The Top 10 Contemporary Environmental Songs | PlushBeds Green Sleep Blog

The Top 10 Contemporary Environmental Songs

I Love Green Music

Green Music to Inspire and Motivate

Music is such a wonderful way to express emotion, but also to motivate. Pop culture with all of its downfalls can actually have its upside as well. Such is the case with the following songs that we have chosen from popular culture that speak directly to the dilemma that our environment (and thus, we ourselves, too) faces.

Sometimes all it takes is a small trigger for somebody to wake up and start to do something about the world around them. We hope that you’ll share some of these tunes with friends and family, as an unintimidating way to effect small changes. Just a small pebble thrown in the water can disrupt and cause an ocean of change. So, please consider sharing one or more of your favorite selections from below on your favorite social media channel(s).

Here are our favorite contemporary songs that deal with Mother Nature. We will include a little bit of commentary, as well as the lyrics for those who appreciate that.

Gotta love Bruce Hornsby & the Range. With memorable scores like The Way it Is, Mandolin Rain, and Every Little Kiss, and being a Donald Trump lookalike with a much different hairdo (that’s neither here nor there 🙂 ), Bruce’s piano playing and lyrics have always been meaningful; no less with this one:

Bruce Hornsby & the Range – Look Out Any Window

 

Lyrics:

There’s a man working in a field
Sees the rain and it’s burning
He’s saying this can’t be real
As he sees the color
Of the fields turning

Far away, the men too busy
Getting rich to care
Close their eyes and
Let it all out into the air
Hoping nobody else would care

Look out any window
Look out any open door
Look out any window
To see what’s going on
In the air around you

There’s a man working on a boat
Pulling lines from the water
Just trying to stay afloat, ohh
Filling the nets is getting harder

Far away, they bend
The rules so secretly
Close their eyes and
Let it all out into the sea
Hoping nobody else would see

Look out any window
Look out any open door
Look out any window
To see what’s going on
In the air around you

Far away, too many leaders
Let them get their way
Close their eyes and
Let it all out into the bay
Say they’ll clear it up another day

Look out any window
Look out any open door
Look out any window
To see that’s going on
In the air around you

(Look out)
Look out for the big boys
Telling you everything
They’re gonna do

(Look out)
Look out for the fat cat builder man
Turning this into a waste land

(Look out)
Look out for the back room boys
That say the smoke is gonna blow away

(Look out)
Look out for the men
Who say it’s okay sitting
In a building far away

 

Kenny Loggins is perhaps best known for his Highway to the Danger Zone track from the film Top Gun and Footloose, among others such as Meet Me Halfway, Forever, and even Return to Pooh Corner. Kenny is ingrained enough in popular culture that it’s not far-fetched at all that he croon about the human habitat.

Kenny Loggins – Conviction Of The Heart

 

Lyrics:

Where are the dreams
That we once had?
This is the time
To bring them back

What were the promises
Caught on the tips of our tongues?
Do we forget or forgive?
There’s a whole other life
Waiting to be lived when
One day we’re brave enough
To talk with conviction of the heart

And down your streets
I’ve walked alone
As if my feet were not my own
Such is the path I chose
Doors I have opened and closed

I’m tired of living this life
Fooling myself, believing we’re right when
I’ve never given love
With any conviction of the heart

One with the earth
With the sky
One with everything in life
I believe we’ll survive
If we only try

How long must we all wait to change
This world bound in chains that we live in
To know what it is to forgive and be forgiven?

Too many years of taking now
Isn’t it time to stop somehow?
Air that’s too angry to breathe
Water our children can’t drink

You’ve heard it
Hundreds of times
You say you’re aware
Believe, and you care
But do you care enough
Where’s your conviction of the heart?

One with the Earth
With the sky
One with everything in life
I believe it will start
With conviction of the heart

With the Earth
With the sky
One with everything in life
I believe it will start
With conviction of the heart

One Earth
One sky
Only one world

Only one chance
For one life
When will live
(With conviction of the heart)

One child
One dream
And only one life

Give her one chance
For one life
When will we live

Only one Earth
Only one sky
Only one world
We’ve only got one chance
To live in one life

I believe it’s only gonna start
When we begin with
Some conviction of the heart

 

A couple personal favorites by John Mayer are Half of My Heart and Heartbreak Warfare. But, lest you think that John is simply all about being handsome (apparently he’s a heartthrob), and causing the ladies to become weak in the knees, know that he can give voice to important issues through his music. He won a Grammy for Best Male Pop Vocal Performance with this song. The song may not be expressly about the environment, but like most songs, you can interpret it in the fashion you wish, and it wouldn’t be a far stretch.

