5 Best Sad English Songs

Picking out the 5 best sad English songs wasn’t an easy task, but we’ve put together a list of solid choices. Each of these songs is a classic example of the way music can touch your deepest emotions. A lot of English music utilizes a traditional Celtic melodies, along with classic rock sounds, and many of these songs are built along those lines. They come from a wide variety of genres, and many are very different stylistically.

  1. “Yesterday” by The Beatles is easily among the best sad English songs of all time, and ultimately we decided to put it at the top of this list. It deals with the emotional isolation people experience following a breakup. This is probably the most recognizable of the sad English songs, and nearly everyone who hears it is touched by its emotional sincerity.
  2. No list of the best sad English songs would be complete without “Knights in White Satin” by the Moody Blues. This song is incredibly emotional both from a musical and lyrical perspective. The song isn't straightforward enough for a simple interpretation, but Moody Blues member Justin Hayward has said that they deal with the feelings at the end of one romance and the beginning of a new one.
  3. “Love Bites” by Def Leppard is one of the best heavy metal ballads ever created, and it’s also one of the most memorable sad English songs. Everything from the lyrics, to the tasteful guitar solo are designed to be as melancholy as possible, but without losing its hard rock edge. It deals with the pain we expose ourselves to when we take a chance on love.
  4. “Candle in the Wind” by Elton John is one of the most popular sad English songs on this list. The song deals with the death of the movie star Marilyn Monroe. It manages to be both a lamentation and a celebration at the same time.
  5. The last song on this list, and perhaps the most unusual, is “1916” by the legendary metal band Motörhead. Their music is usually loud and overwhelming, but this sad English song has sparse background music, and the lyrics tell the story of a soldier’s melancholy plight during the First World War. The stark contrast between this and other Motörhead tunes is one of the reasons for its success.
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