Songs for Learning Vocabulary: Topics A to Z

A to Z of Song Topics

As I’ve spent the last month or so listing songs for learning English grammar, it seems to make sense to finish with a list of songs for topics to introduce or revise vocabulary. This list will grow as I remember/discover more, or people get in touch with suggestions.

Advice / Problems

Father and Son by Cat Stevens

Fix You By Coldplay

Lazing on a Sunny Afternoon by The Kinks

Relax Take it Easy by Mika

Forever Young by The Pretenders (Bob Dylan)


When I’m 64 by The Beatles

7 Years Old by Lukas Graham

These are the Days of our Lives by Queen

When You’re Old and Grey by Tom Lehrer


The Animal Song by Savage Garden

Everything at Once by Lenka

What Does the Fox Say? by Ylvis

Gotta Build a Zoo by Planet Zoo

Going to the Zoo by Peter, Paul and Mary


The Accountancy Shanty by Monty Python

Body (The)

Dem Bones by Delta Rhythm Boys

Thinking Out Loud by Ed Sheeran

Books / Literature

Paperback Writer by The Beatles

Wrapped Up in Books by Belle and Sebastian

Romeo and Juliet by Dire Straits

Wuthering Heights by Kate Bush

The Catcher in the Rye by Guns n’ Roses

Annabelle Lee by Stevie Nicks

1984 by David Bowie

2 + 2 = 5 by Radiohead

Charles Dickens Miserable Song by Horrible Histories


The Outdoor Type by The Lemonheads


I’m in Love with my Car by Queen

Cars by Gary Numan


We Are Going To Be Friends by The White Stripes


For the Benefit of Mr Kite by The Beatles

Send in the Clowns by Judy Collins

Tightrope (from The Greatest Showman) by Michelle Williams


Susan’s House by Eels

Summer in the City by The Lovin’ Spoonful


Rock Around The Clock by Bill Haley


Don’t Cry For Me Argentina by Madonna

My Favourite Shirt by Alan Smith Robertson

Countryside (The)

Take Me Home, Country Roads by John Denver

This Land is Your Land by Woody Guthrie


Love in the First Degree by Bananarama

If it Hadn’t Been for Love by Adele

Highway Patrolman by Bruce Springsteen

Joey by Bob Dylan

In the Ghetto by Elvis

Long Black Veil by Don Williams

Gone to America by Steeleye Span

Dick Turpin by Horrible Histories

Daily Routines

I Say A Little Prayer by Aretha Franklin

Wonderful Tonight by Eric Clapton

Video by India Arie

Manic Monday by The Bangles

Inbetweener by Sleeper

Days of the Week

Lazing on a Sunday Afternoon by Queen

Friday I’m in Love by The Cure

Happy Days by Pratt and McClain

Discrimination (see also Racism, Sexism)

This is Me (from The Greatest Showman) by Keala Settle and Cast

Domestic Violence

Luka by Suzanne Vega

Goodbye Earl by The Dixie Chicks


Loneliness by Annie Lennox

Jealous Guy by John Lennon

I’m So Worried by Monty Python

Environment (The)

Big Yellow Taxi by Joni Mitchell

Don’t Let it Die by Hurricane Smith

Earth Song by Michael Jackson

Beds are Burning by Midnight Oil

Pollution by Tom Lehrer

Gotta Build a Zoo by Planet Zoo

Fairy Tales

When I Live My Dream by David Bowie

The Ugly Duckling by Danny Kaye

Thumbelina by Danny Kaye

The King’s New Clothes by Danny Kaye


Our House by Madness

Our House by Crosby, Stills, Nash and Young

Highway Patrolman by Bruce Sprinsteen

Father and Son by Cat Stevens


I Just Called to Say I Love You by Stevie Wonder

Next  Year, Baby by Jamie Cullum (New Year’s Resolutions)


Too Many Cooks by Robert Cray

Junk Food Junkie by Larry Groce

Meat is Murder by The Smiths

Food, Glorious Food (from Oliver!) by Cast


You’ve Got a Friend by James Taylor

Friends Will be Friends by Queen

With a Little Help from my Friends by The Beatles

That’s What Friends Are For by Trijintje Oosterhuis


The Gambler by Kenny Rogers


This Land is Your Land by Woodie Guthrie

Finland by Monty Python


I Heard it Through the Grape Vine by Marvin Gaye


Holding Out for a Hero by Bonnie Tyler

Heroes by David Bowie

(Wish I Could Fly Like) Superman by The Kinks

Let Me Be Your Superhero by Smash Into Pieces (‘Wishing you would see that I am more than a stalker’ – Discuss!)

Magneto and Titanium Man by Paul McCartney


We’re History by Horrible Histories

Man on the Moon by REM

We Didn’t Start the Fire by Billy Joel

Sympathy for the Devil by The Rolling Stones

The Boudicca Song by Horrible Histories

The Rosa Parks Song by Horrible Histories

The Ages of Stone by Horrible Histories


Another Day in Paradise by Phil Collins

The Streets of London by Ralph McTell


Don’t Cry For Me, Argentina by Madonna

Too Many Cooks by Robert Cray

I’m Going Slightly Mad by Queen

Miniature Disasters by K T Tunstall

Under the Blade by Twisted Sister

That’s What Friends are For by Trijntje Oosterhuis


The Scatterlings of Africa by Johnny Clegg and Savuka

America by Neil Diamond

Illegal Alien by Genesis


The Moving Picture Song by Horrible Histories


English is Cuh-ray-zee by Pete Seeger

Let’s Call the Whole Thing Off by Harry Connick Jr.

