12 Songs About Crying – Being Sad, Tears and Crying Alone
Whenever you’re sad and feel like tears are about to fall from your eyes, it’s always nice to know that there’s someone else out there that feels your pain. And that’s where songs about crying can almost work like a musical therapy session, as it connects you with an artist that can feel your pain. So here are my favorite songs about the subject of crying, which hopefully you’ll find helpful the next time you’re looking for a somber, but impactful, song to add to your playlist.
Songs About Crying You Will Enjoy
Let’s begin with a song by the legendary R&B music queen: Mary J. Blige.
Each Tear by Mary J. Blige (2009)
Every genre of music has songs about being sad and crying yourself to sleep. But, let me tell you, if you’re seeking R&B songs about crying, there’s probably no singer better suited to satisfy your needs than Mary J. Blige.
Now for this list, I could’ve easily have gone with Mary’s “Not Gon’ Cry”—that would’ve been the expected, crowd pleasing choice. And it’s no doubt an R&B classic. But I wanted to go with something slightly more recent—and a song that I think is arguably just as good.
When Mary sings on a track, you expect there to be a lot of pain involved. And that’s certainly present here on “Each Tear.” But, what I like most about this song is that it’s a highly positive and inspiring song that deals with the topic of heartbreak, sadness and of course tears.
On this song, Mary is all about offering words of encouragement—she wants you to believe in yourself. I like that this song isn’t explicit in its “story” or meaning, but it’s clear that Mary is trying to emotionally lift someone out of a funk. The person Mary is singing to is seriously down and out—you get the sense that this person has been devastated by a massive breakup, and it has sent them into an emotional downward spiral.
But Mary is right by your side on this track, letting you know that you can’t give up on your dreams. You’re meant for something great, and Mary won’t let you fail to shoot for the stars.
On a soaring Mary ballad, Blige is usually all about unpacking her own pain. So it’s really nice to hear a song like “Each Tear,” where Mary is dedicating her healing words to pulling someone else out of the darkness for a change.
In each tear
There’s a lesson, (there’s a lesson)
Makes you wiser than before (wiser)
Makes you stronger than you know (stronger)
And each tear (each tear)
Brings you closer to your dreams
No mistake, no heartbreak
Can take away what you’re meant to be
- You Also Might Like: Songs About Depression
Silent Cry by Stray Kids (2021)
Silent Cry is a perfect song about crying, as it truly captures the feeling of what it’s like to hide your tears from the people you love. Doing so allows you the space to cry alone in silence. Even just the lyrics themselves are so meaningful. They describe the pain of someone who hides their feelings alone in their room.
You always say “I’m okay” but I can see everything
How your heart sobs when you’re alone
After turning off the lights in your quiet room
You, who used to smile brightly, are slowly dying
In this empty space, with nobody inside of it
And in the chorus, they offer some words of comfort.
I’ll listen to your silent cry
So that you don’t get tired in a lost corner of your heart
It’ll really feel like the singers are there with you, offering you a shoulder to cry on. And it isn’t just the lyrics that make you feel that way! The whole vibe of the song works so well to create this atmosphere.
The song starts off with the sound of rain, which is often used as a metaphor for tears, followed by the sound of a door opening and then slamming shut. Is this the sound of someone going into their bedroom and shutting the door behind them to cry alone? Or is it the sound of someone finding this person in the room and going up to comfort them? It’s hard to know – and I’d bet it’s the former of the two – but it really does help paint a vivid picture.
Song Cry by Jay-Z (2001)
Rap music can gin up all kinds of emotions, with “sadness” and “regret” no doubt topping the list. But when it comes to crying, that kind of emotion isn’t too terribly common in hip hop. And when it does happen, like with 2Pac’s “So Many Tears,” it’s no doubt worth taking notice.
That’s kind of what we have here in “Song Cry.” On this track, we get a remorseful Jigga—a man that knows he has a good woman at home, yet he’s not quite a good enough man to match her energy. And Jay knows it, as he’s pouring out his heart on this track.
But despite being emotionally torn up, Jay-Z can’t cry. It’s just not in him—he’s not going to be the dude that’s going to “ugly cry” or cry himself to sleep.
So instead, he’ll have to cry vicariously through a song. He’ll have to make this song so honest, and by proxy so sad, that the song will shed tears for him.
This is a particularly sad song because of the kind of woman Jay is rapping about, as well. This isn’t just any ol’ lady—this song clearly paints a picture of a woman Jay knew for a long time. They went through a lot of ups and downs, weathered a ton of storms, and still were able to make it work.
But Jay admits to cheating on this song, as well as how money changed (or perhaps amplified) his behavior. So now, Jay sees the writing on the wall. The relationship has reached its end.
I can’t see it comin’ down my eyes
So I gotta make the song cry
Boys Don’t Cry by The Cure (1979)
This is an iconic one I think everyone knows. It’s really timeless – and catchy! – but also a little ahead of its time. After all, this was released before conversations about toxic masculinity were really seen in the mainstream media!
Boys Don’t Cry has a great message that talks about the pressure that men face with regards to expressing their emotions. The singer tries to cover up his pain with laughter instead of just crying, because he knows that he isn’t really allowed to cry.
I tried to laugh about it
Cover it all up with lies
I tried to laugh about it
Hiding the tears in my eyes
‘Cause boys don’t cry
If you’re curious to hear more about the song, and the effect it’s had on challenging gender norms, you can read this interview with lead singer Robert Smith.
