Songs about trouble have been a staple in the music industry for decades. From heartbreak to financial woes, these tunes have captured the essence of trouble in all its forms. Here are some of the most iconic songs about trouble that will have you tapping your toes!
Best Songs About Trouble
Let’s begin with a classic Johnny Cash song.
“Folsom Prison Blues” by Johnny Cash
“Folsom Prison Blues” is a classic country tune that tells the story of a prisoner who is serving time in Folsom Prison. The song was released in 1955 and features Cash’s distinctive baritone voice and powerful storytelling.
One of the things I personally love about this song is the haunting acoustic guitar riff that opens the tune, setting the mood for the prisoner’s tale. I admire Cash’s ability to convey the prisoner’s longing for freedom through his lyrics and vocal delivery.
It’s become a staple in Cash’s live performances, and it remains a powerful statement on the human experience. Although Johnny Cash never spent time in prison himself, he wrote it while serving in the Air Force in Germany near the actual location of the Folsom prison.
“Trouble” by Coldplay
This pop-rock song from Coldplay features a haunting piano melody and emotional lyrics. I really appreciate this song’s heartfelt delivery from lead vocalist Chris Martin, which gives the song an emotional punch.
It’s difficult to express complex emotions, but Christ Martin really makes it look so easy. Another aspect of the song that I really enjoy is the powerful production, which builds to a powerful climax and leaves you wanting more!
“Trouble Every Day” by The Mothers of Invention
Who doesn’t love a psychedelic rock tune with deep political and social commentary about the troubles of its time? I know I do. The 1966 song features a trippy beat and strange lyrics. It’s really a complex and innovative piece of music that showcases the band’s mastery of instrumentation.
The Mothers of Invention were known for pushing the boundaries of what was possible in popular music. This song is no exception and is a prime example of the band’s willingness to experiment and play with sound.
One of the things I love is the unconventional use of different instruments. The song features a wide range of sounds, from distorted electric guitars and driving bass lines, to complex polyrhythms and avant-garde sound effects. The band also makes use of unconventional instruments, such as a theremin, which adds an otherworldly quality to the music.
“Hit the Road Jack” by Ray Charles
As a classic R&B tune, this 1961 song tells the story of a man who is told to “hit the road” by his girlfriend. It features Ray Charles‘ distinctive vocal style and upbeat swing beat. Charles’ upbeat delivery makes the song a fun tune to listen to.
The instrumentation is truly delightful, featuring a swinging R&B beat and descending blues piano line that is sure to get you dancing. I know I literally can’t help it with this song! It has become a classic, and it is still one of Charles’ most popular tunes.
In many ways, this Ray Charles track almost feels like a straight up problematic troublemakers. If you’re looking for songs about causing trouble, this might not be your jam. But, if you’re seeking out songs that verbally kick troublemakers out the door, you’ll want this one on repeat.
“Living on a Prayer” by Bon Jovi
Who doesn’t love this classic rock tune that tells the story of a couple staying together no matter what it takes? The song features a powerful rock beat and gutting, storytelling lyrics. The passionate delivery of lead vocalist Jon Bon Jovi gives the song an emotional punch.
Honestly, anything Bon Jovi is practically guaranteed to be a heavy-hitter. The powerful guitar riffs are also sure to get your heart racing. This song is rightfully one of the most memorable out of Bon Jovi’s discography.
“Hard Times” by Run the Jewels
This hip-hop tune sure doesn’t shy away from making the group’s own stances known on many current social issues. It features a hard-hitting beat along with socially conscious lyrics.
Something I personally love about this song is its message, which calls for action in the face of adversity. Also, the tight delivery of rappers Killer Mike and El-P, perfectly encapsulates the urgency of the lyrics and the song’s message.
“What’s Going On” by Marvin Gaye
Marvin Gaye’s “What’s Going On” is a soul classic that tackles the social and political issues of its time. His lyrics paint a picture of a world in turmoil, where people are struggling with poverty, injustice, and violence. He sings about the need for peace, understanding, and unity, and encourages listeners to take action to make the world a better place. I really love that.
