If you need songs that make you feel invincible, all you need to do is turn on your favorite songs about power. Power doesn’t have to corrupt (as the old saying goes). Instead, power can be, well, empowering. When you need some motivation, a song about power can get you there.
This list of songs about power has everything from classic rock anthems to hip hop and pop songs. Ready to become empowered? Let’s go!
1. “Eye of the Tiger” — Survivor
Hey, you can call this song cheesy, but there’s no way anyone can listen to Survivor’s “Eye of the Tiger” and not feel a bit energized and empowered. A lot of the appeal of this song comes from seeing Rocky Balboa running up steps and being the beast that he was.
“Eye of the Tiger” topped the pop charts in the U.S. in 1982. For the “Rocky” movie, Sylvester Stallone hand-picked the song after hearing another song by the Survivor band. He was looking for something that had a “strong beat” and would appeal to the rock and roll crowd – and the rest is history.
2. “Power & Control” — Marina and the Diamonds
Welsh singer Marina Diamandis released the song “Power & Control” under her prior stage name of “Marina and the Diamonds.” The song appeared on “Electra Heart,” Marina’s second studio album, and it was the second single released from the album.
In an interview, Marina explained that the song details the painful power struggle that some people experience in relationships, particularly if one person would like to have the upper hand. Marina wrote the song with Steve Angello, a former Swedish House Mafia member.
3. “Power” — Kanye West
In the very first verse of Kanye West’s song “Power,” Ye tells us that every superhero needs his own theme music. One fascinating thing about this song is how the lyrics switch back and forth between jaded and vain to self-aggrandizing and ambivalent. “Power” was the lead single from the “My Beautiful Dark Twisted Fantasy” album, which was Ye’s fifth studio album.
While Ye says in the song that no man should have that much power, he also suggests that having power gives you a good feeling. One powerful line from the song is “I’m fighting for custody” of my inner child.
4. “People Have the Power” — Patti Smith
Patti Smith’s “People Have the Power” song was released when Smith was focusing on semi-retirement and raising a family. The year was 1988, and this song is just another example of the type of rock anthem that was a huge part of the excellent songs of the ’80s.
This powerful song is appropriate for the times we are living in now, and it serves as a reminder that human beings as a collective have the power to “redeem the work of fools.”
5. “The Lady Is a Vamp” — Spice Girls
The Spice Girls were one of the most successful girl bands of all time, and they have sold more than 80 million records worldwide. This makes them the girl group that has sold the most records in history. They’re also one of the most successful pop act in the U.K. since the Beatles.
The Spice Girls sang a lot of songs about girl power to empower women, and “The Lady Is a Vamp” was one of the ones that have lived on as an empowerment song. The lyrics are all about being a powerful girl in a 1990s world.
6. “Stronger” — Kelly Clarkson
Many of Kelly Clarkson’s songs are about finding your own power, and perhaps the most well-known of her empowering songs is “Stronger.” The message is from the old saying, “What doesn’t kill you makes you stronger.” Kelly has faced her share of critics in her career, and she has always risen to the top.
In “Stronger,” people are encouraged to stand taller even when they’re alone. Also, being alone doesn’t have to mean that you’re lonely, and the day someone leaves you is a new start. “Stronger” is one of the greatest powerful break-up songs about taking your power back.
7. “Fight the Power” — Public Enemy
Public Enemy is an American hip hop group, and they released “Fight the Power” in 1989 at the request of Spike Lee. The film director who needed a powerful music theme for “Do the Right Thing.” The song’s lyrics allude to issues that affect African American culture, including the music of artists such as James Brown, Black church services, and civil rights exhortations.
“Fight the Power” also makes the strong point that America’s favorite heroes are rarely people of color, and Elvis Presley and John Wayne aren’t typical heroes to Black Americans due to underlying issues.
8. “Your Power” — Billie Eilish
This is one of the songs on our list of songs about power that cautions people to not abuse their power. We all have a certain amount of power, at least in some areas of our lives. Using that power responsibly is our duty, and “Your Power” by Billie Eilish reminds us of that.
In an interview with British Vogue, Eilish says that her song is a sort of “open letter” to individuals who take advantage, and the song is meant to address sexual misconduct and body image, too. The lyrics of this song note that “power isn’t pain.”
9. “Roar” — Katy Perry
Katy Perry co-wrote her hit song “Roar” with songwriter Bonnie McKee. Perry wrote this song as a sort of autobiography after she underwent therapy. Releasing the song helped her to release all of the feelings that she had been holding inside. Perry said that she was “sick” of not speaking up for herself.
“Roar” is a song that has been described by co-author McKee as a “pick yourself up” anthem for female empowerment. The song was a huge commercial success, and it topped the charts in the U.S., the U.K., Canada, New Zealand, and several other countries.
10. “Take the Power Back” — Rage Against the Machine
In “Take the Power Back,” Rage Against the Machine criticizes the United States government for how leaders and politicians try to force everyone to conform to a certain way of life. In the song, the lyrics say that “Uncle Sam” has installed a “structure of lies” into our minds.
The song optimistically suggests that the American people are too smart to let the government fool them. One of the song’s most powerful lyrics is that the “circle of hatred” will continue unless the people react and do something about it. This is an anthem that rails against inequality and racism.
11. “The Power of Love” — Huey Lewis and the News
Not all songs about power consist of lyrics that involve fighting back against strong forces that try to control us. Love is one of the most powerful forces in the world, and Huey Lewis and the News taught us that in 1985.
