57 Songs About Being Famous

Updated on September 14, 2018
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FlourishAnyway believes there is a playlist for just about any situation and is on a mission to unite and entertain the world through song.

Who hasn't wanted to be a rock star?  Celebrate the advantages and recognize the pitfalls of being famous with a playlist of popular songs about celebrities and fame.
Who hasn't wanted to be a rock star? Celebrate the advantages and recognize the pitfalls of being famous with a playlist of popular songs about celebrities and fame. | Source

You're a Rock Star Just as You Are

Most of us have dreamed of being a rock star or famous actor, model, or athlete. Some of us would prefer to be famous for being famous, like the Rich Kids of the Internet, the Kardashians, and reality stars. You probably associate fame with widespread acceptance, status, and wealth.

But fame is very fickle. It can turn on you or abandon you altogether. It can be a difficult lifestyle, isolating you and making you grow paranoid about whom you can trust. Celebrities caution that it's not always the fabulous dream they had envisioned.

Celebrate the advantages of stardom as well as the downsides of being a celebrity with a playlist of pop, rock, country, metal, and hip-hop songs about being famous. It may make you appreciate your average, anonymous life more because you're a rock star just as you are.

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1. "Wanted Dead or Alive" by Bon Jovi

One of Bon Jovi's signature songs, this 1987 hit depicts the lonely life of a rock star while also giving a nod to the American Wild West. While the narrator is proud to entertain millions of fans with his "loaded six string" (guitar), there are significant downsides to his lifestyle. As he travels on his "steel horse" (tour bus), he misses home, drinks to fill his loneliness, and suffers from a lack of meaningful personal connections. He makes these all of these sacrifices so that we can be entertained.

2. "Celebrity" by Brad Paisley

According to this humorous country song from 2003, you don't need talent or self-control to be a celebrity, thanks particularly to reality shows. The tune is a fun take-down on the life of the rich and famous, noting their

  • brief marriages
  • frequent rehab stints
  • lawsuits against family members and
  • law-breaking with few consequences.

When you're famous, the public loves you just because you're on television regardless of how irresponsibly you behave.

'Cause when you're a celebrity
It's adios reality
You can act just like a fool
People think you're cool.

3. "Hall of Fame" by The Script (featuring will.i.am)

People who are famous for just being famous are a pretty useless bunch. The lead singer of The Script told "The Huffington Post" that he wrote this 2012 pop ditty partly because "we wanted to inspire people to stop trying to be famous for the sake of it." It provides encouragement to all of us to be the greatest in whatever realm we decide to pursue, whether that's academics, sports, business and industry, religion, politics, or something else. Make a difference in the world by becoming known for your competence and hard work.

4. "Took a Pill in Ibiza" by Mike Posner

Finding success in the entertainment industry isn't as glamorous as you'd imagine, according to this 2015 pop song. The narrator describes living an extravagant lifestyle just to show off. After taking one pill to fit in, he also gets hooked on drugs. Even his love relationships are shallow, consisting merely of one-night-stands.

This celebrity has-been is on a downward career trajectory and suffers the lonesomeness of singing sad songs that reflect his empty life. When people want advice on how to become well-known just like him, he tells them they don't want what he has because when the money runs out you have nothing left.

You don't have to be a washed out musician to feel lonely. Make a playlist of songs about loneliness and isolation, then go find a friend to listen along with you.

5. "Candle in the Wind" by Elton John

Two decades before this 1974 pop tune was rewritten for Princess Diana's funeral, it served as a tribute to Marilyn Monroe. She was an actress and American blonde bombshell of the 1950s. Marilyn's stardom ultimately represented her quest for acceptance, as she grew up in foster homes and endured abuse.

Hollywood created the mystique surrounding Marilyn Monroe, but sadly, those around her controlled and exploited her. The song laments that Marilyn felt confused, isolated, and tormented by her fame and was chased by the press even after her death:

Hollywood created a superstar
And pain was the price you paid.