John Mayer – Waiting on the World to Change

 

Lyrics:

Me and all my friends
We’re all misunderstood
They say we stand for nothing
And there’s no way we ever could

Now we see everything that’s going wrong
With the world and those who lead it
We just feel like we don’t have the means
To rise above and beat it

So we keep waiting
Waiting on the world to change
We keep on waiting
Waiting on the world to change

It’s hard to beat the system
When we’re standing at a distance
So we keep waiting
Waiting on the world to change

Now, if we had the power
To bring our neighbors home from war
They would have never missed a Christmas
No more ribbons on their door

And when you trust your television
What you get is what you got
‘Cause when they own the information
They can bend it all they want

That’s why we’re waiting
Waiting on the world to change
We keep on waiting
Waiting on the world to change

It’s not that we don’t care,
We just know that the fight ain’t fair
So we keep on waiting
Waiting on the world to change

We’re still waiting
Waiting on the world to change
We keep on waiting
Waiting on the world to change

One day our generation
Is gonna rule the population

So we keep on waiting
Waiting on the world to change
We keep on waiting
Waiting on the world to change

 

If you are a fan of Disney’s Shrek, then you’ve probably heard the song Accidentally in Love sung by Counting Crows. You may also know Mr. JonesA Long December, and Hanginaround. The song, Big Yellow Taxi, was originally performed by Joni Mitchell, but the remake here by the Crows is a pretty hip rendition.

Counting Crows – Big Yellow Taxi ft. Vanessa Carlton

 

Lyrics:

They paved paradise
And put up a parking lot
With a pink hotel, a boutique
And a swinging hot spot

Don’t it always seem to go
That you don’t know what you’ve got til its gone
They paved paradise
And put up a parking lot

They took all the trees
And put ’em in a tree museum
And they charged the people
A dollar and a half to seem ’em

No no no
Don’t it always seem to go,
That you don’t know what you’ve got
Til its gone
They paved paradise
And put up a parking lot

Hey farmer farmer
Put away the DDT
I don’t care about spots on my apples
Leave me the birds and the bees
Please!

Don’t it always seem to go
That you don’t know what you’ve got
Til its gone
They paved paradise
And put up a parking lot
Hey, now they paved paradise
To put up a parking lot
Why not?

Listenin’ late last night
I heard the screen door slam
And a big yellow taxi
Took my girl away
Now, don’t it always seem to go
That you don’t know what you’ve got
Til its gone
They paved paradise
And put up a parking lot

Hey now, now
Don’t it always seem to go
That you don’t know what you got
Til its gone
They paved paradise
To put up a parking lot
Why not?
They paved paradise
To put up a parking lot
Hey hey hey
Paved paradise
To put up a parking lot

I don’t want give it
Why you want give,
Why you want give it all away?
Hey hey hey
Now you want give it,
Ah she want to give it
Cause she givin’ it all away
Now now now

I don’t want give it
Why you want give,
Why you want give it all away?
Giving it all, giving it all away

Why you want it?
Why do you want it? (She’s giving it all away)

Hey pave paradise
Put up a parking lot

 

Sarah Brightman is a classical crossover artist, and is the world’s best-selling soprano of all time. You may have heard her sing Time to Say Goodbye with Andrea Bocelli (who looks like he was expecting a lips kiss upon the grand entrance for their performance 🙂 ). Sarah has appeared on Broadway as well, as Christine in Phantom of the Opera, singing crowd favorites Phantom of the Opera and All I Ask of You. In this instance she sings of running to save the world.

Sara Brightman – Running

 

Lyrics:

I was sad and I was silent
In shadow of my soul
Ever seeking the horizon
For promises untold.

I dream of silent oceans
And I sing of waters blue
With the crossing of angels
Brought forth to guide me through

To a distant shore so welcoming
where I was free to roam
In a land of ancient mystery
That I could call my own

[Chorus:]
This is me and you
And we are running
To change the world
Where hope is shining through
Gaia’s green and blue
And we are running
To save the world
That we’re about to lose

We’ll be running
Watch it coming
Green is shining through
Love is rising
Worlds colliding
Green is shining through

[Repeat chorus]

Can you hear the distant beating
Of passion born of old
Reaching out to far horizons
Of prophecy untold

I will wander through the desert
I will seek you in my hand
In the silence of shadows
In palaces of sand

Then a voice called from the wilderness
Whose spirit held the key
To a world and soul united
Forever strong and free

 

Vanessa Williams is an actress, singer, and dancer. She is the first African American Miss America (crowned in 1984). You may have heard her songs, Oh How the Years Go By and Save the Best for LastBut, she also sang the following song from Disney’s Pocohontas, about the clashing perspectives of Native Americans and the early white colonizers regarding the land and Mother Nature.