In the song, Lewis sings that the power of love is indeed a curious thing. While it can make some men cry, it can make other men sing. “The Power of Love” is in the 1985 “Back to the Future” movie, and the song was written specifically for the movie.
12. “Don’t Stop Me Now” — Queen
If you want to feel empowered to have a good time (and give yourself permission to do so), just stop and listen to Queen’s “Don’t Stop Me Now.” This song was written by Freddie Mercury and released on Queen’s “Jazz” album in 1978.
Guitarist Brian May once said that this wasn’t one of his favorite songs because Mercury wrote it during a wild time in his life, and the song reflected the unrepentant hedonism that Mercury embraced for a time. However, the song is widely considered to be one of the best Queen songs of all time (and that’s certainly saying something).
13. “Independent Women, Pt. 1” — Destiny’s Child
It was the year 2000 when Destiny’s Child released the song “Independent Women, Pt. 1” for the soundtrack of the “Charlie’s Angels” movie. The epic song hit the number one spot in the U.S. and stayed there for 11 straight weeks. “Independent Women, Pt. 1” also made it to the top spot in the U.K., Brazil, Canada, the Netherlands, and New Zealand.
This was the perfect song for describing the lives of the ladies who formed Destiny’s Child, and that includes Queen Bey (Beyonce) herself. Independent women for the win! The song is all about women who are empowered enough to take care of themselves.
14. “We Are the Champions” — Queen
Did you know that the Queen song “We Are the Champions” has been declared the world’s catchiest song by scientists? We aren’t surprised because the song definitely caught on when it was first released and it’s used by sports teams all over the world. In fact, when Queen frontman Freddie Mercury wrote the song, he had football teams in mind.
The theme of “We Are the Champions” is that you have to go through a lot to find success, and it’s totally worth it. If you want to prove to the world that you can succeed, add this epic anthem to your playlist.
15. “The Power” — Snap
If you want to proclaim “I’ve got the power!” this upbeat and catchy song is exactly what you need. Snap is a German Eurodance group, and they released “The Power” on their debut studio album titled “World Power.” With lyrics such as “radical mind, day and night” and “maniac brainiac, winnin’ the game,” this song will get you motivated.
The rest of the lyrics are a bit all over the place, but it’s easy to forgive some of the randomness because the beat and music are just that good.
16. “Something Inside So Strong” — Labi Siffre
Labi Siffre is a British songwriter and singer who wrote “Something Inside So Strong” and released it in 1987 as a single. Siffre was inspired to write the song after seeing a TV documentary in 1984 about the Apartheid in South Africa.
In the documentary, white soldiers were caught on video shooting at black people in the streets. In an interview with BBC, Siffre also explained that his experience as a gay child, adolescent, and adult also influenced the lyrics. “Something Inside So Strong” is often used in Amnesty International campaigns.
17. “We R Who We R” — Kesha
Kesha is a recording artist with a big voice and an even bigger heart. In 2010, there was a wave of suicides among gay American teenagers, and in just one month, six adolescents committed suicide because of bullying. When Kesha read about the suicides, she was inspired to write the song “We R Who We R” to empower young gay people.
Kesha wanted the song to become an anthem for Gay Pride, she says. Her goal was to inspire everyone to be themselves, and to embrace their eccentricities and quirks. She further explained that she was genuinely affected by the surge in teen suicides. The key message in this song is that everything weird about us is beautiful and makes our lives interesting.
18. “Express Yourself” — Madonna
Madonna wrote “Express Yourself” for “Like a Prayer,” her fourth studio album. A song like “Express Yourself” was super bold in 1989 because the lyrics addressed gender inequality in a time before it was cool to be a feminist. The song received rave reviews from critics because it encourages women and oppressed minorities.
At the time, Madonna was going through a lot in her personal life. She had lost her mother and her belief in a higher power. She was also dealing with issues from her failed marriage with Sean Penn. “Express Yourself” is widely considered to be one of Madonna’s first songs about serious topics.
19. “Power” by Little Mix Featuring Stormzy
Little Mix is a British girl band, and their remix of the song “Power” appeared in 2016 on “Glory Days,” their fourth studio album. The song features Stormzy, a popular female British rapper. Lyrics from this powerful “girl power” song address women’s empowerment and gender equality.
In the music video, drag queens grace the stage, and the political message refers to marches and protests around women’s rights and gender equality. The song is so powerful that it was chosen by World Wrestling Entertainment (WWE) as the theme song for their wrestling event, the Royal Rumble.
20. “Titanium” — David Guetta Featuring Sia
When you reach a point where you have nothing left to lose, you can either quit or use all that you have to go for it. When you make the decision to just do it, you can feel bulletproof. That’s what David Guetta’s song “Titanium” is all about, and it declares “I am titanium.”
The song features the amazing vocals of Australian songstress Sia, and it reached the top 10 in the U.S. and achieved double-Platinum status. In the U.K, “Titanium” reached number one.
21. “Power to the People — John Lennon
The late great John Lennon’s fourth solo single is a song titled “Power to the People.” Lennon wrote this song after he had conversations with activists Robin Blackburn and Tariq Ali. The two activists were writers for Red Mole, a communist magazine.
The song was released on March 12th, 1971 as a B-side song to Yoko Ono’s “Open Your Box.” Later, Lennon reflected that he wasn’t thinking clearly when he wrote the song and he was basically asleep and seeking approval from Tariq Ali and “his ilk.” Lennon said he wouldn’t have written the song if he could do it over again.
Now that you’ve got a list of the best songs about power, you can make a YouTube or Spotify playlist. Just pull up your list and listen when you need to feel empowered.
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.