The 78 Best Sad Songs of All Time

Sometimes life throws a curveball that throws us into the depths of sadness, and we need some encouragement to make it through. For many of us, sadness is not only painful, but it can be extremely challenging to overcome. However, never underestimate the power of music! By creating the perfect melancholy playlist, we can ease our grief through the healing self-comfort of music.

Any song can emote feelings of sadness, even if that isn’t the intent of the music. Sometimes all it takes is a particular song to invoke a memory that transports you to another place in time and makes you long for what once was.

It’s important to know that all of us feel pain, and it’s ok to allow yourself the space to feel the full range of your emotions. But, instead of letting the sadness overcome us, we have to find ways to heal and find strength through it. So, next time you’re feeling down, check out our list of songs about sadness. They are sure to help you find the courage to dust yourself off and keep going.

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Genres: Stomp and hollerIndie folk

The song expresses deep regret and longing for a past moment that cannot be relived, capturing the pain of lost love and the haunting memories associated with it.

Genres: PopUk pop

The lyrics convey the emotional aftermath of a breakup, expressing feelings of heartbreak, loneliness, and the struggle to move on from a relationship that has ended.

Genres: Hip hopSouthern hip hopPittsburgh rap

Originally created as a tribute to the late Paul Walker, the song evokes profound sadness as it reflects on loss, memories, and the hope of being reunited with a loved one in the afterlife.

Genres: PopPermanent wave

The song explores the desire to help and comfort someone going through a difficult time, coupled with a sense of powerlessness in the face of their pain, making it emotionally poignant.

Genres: Pop soulUk popBritish soul

Adele's soulful delivery captures the raw emotions of heartbreak and acceptance, as the lyrics reflect on the end of a relationship and the difficulty of moving forward.

Genres: Pop rockRockIrish rock

The song is imbued with a sense of longing and unrequited love, as the lyrics depict the lingering feelings and emotional struggle associated with a past romantic connection.

Genres: Piano rockPopPop rock

Addressing themes of regret and missed opportunities, the song tells a poignant story of trying to save someone from self-destructive behavior, highlighting the pain of loss and the difficulty of intervention.

Genres: Yacht rockClassic rockRock

Steeped in introspection, the song reflects on the passage of time, personal growth, and the bittersweet nature of change, capturing the vulnerability and uncertainty of life.

Genres: Neo mellowIrish popModern rock

The song expresses the deep yearning for love and connection, portraying the emotional intensity of unfulfilled desires and the ache of feeling incomplete without a specific person.

Genres: Old school thrashRockHard rock

Despite being a love song, the melancholic tone is driven by the vulnerability and sincerity in James Hetfield's lyrics, expressing the fear of judgment and the deep connection that makes everything else irrelevant. The song's acoustic arrangement and Hetfield's soulful delivery contribute to its emotional depth, creating a sense of introspection and intimacy.

Genres: Hard rockRockGlam metal

The melancholic melody and introspective lyrics evoke feelings of longing and loss, capturing the pain of a fading love amidst the backdrop of a rainy November day.

Genres: New wave popSoft rockEuropop

The haunting vocals and dramatic instrumentation mirror the darkness and emptiness felt when love is lost, as if the heart is eclipsed by sorrow and loneliness.

Genres: RockClassic rockMerseybeat

Reflecting on the past, the song carries a sense of regret and nostalgia, highlighting the sadness of lost time and the longing to return to happier days.

Genres: Urban contemporaryBarbadian popPop

With its soulful vocals and pleading lyrics, the song captures the desperation and heartache of wanting someone to stay despite the inevitable end of a relationship.

Genres: Dance popPop

Expressing love tinged with sorrow, the song embodies the pain of letting go and saying goodbye, while holding onto the memories that will always remain.

Genres: Soft rockRock drums

The raw emotion in Collins' voice coupled with the poignant lyrics convey the resilience and vulnerability of love in the face of overwhelming odds, ultimately ending in heartbreak.

Genres: Pop rockNeo mellowPiano rock

The introspective lyrics and melancholic melody reflect the uncertainty and sadness of watching people change and feeling left behind, longing for a sense of belonging.

Genres: Canadian pop

Linked to the tragic romance of Titanic, the song embodies the enduring love that transcends time and distance, yet carries the weight of loss and separation.

Genres: Psychedelic rockArt rockRock

With its wistful lyrics and melancholic guitar solo, the song captures the longing for someone who is absent, conveying a sense of emptiness and yearning.

Genres: Alternative metalRockModern rock

The anguished vocals and nostalgic lyrics express the pain of longing for someone who is no longer there, highlighting the emptiness and longing left behind by their absence.