6. "Applause" by Lady Gaga

This 2013 worldwide pop hit has an electric beat and acknowledges Lady Gaga's reason for performing. Rather than enjoying celebrity status for what it accesses, she seeks the adoration of an energetic crowd who appreciates her music and performance. Riotous applause provides her with instant feedback:

I live for the applause-plause, live for the applause-plause
Live for the way that you cheer and scream for me.

7. "Baby Girl" by Sugarland

This 2004 country ditty is a personal favorite of mine. It exudes positive energy and gratitude for the role the narrator's parents played in making her a celebrity. The song documents the narrator's hard-fought rise from small-time bar musician to big shot singer on the brink of superstardom.

In the early days, the protagonist writes home to ask for her parents' assistance:

Dear Mom and Dad,
Please send money
I'm so broke that it ain't funny
I don't need much, just enough to get me through... .

However, once the singer becomes a prominent musician, she repays her parents handsomely.

8. "Rockstar" by Nickeback

Although critics panned this 2006 rock number as one of the worst songs of all time, it became a global hit anyway. The tune features a wannabe rock star who seeks the material trappings and status symbols of fame without having to work for it: hilltop houses, cars, centerfold models, and fistfuls of money.

If you're someone who values material possessions, here are songs about money to motivate you further.

9. "Grace Kelly" by MIKA

After a recording executive told Mika to try to imitate the style of another popular musician, he wrote this catchy 2007 pop song. An international sensation, it derides musicians who reinvent themselves and change their styles to suit the whim of audiences. He reinforces the value of being uniquely you while poking fun at stars who are too willing to be anything others want them to be.

10. "Castle Walls" by T.I. (featuring Christina Aguilera)

From the outside, everyone thinks celebrities have it made, according to this 2010 hip-hop song. Behind the smiles, the Grammy Awards, and the flamboyant display of wealth, however, they are real people with real problems. They often live an empty and isolated life behind their castle walls of stardom.

Rapper T.I. deals with the challenges associated with being a young, wealthy, black male who is also a repeat felon. In this song, he references his concerns about how his kids will grow up and how his celebrity lifestyle has impacted them.

11. "The Beautiful and the Damned" by G-Eazy (featuring Zoe Nash)

This is everything that comes with celebrity:
Criticism, ridicule, and the scrutiny... .

In this 2017 hip-hop number, a celebrity narrator explains that anyone, including the rich and famous, can face personal obstacles like substance abuse, overspending, and engaging in reckless behavior. There are two sides of this man's psyche that guide his actions—the angel and devil. Like most people, he is a complex combination of the two.

12. "Beverly Hills" by Weezer

The guy in this 2005 rock song admits to being "a no-class beat-down fool," but he wants to live the life of a Beverly Hills celebrity. Currently, his fashion sense is "a little whack," he's poor and drives a beat-up car, although his dreams are to live the high life of a celebrity. We all have goals, but what are his plans to get there?

"Fame doesn't fulfill you. It warms you a bit, but that warmth is temporary." - Marilyn Monroe, American actress
"Fame doesn't fulfill you. It warms you a bit, but that warmth is temporary." - Marilyn Monroe, American actress | Source

13. "Miss America" by James Blunt

Miss America has long been regarded as a model of poise, self-assurance, and success. However, this mournful 2013 pop song looks at the private pain and dark thoughts behind her public mask. As she prances and waves to crowds, the celebrity beauty self-medicates in private with alcohol.

While others see Miss America as pulled together and confident, the song portrays her as crying and falling apart behind closed doors. Not everyone is prepared for the spotlight.

14. "Miracle Mile" by Cold War Kids

As the narrator in this 2013 rock song pursued his singing career, he cut ties with the past and gave up on love. He wasn't necessarily seeking fame, but now that he has found success, he realizes that it matters much less if you don't have the people you love along with you.

15. "You Never Met A Motherfu***er Quite Like Me" by Kid Rock

He sure is full of himself, isn't he? Some celebrities don't let fame go to their heads, but Kid Rock isn't one of them. It's appropriate that this 2002 rock song appeared on an album named "Cocky."

