Turning 18 is one of the most important birthdays, and it’s a signal that you’re now an adult. Adulthood is what most teenagers yearn for and several genres of music have touched on the importance of turning 18.
Here is our list of 27 songs about being 18 you should check out!
1. 18 And Life – Skid Row
Our first artist needs no introduction because everyone knows Skid Row and their hit song from 1989 18 And Life, which was off of their self-titled album. This track is based on a news story about a boy who got a life sentence after killing another teenager. In the song, the boy, Ricky, is 18, and it’s one of those tracks that has us all singing along to it when we hear it.
The song was a hit and reached number four on the Billboard Hot 100 and 11 on the Billboard Mainstream Rock chart. You can find this track in the movie American Satan.
2. I’m Eighteen – Alice Cooper
In 1971, rocker Alice Cooper released I’m Eighteen on his album Love It To Death, and it’s all about how when you turn 18, you don’t know what you want to do in life or where to go even though it’s expected that you have it figured out.
The song peaked at number 21 on the Billboard Hot 100 chart and can be found in the movie The Filth And The Fury as well as on television shows such as 90210 and Pistol.
3. 18 – One Direction
Pop boy band One Direction had a hit with 18 on their 2014 album Four, and this song peaked at 87 on the Billboard Hot 100 chart. The track gives into how when you’re 18 and get into a relationship, it might be the one and last forever, unlike what people think young love is all about.
Even love that begins as a teenager can last a long time, and this is an upbeat song that talks about the possibility.
Recommended: Songs about teenagers
4. She’s Only 18 – Red Hot Chili Peppers
The rock band up next on our list is the Red Hot Chili Peppers who recorded She’s Only 18 on their 2006 Stadium Arcadium album. This is a song about how someone who is 18 isn’t really that old even though most younger women like to date older guys. Singer Anthony Kiedis said that this track was about Heather Christie, who was his girlfriend at the time.
5. 18 – 5 Seconds Of Summer
In 2014, 5 Seconds Of Summer released 18 off of their self-titled album, and it’s kind of a funny song about how turning 18 can be both fun and cringey at the same time. The guy is in love with a girl who’s 18 and he’s younger than her, so he’s trying to prove to her that he is mature and old enough to date.
It’s a relatable track to a lot of boys who find themselves wanting an older woman when they are in high school.
6. 18 Till I Die – Bryan Adams
Bryan Adams is a well-known rock and pop musician and he released 18 Till I Die in 1996 from the album of the same name. The song reached number two on the UK Rock & Metal charts and 21 on the Canada Top Singles chart. It’s a cheesy look at being young and wanting to stay young forever and never lose his love for life.
While admitting he’s getting older, he says it doesn’t affect his outlook on love or life. It’s a good track about wishing to stay 18 and youthful forever.
7. Eighteen – Bow Wow
Rapper Bow Wow released Eighteen in 2003 on his album Unleashed, and it’s a song about him celebrating his 18th birthday by having fancy cars, older women, big houses, and other items that he can afford to have since he became rich and famous before he was 18. It’s a track about the fun and experiences he’s had that we all wish we had when we were 18.
8. 8TEEN – Khalid
Khalid released the song 8TEEN in 2017, which talks about what it’s like to be 18, and it’s similar to what a lot of us experience, which is that we still live at home with our parents. When you’re 18, it’s still thought that you will act dumb and be single without falling in love, and it’s one of those tracks that most people can relate to.
9. Blooming 18 – Ace Of Base
Up next is a group you’ve probably heard of, which is Ace Of Base, and they released Blooming 18 in 1995 from the album The Bridge. This song goes into how there will be difficulties you experience as you turn 18 and try to figure out your life. It’s a track that is about discovering who you are and the changes you’ll go through along the way but encourages you to keep your head up through trying times.
10. 18 – Anarbor
In 2013, Anarbor released 18 on the album Burnout, and it’s a song about a girl who is 18 and wants to be rebellious, so she dates a guy that has tattoos and is the typical bad boy parents want their daughters to avoid in life. The emotions and wildness of being 18 come out in this track, and it delves into the dynamics between parents and teenagers where love is concerned.
11. 18 – Jeremy Zucker
Jeremy Zucker released 18 in 2021 on his album Crusher, and it’s about a boy who is 16 and dating a woman who is 18 years old, but the girl doesn’t know that he is only 16. This song talks about the relationship being a feat and feeling cool for dating someone older. It’s a relatable track for a lot of boys who try to date older women.
12. 18 – My Silent Bravery
In 2018, My Silent Bravery released 18 on the Willing To Try album, and this is a song about missing the good old days of being 18. A time when girls were emotional and high on caffeine while Bon Jovi played in the background.
He wants to be 18 again and in love and have that crush on Madonna that he used to have, so it’s a reflective and nostalgic piece about the 1980s and how life was back then.
13. I Wish I Was 18 Again – Ray Price
A country artist you might not know on our list is Ray Price, who released the song I Wish I Was 18 Again, and it’s about a guy who is reflecting back on his life when he was 18. The time was carefree and full of fun without responsibilities. We love this song because it’s about the memories we all have and wish for again as we get older.