The song was groundbreaking for its time, as it marked a departure from the traditional love songs and ballads that dominated popular music. Instead, Marvin Gaye used his platform as a popular musician to raise awareness about the issues that he cared about and to inspire change.
I personally appreciate the song’s message, which calls for peace and understanding in a world plagued by violence and inequality. Additionally, Gaye’s delivery beautifully expresses the emotion and urgency of the song’s message. The song will always be remembered as a classic of soul music.
- You Might Also Like: Songs with Meaning
“Trouble” by Pink
Pink’s “Trouble” was released in 2003 and features a driving beat and powerful vocals. You really can’t forget Pink’s powerhouse vocal performance, which conveys the attitude and defiance of the song’s protagonist.
Another aspect of the song that stays with you is the song’s production, which features a driving beat and punchy instrumental track that perfectly complements Pink’s vocals and tonality. You want trouble? Pink will always be sure to deliver in the most stunning, memorable way possible.
“Trouble” by Taylor Swift
This Taylor Swift pop song is about a girl who finds herself in trouble with a classic “bad boy”. The upbeat tune was released in 2012 and features a catchy beat and flirty, playful lyrics that make it crazy fun to listen to.
Another aspect of the song that I love is Max Martin’s masterful production, which features a catchy pop beat that is sure to get stuck in your head. The song was a commercial success, reaching the top 20 on the Hot 100 chart, and it remains one of Swift’s most popular tunes.
“Trouble in Mind” by Nina Simone
Nina Simone’s “Trouble in Mind” is a soulful rendition of a traditional blues tune. Simone’s powerful voice and emotional delivery are truly unforgettable. The soulful melodies also really get me! The jazzy piano is the centerpiece of the song, with Simone’s voice being both delicate and powerful as she sings over it.
The bass line provides a solid foundation that holds the song together and gives it a groovy feel, while the drums are used sparsely to accent the beats and keep the tempo going. It’s just a fabulous example of Nina Simone showcasing her signature style of blending elements of jazz, classical, and gospel music.
“Trouble No More” by The Allman Brothers Band
This song is a blues-rock tune that tells the story of a man who has found love and left his troubles behind—with a driving beat and powerful guitar riffs, making the instrumentation really solid. It features a tight rhythm section and soaring guitar solos that perfectly capture the energy of the song.
I also admire the song’s upbeat message, which celebrates the power of love to overcome trouble. This song will forever be known as one of the Allman Brothers Band’s seven greatest blues records.
“Troublemaker” by Olly Murs
Looking for good songs about troublemakers? Well, I present you with this catchy Olly Murs track! The song’s energy is effortlessly fun and lighthearted. Murs’ vocals are incredibly charming, which gives the song an extra dose of personality.
The foundation of the song is the beat-driven rhythm section, with the drums and bass providing pulsing energy that keeps the song moving forward. The drums are tight and punchy, with a driving snare sound that gives the song its energy, while the bass provides a solid foundation that keeps the song grounded. Every part of this song makes me want to dance my heart out!
“Trouble” by Ray LaMontagne
This folk-rock tune was released in 2004 and features a very soulful voice, emotional lyrics, and hints of the 60s throughout. His soulful delivery is outstanding and gives the song so much emotional depth.
Also, the looming, haunting acoustic guitar and simple percussion perfectly complement LaMontagne’s vocal performance. Every part of this song blends together seamlessly for a truly fun listening experience.
Wrapping It Up
So, there you have it: 13 awesome songs with the word trouble in the lyrics! All in all, there is a rich history of songs about trouble in popular music, covering a wide range of styles and themes.
From Johnny Cash’s “Folsom Prison Blues” to Olly Murs’ “Troublemaker,” these songs provide a window into the human experience, capturing the pain and heartache of life’s challenges and the joy and triumph of overcoming them.
Bad boys, lawbreakers, inner demons, and societal issues all have a place in the “trouble” genre. Whether you’re feeling rebellious, searching for peace of mind, or just looking for a good time, these songs are sure to hit the spot!