In this song, the singer boasts about rubbing elbows with other famous people, being on the cover of Rolling Stone, and lots of substance use. While this may not be his best work, don't be too quick to dismiss this singer because of his wild, arrogant persona. He actually has a great voice.

"Talent is God-given; be humble. Fame is man-given; be thankful. Conceit is self-given; be careful." - Harvey Mackay, American businessman
"Talent is God-given; be humble. Fame is man-given; be thankful. Conceit is self-given; be careful." - Harvey Mackay, American businessman | Source

16. "Remember the Name" by Fort Minor (featuring Styles of Beyond)

Fort Minor was a musical side gig for Mike Shinoda, songwriter and co-founder of Linkin Park. The 2005 rap song describes what it takes to make it big in the music business:

This is ten percent luck
Twenty percent skill
Fifteen percent concentrated power of will
Five percent pleasure
Fifty percent pain
And a hundred percent reason to remember the name.

17. "Piece of Me" by Britney Spears

No one ever said fame was easy to cope with.

The fact that Britney Spears made it through 2007 should give us all encouragement to face down our own personal struggles. She abused drugs, lost custody of her two sons, did two stints in a psychiatric facility and famously shaved her head. As many as 100 paparazzi hounded her while she melted down in front of the cameras for all to see.

In this electro-pop number, she swings back at the paparazzi and the haters. For everyone who body shamed her and found entertainment in the drama that was her real life, this is Britney's come-at-me bro song. She claps back with the challenge, "You want a piece of me?"

"Fame is easy to acquire; impact is much more difficult." - Hans Rosling, Swedish physician
"Fame is easy to acquire; impact is much more difficult." - Hans Rosling, Swedish physician | Source

18. "Pop Bottles" by Sky Blu (featuring Mark Rosas)

Sky Blu has had a taste of fame, and he's describing his high flying lifestyle in this 2013 song. The rapper is the grandson of Motown founder Berry Gordy Jr. and was half of the now-defunct American dance music duo, LMFAO.

Full of bravado, the rapper depicts his life of excess and constant travel:

Had a few hits, now we changed the game
Ish gets crazy when you get some fame
Different city every night, but it’s all the same
Everywhere I go people know my name.

19. "Rockstar 101" by Rihanna (featuring Slash)

This danceable 2009 pop song has hip-hop overtones and features a Rihanna who maintains she's no victim. Instead, she portrays a woman who owns her sensuality, even if she does seem a little desperate to convince others that she's in charge. Her repetition of "I told ya" and "Oh, baby, I'm a ...," for example, could almost be confused with stuttering.

20. "Million Years Ago" by Adele

Adele acknowledges that fame has alienated her from those she loves and everything that was familiar to her. In this sad, searching pop song from 2015, she recognizes that life is happening in full speed around her. Fame has made her less of a participant in life than part of the show.

Celebrity Selfies

Click thumbnail to view full-size
In 2015, my daughter took a photo with actor Daniel Radcliffe of Harry Potter fame.  He was on set nearby filming the movie, "Imperium."In 2016, Senator Marco Rubio took this selfie with my daughter when he was running for President.  (She has a way of stepping into the right place at the right time.)Former professional racecar driver Danica Patrick stopped to take a selfie with my daughter back when Danica Patrick was still racing.
In 2015, my daughter took a photo with actor Daniel Radcliffe of Harry Potter fame.  He was on set nearby filming the movie, "Imperium."
In 2015, my daughter took a photo with actor Daniel Radcliffe of Harry Potter fame. He was on set nearby filming the movie, "Imperium."
In 2016, Senator Marco Rubio took this selfie with my daughter when he was running for President.  (She has a way of stepping into the right place at the right time.)
In 2016, Senator Marco Rubio took this selfie with my daughter when he was running for President. (She has a way of stepping into the right place at the right time.)
Former professional racecar driver Danica Patrick stopped to take a selfie with my daughter back when Danica Patrick was still racing.
Former professional racecar driver Danica Patrick stopped to take a selfie with my daughter back when Danica Patrick was still racing.