Vanessa Williams – Color of the Wind

 

Lyrics:

You think you own whatever land you land on
The Earth is just a dead thing you can claim
But I know every rock and tree and creature
Has a life, has a spirit, has a name

You think the only people who are people
Are the people who look and think like you
But if you walk the footsteps of a stranger
You’ll learn things you never knew, you never knew

Have you ever heard the wolf cry to the blue corn moon
Or asked the grinning bobcat why he grinned
Can you sing with all the voices of the mountains
Can you paint with all the colors of the wind
Can you paint with all the colors of the wind

Come run the hidden pine trails of the forest
Come taste the sun sweet berries of the Earth
Come roll in all the riches all around you
And for once, never wonder what they’re worth

The rainstorm and the river are my brothers
The heron and the otter are my friends
And we are all connected to each other
In a circle, in a hoop that never ends

How high will the sycamore grow
If you cut it down, then you’ll never know
And you’ll never hear the wolf cry to the blue corn moon
For whether we are white or copper skinned
We need to sing with all the voices of the mountains
We need to paint with all the colors of the wind

You can own the Earth and still
All you’ll own is Earth until
You can paint with all the colors of the wind

 

Ahh, Olivia Newton-John. With hits like I Honestly Love YouMagic, Hopelessly Devoted to You, and Xanadu, it’s hard not to like Olivia. A pretty lady with a pretty voice, it’s worth listening to her gentle requiem about the trees.

Olivia Newton-John – Don’t Cut Me Down

 

Lyrics:

I’m tall I need room to grow
I need the sun in my eyes
My home is the earth below
One day I know I will touch the sky

Don’t cut me down
For I am innocent
Don’t cut me down
I am your friend

I sigh when the four winds blow
I cry when the cool rains fall
I shine in the moonlight’s glow
I am a home for the great and small

Don’t cut me down
For I am innocent
Don’t cut me down
I am your friend

Give me a year
A year another year
It takes me time for new life to appear
You cut me down
Quicker than I can regrow
Give me a chance
I am the air you breathe
Imagine what life would be without me
I have been here
Longer than you have you know
Harvest the seeds you sow

Don’t cut me down
For I am innocent
Don’t cut me down
I am your friend

I’m tall I need room to grow
I need the sun in my eyes
My home is the earth below
One day I know I will touch the sky

Don’t cut me down
For I am innocent
Don’t cut me down
I am your friend

For I will never mend
Don’t cut me down
I am your friend

 

Michael Jackson – wish he were still around. One very talented singer, known the world over. Many generations still enjoy his recordings. With songs like Beat It, Billy Jean, Thriller, and others, Michael will live on in our memories and in our playback devices 🙂 . In the song here, Michael pleads for us to consider and give a dang about the Earth.

Michael Jackson – Earth Song

 

Lyrics:

What about sunrise
What about rain
What about all the things that you said
We were to gain
What about killing fields
Is there a time
What about all the things
That you said were yours and mine

Did you ever stop to notice
All the blood we’ve shed before
Did you ever stop to notice
This crying Earth, these weeping shores

Ah, ooh
Ah, ooh

What have we done to the world
Look what we’ve done
What about all the peace
That you pledge your only son

What about flowering fields
Is there a time
What about all the dreams
That you said was yours and mine

Did you ever stop to notice
All the children dead from war
Did you ever stop to notice
This crying earth, these weeping shores

Ah, ooh
Ah, ooh

I used to dream
I used to glance beyond the stars
Now I don’t know where we are
Although I know we’ve drifted far

Ah, ooh
Ah, ooh
Ah, ooh
Ah, ooh

Hey, what about yesterday
(What about us)
What about the seas
(What about us)
The heavens are falling down
(What about us)
I can’t even breathe
(What about us)

What about apathy
(What about us)
Burnt despite our pleas
(What about us)
What about the holy land
(What about it)
Torn apart by creed
(What about us)

Where did we go wrong
(Oo, oo)
Someone tell me why
(What about us)

What about babies
(What about it)
What about the days
(What about us)
What about all their joy
Do we give a damn

 

Jack Johnson is the cool surfer dude that plays the guitar and sings chill songs 🙂 . Some favorites are Upside DownBetter Together, and Never Know. If you haven’t discovered him yet, you might just find him to be a breath of fresh air compared to a lot of the music out today 🙂 . In the following song, he brings to our attention reducing, reusing, and recycling.

