Funeral songs are usually meant to do two things. Honor the person who has passed on and comfort the ones that they left behind. You tend to hear a lot of religious music and comforting tracks about where that person is now. If that’s what you’re looking for, you’re in the wrong place.
In this article, we’ll give you 51 songs to play at a funeral that are completely inappropriate for the setting, yet funny nonetheless. Make sure if you use any of these that the people in attendance have a good sense of humor.
1. Since U Been Gone – Kelly Clarkson
It’s important to keep in mind that a lot of these songs are inappropriate during a funeral for a loved one who has passed but might be the perfect way to say goodbye to someone who has continually put you down and hurt you. While it isn’t a setting for the track to be played in a socially acceptable way, sometimes the shoe fits.
Kelly Clarkson’s Since U Been Gone is one of those songs that just feels right when you get out from under someone who has done nothing but keep you down. Finally being able to breathe and be yourself without feeling oppressed is the theme of the track. So, while you may not want to play a song describing how happy you are that someone is gone if you did care about them, this one would be great for a private way to say goodbye to an abuser.
2. Wake Me Up Before You Go-Go – Wham!
Funeral songs almost always have some hint of sadness to them, and if they don’t, there’s a level of melancholy acceptance and reverence in there. Wake Me Up Before You Go-Go has absolutely none of that and is hilarious in the context of a funeral.
The upbeat sound of the track just feels so wrong in that setting that the awkwardness alone might make a few folks chuckle. But the content of the song takes it a step further by happily discussing the person in question being gone forever. Let’s just hope no one in attendance was asleep when the person passed.
3. Bye Bye Bye – *NSYNC
*NSYNC may have been prepared for you to walk out the door, but your family most definitely was not ready for the passing of a loved one. Under no circumstances is Bye Bye Bye an appropriate song to play at a funeral. That being said, this hit boy band single may just be the funniest way to say goodbye to someone who didn’t particularly treat you well during their lifetime.
4. Another One Bites The Dust – Queen
Another One Bites The Dust must be what funeral directors feel like on a day-to-day basis. Good for business, sad for people. Queen’s iconic song is a far cry from an appropriate funeral hymn, but it would make for some hilarious reactions if you slid it into the playlist for the ceremony. Bonus points if it isn’t the only funeral happening around the same time that you’ll be attending.
5. Grandma Got Run Over By A Reindeer – Elmo & Patsy
Is there a funnier Christmas song out there that’s also appropriate for children? Grandma Got Run Over By A Reindeer is a classic but definitely not appropriate at a funeral, especially if the deceased person was a grandmother who passed around the holidays. The part of the track that most kids don’t understand is that Grandma—probably—really got run over by Grandpa, hence why he’s taking it so well.
The crux of the song is about whether or not Santa really exists and why anyone would give him a license to fly a sleigh if he’s such a bad driver, but the sadness of Grandma passing isn’t enough to make it a solid funeral track.
6. Ha Ha You’re Dead – Green Day
Green Day’s Ha Ha You’re Dead is a celebration of the hopeful death of a person who’s wronged you. It’s one of the best f*ck you songs to anyone who’s passed who you truly despised, calling them all sorts of names and explaining just how happy their death has made you. While it’s a bit more harsh than funny, it would still draw a laugh from me, but remember that it’s utterly inappropriate—if you didn’t guess from the name.
7. Dumb Ways To Die – Metro Trains Melbourne
A recent viral TikTok sound and the anthem of YouTube fail channels for the last few years, Dumb Ways To Die is the perfect funny funeral song for someone who passed in a dumb or funny way. The track lists plenty of different ways to die that we can all agree would be dumb, especially since they’re so preventable. Maybe it’s the right song for the next funeral you attend, or maybe not. Either way, it’s morbidly funny.
8. Ding-Dong! The Witch Is Dead – The Wizard of Oz
My mother actually wanted this played at her funeral back in the day because she thought it would be funny. Ding-Dong! The Witch Is Dead was funny when it was played when the first witch died in The Wizard Of Oz film because it was a celebration that she was gone without any introduction into her character. It would be even funnier at a funeral though, and if you play it, don’t tell anyone where you got the suggestion from.
9. Roll Me Up And Smoke Me When I Die – Willie Nelson
Has a stoner in your life recently passed away? Do you need a way to tell their family what that weird smell was and why they always had so much oregano in their bags? There’s no better way to honor their life and diehard passion than Willie Nelson’s classic hit Roll Me Up And Smoke Me When I Die.