Even More Songs About Fame and Being Famous

Song & Year Released
Artist
Lyrics About Fame
21. When I Grow Up (2008)
Pussycat Dolls
Be careful what you wish for / 'Cause you just might get it
22. Papparazzi (2008)
Lady Gaga
I'm your biggest fan / I'll follow you until you love me / Papa-paparazzi / Baby, there's no other superstar
23. Vultures (2013)
John Mayer
How did they find me here / What do they want from me? / All of these vultures hanging / Right outside my door
24. All the Pretty Girls (2017)
The Darkness
(All the pretty girls) like me for who I am / (All the pretty girls) when the record goes platinum / Plenty of action, massive attraction / When you're selling out stadiums
25. Bullets with Butterfly Wings (1995)
The Smashing Pumpkins
Despite all my rage I am still just a rat in a cage
26. Fame (1980)
Irene Cara
(Fame) I'm gonna live forever I'm gonna learn how to fly (High)
27. You Don't Really Know Me (2014)
Jessie J
Playing pretend I shouldn't hide it / It isn't right Being a liar
28. The Lucky One (2012)
Taylor Swift
Another name goes up in lights / You wonder if you’ll make it out alive / And they’ll tell you now, you’re the lucky one
29. The Memory Remains (1997)
Metallica
Fortune fame mirror vain gone insane
30. 13 Beaches (2017)
Lana Del Rey
Something separates me from other people / Everywhere I turn / There's something blocking my escape
31. The Entertainer (1974)
Billy Joel
Today I am your champion, I may have won your hearts / But I know the game, you'll forget my name / And I won't be here in another year / If I don't stay on the charts
32. Starz in Their Eyes (2006)
Just Jack
Since you became a V.I. Person / It's like your problems have all worsened / Your paranoia casts aspersions / On the truths you know
33. An Ordinary Life (2010)
Amy McDonald
I don't care about the cameras / I don't care about the lights / All I wanted was an ordinary life
34. Our Lawyer Made Us Change The Name Of This Song So We Wouldn't Get Sued (2005)
Fall Out Boy
We're only liars, but we're the best (we're the best) / We're only good for the latest trends / We're only good 'cause you can have almost famous friends / Besides, we've got such good fashion sense
35. Next Best Superstar (2009)
Melanie C
Sell your life; sell your soul telling everyone you know / You're living your dream
36. Would You Catch a Falling Star (1982)
John Anderson
Would you catch a fallen star before he crashes to the ground Don't you know how people are nobody loves you when you're down Pick him up and take him home and he'll bring his old guitar Sing a golden oldie song if you'll catch a fallen star
37. The Fame (2008)
Lady Gaga
Fame, doin' it for the fame / 'Cause we wanna live the life of the rich and famous
38. Britney (2008)
Bebo Norman
Britney, I'm sorry for your broken heart We stood aside and watched you fall apart I'm sorry we told you fame would fill you up And money moves the man, so drink the cup
39. Mo Money Mo Problems (1997)
Notorious B.I.G.
I don't know what they want from me/ It's like the more money we come across / The more problems we see
40. Castle (2017)
Eminem (featuring Liz Rodrigues)
I built this castle, now we are trapped on the throne
41. Everybody Knows (2006)
Dixie Chicks
Just another day / Of everybody looking / I swore they'd never see me cry
42. C-lebrity (2008)
Queen + Paul Rodgers
I want to be a face on tv /(Yeah I wanna be on your screen) / Then you can see I'm a c-lebrity
43. Fame (1975)
Dave Bowie
Fame, makes a man take things over Fame, lets him loose, hard to swallow Fame, puts you there where things are hollow
44. Superstar (2007)
Lupe Fiasco (featuring Matthew Santos)
If you are what you say you are -- a super star / Then have no fear the crowd is here and the lights are on and they want a show
45. Hollywood (2006)
Madonna
There's something in the air in Hollywood / I've lost my reputation / Bad and good
46. Falling Down (2009)
Selena Gomez & The Scene
Smile for the camera, everybody's looking at ya / Smile for the camera, cause they're all about to trash ya
47. Eraser (2017)
Ed Sheeran
I used to think that nothing could be better than touring the world with my songs / I chased the pictured perfect life, I think they painted it wrong
48. Welcome to the Fishbowl (2012)
Kenny Chesney
Everybody's business is everybody business and that's a big business now
49. Glamorous (2007)
Fergie (featuring Ladacris)
... I remember yesterday / When I dreamt about the days / When I'd rock on MTV, that be really dope / Damn, It's been a long road / And the industry is cold
50. Jenny from the Block (2002)
Jennifer Lopez (featuring Jadakiss & Styles P)
Don't be fooled by the rocks that I got / I'm still, I'm still Jenny from the block / Used to have a little, now I have a lot
51. Junkies for Fame (2008)
Shinedown
Why are we just junkies for fame
52. Fifteen Minutes of Fame (1992)
Damn Yankees
Here's your 15 minutes of fame It's a risky business It's a liar's game Into the spotlight and out again
53. Farm to Fame (2010)
Joey + Rory
He went from rags to riches, Farm to fame / From digging ditches, to carving out a name
54. Life's Been Good (1978)
Joe Walsh
I'm making records, my fans they can't wait / They write me letters, tell me I'm great
55. Act Naturally (1989)
Buck Owens & Ringo Starr
They're gonna put me in the movies / They're gonna make a big star out of me / We'll make a film about a man that's sad and lonely / And all I got to do is act naturally
56. Famous in a Small Town (2007)
Miranda Lambert
Everybody dies famous in a small town
57. When the Lights Go Down (2002)
Faith Hill
They were there for the fame, the flash, and the thrill / For the drop of the name, the parties, the pills
Know a song about fame or being famous that should be on this playlist? Leave a suggestion in the Comment Section below.

