Animal songs have always held a special place in the hearts of music lovers. From the ferocity of the lion to the carefree nature of birds, these songs capture the essence of the animal kingdom, bringing it to life in catchy melodies and lyrics. Whether it’s a whimsical tune or a power ballad, there’s something about animal songs that resonates deep within us.
So, let’s take a journey through the animal world and discover some of the greatest songs that celebrate all creatures great and small.
“Eye of the Tiger” – Survivor
The first song on our list is an anthem of perseverance that draws inspiration from the majestic animal kingdom. With their signature punchy rock sound, the band sends a message about staying strong in the face of adversity, drawing parallels to the powerful spirit of the titular tiger.
This animal-themed classic has been a staple on sports and fitness playlists for decades, and its rousing chorus is guaranteed to leave you feeling energized and ready to take on the world.
“Blackbird” – The Beatles
“Blackbird” by The Beatles showcases the beauty and freedom that birds embody. The lyrics and melody amplify the elegance of the bird’s flight and the peculiar black feathers of the blackbird. The song explores the themes of hope, endurance, and renewal and how animals, such as birds, can symbolize these key themes.
With its haunting beauty, “Blackbird” captures the essence of the bird, and the message of overcoming adversity in life
“Rockin’ Robin” – Bobby Day
“Rockin’ Robin” is a lively tune that celebrates the energetic and joyful spirit of a little bird in motion. With its upbeat melody and catchy lyrics, this classic song has been covered by many artists over the years, and is widely recognized as one of the most popular songs about animals.
The song’s celebratory tone and vivid imagery captures the spirit of nature and reminds us of the beauty and vitality of the world around us.
“Hungry Like the Wolf” – Duran Duran
“Hungry Like the Wolf” by Duran Duran is a lively and enigmatic song that compares the pursuit of a romantic interest with the hunting instinct of a predator. The metaphor of the wolf and its primal desire for prey is artfully employed in the lyrics and reinforced by the infectious beat and powerful instrumentation of the music.
This song is a celebration of both animal and human passion, expressed with an intensity that demands to be heard and felt.
“Octopus’s Garden” – The Beatles
“Octopus’s Garden” is a delightful composition by The Beatles that takes the listener on an underwater journey to an octopus’s lair. The song’s poetic lyrics and mesmerizing melody showcase the group’s musical prowess, while its upbeat and playful tone makes it a timeless classic. A delightful tribute to marine life, the tune is a perfect addition to any animal-themed playlist.
“Year of the Cat” – Al Stewart
There’s an apt evocation of the animal kingdom in Al Stewart’s “Year of the Cat”. The song has a captivating and intricate melody, with lyrics that are intriguing and poetic.
Stewart’s metaphorical use of the year of the cat paints a picture of a world where felines rule and there’s an aura of mystery and sensuality. He creates an almost surreal landscape that captures the listener’s imagination and invites them on a journey through a mystic and captivating world.
“Hound Dog” – Elvis Presley
Elvis Presley’s “Hound Dog” is a rollicking rock-and-roll hit with a wailing saxophone solo that will make you want to shake all of your bones. The lyrics tell a story of heartbreak and betrayal, with the title animal serving as a metaphor for an unfaithful lover. The catchy chorus and driving beat made it an instant classic upon its release in 1956, and it remains a staple of oldies radio to this day.
“The Lion Sleeps Tonight” – The Tokens
“The Lion Sleeps Tonight” by The Tokens is a timeless classic about the king of the jungle. Its upbeat and catchy rhythm makes it a great sing-along tune for any animal lover. The lyrics depict the peacefulness and majesty of the lion, evoking a sense of admiration and awe for these powerful creatures. It’s a joyful celebration of nature’s beauty and the simplicity of life in the animal kingdom.
“Black Sheep” – Metric
Metric’s “Black Sheep” is a creatively rhythmic pop song that exhibits a unique personification of sheep, exploring themes of outcast and individuality in their lyrics. With the strong presence of bass and synths in the song, the song’s captivating energy will leave you hooked on its catchy hooks and lyrics.
“The Fox (What Does the Fox Say?)” – Ylvis
One song in the animal-focused genre is “The Fox (What Does the Fox Say?)” by Ylvis. With a rhythm that’s difficult to get out of your head and silly lyrics that ponder what sounds various animals make, this tune captures the imagination and sparks joy in listeners. Though it’s not exactly a serious anthem, it’s the perfect song to lift spirits and have a good laugh.
“The Birds and the Bees” – Jewel Akens
“The Birds and the Bees” – Jewel Akens is a captivating and enigmatic song about the complex and diverse nature of the animal kingdom. The metaphorical use of the titular black sheep is an obscure reference to an animal that is marginalized and different from the rest of the herd.
The sensuous and rich lyrics juxtapose with the raw and energetic guitar riffs, creating a bursty and eclectic sensory experience. Overall, “Black Sheep” is an animal-themed masterpiece that showcases Metric’s unique perspective and musical prowess.
