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57 Songs About Dreams and Dreaming

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Dream On!

There's nothing so practical as a dream, well-formed. Every invention, discovery, creative masterpiece, and impossible accomplishment started as an idea then blossomed from there. But dreams are also small business start-ups, college degrees, and marrying the right person. They are common miracles.

Many years ago, a teenage friend and I passed a freshly boarded up gas station that had gone out of business. It was just a defunct gas station to me. Her misty eyes perceived otherwise.

"How sad. That was somebody's life dream." Her parents had just lost their own family business. They were moving out of town so they could find other work and begin again.

Dreams aren't just about sleep. They very much inhabit our waking worlds. Whatever your dreams are, I hope you are diligently working towards them to make them reality.

Celebrate the value of dreams and dreaming with a playlist of pop, rock, and country songs about them. We have a long list below to get you started. Dream on!

1. "American Dream" by MKTO

This 2014 pop song reflects the changing American dream. The narrator and his friend have escaped their small town life, with dreams of heading to California. Rather than seeking a family with 2.2 kids, they want new adventures and experiences on their own.

The narrator points out that the American dream referenced by John Cougar Mellencamp in his 1982 song "Jack and Diane" has shifted significantly:

This ain't the same summer song that you used to know
'Cause Jack left Diane thirty years ago
The world is spinning too fast for you and me
So tell me whatever happened to the American dream.

Tell Us Your Life Dream

What is your life dream? Did it tiptoe to you in your sleep? Does it frequent you while you daydream? What steps are you taking steps to make it come true? Tell us in the Comments Section below.

2. "All I Have to Do Is Dream" by The Everly Brothers

The guy in this 1970 rock song is upset that he is separated from his beloved. However, he finds comfort in one thing to bridge the distance between them: dreaming.

Whenever he misses her—day or night—his dreams make it seem like she's almost right by his side. The trouble is that his strategy will only keep him satisfied for so long.

"If you don't build your dream, someone will hire you to help build theirs." - Tony Gaskins, American motivational speaker
"If you don't build your dream, someone will hire you to help build theirs." - Tony Gaskins, American motivational speaker | Source

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3. "Dream On" by Aerosmith

Steven Tyler took six years to write this 1973 rock anthem, and it became Aerosmith's first single. The song is about both the process of growing more mature and the internal quest to become somebody. Named one of Rolling Stone‘s 500 Greatest Songs of All Time, it motivates the listener to keep striving until you realize your dreams.

4. "Get Outta My Dreams, Get into My Car" by Billy Ocean

Did this approach ever work? The creepy narrator in this 1988 hit sees the woman of his dreams and tries to be a smooth operator. He yells out to her to get her attention:

Get outta my dreams
Get in to my car
Get outta my dream
Get in to the back seat baby
Get in to my car.

5. "Don't Dream It's Over" by Crowded House

In this 1986 ballad, the narrator describes the tumultuous challenges that he and his friend must face. Amidst all the turbulence, he warns that although outside forces will try to build walls between them, they must stick together. "Don't ever let them win," he cautions.

"To accomplish great things, we must not only act, but also dream; not only plan, but also believe." - Anatole France, French writer
"To accomplish great things, we must not only act, but also dream; not only plan, but also believe." - Anatole France, French writer | Source

6. "In Sleep" by Lissie

At the center of this ballad from 2010 is a love forsaken narrator. She has lost her sweetheart, and the only place she can see him is in her dreams. She thus retreats to the world of sleep they can be together, if only fleetingly.

7. "Dream" by Imagine Dragons

In this somber song from 2015, the narrator shuts out the chaotic world in favor of living in a more hopeful and organized dream world of his own making:

We all are living in a dream,
But life ain’t what it seems.
Oh, everything’s a mess
And all these sorrows I have seen
They lead me to believe
That everything’s a mess.

