I am a songwriter, poet, and a translator of songs from Russian. In this article, I’ll share some deep songs with deep song lyrics and unwrap some of the magic of the poetry in these songs.
If you want to specifically explore songs with rich and poetic lyrics, here is a page with a collection of songs with the best song lyrics.
Song With Deep Lyrics: Oh Michelangelo
The most interesting lyric that I’ve ever written was in a song called “Oh Michelangelo” in which I take Michelangelo’s famous Sistine Chapel painting called “The Birth Of Adam” which depicts a sensitive touch between two hands, and reimagined it as a moment of lovers connecting in a magical touch. At one point of the song, there is a line that I think is my best:
“Our eyes close as my fingers track new Sistine Chapels along your back.”
Just picture caressing a woman’s back so gently that it’s almost like painting something beautiful along her back. As a writer, I am happiest with how this line of mine came out more than any other line I’ve written. There is just the right amount of metaphor, imagination, and sweetness packed into just a few words.
Famous Blue Raincoat By Leonard Cohen
This is a sneaky-simple song, but one with very meaningful and rich lyrics. At first, the song sounds like it’s about some blue raincoat, but the song is about a life triangle in which Leonard Cohen is cheated on. The lyrics are soft and at times biting, and the poetry is understated, but potent. It’s a song worth listening to again and again.
SHAKESPEAREAN RHAPSODY – Song With Shakespeare’s Quotes Weaved Into Its Lyrics
This is a unique song featuring some of Shakespeare’s most brilliant words. The four quotes it uses are
- Love is a smoke made with the fume of sighs.
- You have witchcraft on your lips.
- In your heart of hearts.
- Parting is such sweet sorrow that I shall say good night til it be morrow.
Take a listen to this song, and see how these Shakespearean lines seamlessly make their way into the original storyline of the song.
BITTERSWEET MIRAGE – Song Inspired By Nietzsche’s Idea
Nietzsche famously stated that “You’ll go through great suffering if you see meaning in it” and that is precisely the quote used in this song.
This quote is also consistent with the Myth Of Sisyphus, which this song is also inspired by. In the Myth Of Sisyphus, Sisyphus is forced to constantly roll a rock up a hill for infinity. Much of life’s work can feel that way, and it’s an interesting subject to explore.
WIND OF SIGHS – A Philosophical Song With Its Own Attempt At Answering: What Is Beauty?
This song tackles one of the most challenging of all philosophical questions: what is beauty?
Ever since the time of Socrates, people have tried to define beauty, but its definition is quite elusive. You might say beautiful things are things that look pretty or pleasing, but those would be examples of beauty, but not its definition. The definition is quite abstract.
My song attempts to define beauty this way: Beauty is that which is inspires.
This isn’t a perfect definition, but it is at least food for thought.
Take a listen for yourself to see what you think of the overall song:
Analysis of the Socratic dialog in which Socrates explores the question of what is beauty:
KEEP YOUR HEART OPEN -Translated From The Oroginal Russian Language by Bulat Okudzhava
The original lyrics in Russian urged to keep one’s door open, but in English that loses something special in translation. So I stayed with the main idea of the song, which is to keep your heart open.
Road Less Traveled Song – Another Song With Deep Meaning
This song is based on a common misinterpretation of Robert Frost’s poem The Road Less Traveled. The misinterpretation is that you chose a road of your own and even though it is less traveled, you get to forge your way. It’s an exciting way to picture yourself and connect with the poem in that way.
My song puts me on my own road less traveled through years, filled with regrets, mistakes, and different battles. This is similar to what most people experience through life, which I thought would make the song feel relatable.
Some interesting lyrics are:
“Regret and pride fought as my mind unraveled
Looking back at my road less traveled.”
And another lyric about being your own worst enemy, which is all too relatable for most people:
I fought myself right from the start
Keeping me from fully following my heart.
But there is something redemptive towards the end of the song:
Don’t wish my road on anyone – it pained and left me stunned.
But you know what I faced it, fought, wavered, but didn’t run.
Guardians Of Souls – Deep Song With Powerful Lyrics And Deep Meaning
Guardians of Souls are obviously poets and artists of all types. The role of poets, musicians, and artists is to breathe beauty into our lives, inspire us, give more meaning to our lives, and guard our souls from negativity or basic soul-sucking daily drudgery which makes up most people’s lives.
In this song I discuss the life-saving impact poets had on me. When it felt like there isn’t much more to life, “the words of a poet chose me to rescue.” And it really was like that. The words of poets really did give me something truly meaningful to look forward in life – beauty.
As the song goes on, it touches on the fact that beauty is so scarce now and much of art is corporate-made, not made by true poets. The song talks about how beauty has been stolen from us, but there is only one person who can rescue beauty, and that’s a poet. Poets fight for all of our souls. We just have to give them our ears.
Take a listen to the full song:
Blue Trolley – Another Deep Song With Meaning
We don’t think of public transportation as a place to find compassion and a community. But in this English translation from a popular 20th century Russian song. this is exactly what we find. The author of the song, Bulat Okudzhava, creates a world in which the bus or trolley is like a ship picking up everyone who has been shipwrecked at night. And all the passengers are like sailors who are silent, but share compassion for one another in their silence.
Take a listen to the full translated version here:
Song With Deep Meaning: Dust In The Wind by Kansas
This is a pretty song. It’s melody is one with the lyrics. It just flows..flows right into you, and you flow into a daydream.