Cry For Me (Eng. Ver.) by Twice (2021)
A far cry from Twice’s usual cute, girly image, this one talks about wanting someone to hurt the way that they were hurt! They want the person in question – most likely an ex – to cry just like they did.
I want you to cry, cry for me
The way I cried for you, baby, cry for me
Make your rain fall, cry for me
It’s definitely got a more of an angsty breakup song vibe compared to most of their other discography. Even so, it’s definitely catchy – something you’ll find yourself singing along to. There’s an English version as well as a Korean version (and even one in Japanese!), so you can listen to whichever one you’re in the mood for!
If you’re looking for some K-Pop songs about crying, look no further than this Twice song.
Pretty When You Cry by Lana Del Rey (2014)
From her album “Ultraviolence,” Pretty When You Cry is a slow, mesmerizing song about crying. It features Lana’s unique, siren-like voice recorded over some simple guitar. It’s really a song that will rope you in!
What’s cool about this one is that it was improvised and recorded in one take. Impressive! The lyrics are a little unexpected, which is understandable given that it was freestyled. It seems like she’s talking about unrequited love or an unfulfilling relationship, but the whole situation is sort of vague. In any case, the chorus is memorable and beautiful to listen to!
Because I’m pretty when I cry
I’m pretty when I cry
I’m pretty when I cry
I’m pretty when I cry
Teardrops On My Guitar by Taylor Swift (2007)
This is an OG Taylor Swift song. Based on Taylor’s real-life crush at the time, the lyrics talk about unrequited love. It’s definitely the kind of song you’ll want to listen to if you’re dealing with similar feelings or emotions!
It is sort of innocent and naïve – it’s really a schoolgirl crush, after all. But that’s part of the charm. It’s something we’ve all dealt with in one way or another!
He’s the reason for the teardrops on my guitar
The only thing that keeps me wishing on a star
He’s the song in the car I keep singing
Don’t know why I do
A great song to cry to, but also just a fun listen if you miss Taylor’s old sound.
- You Might Also Enjoy: Songs About Crushes
Cry For Me by Camilla Cabello (2019)
No, this isn’t a mistake—it really does have the same title as the Twice song. But although they share the same title, the two songs are very distinct. This one has a totally different vibe and energy to the Twice song; it’s a lot angrier and a lot more direct.
For example, a line like this could never appear in a Twice song.
Who’s gonna touch you like me?
It’s very catchy, though admittedly quite repetitive. But it really is the perfect breakup song. Not only does she want her ex to cry for her, she also wants them to die for her.
I want you to cry for me, cry for me
Say you’d d-d-die for me, die for me
And if you can’t, lie for me, lie for me
‘Cause you haunt me when I’m dreamin’
And it’s time you know the feeling
So cry for me
Baby Don’t Cry by Daesung (2011)
Daesung’s Baby Don’t Cry is oddly reminiscent of an 80s pop song with the drums and sound effects. It might seem weird that the track is so upbeat given the subject matter, but it works! The song is supposed to be uplifting, and it is!
And if you look at the lyrics, you can see this even more so.
But why are you crying?
Why are you closing your eyes like it’s the end?
Everything has passed
Smile now, my baby
Even though many people left you
This song will forever be by your side
Very comforting! Another song to make you feel like you aren’t alone in your tears.
911 by Lady Gaga (2020)
In this song, Lady Gaga discusses the effects of the antipsychotic medication she was on. Namely how it made her unable to cry anymore.
Listening to 911, it’s definitely got that distinctive EDM sound. It really sounds like dance music, despite the lyrics being so dark. But I think that’s on purpose; it’s repetitive and dance-y. It’s almost like she’s in a trance while singing it, which is how many people who have been on various psychiatric medications have described feeling.
This is a song about the subject of crying, but more than that, it’s a song about the inability to cry. It’s relatable to anyone who has ever been on medication for mental illness, but it’s also just a relatable feeling in general. Sometimes we can be feeling so much, but we can’t seem to cry even if we want to.
Could Cry Just Thinking About You by Troye Sivan (2021)
A beautifully raw breakup song about a failed relationship. If you like country songs about crying, I suppose this Troye Sivan song can give you a bit of that vibe, especially with the sound of the guitar and the other string instruments.
I have to say, on this track, you really get some heartbreaking lyrics here, as you can tell that he’s talking about a relationship that was likely long-term. This is a song about a life that could have been with someone that you can’t quite let go of.
I could cry just thinking about you
Every line I write is something about you
Every guy I want looks something just like you
Every book I read, I only read for you
Every art piece is just to remind you
I don’t know who I am, with or without you
It’s a really great song for anyone who’s ever been in a relationship where they’ve sort of lost themselves in another person.
No Tears Left to Cry by Ariana Grande (2018)
Another one that everyone knows! It’s catchy, and really highlights Ariana’s vocal skills. It was intended to be uplifting not only for Ariana Grande herself, but also for anyone listening to the song. This was her first real comeback after the 2017 bombing attack in Manchester.
The lyrics talk about having cried a lot and having had dealt with a lot of mixed emotions—but also finding a way to move forward.
Right now, I’m in a state of mind
I wanna be in like all the time
Ain’t got no tears left to cry
A really catchy, uplifting song about moving on from a difficult time in your life!
When we listen to songs about crying, they can be cathartic. They can make us feel less alone, and when done properly, can lift us out of despair and out us back on a path towards hope and redemption.
This is why we love music, and why a great song will always be the soundtrack to our lives.
If you enjoyed the article, be sure to subscribe to my Devoted to Vinyl YouTube channel and Facebook page.
You Might Also Like: