Songs about time passing can be some of the most poignant and introspective pieces of music. In this article, we explore 20 songs that tackle the concept of time from various angles. These tunes offer a musical journey through the different ways we perceive and grapple with the ticking clock.
- 1. “Yesterday” by The Beatles
- 2. “7 Years” by Lukas Graham
- 3. “august” by Taylor Swift
- 4. “A Hazy Shade of Winter” by Simon and Garfunkel
- 5. “Time in a Bottle” by Jim Croce
- 6. “Good Old Days” by Macklemore feat Kesha
- 7. “Anticipation” by Carly Simon
- 8. “While We’re Young” by April Kry
- 9. “Who Wants To Live Forever” by Queen
- 10. “Eastside” by Halsey & Khalid
- 11. “I Can See Clearly Now” by Johnny Nash
- 12. “Airplanes” by BOB
- 13. “Time After Time” by Cyndi Lauper
- 14. “Fast” by Luke Bryan
- 15. “Grew Up Slower” by Dylan Schneider
- 16. “Forever Young” by Rod Stewart
- 17. “When We Were Young” by Adele
- 18. “Ever Changing Times” by Aretha Franklin
- 19. “Only Time” by Enya
- 20. “Clocks” by Coldplay
- 21. “Changing Times” by Iwan Rheon
- 22. “Unbelievable” by Owl City
- 23. “Sign of the Times” by Harry Styles
- 24. “Grew Up Slower” by Dylan Schneider
- 25. “Through The Years” by Kenny Rogers
- 26. “Good Morning” by Kanye West
- 27. “Time (Clock of the Heart)” by Culture Club
- 28. “Until the End of Time” by Justin Timberlake
- 29. “Time Is On My Side” by The Rolling Stones
- 30. “No Time To Die” by Billie Eilish
- Final Thoughts
1. “Yesterday” by The Beatles
Starting off the list is one of The Beatles’ most iconic and well-loved songs, “Yesterday.” This song is all about how time can change things, and how it can be both good and bad. The lyrics talk about how the singer was once in love, but now that person is gone and they are left feeling empty. It was from the 1965 album “Help!”.
2. “7 Years” by Lukas Graham
A smash hit released in 2015, “7 Years” serves as a soulful autobiography set to music. Lukas Graham, the Danish pop band fronted by Lukas Forchhammer, takes listeners on an emotional roller coaster that begins in childhood and ends with musings about what life might look like at age 60. If you’ve ever wanted to get philosophical on your morning commute, this is the song for you.
3. “august” by Taylor Swift
Featured on Taylor Swift’s critically acclaimed album “Folklore,” “august” explores the transient nature of a summer love. Laced with Swift’s signature storytelling, the song serves as a bittersweet reminder of how even the most magical moments can be fleeting. “august” shows us that while time may pass, memories remain etched in our minds, as constant as the changing seasons.
4. “A Hazy Shade of Winter” by Simon and Garfunkel
This next song talks about how time can be a great healer. “A Hazy Shade of Winter” is all about how the winter can be a tough time, but it eventually ends and spring comes again. It’s a great reminder that no matter how tough things might seem, they will eventually get better. You can find it on the Bookends album
5. “Time in a Bottle” by Jim Croce
This song is all about how time is something that we can never get back once it’s gone. “Time in a Bottle” talks about how we should make the most of the time we have because it will eventually run out. It’s a classic hit song that has been covered by various artists over the years.
6. “Good Old Days” by Macklemore feat Kesha
“Good Old Days” is a song about how time can move so fast and how we sometimes long for the past. The lyrics talk about how life was simpler back in the good old days and how we sometimes take for granted the things we have now. This song is from Macklemore’s album “Gemini”.
7. “Anticipation” by Carly Simon
Carly Simon’s “Anticipation” is a song about how time can be both exciting and frustrating. The lyrics talk about how we often spend so much time waiting for things to happen that we miss out on the moment. It’s a great song to listen to when you’re feeling impatient. It was released in 1971 as part of the album of the same title.
8. “While We’re Young” by April Kry
This next song will remind you to make the most of your youth because time will eventually catch up to you. “While We’re Young” is all about how we only have a limited amount of time to enjoy our lives.
The lyrics encourage us to make the most of every moment and not take our youth for granted. You can find it on April Kry’s album of the same name.
9. “Who Wants To Live Forever” by Queen
Featured in the movie “Bohemian Rhapsody”, this next song talks about how time is something that we all have to face. “Who Wants To Live Forever” is all about how we are mortal and how our time on this earth is limited. The lyrics ask the question of who would want to live forever if it means living without love.
10. “Eastside” by Halsey & Khalid
Next on the list is “Eastside” by Halsey and Khalid. This song is all about how time can change people and how they can grow apart. The lyrics talk about how the two people were once in love, but now they’re on different sides of the world. It’s a sad song that explores the idea of how time can eventually tear people apart.
11. “I Can See Clearly Now” by Johnny Nash
“I Can See Clearly Now” is a song about how time can help us to see things more clearly. The lyrics talk about how the singer was once blinded by love, but now they can see things more clearly.
It’s a great song to listen to when you’re going through a tough time. You can find it on Johnny Nash’s album of the same title.
12. “Airplanes” by BOB
Next on the list is “Airplanes” by B.o.B. This song is all about wishing we could turn back time. The lyrics talk about how the singer wishes they could go back to a time when things were simpler.
It’s a great song for when you’re feeling nostalgic or homesick. You can find it on B.o.B’s album B.o.B Presents: The Adventures of Bobby Ray.
13. “Time After Time” by Cyndi Lauper
Cyndi Lauper’s “Time After Time” is a classic love song that talks about how time can heal a broken heart. The lyrics talk about how the singer will always love the person they’re singing to, no matter how much time passes. It’s a beautiful song that reminds us that true love never dies. It was released in 1984 as part of the She’s So Unusual album.
14. “Fast” by Luke Bryan
The next song on the list is “Fast” by Luke Bryan. This song is all about how time seems to fly by when we’re having fun. It talks about how we should make the most of our time because it goes by so quickly. It’s a great song for when you need a reminder to enjoy your life. You can find it on Luke’s “Kill the Lights” album.
15. “Grew Up Slower” by Dylan Schneider
Dylan Schneider is a country music star. This song is about how time seems to move faster as you get older. The lyrics talk about how Schneider wished he could have grown up slower. Things might have been different if he had taken the time to enjoy life more. It was released in 2017 as part of the “Spotlight’s on You” EP.
16. “Forever Young” by Rod Stewart
Next on the list is “Forever Young” by Rod Stewart. This iconic song was released in 1988 and is about staying young at heart.
The lyrics talk about how time will eventually take us all away, but we should try to stay young forever. The song has been covered by many artists over the years, but Stewart’s version remains the most popular.
17. “When We Were Young” by Adele
Featured on her blockbuster 2015 album “25,” Adele’s “When We Were Young” is a powerful ballad that tackles the concept of nostalgia head-on. The song serves as an emotional time capsule, capturing the essence of youthful friendships and lost loves. It brings to focus the transient nature of time, reminding us that moments and people can’t be held onto forever.
18. “Ever Changing Times” by Aretha Franklin
Aretha Franklin’s “Ever Changing Times” is a soulful ballad about how time changes everything. The lyrics talk about how the world is constantly changing and we have to change with it. The song was released in 1987 and was a huge hit. It remains one of Franklin’s most popular songs.
19. “Only Time” by Enya
Released in 2000, “Only Time” by Enya is a beautiful song about the passage of time. The lyrics talk about how time is always moving forward and we can never go back. You can find it on her “A Day Without Rain” album which can be streamed on all music platforms out there.
