To help get you into a feel-good mood and raise your hope for the future, here are the top 10 peace songs.
1. Imagine – John Lennon
John Lennon wrote and recorded Imagine in the summer of 1969. The Beatles haven’t officially broken up yet at the time. In the song, Lennon asks the listener to imagine what the world would be like if there are no things that would divide us, like religion and possessions. He says that if people want peace, they first need to imagine what it would be like.
2. Heal the World – Michael Jackson
Heal the World is a song about being more considerate of less fortunate people. The message is that with everything you do, you should always consider how it will impact other people, especially the ones in other parts of the world who are living in poverty.
3. One Day – Matisyahu
Matisyahu is an American reggae singer, his song One Day was first released in 2008, but it gained worldwide popularity in the mid-2010s. The song One Day is Matisyahu’s expression of hope that one day will come when there is an end to world violence. It is also a prayer that there will come a day of global peace and understanding.
4. While My Guitar Gently Weeps – The Beatles
George Harrison found inspiration for this song after he read a copy of the I-Ching in his parents’ home. The song is about his dismay with the world’s unused potential for universal love, which is what he refers to in the song as “the love that’s sleeping.”
5. Give Peace A Chance – John Lennon/Plastic Ono Band
John Lennon wrote this song during his and Yoko Ono’s “bed-in” honeymoon. During this period, the press would visit the couple as they just stayed in their bed. When asked why they were doing this, John replied, “Just give peace a chance”, and that’s where it came from.
6. Where is the Love? – Black Eyed Peas
This was the first hit song of the group. Released in 2003, Where is the Love is a response to the 911 terror attack. The lyrics shed light on the many issues that plagued society, like gang crimes, racism, terrorism, intolerance, and many others.
7. Fortunate Son – Creedence Clearwater Revival
This is a protest song about the Vietnam War. It supports the men who got drafted and served in the war. It was also against the children of the wealthy who dodged the draft without suffering consequences. These are the “fortunate sons”.
8. Zombie – The Cranberries
Dolores O’Riordan, the lead singer of the band, wrote this eerily haunting song as a protest against the ongoing conflict in Northern Ireland. What triggered O’Riordan to write this incendiary song was a particularly heart-breaking incident where two children were killed by a bomb placed in a trash bin in the Warrington City center.
9. One Love – Bob Marley
At first hearing, the song sounds like it is about peace and love. However, if you listen closely to the lyrics, you will discover that Bob Marley cleverly inserted other themes into the song. Some verses sing about how people should look at each other beyond the color of their skin, race, and religion.
10. We Are the World – the USA for Africa
This song is a collaboration of the biggest pop stars of the 80s, collectively called the USA for Africa. The group was formed to raise funds to help feed the people of Africa, which, at the time, was suffering from a famine. The song sends a message that no matter the color of your skin or where in the world you live, we are all part of a global family.