Top 10: most inspirational pop song lyrics

Vinyl record
Photo by Skylar Sahakian on Unsplash

Music is one of those timeless things that everyone can enjoy. Even though no one will interpret the same song the same way, there are many lyrics that seem to speak to people on a personal level. I’ve compiled a list of some of my favorite inspirational quotes from pop songs – in no particular order – to help keep you motivated.

10. “I won’t be afraid as long as you stand, stand by me” – Ben E. King, “Stand By Me”

This is an immortal piece of music. Everyone has heard this song. However old this song may be, its lyrics are still timeless. This particular lyric sings of solidarity and sticking together in order to accomplish a common goal.

9. “It’s a beautiful day / Don’t let it get away” – U2, “Beautiful Day”

I absolutely adore this lyric. The song has been around since the early 2000s, yet it has the vintage feel of something much older. The lyrics are so simple, yet powerful and effective. It persuades the audience to seize the day and make something beautiful with their lives.

8. “Darkness exists to make light truly count.” – Sleeping At Last, “Uneven Odds”

This lyric comes from one of my favorite songs. The song itself consists of lilting violins and mournful piano to create a sort of melancholy feel. It’s structured as a lesson to the listener to take everything that comes, the good and the bad, because it’s the bad days that make the good days really count.

7. “There will be an answer, let it be” – The Beatles, “Let It Be”

The Beatles will forever be immortalized by their music. This song in particular speaks to the audience on a different level than most of their other songs. The lyrics tell the audience to slow down and stop overthinking every little thing that they encounter. Eventually an answer will present itself, but until then, it’s best to let it be.

6. “If at first you don’t succeed, dust yourself off and try again” – Aaliyah, “Try Again”

Even though Aaliyah has passed on, her music remains with us and continues to inspire its listeners. While this lyric is more or less a modification of the popular phrase “if at first you don’t succeed, try again,” Aaliyah’s lyrics are more powerful. This is because the song acknowledges that some damage has been done – the dust – but it’s possible to heal and try again.

5. “Live your life with arms wide open / Today is where your book begins; the rest is still unwritten” – Natasha Beddingfield, “Unwritten”

Sure this song has become a bit “meme-y” in the past few years, but that doesn’t mean that the lyrics don’t have meaning. I like this lyric because it tells the listener that they have the opportunity to rewrite their own story, that they can control their own narrative if they have an open mind.

4. “Hello hurricane / I’ve got doors and windows boarded up / All your dead end fury is not enough” – Switchfoot, “Hello Hurricane”

While Switchfoot isn’t as popular as some of the other artists on this list, their music is still just as relevant. This song describes the negative parts of life as a hurricane, and the singer is telling the hurricane that it has no power over him. He sings that the hurricane isn’t enough to sweep him off his feet, that only he can control his life.

3. “Don’t worry ‘bout a thing, ‘cause every little thing gonna be alright” – Bob Marley, “Three Little Birds”

I couldn’t not have Bob Marley on this list, especially with this song. This song is very, very popular and is still quoted even decades after it was written. I don’t even need to explain to you what it means, but I do think it’s a great reminder that it’s okay to slow down sometimes.

2. “Listen as your day unfolds / Challenge what the future holds” Des Ree, “You Gotta Be”

This song is all about observing the world around you and learning from it. Sometimes it can be overwhelming to experience life all at once, but the song advises the listener to be whatever they want to be – whether that be bold, hard or strong – in order to truly face life head on.

1. “Go on and try to tear me down / I will be rising from the ground like a skyscraper” Demi Lovato, “Skyscraper”

This song in particular sends a very powerful message. It’s all about recovering from trauma and rising from the ashes of the past. I really appreciate that the song functions as an anthem and is accessible to just about anyone who listens to it.

Jenna Hultgren

Jenna Hultgren is the page editor for Perspectives on The Hilltop Monitor. She is a sophomore majoring in English.

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