8. "Just a Dream" by Carrie Underwood

In this sad country ballad from 2007, a grieving teenage bride shows up to the chapel in her wedding gown. However, instead of getting married today, she will be burying her soldier groom. Oh, how she wishes it were all just a dream.

9. "Dreamlover" by Mariah Carey

We each have different definitions of a dream lover, but in this 1993 pop song, Mariah Carey seeks a perfect lover to rescue her. Rather than a pretender, she wants the real deal, someone who will be accepting, uplifting, and understanding of her needs. And on top of all this, she's seeking a forever commitment.

10. "Wildest Dreams" by Taylor Swift

Sometimes you find Mr. Right. Sometimes you find Mr. Right Now.

Taylor Swift's narrator describes a romantic rendezvous with a handsome lover in this 2014 song. Even though he is charming and irresistible, she knows their relationship won't last. Our narrator ventures off with him on the condition that he remember her fondly, even if it's only in his wildest dreams.

11. "Just A Dream" by Nelly

Recalling a lover who has left him, the heartbroken guy in this 2010 song regrets not proposing to his ex-girlfriend. In his mind, he travels back down the road and considers all the mistakes he made. He realizes, however, that it was just a dream. Alone now, he can't fix the past.

12. "Dream Baby Dream" by Bruce Springsteen

With this simple but inspiring 2014 song, if you know the lyrics "dream baby dream," you know a lot of the song already. It's an inspiring, energetic song that motivates the listener to do the following:

  • open up your heart
  • dry your eyes
  • smile and
  • dream.

Can you do follow that simple recipe?

13. "A Head Full of Dreams" by Coldplay

Celebrate the infinite possibilities that exist inside of you with this 2015 song. It is one of hope and looking forward:

You can see the change you want to
Be what you want to be
When you get a head
A head full of dreams.

14. "These Dreams" by Heart

In this 1986 rock song, the narrator describes a world of fantasy that she enters each time she falls asleep. Seeking to hide from the pain of her ordinary life, the narrator lives a parallel reality in her dreams.

The Meaning of 10 Common Dreams

Dream
Meaning
Dream
Meaning
death
there's an important, dramatic change in your life
nudity
you're feeling exposed or vulnerable
spiders
the dreamer is being manipulated
paralysis
you're lacking control in your life over something important
being chased
you may be avoiding something in your waking life that needs your attention
losing your teeth
there's a situation in your waking life that represents a lack of confidence
falling uncontrollably from a great height
lack of control over your life circumstances; something in your life is moving rapidly in the wrong direction
pregnancy & birth
creativity and the desire to generate a new idea
being lost
worry about finding your way with a new life situation
baby
there's something new in your waking life

15. "Had A Dream (For The Heart)" by The Judds

Obsessed about a lover who has left her, the heartbroken protagonist in this 1983 song dreams about his unlikely return. She is lonesome and realizes that her sad heart just cannot love anybody but him.

16. "Sweet Dreams" by Eurythmics

The narrator in this 1983 hit is satisfied with her relationship which she describes as sweet dreams. At the same time, however, she realizes that everyone is looking for something unique and different in their interactions with others:

Some of them want to use you
Some of them want to get used by you.
Some of them want to abuse you
Some of them want to be abused.

She prods the listener to "keep your head up, movin' on," rather than being shamed by what you seek.

"Sometimes, the only realists are the dreamers." - Paul Wellstone, American politician
"Sometimes, the only realists are the dreamers." - Paul Wellstone, American politician | Source

17. "Dreams" by Fleetwood Mac

At the time of this 1977 rock hit, Stevie Nicks was involved in a deteriorating relationship with fellow Fleetwood Mac member Lindsay Buckingham. This song was her invitation that he leave their relationship; she wanted out as well. He responded with the harsher 1977 song, "Go Your Own Way."

18. "Dream Weaver" by Gary Wright

The narrator in this soft rock song from 1975 seeks refuge from the worries and pain in his everyday life. He allows his dreams to whisk him away to an astral plane, a highway of fantasy.

