There are all kinds of ways to define going crazy, from doing things you would never normally do because you’re in love with someone to making an awful decision or trying to achieve something impossible to literal psychotic breaks. In this article, we’ll hit most of these types of crazy as we go over 21 of the best songs out there about going a little bit insane.
1. Crazy – Patsy Cline
Here’s one of the older songs about going crazy that has been an absolute classic for decades. Patsy Cline laid it down in Crazy, a song where she mainly discusses how crazy she is for how strong her feelings for her partner are. Despite her knowing he likely wouldn’t be in it for the long run, she went ahead with it anyways, with the song mostly referring to her maligning herself for loving him.
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2. Let’s Go Crazy – Prince
Prince’s song Let’s Go Crazy is one of the greatest songs ever, not just one of the best ones out there, about going crazy. It looks at it as something everyone deals with and even seems kind of happy about it, where just by letting go, you’ll find a lot more happiness than the things you typically have to deal with. It’s also been remixed and recorded by numerous other artists over the years, with my favorite (another version) coming from Incubus.
3. Institutionalized – Suicidal Tendencies
Institutionalized was Suicidal Tendencies’ debut single in 1983, and it was the only single to come from their first album. It was so popular (and still is) that it was nominated for a Grammy Award for Best Metal Performance With Vocal in 1994, 10 years after its release. Who would have thought a song about being placed in a mental facility would be so universally relatable?
4. Crazy Train – Ozzy Osbourne
ALLLL ABBBOOOOOOOOOOAAAAAARRDDDDDDD. Ozzy slides in with his own brand of madness and evil with Crazy Train, his first major hit as a solo artist and a song you’ll still hear on the radio today. It’s probably one of the most catchy songs on this list and takes us on a long trip through the mental case that Ozzy Osbourne has become during his time as a rock and roll star.
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5. Stone Cold Crazy – Queen
Queen had quite a few songs about going crazy. Stone Cold Crazy was one of their most popular ones, being played in every one of their concerts between 1974 and 1978. This is odd because they never released it as a single. Incredibly fast, Stone Cold Crazy was a metal song before there were a lot of metal bands out there, with Metallica later covering it for themselves.
6. Mad Hatter – Melanie Martinez
Inner turmoil can absolutely drive you crazy. There are some things you can’t change about yourself, and the only way to find a place of mental clarity is to accept them and be okay with them. That was the entire theme of Melanie Martinez’s Cry Baby album, with none more indicative of the internal struggle and crazy feeling of acceptance than Mad Hatter.
7. They’re Coming To Take Me Away, Ha-Haaa! – Napoleon XIV
This marching-style sound is honestly hilarious, but it’s also one of the absolute best songs about going crazy. It feels like it comes from a delusional mind, and the voice effects are even pretty creepy. You’ll also find plenty of references to the mad, from being taken away to the asylum, and phrases like a funny farm that nail the theme down. In general, it’s an unhinged song that might even drive you a bit crazy.
8. Crazy Little Thing Called Love – Queen
We said Queen had crazy in a few of their songs. Crazy Little Thing Called Love is one of their best-known songs and builds off of musical greats in the past like Elvis Presley. Love will make people do things they normally wouldn’t, which is honestly a form of crazy that can happen to every single person out there.
9. Still Crazy After All These Years – Paul Simon
The title track of Paul Simon’s fourth album, Still Crazy After All These Years, is a nostalgic song about holding onto the same old crazy ways they had in the past. After meeting a former lover, they go their separate ways because, crazily enough, neither of them has changed over the years.
10. Crazy Ex-Girlfriend – Miranda Lambert
Miranda Lambert is one woman you don’t want to screw over in a relationship, and she has several songs about being a crazy ex-girlfriend in her repertoire. No matter where you end up going, she will find you and make you regret going out with any other woman, though her crazed rage hasn’t brought her to the point of actually killing you… yet.
11. Basket Case – Green Day
Green Day became one of the biggest bands of all time and was instrumental in alternative rock becoming a major genre on the world stage. Their first-ever music video, the one for Basket Case, was set in a mental asylum. Look, they’ve always had a screw loose, but it seems the band took someone calling them “basket cases” a little too literally and decided to produce a banger of a song with the motivation.
12. Psychotic Girl – The Black Keys
In most cases, you can look at how someone treated their ex and know how they will treat you. There are, of course, exceptions, but if you see someone treating someone else like garbage, you should expect the same if you get with them. The real question is whether the crazy person in Psychotic Girl is the girl in question or the narrator for getting with her at all.
13. Crazy Bitch – Buckcherry
Crazy Bitch is Buckcherry’s biggest hit, and the idea of sex with crazy girls being better is one that has a grain of truth to it. This one even earned them a Grammy nomination for Best Hard Rock Performance and their first entry to the Billboard Hot 100.
14. Pumped Up Kicks – Foster The People
Pumped Up Kicks may sound like a fairly calm, groovy dance vibe, but a close inspection of the lyrics will tell you it’s much more chilling than that. A kid gets pushed too far and takes things into his own hands after finding his father’s gun in a closet. The narrator has plenty of targets in mind, from his family to the popular kids, and he’s even coming for you too.
15. (You Drive Me) Crazy – Britney Spears
You can’t really blame Britney Spears for going a bit crazy, especially now with all the information about how she was controlled for so long. This song is different, as a lover drives her into a craze. How much she loves and desires him keeps her up at night and excites her, so it’s at least kind of a positive kind of crazy.
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16. Beautiful Crazy – Luke Combs
Beautiful Crazy is a tribute from Luke Combs to his wife. With everything she has to deal with, she goes a bit crazy sometimes, but it only makes him love her more. His love for his wife drives him to insanity, but in the most beautiful way imaginable.
17. Before He Cheats – Carrie Underwood
There are a few different ways to go crazy, but going absolutely out of your mind after trauma is definitely one of the worst ways to go about it. In this one, Carrie Underwood has lost it after finding out her lover is cheating and is getting revenge the best way she knows how: going to town in his car. Maybe next time, he really will think before he cheats on someone.
18. People Are Crazy – Billy Currington
People Are Crazy is kind of a feel-good song about the world we live in. The two people in the song spend quite a long time talking about life and the experiences they’ve gone through. Instead of going crazy themselves, they come to the conclusion that people as a whole are crazy and do things for insane reasons. In the end, I think they’re onto something.
19. Madhouse – Anthrax
Madhouse is one of the best songs Anthrax has produced. Its music video sees the band perform in an insane asylum with quite a few of the patients there rocking out to the song with them.
20. Psycho – Metal Church
If songs about being crazy need to be deranged, then this song would be near the top of the list for the best. It’s got a little bit of comedy in it as well, making you feel afraid of what hides in the shadows, be it a crazy serial killer or Bill Cosby with his sleepy drinks.
21. Psychotic Break – Jerry Cantrell
We’ll finish off the list with another song that verges on the deranged. Psychotic Break by Jerry Cantrell is indeed psychotic, with the energy of the racing and circular thoughts you can’t get rid of when you’re on the verge of absolutely losing your mind.
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.