Jack Johnson – The 3 R’s

 

Lyrics:

Three it’s a magic number
Yes it is, it’s a magic number
Because two times three is six
And three times six is eighteen
And the eighteenth letter in the alphabet is R
We’ve got three R’s we’re going to talk about today
We’ve got to learn to
Reduce, Reuse, Recycle
Reduce, Reuse, Recycle
Reduce, Reuse, Recycle
Reduce, Reuse, Recycle
If you’re going to the market to buy some juice
You’ve got to bring your own bags and you learn to reduce your waste
And if your brother or your sister’s got some cool clothes
You could try them on before you buy some more of those
Reuse, we’ve got to learn to reuse
And if the first two R’s don’t work out
And if you’ve got to make some trash
Don’t throw it out
Recycle, we’ve got to learn to recycle,
We’ve got to learn to
Reduce, Reuse, Recycle
Reduce, Reuse, Recycle
Reduce, Reuse, Recycle
Reduce, Reuse, Recycle
Because three it’s a magic number
Yes it is, it’s a magic number
3, 3, 3
3, 6, 9, 12, 15, 18, 21, 24, 27, 30, 33, 36
33, 30, 27, 24, 21, 18, 15, 12, 9, 6, and
3, it’s a magic number

 

Sarah Bareilles broke onto the scene with Love Song. You may have also heard her sing a really neat song about sticking up for yourself, and having your own voice called Brave. Another notable song of hers is King of Anything. The following is another song that may not be expressly about the environment, but the words definitely apply. If we are living in Eden, things definitely have changed.

Sara Bareilles – Eden

 

Lyrics:

Let me paint a picture for you then I’ll have to teach you to see it
Illustrate the remnants of the life I used to live here in Eden
Rolled a lucky pair of dice,
Ended up paradise
Landed on a snake’s eyes, took a bite and ended up bleeding

You know if I could change anything, I think I would start with the name
The truth is all those angels started acting the same
And I know there’s no going back now ’cause
Life in Eden
Life in Eden changed
No way to make the pain play fair
It doesn’t disappear just because you say it isn’t there
So when they ask why’d she go you can say ’cause
Life in Eden
Life in Eden changed
Life in Eden changed

Walking in the garden was a serpent-shaped heart and he told me
What is broken cannot show, and less than beautiful is worse than unholy
Idolized my innocence,
Stole it from me in the end
Now I’m wide awakened and still paying for the poison they sold me

You know if I could change anything, I think I would start with the name
The truth is all those angels started acting the same
And I know there’s no going back now ’cause
Life in Eden
Life in Eden changed
No way to make the pain play fair
It doesn’t disappear just because you say it isn’t there, so
When they ask why’d she go you can say ’cause
Life in Eden
Life in Eden changed
Life in Eden changed

There was a time when I was taking all bets that
This place was even better than as good as it gets and now
Looking back from the outside in
I think I was choking on the air in Eden
Choking on the air in Eden

Life in Eden changed

You know if I could change anything, I think I would start with the name
The truth is all those angels started acting the same
And I know there’s no going back now ’cause
Life in Eden
Life in Eden changed
No way to make the pain play fair
It doesn’t disappear just because you say it isn’t there, so
When they ask why’d she go you can say ’cause
Life in Eden
Life in Eden changed
When they ask why’d she go
‘Cause life in Eden
Life in Eden changed

Life in Eden changed
Life in Eden changed

We hope you enjoyed our picks for the top environmental songs. In fact, we hope you found a new favorite! Each of these artists is very talented, and you ought to check out some of their other music, too. Please also consider sharing. Because, you never know, it could make a difference. And, music is such an unintimidating way to broach the subject 🙂 .

Get Some Brownie Points by Sharing the Green Tunes

Share these beautiful green tunes by adopting the following badge on your blog or website. Simply copy and paste the html code below the badge, and voila, you’ll be doing a good deed to spread the good word and help the environment!

Top 10 Environmental Songs
(Visited 587 times, 1 visits today)

Share!Share on Facebook0Tweet about this on TwitterPin on Pinterest1Share on Google+1Share on LinkedIn0Email this to someone

Post Navigation