19. "Sweet Dreams" by Beyoncé

The woman in this 2008 song goes to sleep each night hoping that she'll see her Prince Charming again in her dreams. His love is too good to be true, and she can't wait to drift away to dreamland to be with him again.

20. "The River of Dreams" by Billy Joel

This 1993 song is full of symbolism. In the middle of the night, the protagonist sets off in his dreams on a trek looking for something that was wrongfully taken from him. Through a jungle of doubt and the desert of truth, he walks until he comes to a river too wide to cross.

Then he stands at the shore, peering at the opposite side for what he's been looking for. He wades in the river of dreams and contemplates the afterlife.

"If one advances confidently in the direction of his dreams and endeavors to live the life which he has imagined, he will meet with a success unexpected in common hours." - Henry David Thoreau, American writer
"If one advances confidently in the direction of his dreams and endeavors to live the life which he has imagined, he will meet with a success unexpected in common hours." - Henry David Thoreau, American writer | Source

Even More Songs About Dreams and Dreaming

Song
Artist
Year Released
21. California Dreamin'
The Mamas & the Papas
1966
22. Talking in Your Sleep
The Romantics
1983
23. Boulevard of Broken Dreams
Green Day
2004
24. #9 Dream
John Lennon
1974
25. Behind the Wall of Sleep
The Smithereens
1986
26. Enter Sandman
Metallica
1991
27. Follow Your Dreams
Sheryn Regis
2004
28. The Gunner's Dream
Pink Floyd
1983
29. When You Close Your Eyes
Night Ranger
1984
30. In My Dreams
REO Speedwagon
1987
31. Dream
The Cranberries
1993
32. Dreaming of You
The Coral
2002
33. Made to Dream
Jackie Evancho
2014
34. Dream Big
Jazmine Sullivan
2008
35. Dreamer
Supertramp
1974
36. All of These Dreams
Phish
2002
37. Daysleeper
R.E.M.
1998
38. What Dreams Are Made Of
Hilary Duff
2003
39. Crazy Dreams
Carrie Underwood
2007
40. Dreaming
Blondie
1979
41. Even If It Breaks Your Heart
Eli Young Band
2011
42. Daydream Believer
The Monkees
1968
43. Daydreaming
Radiohead
2016
44. I Can Dream About You
Dan Hartman
1984
45. Dreams
Beck
2015
46. Teenage Dream
Katy Perry
2010
47. Anyway
Martina McBride
2007
48. Dreaming With My Eyes Open
Clay Walker
1993
49. You Make My Dreams Come True
Hall and Oates
1980
50. Don't Fall In Love With a Dreamer
Kenny Rogers and Kim Carnes
1980
51. Livin' the Dream
Drake White
2016
52. Runnin' Down a Dream
Tom Petty
1989
53. In Dreams
Roy Orbison
1986
54. Dreamer
Ozzy Osbourne
2001
55. Sweet Dreams Baby
Roy Orbison
1962
56. Enter Sandman
Metallica
1991
57. Talking In Your Sleep
Crystal Gayle
1978
Got a song suggestion for this Dream Playlist? Leave us a comment in the Comments Section below.
"Dreams are the touchstones of our character." - Henry David Thoreau, American writer
"Dreams are the touchstones of our character." - Henry David Thoreau, American writer | Source

What's In a Name? Locations With Names Associated with Dreaming and Sleep

show route and directions
A markerDay Dream, Kansas, USA -
Day Dream, Kansas, USA
get directions

B markerDoze Lake, Canada -
Doze Lake, Wood Buffalo, AB T0P, Canada
get directions

C markerDream Gulch, Idaho, USA -
Dream Gulch, Idaho 83873, USA
get directions

D markerDrowsy Lake, Canada -
Drowsy Lake, Laurentian Hills, ON K0J, Canada
get directions

