COVID Update: Masks are still required in health care settings, even if you’re fully vaccinated. Also, Scripps does not provide COVID-19 tests for asymptomatic patients. See FAQs.

What Songs Should I Include in My Birth Playlist? (video)

Labor and delivery playlist can help you relax, reduce pain

Labor and delivery playlist can help you relax, reduce pain

Scripps Clinic OB-GYNs have compiled a playlist of their favorite songs to help expectant mothers when they are ready to deliver their baby. Scripps OB-GYNs call it a “push” playlist. Other names for it are birth or birthing playlist.


A carefully picked music playlist can help mothers-to-be get through labor and delivery. Studies show music during labor can help reduce anxiety and pain.


“Music can help reduce labor pain and the emotional distress that can come from it and, in my experience, that can help shorten labor duration,” says Jonathan Dunn, MD, an OB-GYN at Scripps Clinic Carmel Valley. “You can pick music that covers the different stages of labor and delivery. Many women pick celebratory and happy music for after birth.”

Birth plan checklist

Music is optional of course. But it can be part of your birth plan, which is a written statement of your preferences during labor and delivery. Your birth plan can include anything from who you want to be present during delivery to your choice of pain relief to whether you want a quiet room or will provide your own music.


To help prepare for a maternity stay at Scripps, visit: “What to Pack for Your Hospital Stay.”

Ideal playlist

Choice of music depends on your musical tastes. Consider a mix of slow and fast-paced music that can accompany you through giving birth – from the start of contractions to when you first meet your newborn. Consider putting slow and mellow songs at the beginning so the high tempo ones can play when it’s time to push.


Here are some popular songs recommended by Scripps OB-GYNs for the various stages of labor:

Early labor / Relaxation

  • The Greatest Discovery – Elton John
  • Cat’s in the Cradle – Harry Chapin
  • You are so Beautiful – Joe Cocker
  • The Day – Babyface
  • With Arms Wide Open – Creed

Active Labor / Focus

  • My Girl – The Temptations
  • Shower the People – James Taylor
  • Isn’t She Lovely – Stevie Wonder
  • Exodus – Bob Marley
  • Deliver Me – Sara Brightman

Transition State / Groove

  • Sweet Child O Mine – Guns N’ Roses
  • Born to Be Wild – Steppenwolf
  • Don’t Look Down – Martin Garrix and Usher
  • Tell Me You Love Me – Demi Lovato
  • Stay Up Late – Talking Heads

Pushing / Go Time

  • Push It – Salt-N-Pepa
  • Hot in Herre – Nelly
  • Feel This Moment – Pitbull and Christina Aguilera
  • Eye of the Tiger – Survivor
  • Can’t Stop the Feeling – Justin Timberlake
  • Jump – Van Halen