10 Best Songs About Being Lonely

Whether you're feeling lonesome or you just need a break from happily-ever-after songs, you'll want to check out the 10 best songs about being lonely.  Each one, in its unique way, will speak to your heart.

  1. “The Tracks of My Tears” by Smokey Robinson.  One of the most recognized songs about being lonely, “The Tracks of My Tears” is a soul classic.  While the lonely, jilted lover might try to use a smile as a masquerade, there's no hiding the tracks of his tears.
  2. “Walk On By” by Dionne Warwick.  In “Walk On By,” Dionne Warwick makes no attempt to hide her tears.  In this poignant song about being lonely, she urges her ex-lover to just “walk on by” if she's crying when he sees her on the street.
  3. “I Heard It Through the Grapevine” by Marvin Gaye.  In this song, Marvin Gaye sings about confusion and hurt upon his discovery that his lover may be leaving him for another man.  He poignantly sings, “A man ain't supposed to cry, but these tears I can't hold inside.”
  4. “Smokestack Lightning” by Howlin' Wolf.  In one of the most well-known blues songs about being lonely, Howlin' Wolf asks his lover, in his deep, raspy voice, “Where did you stay last night?” and “Why don't you hear me crying?”
  5. “I'm So Lonesome I Could Cry” by Hank Williams.  In this country tune about love gone wrong, Hank Williams compares himself to a lonesome whippoorwill who “sounds too blue to fly.”  His own troubled marriage inspired this song, and it comes straight from his heart.
  6. “Eleanor Rigby” by the Beatles.  The song's theme, “Look at all the lonely people,” is illustrated by character sketches of Eleanor Rigby and Father McKenzie.  These people move about their lives in isolation, caring about nobody and nobody caring about them.
  7. “Turn the Page” by Bob Seger.  “Turn the Page” is a song about being lonely on the road, from a performing musician's point of view.  “Here we go again,” Bob Seger sings, worn out from the gigs.  Even in the spotlight, he feels “a million miles away.”
  8. “Rocket Man” by Elton John.  Inspired by the astronauts of the early seventies, Elton John imagines a man on a mission to Mars who misses his wife and family.  In “Rocket Man,” he sings plaintively, “I think it's gonna be a long, long time.”
  9. “I Fall to Pieces” by Patsy Cline.  In her lovely voice, Patsy Cline tells her ex-lover that she falls to pieces every time she sees him.  She tries to find someone new, but nobody can replace her ex.  In this classic song about being lonely, “time only adds to the flame.”
  10. “Blue Eyes Crying in the Rain” by Willie Nelson.  In this song about being lonely, Willie Nelson sings about the painful side of love: that of parting, whether because of a breakup or a death.  “Love is like a dying ember,” he sings.  “And only memories remain.”
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