E markerGoodnight, Texas, USA -
Goodnight, TX 79226, USA
get directions

F markerNightmare Lake, Montana, USA -
Nightmare Lake, Montana 59061, USA
get directions

G markerShuteye Peak, California, USA -
Shuteye Peak, California 93604, USA
get directions

H markerSleeper, Missouri, USA -
Sleeper, MO 65536, USA
get directions

I markerSleepy Creek, West Virginia, USA -
Sleepy Creek, 3, WV 25411, USA
get directions

J markerSlumber Trail, Georgia, USA -
Slumber Trail, Decatur, GA 30034, USA
get directions

© 2016 FlourishAnyway

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Comments 32 comments

FlourishAnyway profile image

FlourishAnyway 10 days ago from USA Author

Patricia - I hope all your dreams come true. I know that you and your family are struggling with a lot. Have a good weekend with those you love.


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FlourishAnyway 10 days ago from USA Author

Gypsy Rose Lee - Thank you for stopping by and for commenting. Yes, it seems like some singers have favorite themes that they revisit time and again. Have a great weekend!


pstraubie48 11 days ago

so many great songs here...the Everly Brothers' song took me waaaay back....music is part of every single day for me, a huge part.

Thanks for sharing this with us.

Angels are once again on the way...hope you are having a lovely Thanksgiving weekend. ps


Gypsy Rose Lee profile image

Gypsy Rose Lee 11 days ago from Riga, Latvia

Just loved this and had me humming some of the songs. You know what sometimes gets a bit confusing is that there are some singers like Roy Orbison has a number of songs about dreams and dreaming. Anyway great job as always.


FlourishAnyway profile image

FlourishAnyway 13 days ago from USA Author

Martie - So glad you enjoyed this. With all that is going on in the world right now, I prefer dreaming. Have a wonderful week!


MartieCoetser profile image

MartieCoetser 13 days ago from South Africa

Beautiful songs! My favorite is "All I Have to Do Is Dream" by The Everly Brothers :)


FlourishAnyway profile image

FlourishAnyway 2 weeks ago from USA Author

Minnetonka Twin - Thank you for stopping by and adding your reflections on these songs. Glad they bring back the good times. Happy Thanksgiving!


Minnetonka Twin profile image

Minnetonka Twin 2 weeks ago from Minnesota

Love your thorough list of great songs about dreaming. The song 'Talkin in your Sleep' is one of my favorites because it brings me back to my fun college days. Thanks for the a fun list that brings up so many memories.


FlourishAnyway profile image

FlourishAnyway 2 weeks ago from USA Author

Linda - Oh, that's so funny! I can almost see it down, perhaps from the vantage point of another driver on the interstate or stopped at a red light looking over. Too funny! Adding that one!


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FlourishAnyway 2 weeks ago from USA Author

Devika - I often wonder what American songs get heard overseas. I'm happy that some of these were familiar to you. Have a great week.


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FlourishAnyway 2 weeks ago from USA Author

MsDora - Keep dreaming. We all have to have something to reach, to stretch for so we continue to grow. Thank you for stopping by!


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FlourishAnyway 2 weeks ago from USA Author

Heidi - Glad you enjoyed it. Thanks so much for consistently reading. I appreciate you! Have a great week.


Carb Diva profile image

Carb Diva 2 weeks ago

Oh Flourish, so many sweet songs here in your list. However, when Aerosmith comes on the radio, it's best if my kids are not in the car. I embarrass them with my head banging. I also love "Enter Sandman" (gosh, am I revealing that I might be a closet metal head?) Thank you for this hub!


heidithorne profile image

heidithorne 2 weeks ago from Chicago Area

Even before I scrolled through I thought of the Everly Brothers track. Another list with lots of favorites! And, in agreement with our pal, billybuc, if I can recall the Everly Brothers, I'm getting old. :) Keep the hits coming!