10. Wanted Dead or Alive – Bon Jovi
Perhaps Bon Jovi’s most covered song, Wanted Dead Or Alive might mostly be about time on the road. For our purposes, it’s a rocking reminder of the person we love and the fact that they are now gone. Not appropriate for a funeral but definitely a humorous one to throw into the ceremony playlist.
11. Survivor – Destiny’s Child
Every single line of Destiny’s Child’s Survivor is about how much better off the narrator is now that a certain someone is out of their life. Even if that does happen to be the case for you and it would be hilarious to put in a funeral playlist, it’s definitely not appropriate. It serves as the antithesis to everything you expect at a service. Instead of honoring, it decries. And that’s what makes it funny.
12. Goodbye Earl – The Chicks
Goodbye Earl might be a funny song to play at a funeral, but if the departed soul died under mysterious circumstances, and you add it to the playlist, you might end up being suspected of having something to do with it. It’s a great track about ending a relationship with an abuser permanently and would be funny at a funeral, though it might serve as evidence against you in the wrong situation.
13. Stronger (What Doesn’t Kill You) – Kelly Clarkson
The old adage of “what doesn’t kill you, makes you stronger” is generally true. Growth is painful, whether that be pulling yourself out of a bad emotional situation or working out and feeling sore the next few days. It’s supposed to be a reminder that surviving hardships will make you tougher. Apparently, the person in the coffin isn’t getting any stronger now though…
14. Everything Is AWESOME!!!! – Tegan and Sara Feat. The Lonely Island
Everything is, in fact, not awesome when a loved one has passed on. However, if you want to remind everyone to have a positive mental attitude and approach things from a happy place they might just need this song to remember all the good things that they have in life. Perhaps not at the funeral but playing it during one still sounds funny to me.
15. Stairway to Heaven – Led Zeppelin
Stairway To Heaven almost has the right sound to be played at a funeral, but it’s missing a few things. Rather than being about the actual stairway to heaven that departed souls go up to find peace, it’s more about being a fool and buying your way through life. Not exactly the funniest song out there to play at a funeral but worth a chuckle and definitely not appropriate.
16. In Da Club – 50 Cent
Ultimate hip hop party anthem of the early 2000s that set 50 Cent’s career on fire—in a good way—and had clubs across the country bumping. You probably aren’t going to see too many people breaking it down at a funeral, but you can definitely put this hit single on to try to get them moving. Just don’t play it if they died in a fire because that was one roof that definitely shouldn’t have been burning.
17. Forget You – Cee Lo Green
Forget You is the clean, radio-friendly version of this song, so if you want something even harsher play the explicit one. The track isn’t a happy way to say goodbye, it’s a big f*ck you to the person you play it for. Just maybe, they deserve it. But expect it to get you some not-so-favorable reviews if you put it in a funeral playlist.
18. Highway To Hell – AC/DC
Highway To Hell has always served as a funny, loud, and rocking way to say goodbye to someone who was in all sorts of trouble during their life. You generally want to play songs that bring some comfort to those in attendance, with picturing the departed soul in heaven being one of the most common things to think of. With exactly the opposite imagery, this track is sure to make the morbid laugh to themselves at a funeral.
19. Stayin’ Alive – Bee Gees
Stayin’ Alive would be such an ironic song to play at a funeral that I laughed out loud while putting it on this list. No matter the circumstances, the Bee Gees are all about overcoming trouble and staying alive. Unfortunately, it seems that not everyone got that memo, and now, you have a funeral to attend.
20. I Will Survive – Gloria Gaynor
Irony seems to be a big theme of the songs that would be hilarious to play at a funeral. Gloria Gaynor’s I Will Survive was a massive hit during its time and remains a classic staple today. Why is it not appropriate you might ask? It isn’t about surviving after someone has passed. At a funeral, it serves as the ironic twist of someone who happened to not be able to survive.
21. Six Feet Under – Billie Eilish
Six Feet Under absolutely has to do with death, but it’s about the death of a relationship. In the context of a funeral, lines like “How can you die carelessly” take on a newer, harsher meaning. Wondering how things will grow on the person’s grave is also a bit uncouth of you, so this ends up being a somber yet inappropriately funny funeral song.
22. Na Na Hey Hey Kiss Him Goodbye – Steam
This one is an iconic sports song, best known for being the go-to loudspeaker track when ice hockey players get sent to the penalty box. It’s also a hilarious goodbye and suck-it song to play at a funeral, though you’re going to get quite a number of dirty looks. It’s a bad, yet very funny way to say goodbye to the dearly departed, especially if you really didn’t like them very much.