20. “Clocks” by Coldplay
This Coldplay classic, released in 2002, is perhaps one of the most iconic songs about the relentless tick-tock of the clock. Though the lyrics are somewhat abstract, the overarching theme of urgency and the passage of time are unmistakable. Driven by a pulsing piano riff that simulates the steady beating of a clock, the song is a sonic representation of time’s relentless march forward.
21. “Changing Times” by Iwan Rheon
Here’s a reminder that time changes everything from Iwan Rheon. This song is from his 2011 album “Changing Times EP” and it’s about how the world is constantly changing and we have to change with it. The lyrics talk about how things will never be the same and we have to accept that.
22. “Unbelievable” by Owl City
Owl City is a one-man band created by Adam Young. “Unbelievable” is a song about how time seems to pass more quickly as we get older. It will remind you of those carefree days when time seemed to stand still. You can find it on the “Mobile Orchestra (Track By Track Commentary)” album.
23. “Sign of the Times” by Harry Styles
Harry Styles is a former member of the boy band One Direction. “Sign of the Times” is his debut solo single. It’s a song about how time seems to be moving too fast and we’re all just trying to keep up. You can find it on the album of the same name. You can find it on his self-titled album.
24. “Grew Up Slower” by Dylan Schneider
A lesser-known gem, “Grew Up Slower” by country artist Dylan Schneider is an ode to the seemingly simpler times of youth. The song laments how quickly children grow up, trading bicycles for cars and lemonade stands for nine-to-fives.
Schneider’s lyrics, like “Wish we never learned how to turn fifteen,” capture a universal sentiment—that despite the freedoms and opportunities that come with age, there’s something incredibly precious about the innocence and wonder of childhood.
25. “Through The Years” by Kenny Rogers
This track is more about the idea of time passing, rather than the actual experience of it. “Through The Years” is a ballad by Kenny Rogers about how love endures through time.
It’s a beautiful and sentimental song that is sure to tug at your heartstrings. You can find it on the “Share Your Love” album.
26. “Good Morning” by Kanye West
Kanye West’s “Good Morning” is an ideal opener for anyone familiar with the grind of daily life. Featured on his 2007 album “Graduation,” the song uses the concept of morning as a metaphor for new beginnings and the passage of time.
It’s a look at how quickly things can change as you move from one chapter of life to another, whether it’s graduating, starting a new job, or experiencing personal growth.
27. “Time (Clock of the Heart)” by Culture Club
An 80s classic by Culture Club, “Time (Clock of the Heart)” delves into the emotional aspects of time, particularly as it relates to love and relationships. This song doesn’t just focus on the linear progression of time, but rather how emotional experiences can make time seem elastic—speeding up during moments of joy and slowing down during moments of sorrow.
28. “Until the End of Time” by Justin Timberlake
From Justin Timberlake’s 2006 album “FutureSex/LoveSounds,” “Until the End of Time” is a love ballad that takes the notion of time and frames it within the context of a romantic relationship. The song beautifully highlights the idea that love, in its purest form, is timeless and unchanging.
29. “Time Is On My Side” by The Rolling Stones
A rock classic by The Rolling Stones, “Time Is On My Side” became one of the band’s first hits in the United States when it was released in 1964. Unlike many songs about time, which often focus on its fleeting nature, this song presents a more optimistic view.
The repeated line “Time is on my side, yes it is,” drives home the point that time can be an ally, especially when it comes to rectifying mistakes or healing wounds.
30. “No Time To Die” by Billie Eilish
The title track for the 2020 James Bond film of the same name, Billie Eilish’s “No Time To Die” adds a darker twist to the theme of time. The song revolves around betrayal and the realization that time won’t heal all wounds. With haunting vocals and evocative lyrics like “You were never on my side,” this track presents a more cynical view of time, as something that can’t necessarily be counted on to bring positive change or healing.
Though time may seem to move slowly at times, it has a way of sneaking up on us when we’re least expecting it. As these songs show, time marches on, whether we’re ready for it or not.
We hope you’ve enjoyed this journey through some of the best songs about time passing. Thanks for reading!