14. 18 – EXES
Next on our list is EXES with its hit song 18, which is energetic and full of fun melodies and lyrics. It’s all about how you have all of these uncertain moments when you’re 18, but you may be in love and have a lot of carefree wild moments too. Emotions that come with being 18 and in love and not knowing what to do in life are explored in this song, and it’s perfect for capturing life as an 18-year-old.
15. Eighteen – Beabadoobee
In 2018, Beabadoobee released Eighteen, which goes into how you leave your childhood and move into adulthood. Even though you’re an adult it’s still a young age where you can enjoy your life and have fun, this song goes into more of the feelings and thoughts that you’re an adult now so grow up.
16. 18 Yellow Roses – Marty Robbins
Marty Robbins released 18 Yellow Roses, and it’s a country song about a guy who sends roses to someone he used to love and a symbol of regret and wishing he was with her again. The emotion in the track paints a good picture of young love and how it doesn’t always work out.
17. 18 Years – Daughtry
Daughtry is a country singer who released 18 Years back in 2013, and it’s about changing and growing up when you turn 18. It’s a reflective song about how different they are from when they were 18, and we all can relate to that nostalgic and contemplative process as we age.
18. When She Turns 18 – Christian TV
Christian TV released When She Turns 18 in 2010, and it’s about the joys and freedoms that come with turning 18. However, there are also responsibilities we have when we turn 18, and the song goes into that too, but it’s more celebratory than anything about turning 18.
19. Eighteen – Vistas
Vistas released Eighteen in 2019, and it’s about wanting to have that love they had when they were 18, and not having those same feelings anymore. The song talks about missing the emotions and feelings of being 18 and in love.
20. 18 – Iann Dior
Next up is iann dior and his song 18, which was released in 2018. He goes into detail about his first love and how the girl he was with said she hated him and how much it hurt him but they stayed together. It’s also going into toxic relationships and how we are often in those when we are young.
21. Girls – The 1975
In 2013, The 1975 released Girls, which is about how younger girls who are 18 want to be in a relationship even though they are not mature enough and too emotional. It delves into the fact that so many of us are not ready to be in serious relationships, but we force them anyway.
22. Eighteen – Aaron Prichett
Aaron Prichett released Eighteen in 2009 on Something Goin’ On Here, and it’s about how you feel that you’re invincible when you’re 18 and how that can lead to trouble for people.
It’s about an older guy looking back on those times in his life and all the rowdy crazy things he did.
23. She Will Be Loved – Maroon 5
A classic song we’ve all heard a million times is She Will Be Loved by Maroon 5, which came out in 2002 on Songs About Jane. The track was a huge success for the band peaking at five on the Billboard Hot 100, one on both the Adult Top 40 and Mainstream Top 40 charts, and four on the Adult Contemporary chart.
It’s about a girl who is 18 and insecure although she’s beautiful and she is broken. It talks about societal pressure and struggles that girls often go through in their lives. This song was featured in Smallville, One Tree Hill, and movies such as Rock The Kasbah.
24. Dreams Of 18 – Lal Meri
In 2009, our next artist Lal Meri released Dreams Of 18 on the album Lal Meri, and it’s a little jazz and blues mixed in with some electric vibes. It’s a sad song that goes into the lives of two people who are using substances and sleeping around to try to forget their past and the wish for them both to turn back time to when they were 18 and felt safe and loved.
25. Eighteen – Pale Waves
Pale Waves released Eighteen in 2018 on the My Mind Makes Noises album, and this is a nostalgic and energetic song about looking at being 18 and all of the fun you had as a teenager. Being carefree and having fun with your friends is part of being 18, and they hit the nail on the head with this track. You can feel the freedom and upbeat energy in the song that is very indie-pop.
26. 18 – Anson Seabra
In 2022, Anson Seabra released 18, and this song is about looking back at being 18 when he was with someone he loved and he doesn’t have contact with that person anymore. He looks at their love and how he longs to have it back. It’s a track we all can relate to, and it’ll have you feeling sad and nostalgic at the same time.
27. She’s A Lady – Forever The Sickest Kids
Forever The Sickest Kids ends our list with the song She’s A Lady from the 2008 album Underdog Alma Mater. This track is about being a teenager and trying to have a relationship that is filled with drama, hormones, and emotions. Both of the people in the song are 18, and it’s a track that tells the story of how they always fight and things are only alright when they are hooking up.
From the time she was little, Florence loved listening to music and quickly learned how music can make you happy and feel fulfilled. One of her favorite memories is being in the garage with her dad working on classic cars with the local rock station blaring in the background. Ever since Florence was 3, she loved grunge music and spent hours listening to bands such as Alice in Chains, Mad Season, Soul Asylum, and Soundgarden.
She also enjoys classic rock, modern rock, nu metal, alternative rock, and old 90’s R&B. Her love of music grew as she got older, and used music to help her get through tough times in her life. More often than not, you’ll see Florence with earbuds in while she’s writing, cooking, cleaning, and doing other tasks. She also loves to debate music with her friends such as which lead singer is the best vocalist, the most iconic guitar solos in music, and what songs are really the best of the decade.