Depression is a more profound feeling of sadness that makes a person feel hopeless and worthless, leading to apathy. Clinical depression is a condition that affects so many people each year.
In contrast, situational depression is a familiar feeling that many people experience that comes from the loss of relationships, jobs, or overwhelming, stressful events. We have collected the best songs about depression that put it into perspective, and we believe they can ease your mind during difficult times.
1. “I Feel Like Dying” – Lil Wayne
One of the ways that people cope with it is using substances, and Lil Wayne, in this song, describes the feeling after the substances have worn off, wanting to end his life. The depression comes back and makes him feel like dying. However, when he is on these substances, he is euphoric and feels good. This song perfectly describes how people with depression try to find ways to deal with depression using outside methods.
2. “Adam’s Song” – Blink 182
The lyrics of Adam’s Song came from a real-life situation where a teen committed suicide and left a suicide note. The lyrics are from that note. The teen’s depression came from a feeling of loneliness after not being happy. The feeling of intense loneliness is something that many people who suffer from depression identify from this song.
3. “Hurt” – Johnny Cash
Hurt’s lyrics outline beautifully the numbness that comes from depression brought about by grief. The song also highlights the pain of losing people we love, either from death or even a painful breakup. The emotional lyrics are relatable for people who have suffered loss and are looking for a song that interprets how they feel.
4. “Unsteady” – X Ambassadors
This song by X Ambassadors is about a troubled relationship between parents and how it impacts the rest of the family. It is a touching song for people with depression brought about by unstable and troubled family situations and wanting our parents’ relationship to work out.
5. “Never Let Me Go” – Florence + the Machine
‘Never Let Me Go’ is a song that explains the rollercoaster of depression after a relationship ends. Like other depression songs, it describes the struggle to not give up on the relationship but finally sinking into the realization that it is over. The lyrics, “And it’s peaceful in the deep,” are about accepting the painful ending of the relationship.
6. “Paint It, Black” – The Rolling Stones
This Rolling Stones song is a dark song that expresses how someone who is depressed feels inside of them. The lyrics ‘I look inside myself, And see my heart is black’ explain the darkness that sometimes people who are depressed feel. That everything in the world should match the feeling inside of them.
7. “Breathe Me” – Sia
The lyrics in this song talk about dealing with depression and the dreadful emotions and toxic thoughts resulting. The lyrics ‘Help, I have done it again’ show the constant state of depression creeping back. At the same time, the song also shows a vulnerability of asking for help recognizing the helplessness from depression.
8. “Fade to Black” – Metallica
This Metallica song speaks about the dark and hopeless feelings that come from being depressed. The lyrics talk about ‘Getting lost within myself where the dark emotions come with depression and how nothing and no one else matters when in that desperately unhappy place when feeling empty, lost and losing the will to live.
9. “Everybody Hurts” – R.E.M.
This song is an encouragement to people who suffer from depression and sometimes want to end it all. The lyrics encourage them to hold on by asking them not to let themselves go. The song empathetically recognizes the feelings that can lead to someone who is depressed wanting to end it all but encourages them not to commit suicide.
Next: Top songs about suicide
10. “Unwell” – Matchbox Twenty
Rob Thomas wrote ‘Unwell’ for Matchbox Twenty after suffering from panic attacks that also worsened his feelings of being alone and uncomfortable around groups of people. It talks of the emotional fragility that comes from being uncomfortable in his skin and recognizing that he is unwell.
11. “Be OK” – Ingrid Michaelson
This song talks about wanting to be OK even when suffering from feelings of depression. It is about the singer feeling numb and broken inside but wanting these feelings to pass and be alright. She asks for assurance that she will get there. When you are depressed, this is a lovely song.
12. “Runaway Train” – Soul Asylum
The lead singer for Soul Asylum, Dave Pirner, wrote this song to describe his experience of depression. It talks about the feeling of not coming out of depression and being in too deep. The song describes feeling overwhelmed like a runaway train being uncontrolled.
13. “Lose You To Love Me” – Selena Gomez
The song explains the depression that one feels after going through a painful breakup, but it also talks about how Selena can recognize that the relationship isn’t working for her and how she needs to move on. She takes the pain of the breakup as the new beginning to love herself again.
14. “Skyscraper” – Demi Lovato
The powerful lyrics about depression will help you feel better, that things will change, and hope will come as you rise from the dark feeling of depression and become stronger. Demi Lovato reminds you that “you’re a skyscraper” and don’t forget it.
15. “Mad World” – Gary Jules
Mad World is hopeless and depressing because of the description of living a mundane life working the 9 to 5, which sucks the joy and life out of us. The lyrics ‘The dreams in which I’m dying, Are the best I’ve ever had’ describe how chasing a job can make life unhappy.