“Barracuda” – Heart
Heart’s “Barracuda” is a classic rock song about the predatory fish that attacks its prey with a swift and deadly burst of speed. Ann Wilson’s primal vocals and Nancy Wilson’s guitar riffs capture the ferocity of the titular creature as they warn listeners to beware of those who would use their power to deceive and manipulate.
The song’s fierce energy and animalistic imagery make it a standout track in the canon of animal-inspired rock anthems.
“Crocodile Rock” – Elton John
“Crocodile Rock” is an upbeat and catchy song from Elton John that pays homage to 1950s rock and roll. The song features a lively piano melody and catchy lyrics that evoke an energetic and carefree spirit.
While the song doesn’t necessarily detail the characteristics or behaviors of crocodiles, the use of the animal in the title and chorus gives it an animalistic and wild feel that fits perfectly with its overall theme of youthful exuberance.”
“I Am the Walrus” – The Beatles
“I Am the Walrus” by The Beatles is an intriguing and perplexing combination of abstract lyrics that contain references to a variety of animals, including pigs, dogs, and walruses. The song showcases an experimental style that is unique to The Beatles, and the use of animal imagery adds a layer of complexity to its already cryptic meaning.
With its cryptic lyrics and whimsical animal references, “I Am the Walrus” is a must-listen for those seeking a musically perplexing and curiously allegorical tune.
“Cat Scratch Fever” – Ted Nugent
“Cat Scratch Fever” by Ted Nugent is an electrifying rock anthem that channels the primal energy of these graceful yet powerful felines. The song’s raw guitar riffs and soulful vocals capture the contradictory nature of cats, both fierce predators and mysterious and elegant creatures.
Nugent’s frenzied playing style perfectly mirrors the unpredictable movements of these elusive animals, making “Cat Scratch Fever” a standout piece in the animal-inspired music genre.
“Three Little Birds” – Bob Marley & The Wailers
“Three Little Birds” by Bob Marley & The Wailers is a reggae song that features the titular birds as symbols of hope and optimism. With its infectious melody and Marley’s smooth vocals, the song’s joyful message of “don’t worry about a thing” has made it a perennial favorite, reminding listeners that even in tough times, there is always reason to believe in better days ahead.
“White Rabbit” – Jefferson Airplane
“White Rabbit” by Jefferson Airplane is a psychedelic rock song that features a set of fantastical animal imagery, most notably a white rabbit, as a metaphor for the altered state of consciousness integral to the psych-rock genre. The song’s dreamy and surrealistic soundscapes are a fitting sonic backdrop to its lyrical exploration of the relationship between reality and illusion.
With its cryptic and enigmatic lyrics, “White Rabbit” remains an enduring classic among the animal-themed songs of the 1960s.
“Werewolves of London” – Warren Zevon
“Werewolves of London” by Warren Zevon is a humorous and upbeat song that tells the tale of a werewolf roaming the streets of London. While not strictly about a specific animal, the werewolf is a classic creature of mythology and ties in with the theme of animal-inspired music.
The song features catchy guitar riffs and a lively piano melody, making it a fun addition to any animal-themed playlist.
“Buffalo Soldier” – Bob Marley & The Wailers
“Buffalo Soldier” by Bob Marley & The Wailers is a reggae tune that addresses the tale of African-American soldiers who fought in the American West after the Civil War. The term “Buffalo Soldier” was used by Native Americans to relate to African American soldiers, and Marley’s track uses the metaphor of the buffalo to discuss their courage and unwavering spirit.
The track is an extraordinary piece of social commentary, using nature imagery to depict the history of Black individuals.
“Blackbird Song” – Lee DeWyze
“Blackbird Song” by Lee DeWyze is a soulful and enchanting tune that pays homage to a bird commonly associated with darkness and sorrow. With tender vocals and strumming guitar chords, DeWyze paints a haunting yet peaceful picture of the blackbird’s flight and its ability to transcend beyond its earthly limitations.
This song captures the essence of the blackbird’s beauty, and displays the artist’s finesse in crafting rich, emotive lyrics that stays true to the theme of this compilation of animal-centric tunes.
“I Wanna Be Your Dog” – The Stooges
This track appears to be about seeking shelter and guidance from someone who can play the tambourine, acting as a sort of spiritual guide. While the song’s meaning may be ambiguous, it has a hypnotic and mystical quality that remains captivating after many listens.
It’s unique lyrical style and distinctive voice make this piece stand out, even in a group of songs as diverse as those about animals.
“The Lion and the Unicorn” – The Beatles
This Beatles classic employs cryptic lyrics and an enigmatic melody to pay tribute to the lion and the unicorn, two powerful symbols of British royalty. Though the song’s meaning is ultimately left open to interpretation, its whimsical imagery and intricate arrangement make for an enchanting homage to these regal beasts.
“Fly Like an Eagle” – Steve Miller Band
The classic rock hit sees Steve Miller singing about soaring like a bird through the vast expanse of the world. The animal metaphor appears in his effort to express the sense of freedom and adventure that accompanies flight, and the mysticism of the scene is amplified by his curious lyricism, the acoustic guitar, and the psychedelic texture that permeates the instrumentation. It’s a track that speaks to the wild and independent spirit of animals, and their unceasing desire to explore and go beyond limits.