DDE 2 weeks ago

Songs I know of but you got me thinking here about these songs some I haven't heard of in a while.Songs I don't hear in Croatia.


MsDora profile image

MsDora 2 weeks ago from The Caribbean

Thanks for underscoring the power of dreams. I call myself a late dreamer, nor remembering any significant dreams that I dreamed real early, but I'm still dreaming. Based on your meaning of dreams, I am hopeful.


FlourishAnyway profile image

FlourishAnyway 3 weeks ago from USA Author

Nell - Thank you for the sweet compliment. I'm happy that this list brought you joy. Have a wonderful week ahead.


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FlourishAnyway 3 weeks ago from USA Author

Genna - Can you imagine having to sing those songs repeatedly, given the emotional loading? Talk about bad blood. Thank you for reading! Have a good week!


FlourishAnyway profile image

FlourishAnyway 3 weeks ago from USA Author

Bill - Glad it made the list then! Thank you for stopping by. I appreciate you taking a look. Have a great week ahead.


FlourishAnyway profile image

FlourishAnyway 3 weeks ago from USA Author

Peg - Thank you so much for your kind kudos. I didn't realize there were so many "dream" songs. Have a great week!


FlourishAnyway profile image

FlourishAnyway 3 weeks ago from USA Author

Linda - That's what I found as well -- different interpretations of what a dream means to people. Some people were literal with dreams being sleepy dreams or daydreams while others considered them more of hopes and dreams ambitions or the difficult to define American Dream. Thanks for visiting. Have a great week.


AliciaC profile image

AliciaC 3 weeks ago from British Columbia, Canada

I enjoyed reading the quotations on the photos. Of course, I enjoyed reading the rest of the article, too! It's interesting to see how the topic of dreams has been interpreted in different songs.


Genna East profile image

Genna East 3 weeks ago from Massachusetts, USA

Ah, to dream! Our dreams and hopes are part of the miracles of humanity. I have been listening to these songs, and it has been such a treat. After the turmoil of this past week, nothing could be better. (And I never knew the story behind Fleetwood Mac's "Dreams.") Thank you!


Nell Rose profile image

Nell Rose 3 weeks ago from England

I love these songs! there are loads aren't there? Your hubs are fab, I always ended up singing or tapping my feet! lol!


PegCole17 profile image

PegCole17 3 weeks ago from Dallas, Texas

Gotta love that Billy Ocean tune, Mamas and the Papas and Heart. Also loved The Everly Brothers with Dream, Dream, Dream. Another wonderful collection.


bdegiulio profile image

bdegiulio 3 weeks ago from Massachusetts

Great list Flourish. Can't believe how many songs there are dealing with dreaming. California Dreamin by the Mamas and the Papas is one of my all-time favorites. Great job.


FlourishAnyway profile image

FlourishAnyway 3 weeks ago from USA Author

Larry - Glad you enjoyed this! Hope you are livin' the dream like I am. (Sometimes you have to change what you want midstream, but you know.) Have a great week.


Larry Rankin profile image

Larry Rankin 3 weeks ago from Oklahoma

"I had a dream that I could fly, over the moon in ectasy! I got a golden ticket!" Willy Wonka:-)

Great read!


FlourishAnyway profile image

FlourishAnyway 3 weeks ago from USA Author

quicksand - Added as #55! Thanks for the suggestion! I appreciate you stopping by!


FlourishAnyway profile image

FlourishAnyway 3 weeks ago from USA Author

Bill - But it made the list, didn't it!?! You're an oldie but goodie, my friend.


quicksand profile image

quicksand 3 weeks ago

Can I add an old fave? Roy Orbison's Sweet Dream Baby.


billybuc profile image

billybuc 3 weeks ago from Olympia, WA

My age is showing. I had "Daydream Believer" by the Monkees as #1. LOL I'm suddenly feeling old.

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    FlourishAnyway875 Followers
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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.



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