16. “Stressed Out” – Twenty One Pilots
This song was a global hit. The rock and rap song talks about the overwhelming feelings teens experience coming from childhood at the cusp of adulthood. These feelings include insecurities, fear of the unknown in adulthood, school loans, and longing to be a child again.
17. “Fix You” – Coldplay
Coldplay’s “Fix You” is a haunting, comforting song when in depression. The lyrics “tears stream down your face when you lose something you cannot replace” can help identify the sad feelings and emotions. It is a song about a loved one wanting to fix the hurt of someone going through depression.
18. “Only Happy When It Rains” – Garbage
This alternative rock song is about the misery of depression. The singer seeks that misery because it has become a part of their life. The song lyrics ‘I’m riding high upon a deep depression’ talk about them getting used to beng in a depressive state and learning to be comfortable there.
19. “Little Talks” – Of Monsters and Men
The debut single by this indie-folk and the indie pop-rock band is about losing the person you love. It is about the sorrow and sadness that arises and refuses to leave. The feeling of depression since his death makes her have trouble sleeping and some days cannot even get dressed, a feeling that many depressed people can identify with.
20. “All We Are” – One Republic
The lyrics in this uplifting anthem can encourage you if you are suffering from hopelessness and depression. The encouragement comes from the focus that the suffering is not permanent and eventual healing after hurt. The song is about a relationship that is not working and is honest to recognize the dead relationship.
21. “Living Is A Problem Because Everything Dies” – Biffy Clyro
The song is about depression and the hopelessness that comes from thinking that nothing will change and that everything will remain the same. The lyrics ‘Built a time machine to escape from all the pain in the back of my car’ are about the pain of the feeling of hopelessness.
22. “Hurt” – Nine inch Nails
One of the ways that people deal with depression is hurting themselves to feel some relief from the internal pain. This song captures the pain of trying to deal with depression, yet it is not effective. It is a painful reminder that the singer wants a way out of the pain.
23. “Summertime Sadness” – Lana Del Rey
Lana Del Rey’s music is easily recognizable for its melancholic subjects, and Summertime Sadness is no different. The song is about a girl who loves her lover so much that she would die for him. The haunting tune creates a foreboding feeling which makes it a favorite for people feeling depressed.
24. Chandelier – Sia
This upbeat tempo song sung in Sia’s captivating voice is a reflection of how people who are depressed will try to appear normal to the rest of the world. The lyric “I push it down” shows how we try to ignore our despondent emotions and thoughts, and yet they always come bubbling back up.
25. “Save Myself” – Ed Sheeran
Some of the lyrics of Ed Sheeran’s song, ‘Life can get you down so I just numb the way it feels,’ describe clearly how the singer feels after giving himself in unappreciative relationships. It causes him to feel sad to the extent of numbing himself to avoid those depressive feelings.
26. “Just A Dream” – Carrie Underwood
“Just A Dream” is a song about depression that families and loved ones experience after losing someone in military service. It speaks about the emotional feeling of panic since your brain can’t process the depth of the pain of everything that is happening. It is a song that talks about the depth of pain caused by grief.
27. “You Found Me” – The Fray
This rock song describes the singer confronting G*d for the bad things that have happened to him. He feels defeated by the situations he finds himself in and concludes that he is alone and will probably always be this way. It describes sadness and isolation.
28. “Already Gone” – Kelly Clarkson
Already Gone is a Kelly Clarkson song about a depressing breakup. The lyrics “we were never meant to say goodbye” talk about how the singer thought they would always be together but have lost the person they loved. The song has uplifting moments where the singer ends the song positively even with the end of the relationship.
29. “Missing You” – All Time Low
This song is about someone recognizing a friend who has messed up but encouraging them not to give up. The friend is depressed, and the song encourages them not to give up and lose the fight, and things will get better.
30. “Whataya Want From Me” – P!nk
P!nk sings a haunting song about having good people who support you when you are depressed. It talks to the loved ones of the depressed singer to tell them not to give up on her. She is trying to work things out, and it is a lovely song when you are depressed as it can encourage you to be not alone.
31. “Here Comes the Rain Again” – Eurythmics
The rain in this song is a metaphor for sadness and depression. The song’s lyrics ‘Tearing me apart like a new emotion’ talk about longing to have the one they love to respond to them with love, but the rain comes again. It expresses despondency about a relationship that is not stable.
32. Numb – Linkin Park
Numb is one of the most popular songs about depression. It speaks of how losing our lives can feel out of control, leading to depression, especially if there are unrealistic expectations placed on us. The escape for this is to feel numb to block out the negative emotions.
