German The Best German Folk Songs  

Ranker Music
231 votes 110 voters 4.5k views 22 items

The best German folk songs celebrate the country’s heritage and tell tales of both joy and woe. Many of the tunes on this German folk songs list were written hundreds of years ago, though they’ve been recorded by modern-era artists as well.

“Muss i denn” is perhaps one of the most famous German folk songs. This song, about a soldier who goes off to war with a promise to return and marry the woman he loves, was written in 1827. Don't think you know it? Well, you actually might. In 1960, Elvis Presley recorded an adaptation called “Wooden Heart,” which was included in his film G.I. Blues.

Several of these top German folk songs were reimagined by famous composers and musicians, including “In Stiller Nacht” (“In the Silent Night”) – a traditional folk song that was adapted by Johannes Brahms. The song is a haunting lament about impending death. The moon refuses to shine, and grieving birds and animals are still.

Like all good folk songs, these tunes move the listener, whether they are political in nature, lullabies, or children’s songs. What is your favorite? Be sure to watch the videos if you’re not familiar with these songs, and vote your picks up to the top!

list ordered by

1
21 8
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Johannes Brahms

2
21 9
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3
20 9
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Klauss Doldinger

4
7 4
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Will Glahé

5
6 3
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6
8 6
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Matthias Claudius Chor St. Michaelis

7
8 6
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8
7 5
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Andrea Bocelli

9
4 2
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10
4 2
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Newhere added Walter Scheel

11
3 2
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Kern Buam

12
3 2
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13
1 0
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korrgf added Die Woodys

14
4 4
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Otto Waalkes

15
4 4
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16
2 2
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17
3 4
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Philharmonischen Kinderchor Dresden

18
3 4
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Anton Wilhelm von Zuccalmaglio

19
2 3
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20
1 2
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21
2 5
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Victoria Ivanova

22
3 7
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