23. Happy – Pharell Williams
Happy by Pharell Williams is one of the most upbeat and positive songs out there and one of the best tracks to play when you’re in a contagiously good mood. That makes it utterly unfathomable to hear played at a funeral and is surely at least a bit humorous when thought of in that context. Whoever died had to be the worst person ever if this song fits at their service.
24. Die Young – Ke$ha
Ke$ha’s Die Young is a party anthem about making the most of the night and using the thought of an early grave to justify doing whatever your heart desires. It’s a fun pop song that has no place in a funeral. It’s so far off that the emotions of the tune and just the way it sounds are even more funny than the ironic lines about dying young.
25. The Final Countdown – Europe
Europe scored a major hit single with The Final Countdown, and the synth horns throughout the song have gone on to make it one of the most iconic classic rock tracks in history. Unfortunately, those things also make it an awful funeral song, and the irony of the clock counting down on the recently deceased only adds to how inappropriate this one is for the setting.
26. (I’ve Had) The Time of My Life – Jennifer Warnes And Bill Medley
What part of this song is the funniest? Is it owing someone because they gave you the most fun time ever? Is the “time of your life” seeing them depart from the mortal realm? Who is to say? Regardless, this hit track by Jennifer Warnes and Bill Medley is sure to make a few people laugh thanks to its upbeat, celebratory tone.
27. Celebration – Kool & the Gang
Ah, Celebration. The perfect track to celebrate the end of a school year, a happy reunion, or a great achievement. It’s so far from being a funeral song that the mere idea of playing it at one is funny. Though I guess it could fit if you and everyone else are throwing a party for the deceased instead of an actual funeral.
28. Baby Come Back – Pato Banton
Baby Come Back already had an air of hopelessness to it, as it’s obvious the relationship in the song is fractured because of the narrator. Why is it funny to play at a funeral though? Because no matter how hard you ask, the person who passed can’t come back. That may offend some of you, and if it does, you shouldn’t be reading this.
29. Problem – Ariana Grande Feat. Iggy Azalea
The real crux of Ariana Grande’s Problem is the chorus, as it talks about how she has one less problem without you in her life. This is an awful funny way to say goodbye to someone during their funeral service, complete with lines about them never waking up or never being able to come back.
30. (Don’t Fear) The Reaper – Blue Oyster Cult
Blue Oyster Cult meant for this song to be a thoughtful way to think about death. It accepts that “the reaper” comes for us all, and we should enjoy the time we have. But it’s totally inappropriate at a funeral. Imagine telling the person who has already passed to not be afraid to die and not to be scared of that guy in a hood with a scythe over there.
31. Thriller – Michael Jackson
Is a pop song about people rising from the dead as zombies appropriate for a funeral? Absolutely not. Would it be hilarious for people to do the Thriller dance in front of the casket? You bet your butt it would be.
Recommended: Top Michael Jackson songs of all time
32. The Best Day Ever – Spongebob Squarepants
This is one of the happiest songs ever about what an amazing day our favorite yellow sponge is having. Unfortunately, his voice is unfit for funerals and so is the theme of having your best day on someone’s last. It’s funny but truly rude.
33. A Little Piece of Heaven – Avenged Sevenfold
I saw this song in a few other articles discussing inappropriate tracks for funerals, with most of them saying it talks about the deceased burning in hell. This is in fact only partly true.
A Little Piece Of Heaven is an eight-minute masterpiece about keeping and having “relations” with a dead body, then being haunted by the reanimated soul as they claw their way back from hell to exact revenge for the narrator’s actions. There’s also a hint of murder, marriage, and insanity in the song. Definitely not appropriate for a funeral, but a few of the lines would definitely be funny to hear during one, like “Everybody’s gotta die sometime.”
34. Shake It Off – Taylor Swift
Telling someone to “shake it off” is a super common way to try to help them snap out of feeling hopeless or get over a minor injury. It’s incredibly unhelpful in most situations though, just like how unhelpful it would be to tell people at a funeral. Taylor Swift’s song only adds some levity to the unhelpfulness and is doubly funny as you can hopelessly try applying it to both the people in attendance and the deceased.
35. Let It Go – Idina Menzel
I don’t think this was exactly the sort of thing Elsa was singing about in Frozen, but there’s probably no funnier way to tell someone to let the passing of a loved one go than this. Extra funny if they happen to be parents tormented by the song but absolutely should never be played at a funeral regardless.