“Badger Badger Badger” – Weebl’s Stuff
“Badger Badger Badger” is a hypnotic jingle that portrays a repeating cycle of badgers moving in a whimsical fashion. The song is packed with boundless energy and erratic rhythms that are rhythmic, fun, and, at times, baffling. Despite its lack of lyrics, “Badger Badger Badger” manages to capture the playfulness of an animal and bind it into a lively melody that leaves a lasting impression on its listeners.
“Love Cats” – The Cure
“Love Cats” by The Cure is a poetic and whimsical song about feline affection. With upbeat instrumentals and Robert Smith’s eccentric vocals, the song tells a story of two cats falling in love and sharing playful moments together.
Taking inspiration from the band’s own pets, “Love Cats” captures the mysterious and playful nature of our feline friends in a lighthearted and infectious melody. It’s a quintessential example of how songs can capture the essence of an animal’s personality and turn it into art that everyone can enjoy.
“Black Dog” – Led Zeppelin
“Black Dog” by Led Zeppelin is a classic rock song that features a distinctive riff and soaring vocals. While the true meaning behind the lyrics is subject to interpretation, many have speculated that the title refers to a black dog that haunted a former residence of lead singer Robert Plant.
Despite the somewhat cryptic lyrics, the song’s anthemic quality and memorable melody have made it an enduring favorite among rock fans.
“Baby Shark” – Pinkfong
“Baby Shark” is a popular nursery rhyme that has taken the internet by storm. The repetitive and catchy tune revolves around a family of sharks – Mommy Shark, Daddy Shark, Grandma Shark, Grandpa Shark, and Baby Shark.
Despite its simple melody and lyrics, “Baby Shark” has become a cultural phenomenon, inspiring countless memes, dance challenges, and even a TV show. Whether you love it or hate it, there’s no denying the power of this animal-themed song.
“Horse with No Name” – America
This tune by America is a wildly famous folk rock ballad. The lyrics tell a story of a journey through the desert with a horse who lacks a moniker, resulting in a recurrent chorus of “I’ve been through the desert on a horse with no name.”
The song’s peculiarity comes from its lack of a straightforward interpretation, making it a mystery as to what the writer wanted to convey via the animal imagery. Despite this, the chorus is undoubtedly catchy and has permeated popular culture.
“Monkey Man” – The Rolling Stones
“Monkey Man” by The Rolling Stones is a delightful tune that draws listeners in with its infectious beats and infectious lyrics that tell the story of a man who takes on the characteristics of his animal namesake.
With its upbeat tempo, catchy tune, and whimsical lyrics, “Monkey Man” is a must-include on any list of songs about animals that will appeal to lovers of classic rock and all generations of music fans.
“Black Swan Song” – Athlete
“Black Swan Song” is a powerful and emotive track by the rock band Athlete that explores themes of love and loss through the metaphorical lens of a black swan. With poetic lyrics and haunting melodies, the song evokes a sense of mystery and wonder, leaving the listener captivated by its enigmatic beauty.
Throughout the track, the band masterfully weaves together a variety of sounds, from delicate piano chords to soaring guitar solos, creating a deep and textured sonic landscape that perfectly matches the song’s complex emotional themes.
“Blackbird” – Alter Bridge
“Blackbird” by Alter Bridge is a hauntingly beautiful song, paying tribute to the magic of this intriguing, dark-feathered bird. With its soaring vocals and intricate guitar riffs, the song celebrates the free spirit and resilient nature of these creatures, showcasing the band’s impressive musical prowess.
It’s an ideal song for those fascinated by the enigmatic symbolism of birds and nature, as it captures the essence of these feathered friends in all their mysterious glory.
“The Elephant Song” – Eric Herman
“The Elephant Song” – Eric Herman uses the metaphor of a horse named Wildfire to illustrate the powerful and dangerous nature of passion and unrequited love. The song’s captivating melody, along with its poignant lyrics, seamlessly blends the themes of love and loss with the grace, energy, and force of a wild stallion, making it a timeless classic that resonates with listeners of all ages.
“The Snake” – Al Wilson
This captivating tune captures the essence of a sly and cunning snake, drawing listeners into its hypnotic rhythm. Al Wilson’s soulful voice skillfully conveys the snake’s power dynamics, creating an air of danger and sensuality.
The lyrics and the melody seamlessly blend together to create an immersive experience of the animal’s mystique and allure. It’s an exquisite piece that pays homage to the natural world’s mesmerizing beauty and complexity.
“The Fly” – U2
Coming up with creative ways to write about animals can be a challenge, but U2’s “The Fly” takes a unique approach to the topic. While the song itself isn’t about a specific animal, the lyrics compare the singer to a fly, highlighting the pesky yet resilient nature of these buzzing bugs. It’s a burst of energy and a mesmerizingly catchy tune that fits in well with the animal-themed canon of music.