Questions & Answers

    © 2018 FlourishAnyway

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      • FlourishAnyway profile imageAUTHOR

        FlourishAnyway 

        2 days ago from USA

        Genna - I also enjoyed Elton John's "Goodbye Norma Jean" and although I liked the rewrite, the original has always been my favorite. Thanks for stopping by. Hope your weekend is excellent.

      • Genna East profile image

        Genna East 

        2 days ago from Massachusetts, USA

        Being famous is not something I've ever desired. For a number of people, it hasn't easy to navigate or survive. You've given us another list of wonderful songs. Elton's haunting and beautiful tribute to Marilyn is my fav, Flourish. He re-wrote the lyrics for Princess Diana's services. I shall never forget this song.

      • FlourishAnyway profile imageAUTHOR

        FlourishAnyway 

        3 days ago from USA

        Tim - You may have just given me another idea for a playlist. Thank you for mentioning the song. Hope you are doing well this weekend.

      • FlourishAnyway profile imageAUTHOR

        FlourishAnyway 

        3 days ago from USA

        Heid, Thanks for the song suggestions. I put Billy Joel's song on the playlist about arrogance. Hope your weekend is a terrific one!

      • heidithorne profile image

        Heidi Thorne 

        4 days ago from Chicago Area

        Immediately thought of Nickelback's "Rockstar" when I saw the title of this post. One of my faves.

        I'd add another Billy Joel track to the list, "Big Shot," and Styx's "Miss America," too.

        Love so many on this list! Happy Weekend!

      • Tim Truzy info4u profile image

        Tim Truzy 

        4 days ago from U.S.A.

        Hi, Floyurish,

        You are always creating the most interesting play lists. I couldn't help but notice, one of my favorites wasn't there. However, you did get my favorite artist, Billy Joel up there.

        But Billy did a duet with Ray Charles before he passed called: Baby Grand which speaks of fame. Here are some of the lyrics:

        I've had friends

        But they have slipped away

        I've had fame

        But it doesn't stay

        I've made fortunes

        Spent them fast enough

        As for woman

        They don't last with just one man

        But baby grand. . .

        Anyway, I thought it was worth mentioning since these guys are awesome. In this tune, Billy sounds a lot like Ray as they do the duet.

        Thanks again.

        Much respect and admirationm

        Tim

      • FlourishAnyway profile imageAUTHOR

        FlourishAnyway 

        4 days ago from USA

        Shannon - You're awesome! Thanks for the song suggestions which I've added. Have a great weekend.

