Music

The Best Songs About History 

Ranker Music
Updated September 24, 2019 2.1k votes 534 voters 26k views 78 items

History is a fascinating subject, so it's no shock it has been explored in song. Enjoy this list about the best songs about history, ranked by your votes. Some of the best songs about history are about specific historical events and others are about famous people who had an impact on history. Many of the top history songs specifically reference history in their titles.

On “We Didn't Start the Fire,” Billy Joel recalls dozens of historic headlines that occurred from 1949 to 1989. “Rosenbergs, H-bomb, Sugar Ray, Panmunjom/Brando, 'The King and I' and 'The Catcher in the Rye,” are a few examples of the references Joel makes throughout this song. Sublime wrote “April 29, 1992” about the L.A. Riots, which is a great song about a specific historical event.

The historic significance of the 9-11 attacks propelled Bruce Springsteen to write an entire album about the time and feelings surrounding the event. His song “The Rising,” which is also the album's title made this list of the best songs about history. Crosby, Stills, Nash & Young's hit, “Ohio,” is also a good history song.

Do you have a favorite song about history? Let us know in the comments and vote it to the top of this list.
list ordered by
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2
The Wreck of the Edmund ... is listed (or ranked) 2 on the list The Best Songs About History
slaft added Gordon Lightfoot
3
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Amy Boal added Don McLean
4
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5
Hotel California is listed (or ranked) 5 on the list The Best Songs About History
slaft added Eagles
6
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Cranberries
7
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slaft added Deep Purple, Flashback!, Joe Satriani
8
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Crosby, Stills, Nash & Young
9
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Moai added Sabaton
10
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They Might Be Giants
11
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slaft added Nena, Nena
12
Sympathy for the Devil ... is listed (or ranked) 12 on the list The Best Songs About History
slaft added The Rolling Stones
13
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RobLein added Johnny Horton
14
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slaft added Bruce Hornsby & The Range, Bruce Hornsby
15
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slaft added Led Zeppelin
16
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Bruce Springsteen, Bruce Springsteen & The E Street Band
17
Indian Reservation is listed (or ranked) 17 on the list The Best Songs About History
slaft added Paul Revere and The Raiders
18
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The Clash
19
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slaft added Simon and Garfunkel
20
Black Friday is listed (or ranked) 20 on the list The Best Songs About History
slaft added Steely Dan
21
She's Leaving Home is listed (or ranked) 21 on the list The Best Songs About History
slaft added The Beatles
22
Abraham, Martin and John... is listed (or ranked) 22 on the list The Best Songs About History
Marty Hill added Marvin Gaye
23
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Elvis Costello
24
Empty Garden is listed (or ranked) 24 on the list The Best Songs About History
slaft added Elton John
25
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Joni Mitchell