Silent ‘e’ by Tom Lehrer

‘N’ apostrophe ‘T’ by Tom Lehrer

The Rain in Spain (from My Fair Lady) by Rex Harrison and Audrey Hepburn

Why Can’t The English Learn to Speak (from My Fair Lady) by Rex Harrison

William Shakespeare and The Quills Song by Horrible Histories


The Circle of Life (from The Lion King) by Elton John

Once in a Lifetime by Talking Heads


In an Emergency Room by Alan Smith Robertson

Comfortably Numb by Pink Floyd

Hospital by Counting Crows

Edward Jenner, Good Vaccinations by Horrible Histories

The Plague Song by Horrible Histories

The Florence Nightingale Song by Horrible Histories

The Mary Seacole Song by Horrible Histories

Money / Consumerism

Money, Money, Money by Abba

Ka-Ching by Shania Twain

If I Had a Million Dollars by The Barenaked Ladies

Money for Nothing by Dire Straits

Material Girl by Madonna

What You Own (from Rent) by Adam Pascal and Anthony Rapp

Money Song by Monty Python


Tubby The Tuba by Danny Kaye

Stereo Hearts by Gym Class Heroes

Piano Man by Billy Joel

News (The)

7 o’clock News/Silent Night by Simon and Garfunkel

Odds Are by The Barenaked Ladies


The Galaxy Song by Monty Python


Hand in my Pocket by Alanis Morrisette

Zebra by John Butler

Opposites Attract by Paula Abdul

Poverty (also see Homelessness)

Coat of Many Colours by Dolly Parton

In the Ghetto by Elvis

Fast Car by Tracy Chapman


I Wish I Knew How it Would Feel to be Free by Nina Simone

Illegal Alien by Genesis

Ebony and Ivory by Stevie Wonder and Paul McCartney

The Rosa Parks Song by Horrible Histories

School / Education

Wonderful World by Sam Cooke

That’s Mathematics by Tom Lehrer

The Logical Song by Supertramp


The Big Bang Theory by The Barenaked Ladies

The Elements by Tom Lehrer

Charles Darwin Natural Selection by Horrible Histories

Senses (The)

Senses Working Overtime by XTC


It’s a Man’s World by James Brown

If I Were a Boy by Beyonce

Leftwing Wife by Peggy Seeger

Housewife’s Alphabet by Peggy Seeger

Woman’s Work by Tracy Chapman

Video by India Arie

You Can’t Stop The Girl by Bebe Rexha

The World War Two Girls Song by Horrible Histories


Three Lions by The Lightning Seeds

Kung Fu Fighting by Carl Douglas

Basketball by Kurtis Blow

Cricket Champions by Lord Kitchener


Dear Mr President by Pink

Common People by Pulp

Where is the Love by The Black Eyed Peas


An Englishman in New York by Sting

Mad Dogs and Englishmen by Noel Coward


Hazard by Richard Marx

Highway Patrolman by Bruce Springsteen

Joey by Bob Dylan

In the Ghetto by Elvis

Goodbye Earl by The Dixie Chicks

Matty Groves by Fairport Convention

Rosemary and the Jack of Hearts by Bob Dylan

Dick Turpin by Horrible Histories


Pleasant Valley Sunday by The Monkees

Little Boxes by Pete Seeger


Don’t Go by The Hothouse Flowers

Summer In The City by The Lovin’ Spoonful

Summertime by Ella Fitzgerald


Life by Des’ree

Superstition by Stevie Wonder


Info Superhighway by 2 Unlimited

Now Generation by The Black Eyed Peas

Video Killed the Radio Star by The Buggles

Radio Ga Ga by Queen

Cookie Jar by Jack Johnson

The Luddites Song by Horrible Histories


Single by Everything But The Girl

Telephone Line by The Electric Light Orchestra

Operator by Jim Croce

Hanging on the Telephone by Blondie

Transport (see also Cars)

Get Here by Oleta Adams

The Pioneers of Transportation Song by Horrible Histories


Leaving on a Jet Plane by John Denver

Rocket Man by Elton John

Universe (The) / Space

The Galaxy Song by Monty Python

Rocket Man by Elton John

Space Oddity by David Bowie


War (What is it Good For?) by Edwin Starr

Zombie by The Cranberries

Weather (see also Summer)

Singing in the Rain by Gene Kelly

Mr Blue Sky by The Electric Light Orchestra

Here Comes the Sun by The Beatles

Stormy Weather by Billie Holiday

Lightning Strikes by Aerosmith

Umbrella by Rhianna

Wild is the Wind by David Bowie

Four Seasons in One Day by Crowded House

Work / Jobs

9 to 5 by Dolly Parton

Penny Lane by The Beatles

Livin’ On a Prayer by Bon Jovi

She’s Not Just a Pretty Face by Shania Twain

The Victorian Work Song, Work Terrible Work by Horrible Histories


Signs by Beyonce

What’s Your Sign by Des’ree


Just good songs for classroom use

Perfect Day by Lou Reed

Missing by Everything But The Girl

Nothing Compares 2 U by Sinead O’Connor