36. Bodies – Drowning Pool
Is there a lot to say here? It’s utterly inappropriate to talk about bodies hitting the floor during a funeral. But if the casket tips over while it’s on, you know it’s going to be a hilarious viral video.
37. Ring of Fire – Johnny Cash
Johnny Cash and June Carter fell into a burning ring of fire when they fell in love with each other, but playing this at a funeral implies the deceased is falling into the burning fires of hell. Funny, yes, but not a particularly tasteful—or subtle—way of discussing where they ended up.
38. Knockin’ on Heaven’s Door – Guns N’ Roses
Knockin’ On Heaven’s Door is a great song by Bob Dylan, but the Guns N’ Roses version cranks it up and gives it more energy. In true GNR fashion, it’s utterly inappropriate for a funeral. Playing their version at a funeral would make it feel like a parody of a bad comedy movie. Hilarious, but not the time or place for it.
39. Through the Fire and Flames – DragonForce
Through The Fire And Flames might be best known from its time on Guitar Hero, but a song about going through hell is a hilariously inappropriate addition to any funeral.
40. Surfin’ Bird – The Trashmen
Have you heard? Oh, I’m sorry, I thought that everyone was already aware that bird is the word. Surfin’ Bird gained new life thanks in large part to Family Guy, reaching thousands of younger people who thought the bit was a hilarious running theme for the show. What would be equally hilarious and inappropriate is breaking this one out at a funeral.
41. Dead & Bloated – Stone Temple Pilots
If you’re looking for a song to represent the dearly departed, you should probably avoid tracks that discuss what’s going to—eventually—happen to their body. Stone Temple Pilots might have been using metaphors in Dead & Bloated, but it’s the unfortunate reality of a dead person that makes this a hilarious song to play at a funeral.
42. Circle of Life – Carmen Twillie And Lebo M.
The Lion King did a great job illustrating the way nutrients are cycled through an environment—at least in this song—though it did avoid touching on death as much as it possibly could for the sake of the remaining film for children. Circle Of Life is a funny yet inappropriate track for a funeral that just might help you accept that they’re gone now.
43. Sympathy for the Devil – The Rolling Stones
Sympathy For The Devil is fun. Speaking from the Devil’s point of view is funny for a funeral, but definitely not something you’d expect to hear from. This one should be reserved for the truly devilish figures in your life when they pass.
44. Danger Zone – Kenny Loggins
You’ve just entered the danger zone. This hit from Kenny Loggins has no place at a funeral, though I guess the last unexplored area of our lives is death and that would be a pretty dangerous endeavor.
45. It’s The End of the World As We Know It (And I Feel Fine) – R.E.M.
R.E.M. knows everything is over, but despite the losses, they’re still happy. It’s a good thing to try to emulate on a funeral day, but you shouldn’t be playing it out loud during one.
46. You Can’t Always Get What You Want – The Rolling Stones
The Rolling Stones scored a hit with You Can’t Always Get What You Want. In later years, more than hearing it as a standalone song, it’s been used to make fun of people. And what a funny but awful message to deliver during a funeral.
47. Here I Go Again – Whitesnake
Whitesnake is ready to move on, and they’ve apparently been left alone quite a bit. This one has all the glam rock power you’d want for a rocking good time, but it’s got no place at a funeral.
48. Only The Good Die Young – Billy Joel
Is it only the good who die young or do we only care when it’s a good person who does so? That’s a question left to smarter people than me or Billy Joel, but this song would definitely be a funny one at a funeral service.
49. Hell Awaits – Slayer
The one thing people hope for is that there’s a better place waiting for their departed loved one. Slayer has no qualms about telling them that they’re wrong. Hell Awaits is another song that features as the antithesis to everything a funeral is usually about, making it one of the funniest tracks to play at one.
50. Stupid Hoe – Nicki Minaj
Perfect for the stupid hoe in your life who has passed on. There’s no real way to describe how inappropriate this song would be at a funeral, but if the shoe fits…
51. I Knew You Were Trouble – Taylor Swift
I Knew You Were Trouble has all the wrong energy for a funeral, but it could be fitting in several ways. Not only is it a funny song to play for the departed trouble-maker in your life, like Taylor Swift they’re also now lying on the cold hard ground, oh…
As a contributing writer for Music Grotto, Dakotah writes and produces professional music/media content. He works closely with editorial staff to meet editorial standards and create
quality content for the Music Grotto website. Dakotah is passionate about music in a wide variety of genres, from hip-hop to country and lo-fi to metal, and he enjoys creating music pieces for Music Grotto.