"Pomp and Circumstance, March No. 1" by Edward Elgar is an American fixture at graduation ceremonies throughout the country. In addition, songs such as "I've Got a Feeling" by the Black Eyed Peas and "Graduation" by Vitamin C work well at graduations and graduation parties because they celebrate a new and exciting phase of life.
Parents of graduating students may enjoy songs with a more nostalgic sentiment, such as "I Believe I Can Fly" by R. Kelly or "Seasons of Love" from the Broadway musical "Rent," which were songs selected for Brigham Young University's "Top 10 Best/Cheesiest Graduation Songs." Ultimately, in spite of all the mixed emotions surrounding graduation day, most people view it as a day to celebrate and enjoy the idea of new adventures to come. This is why Mashable lists songs such as "Celebration" by Kool and The Gang and "Go Your Own Way" by Fleetwood Mac as popular selections for graduation day.
Graduations can be very emotional and joyous occasions, filled with all sorts of mixed feelings. Graduates may feel euphoric while parents have a more bittersweet attitude. Although they are proud of their kids, they may also feel a bit sad that their children are moving on to new stages of life in which they won't need the parents as much. Music chosen for graduations should capture all these conflicting emotions.