitney Houston. I am sure that she would have loved this cover of “I will always love you” too. Shivers.)

    10. My man (Which one was dedicated to Finn! An incredible performance of Lea Michele. She could be the heir of Barbra Streisand.)

    11. Don’t you want me? (My favourite duet of “Glee” ever, and I like this version of the song more than the original one.)

    12. Sing (An emotional performance. Besides, I love this song.)

    13. Americano/Dance again (I always underrated the talented Kate Hudson, and I was wrong. She is a good singer and a good dancer. My favourite mash-up of “Glee” ever!)

    14. Jar of hearts (I love this scene and I love “Jar of hearts”. It is the song that every girl would love to dedicate to the boy she loves and who broke her heart.)

    15. Rumour has it/Someone like you (My second favourite mash-up of “Glee”! Santana ruled this performance!)

    16. Everytime (An incredibly sweet performance. Welcome to the top 21, Marley. I am sure this girl will make some good performances in the next episodes!)

    17. Total eclipse of the heart (Emotional performance! Lea Michele is a good singer and she can sing everything!)

    18. Animal (I could not put a performance of the “Warblers” on my list. This is my favourite one… Kurt looked so funny when he tried to appear sexy.)

    19. I feel pretty/Unpretty (I really like the friendship between Rachel and Quinn and this performance is so cute.)

    20. Smooth Criminal (I love Santana and Sebastian. In my opinion this is the sexiest performance of “Glee” ever!)

    21. This is a man’s world (This was the best performance of Dianna Agron on “Glee”. I think that she should sing other songs of this kind!)

  8. habibe says:

    here someof the one i like that come to my head but i still have heaps more

    acoustic teenage dream
    somebody that i used to know
    dont you want me
    its not unusual
    its not right but its ok
    give your heart a break
    barely breathing
    sexy and i know it
    ill have nothing
    cough syrup
    red solo cup
    dont stop believin
    somebody to love
    hungry like the wolf/rio
    last friday night
    big girls dont cry
    never say never
    somewhere only we know
    human nature
    4 minutes
    roots before branches
    baby its cold outside
    river deep mountain high
    need you now
    so emotional

    that 30 of the one that didnt make top 21 hmmm

  9. Joel says:

    I have to say that “Don’t Speak” and “Oops!… I Did It Again” MUST be included in the list.

  10. Shamira says:

    I agree with those but I think that you should add Lady is a Tramp to that list and Roots Before Branches , but other than that , it’s all bueno !!

  11. Megan says:

    My man!!! I love that one! I also agree we are young should be top 3 at least

  12. Jessica says:

    Forget You is really overrated. There are so many better performances on Glee then that one. I think We Are Young should be up there.

  13. emily says:

    You all are wrong! BORN THIS WAY!

  14. Teresa says:

    Cough Syrup!! My all time favorite. I cried (and still do) every time I watched that scene and whenever I hear the song.
    Tongue Tied!! When they won nationals. I felt so proud and so happy.
    My Man! I love it! It shows off Rachel’s (Lea’s) amazing vocal ability.
    Lucky! Sam and Quinn are so cute and harmonious psinging it. It’s so calming and happy and beautiful!
    There are a lot more but that’s all I could think of right now :P

  15. Rachel says:

    I think there is no comparison with any of the songs:to me each song has a special place in my heart of wonderful musical collaborations and stunning visual dance moments. If you are all honest, each song touches everyone differently and has a uniqueness about it. As Glee is about individuality, we should respect what songs people like regardless of what we like and expect the same in return.

  16. Glenn says:

    I get goosebumps everytime I watch the performance of Take My Breath Away, it’s Dianna’s best vocal performance imo. I feel pretty (unpretty) is also on my top list.

  17. Marc says:

    The fact that Hell to the No is above Defying Gravity makes me want to barf.

    21. Paradise on the Dashboard Light
    20. Loser Like Me
    19. We Are Young
    18. New York State of Mind
    17. New York/ I love New York
    16. All I want for Christmas is you
    15. 3
    14. Imagine
    13. I feel Pretty/ unpretty
    12. Get Happy/Happy Days
    11. Roses Turn
    10. To Sir With Love
    9. Shake it out
    8. Smooth Criminal
    7. Don’t Rain On My Parade
    6. Defying Gravity
    5. Rumor Has It/ Someone Like You
    4. Somebody To Love (queen not Bieber)
    3. The Scientist
    2. Rid wit Me (LOVE)
    1. Don’t Stop Believing

  18. DD says:

    Rumour Has it and Smooth Criminal are the best ever!