33. “Lithium” – Evanescence
Lithium is about the singer who has a prescription for medication. However, she feels torn between remaining depressed, which she is used to, and becoming a new person while taking the medication. It talks about how sometimes you can be depressed for so long that it is not obvious that you want to change when the solution comes.
34. Welcome to the Black Parade – My Chemical Romance
Welcome to the Black Parade is an uplifting song about depression. It encourages the person who is depressed to fight back and come out of the dark feelings they are experiencing. The lyrics ‘Defiant to the end, we hear the call’ is the attitude to defeat the misery that comes from life knocking you down.
35. “Lullaby” – Nickelback
This song is about a man who has a suicidal friend, and when he cannot reach, he fears the worst. He tells his friend that he understands him but tells him not to give up because the best is yet to come.
36. “Let You Down” – NF
N.F. is a rapper, and his song Let You Down talks about dealing with depression and the negative thoughts that cause depression. He talks of the persistent feeling that steadily grows worse. It is a sad song that speaks of the hopelessness we experience from depression caused by loud negative thoughts.
37. “Fell on Black Days” – Soundgarden
The song’s opening lyrics ‘Whatsoever I’ve feared has come to life set the pace for this dark emotional tune. Chris Cornell, the lead vocalist of Soundgarden, wrote it, and he struggled with depression and finally lost that battle. The lyrics of the song describe the black days that the singer is experiencing.
38. “By The Grace of G*d” – Katy Perry
The lyrics of this song graphically paint a picture of the singer’s struggle with suicidal thoughts. These feelings came from extreme fatigue and burnout. She calls out to G*d, who saves her, and she gets the strength to pick herself up again and keep going on.
39. “Champagne Problems” – Taylor Swift
Champagne Problems is a sad song about a broken relationship. One person is ready to tie the knot while the other wants out of the relationship. The slow tempo of the music and the sweet voice of the singer help to soothe you if you are coming out of a relationship that you thought would last forever.
40. “Black Eyed Dog” – Nick Drake
This song has simple repetitive lyrics that are sad and lethargic. The singer says he does not want to grow old and wants to go home, which is a metaphor for dying. The singer died from a substance overdose a short while after this song was released, making it even more depressing.
41. “Suicide Is Painless” – Manic Street Preachers
This song is about suicide and how depressed people sometimes feel like it is the only way out. It is a dark song that shows that suicide is the only way to live a painless life. It is a hopeless song that makes the listener more depressed with no solution in sight.
42. “Dark Times” – The Wknd
This 2015 release from The Wknd warns the singer’s lover that he faces dark times. It is a self-aware song of his struggle to deal with the darkness in him that causes him to do bad things such as fighting and drinking too much.
43. “Loser” – Beck
The loser is a depressing and defiant song where the singer believes he is a loser and does not deserve to live. When depressed, you can identify with the lyrics of this song because sometimes it feels like the dark thoughts tell you that you don’t deserve to live.
44. “Away From the Sun” – 3 Doors Down
This is among the top songs about depression that describes the feeling of the singer stuck in a dull existence because depression has stripped away color from his life. He longs for happier days.
45. “Say Something” – A Great Big World & Christina Aguilera
This is a haunting ballad of a failing relationship. One person pleads with the other to say something. They do not get a reply, making the song very sad.
46. “Every Night” – Paul McCartney
Every Night is a song about The Beatles’ breakup. It talks about McCartney having a hard time moving on.
47. “Stan” – Eminem
Stan is a song about a disturbed fan and ends his life after Eminem does not respond to his letters. It is a regretful depiction of suicide and what pushes people to end their lives.
48. “A Little Too Much” – Shawn Mendes
A Little Too Much is a sweet song about a man who is dealing with his depressed girlfriend. It is an encouragement to people with loved ones who are depressed to hang in there with them and for those who are depressed to ask for help.
49. “Believer” – Imagine Dragons
This is a song about the singer’s battle with depression which comes from going through hard times when he is young. The song motivates you when suffering from depression to turn your challenges into something that works out for you.
50. “Sorrow” – The National
The lead singer, Matt Berninger, described this song as a person having a relationship with his sad feelings. It is a song that describes depressed emotions and allows you to feel them.
51. “FML” – Kanye West feat. Travis Scott, The Weeknd & Bon Iver
FML is among the top raw depression songs by Kanye West on his mental struggles. He describes his thoughts in this masterpiece from his album ‘Life of Pablo’.
As the Head Editor at Music Grotto, Liam edits content produced from over 30 professional music/media journalists and contributing writers. He works closely with journalists and other staff to format and publish music content for the Music Grotto website. Liam is also the founding member of Music Grotto and is passionate in disseminating editorial content to its readers.