      • FlourishAnyway profile imageAUTHOR

        FlourishAnyway 

        4 days ago from USA

        Linda, Thank you for your kind comment. I love your avatar. You totally had me convinced. I couldn't choose which of my cats would be my avatar so I just put my face up there. For a long time I just had a flower.

      • Carb Diva profile image

        Linda Lum 

        5 days ago from Washington State, USA

        Flourish, I honestly don't think I know any of these songs but that's my fault, not yours. I don't know how you do these, but I hope you don't stop; they are always enjoyable.

        I'm not famous for anything, nor do I want to be. (In case you weren't sure, that avatar by my name isn't my photo).

      • FlourishAnyway profile imageAUTHOR

        FlourishAnyway 

        5 days ago from USA

        Pamela - This one had more hip-hop songs on it, so I wouldn't be surprised if not everyone was familiar with all the artists. Unless perhaps you're a hip-hop fan and we just didn't figure you as that. You never can tell!

      • FlourishAnyway profile imageAUTHOR

        FlourishAnyway 

        5 days ago from USA

        Bill - Thanks for stopping by. I'd only want fame if it came with lots of money!

      • bdegiulio profile image

        Bill De Giulio 

        6 days ago from Massachusetts

        Hi Flourish. Another great list. Your daughter has a knack for being in the right place at the right time. Fame is not for me, seems like way too much to.

      • Pamela99 profile image

        Pamela Oglesby 

        6 days ago from Sunny Florida

        Florish, I have never heard of several of these stars, but that s not suprisibng. Other songs I know and love. I am always surprised at the bid number of songs you find. I would enhy the money but not the fame. Interesting as always.

      • shanmarie profile image

        Shannon Henry 

        6 days ago from Texas

        You really do have a playlist for everything. LOL.

        My suggestions off the top of my head for this one

        :

        Famous in a Small Town - Miranda Lambert

        When the Lights Go Down - Faith Hill

        And there's one by Jo Dee Messina on the tip of my tongue, but I can't think of the title. I'm not sure she ever made it a single. It's about her wondering sometimes who is really wanting to get close to her for who she is and who just wants to get close to her because of her fame. One of her more vulnerable songs.

      • FlourishAnyway profile imageAUTHOR

        FlourishAnyway 

        6 days ago from USA

        Frances - You have a good point there!

      • Frances Metcalfe profile image

        Frances Metcalfe 

        6 days ago from The Limousin, France

        Hi Flourish. I wouldn't want to be famous for anything, unable to go anywhere without being recognised, always having to watch what you say - so much is taken out of context!

      • FlourishAnyway profile imageAUTHOR

        FlourishAnyway 

        6 days ago from USA

        Linda - She has a way of slipping right through the crowd to find the famous person in the room. I have a friend from college who would go backstage at a major music venue without any credentials just by acting like he belonged. I didn't believe him until he showed me photos. He hobnobbed with all kinds of musicians that way. Thanks for reading!

      • AliciaC profile image

        Linda Crampton 

        6 days ago from British Columbia, Canada

        This article is interesting and informative, as always. Fame doesn't sound easy to deal with. Your daughter has met some interesting people!

      • FlourishAnyway profile imageAUTHOR

        FlourishAnyway 

        6 days ago from USA

        Mary - An anonymous life is not all that bad. Thanks for reading. Have a great week!

      • FlourishAnyway profile imageAUTHOR

        FlourishAnyway 

        6 days ago from USA

        Clive - My daughter enjoys the challenge of getting selfies with famous people. She has selfies with some sports stars, too, but I don't know who the athletes are.

      • aesta1 profile image

        Mary Norton 

        6 days ago from Ontario, Canada

        Flourish, you have again thought out carefully this topic of fame and found just the right songs. Fame is not something to put your heart into.

      • clivewilliams profile image

        Clive Williams 

        6 days ago from Jamaica

        Your daughter looks like a chip off the old block. Sometimes fame leads to unhappiness. I never want fame, want wealth.

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