  19. JenJen says:

    The two I found most entertaining to WATCH not just hear because the acting during the songs was SPECTACULAR were: With You I’m Born Again (hilarious) and The Boy is Mine (intense). I love a lot of their songs, so this list would be hard, But, I would not have put Hell to the No, or Run the World, in the top 25. My favorite song though would probably be Roots Before Branches because the accompanying vocals that Cory Monteith did (which really were not featured on the show, just on the ITunes track) are mournfully beautiful and gut wrenching!

  20. Tentoes says:

    1. Nationals – Season 3- all 3 songs…especially Paradise
    2. Don’t Rain on my Parade
    3. Valerie
    4. My Man and/or Cry
    5. Lucky
    6. Don’t go Breaking my Heart
    7. Faithfully
    8. Girls Just want to Have Fun
    9. The Scientist and all from Break UP episode (except Give your Heart a Break)
    10 Shake it Out
    11. Jar of Hearts
    12. Take My Breath Away
    13. Sectionals – Season 3 – all three songs for their sound and choreography
    15. Borderline/Open your Heart
    16. Don’t Stop Believing (Pilot Version)
    17. Crazy/You Drive Me Crazy
    18. Take a Bow
    19. West Side Story songs (especially Somewhere There’s A Place For Us.)
    20. Spotlight
    21. Hello, I Love You
    22. Somebody to Love by Queen
    23. One
    24. Sing
    25. Turning Tables

  21. If I could only have five songs on my iPod, they would be (in order) Cough Syrup, We Are Young, The Scientist, I Want to Hold Your Hand, and Teenage Dream (acoustic).

  22. Mário Soares says:

    My all star favorite is Valery, i think that Brittany and Mike were awesome. Also i like:

    – Empire state of mind

    I think all of them are very good i love them all but my favorites are these ones.
    By the way I love Santana ( Naya Rivera).

  23. HipsterTrianglesSuck. says:

    New York State of Mind & We Are Young were missing.

  24. Ana says:

    Nope. Major fail here. Where is ‘Scream’? The video with Artie and Mike from the Michael Jackson epi? That is hands down the best Glee video ever.

  25. Shiri says:

    1. I Dreamed a Dream
    2. Cough syrup
    3. Rumor Has It/ Someone Like you
    4. Somebody to Love
    5. Lean On me
    6. Don’t Stop Believing
    7. Get It Right
    8. Loser Like Me
    9 Roots Before Branches
    10. Poker Face
    11. Born This Way
    12. Take Me Or Leave Me
    13. For Good
    14. Defying Gravity
    15. Maybe This Time
    16. Somewhere Over The Rainbow
    17. Don’t Stop
    18. Somewhere
    19. Shake It Out
    20. Flashdance
    21.Go your own way

  26. Johanna says:

    1) Any top Glee songs list without “Bohemian Rhapsody” is void. It just is.
    2) Needs more Artie. “Dream a little dream”, “Never going back again”, “Let me love you”, pick one/multiple, but this list in is desperate need for more of the best singer in that club.
    3) A Brittany solo?… Seriously?

    • Ashley says:

      “Any top Glee songs list without “Bohemian Rhapsody” is void. It just is.”

      Word. So much fail going on with this list.

  27. Krizten Rutter says:

    The entire Michael Jackson collection was amazing,…and what about the two Rachel and Shelby’s duets Somewhere from WSS and I Dreamed a Dream from Le Miz? I just like waiting to see the performances and two or three episodes a season just totally amaze me and I watch those episodes over and over.

  28. kim says:

    NOOOO! sorry but the top 5 is wrong. rumor has it/someone like you was season’s 3 best number. it should be eiter 1 or 2. don’t stop believin (regionals) should be either 1 or 2 too. smooth criminal was the best duet. it should be in top 5.

  29. what about queen somebody to love??!! That or Dont Stop Believing should have been number one but somebody to love should have been on the list somewhere

  30. Zach says:

    ssoooo why is Hell to the No on this list at all?

  31. Chris says:

    My favorites are……

    Don’t dream it’s over
    Don’t stop believing