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100 Best Nostalgic Songs

I have been an online writer for over six years. I am passionate about books, philosophy, music, and the music industry.

best-nostalgic-songs

Songs About Nostalgia

Special memories of our growing years come alive when we listen to certain songs. These songs rekindle nostalgic times of the past in a vivid manner. Be it our childhood years or teenage years, it's memories of music that bring back that joyful smile. The lyrics in certain songs take us on a nostalgic trip down memory lane. The simple pleasures of life and the beautiful moments of the past are poetically sketched in songs about nostalgia.

The list below showcases a collection of rock, pop, country, R&B, folk, indie, alternative, hip hop, reggae, jazz, blues, and dance songs of the ‘60s, '70s, ‘80s, ‘90s, 2000s, 2010s, and 2020s that are truly nostalgic. If you have a view, opinion, or song suggestion, let us know in the comments section.

Top 10 Best Nostalgic Songs

  1. “Perfect”—Ed Sheeran
  2. “All of Me”—John Legend
  3. “Take on Me”—a-ha
  4. “Summer of 69”—Bryan Adams
  5. “Better Together”—Jack Johnson
  6. “Seven”—Taylor Swift
  7. “In My Life”—The Beatles
  8. “Just the Way You Are”—Bruno Mars
  9. “Sweet Child O’ Mine”—Guns N’ Roses
  10. “I’m Yours”—Jason Mraz

What Is Nostalgic Music?

Nostalgic music relates to an identity or association of sentimental longing or wistful affection belonging to a period in the past. With nostalgia portrayed in songs, listeners experience a yearning to return to the past by remembering instances of pleasure or sadness. The craving to go back in time to relive moments is often augmented with a strong emotional feeling.

Beautiful moments of the past are remembered and cherished when lyrics of songs reference the simple pleasures of life. The best nostalgic songs are the ones that evoke enjoyable feelings with a recollection of past events. The emotional journey triggered by nostalgia in songs is known to affect our present state of mind positively.

Nostalgic music gives a brand new perspective to memories of the past. Songs about nostalgia evoke a momentary emotional connect of happenings in the past. It’s the lyrical content in these songs that takes listeners on a memorable journey of thoughts and memories. Aesthetic forms of nostalgia are showcased in songs from different decades. The emotions and feelings in reflective love songs connect in a relatable manner with instances in our life. In songs from different genres musicians exhibit the feeling associated with nostalgia poetically.

#11—20

11. “Dancing in the Dark”—Bruce Springsteen

12. “Comfortably Numb”—Pink Floyd

13. “No Time to Die”—Billie Eilish

14. “Rolling in the Deep”—Adele

15. “7 Years”—Lukas Graham

16. “Complicated”—Avril Lavigne

17. “Heaven”—Bryan Adams

18. “Yellow”—Coldplay

19. “In the End”—Linkin Park

20. “Brown Eyed Girl”—Van Morrison

best-nostalgic-songs

Memories and Nostalgia in Songs

Songs about memories and nostalgia exhibit a wide spectrum of emotions. A number of singers and songwriters paint a picture about heartwarming moments from the past. Years gone by are revisited with lyrics that communicate endearing warmth. Certain songs describe the fun-filled adventures of teenage years in retrospect with present times. The peaceful easy feeling of yesteryears is often portrayed with experiences of childhood years. Romantic moments from the past are uniquely expressed through lyrics in songs about love and life.

#21—40

21. “Nothing’s Gonna Stop Us Now”—Starship

22. “With Or Without You”—U2

23. “Thinking Out Loud”—Ed Sheeran

24. “Photograph”—Nickelback

25. “All About That Bass”—Meghan Trainor

26. “Crazy”—Gnarls Barkley

27. “Yesterday”—The Beatles

28. “Last Friday Night (T.G.I.F.)”—Katy Perry

29. “Beat It”—Michael Jackson

30. “Despacito”—Luis Fonsi and Daddy Yankee featuring Justin Bieber

31. “Levitating”—Dua Lipa featuring Dababy

32. “Call Me Maybe”—Carly Rae Jepsen

33. “I Don’t Wanna Miss a Thing”—Aerosmith

34. “Love You Like a Love Song”—Selena Gomez & the Scene

35. “Dancing Queen”—ABBA

36. “My Heart Will Go On”—Celine Dion

37. “Truly Madly Deeply”—Savage Garden

38. “Wannabe”—Spice Girls

39. “I Wanna Know What Love Is”—Foreigner

40. “Girls Just Want to Have Fun”—Cyndi Lauper

Nostalgic Themes in Songs

A wide-genre of nostalgic themes in songs is creatively showcased to explain a concept or idea. Certain singers and songwriters convey the sentiments of love and sadness with nostalgic events in their past. Dream themes showcased in songs often express joy and happiness associated with memorable instances from the past. In different genres, singers and songwriters recall past happenings with myriad themes that connect with the heart.

A number of music videos capture the essence of cherished moments with highly stylized emotional concepts and ideas. In songs from different genres, musicians narrate the beautiful feeling of leading a carefree life in their younger days. Moments spent with family and friends are highlighted in a thoughtful manner with emotions being the centrifugal element. Although contrasting attributes are associated with nostalgia, in songs the different themes often portrayed are

  • Childhood
  • Friendship
  • Freedom
  • Happiness
  • Remembrance
  • Teenage
  • Love
  • Innocence
  • Memories
  • Thoughts
  • School
  • College
  • Regret
  • Dating
  • Romance
  • Homesickness
  • Forgiveness

#41—60

41. “Wonderwall”—Oasis

42. “I Want to Break Free”—Queen

43. “Party Rock Anthem”—LMFAO

44. “Eye of the Tiger”—Survivor

45. “Boom Boom Pow”—The Black Eyed Peas

46. “More Than Words”—Extreme

47. “Sound of Silence”—Simon & Garfunkel

48. “Oops!...I Did It Again”—Britney Spears

49. “Can’t Help Falling in Love With You”—Elvis Presley

50. “Pour Some Sugar on Me”—Def Leppard

51. “Wake Me Up before You Go-Go”—Wham!

52. “Is This Love”—Whitesnake

53. “How Deep is Your Love”—Bee Gees

54. “Hey Ya!”—OutKast

55. “Royals”—Lorde

56. “What a Wonderful World”—Louis Armstrong

57. “Born to Be Wild”—Steppenwolf

58. “(I Just) Died in Your Arms”—Cutting Crew

59. “Total Eclipse of the Heart”—Bonnie Tyler

60. “Smells Like Teen Spirit”—Nirvana

best-nostalgic-songs

#61—80

61. “We are the World”—USA for Africa

62. “Faithfully”—Journey

63. “Shape of You”—Ed Sheeran

64. “Fancy”—Iggy Azalea and Charli XCX

65. “What’s Love Got to Do Without It”—Tina Turner

66. “Hello”—Lionel Richie

67. “I Just Called to Say I Love You”—Stevie Wonder

68. “Sweet Dreams (Are Made of This)”—Eurythmics

69. “Africa”—Toto

70. “Losing My Religion”—R.E.M.