Stars, whether they be of the celestial or celebrity form, have been a great source of inspiration for songwriters for about as long as people have been writing songs.
Ruminating on humanity’s place in the cosmos or as a metaphor for achieving your dreams. Whatever it might be, there are many great songs with the word star in the title.
So, without further ado, we bring you ten of the very best songs related to stars.
- Top 10 Songs with the Word Star in the Title
- The Star-Spangled Banner – Jimi Hendrix (1969)
- Starman – David Bowie (1972)
- Another Star – Stevie Wonder (1977)
- Wishing on a Star – Rose Royce (1978)
- Video Killed the Radio Star – The Buggles (1979)
- Lucky Star – Madonna (1984)
- Waiting for a Star to Fall – Boy Meets Girl (1988)
- Stars – Simply Red (1991)
- Black Star – Radiohead (1995)
- All Star – Smash Mouth (1999)
- Want More Songs About the World Above Us?
- Songs with the Word Star in the Title – Final Thoughts
Top 10 Songs with the Word Star in the Title
The Star-Spangled Banner – Jimi Hendrix (1969)
By far, the most controversial song with the word star in its title. Hendrix’s rendition of the US national anthem caused a storm at the time.
He played it as the closing number to his Woodstock set and the festival as a whole. Jimi’s unorthodox version, complete with brutal feedback, was his way of protesting the Vietnam war.
Rather than write lyrics on the subject…
He let his guitar express how he felt, and the resulting performance has since become legendary. Anyone who strayed from a traditional rendition of the anthem was deemed disrespectful by the establishment. However, for the hundreds of thousands of fans who witnessed it live, it was a moment of protest they will never forget.
Needless to say, the song was never released as a single for obvious reasons. As a result, it only appears on the Live at Woodstock album released after his death.
Starman – David Bowie (1972)
“Starman” was the first single released from Bowie’s groundbreaking album, The Rise and Fall of Ziggy Stardust and the Spiders from Mars. When it comes to songs with the word star in the title, Bowie was bound to make an appearance.
This inspirational song was written as a message…
One of hope to the youth of the world. The Starman has traveled light-years to enlighten humanity that it’s their responsibility to enjoy life. And, thereby, help to create a better future. He directs his message to the young as they have the most potential to affect change.
Released in 1972, “Starman” has remained part of the cultural zeitgeist ever since. It’s been used in multiple film soundtracks. Most recently, in the Pixar animated film “Lightyear.” Bernie Sanders also used the song in his bid to become the 2016 Democratic presidential candidate.
Given its enduring popularity, the song wasn’t one of Bowie’s biggest hits peaking at #10 in the UK charts and #65 on the US Billboard Hot 100.
Another Star – Stevie Wonder (1977)
When most people hear the name Stevie Wonder, they automatically think of his cringe-inducing output of the 1980s.
What most of them don’t know is…
From 1972 to 1977, Stevie Wonder was responsible for some of the most joyful and creative albums of the decade. Simply put, the man was a musical genius at the peak of his powers.
“Another Star” is a great example of his output at the time. Although the song is about heartbreak, the music is about as uplifting as it gets. If the Brazilian flavor of the whole production doesn’t want to make you want to get up and strut your funky stuff, then nothing will.
In typical Stevie style…
A whole host of instrumentalists were brought in to add depth. Trumpets, saxophones, piano, and a flute help weave a wall of sound together with Wonder’s incredible vocal range. A production that will leave you blown away.
The song wasn’t a huge commercial success peaking at #32 on the Billboard Hot 100. However, the album it was taken from, Songs in the Key of Life, is critically recognized for the work of genius it is. So much so, that Rolling Stone magazine ranked it at #4 in their countdown of The 500 Greatest Albums of All Time.
Wishing on a Star – Rose Royce (1978)
This melancholy ballad was written by Billie Rae Calvin, a member of the group Undisputed Truth. Barbara Streisand was given the option to record it but turned it down. Soul/R&B band Rose Royce recorded the first version instead, releasing it as a single in 1978.
The song is about a woman regretting the loss of a lover and wishing she could rekindle their relationship. She’s so desperate to get him back that she’s resorted to wishing on shooting stars and rainbows.
The song didn’t make much of an impact in the US…
Only managing to reach #52 on the Billboard Hot Soul Singles chart. However, it was much more successful across the Atlantic. Hitting the dizzy height of #3 in the UK singles chart.
It’s since been recorded by numerous artists, including Jay-Z, Seal, and Beyoncé.
Video Killed the Radio Star – The Buggles (1979)
Most commonly known as the first video to be played on MTV, “Video Killed the Radio Star” was a massive one-hit-wonder for British New Wave band The Buggles on its release in 1979.
It hit the #1 spot in 16 countries worldwide. And it was so popular in Australia it was the best-selling single for the next 27 years.
So what’s the song about?
The song is about the impact of modern technology on the music industry. It’s a nostalgic nod to a bygone era when wireless radio was the main source of musical discovery. And when music wasn’t reliant on over-production in the studio or slick music videos.
It’s an incredibly catchy song with star in the title. And, once you hear it, it’s nigh on impossible to get out of your head. You’ve been warned.
Lucky Star – Madonna (1984)
“Lucky Star” was one of Madonna’s earliest hits. And one of the most danceable songs she ever produced. Taken from her debut album, the song makes comparisons between the male physique and the stars in the heavenly sky.
“Holiday” and “Borderline” were the other two big hits from the album. And, much like them, “Lucky Star” is founded on near-perfect Pop hooks.
On its 1984 release…
The song became Madonna’s biggest hit to date. Making it to #4 on the US Billboard Hot 100 singles chart and firmly putting her on the road to superstardom. The accompanying video showcasing her unique style also helped make her a fashion icon for the younger generation.
Waiting for a Star to Fall – Boy Meets Girl (1988)
This classic piece of 1980s Pop from singer-songwriting duo Boy Meets Girl was inspired by witnessing a shooting star at a Whitney Houston concert.
The song is about the difficulty the protagonist has in winning the heart of his true love. It’s as difficult as catching a star. In other words, not easy.
The duo initially offered the song to Whitney Houston, having already written hit songs for her in “How Will I Know” and “I Wanna Dance with Somebody.” Houston’s record company didn’t think the song would be a good fit, so George Merrill and Shannon Rubicam decided to record it themselves.
It’s safe to say they were pretty glad they did. The song scored them a #5 hit on the US Billboard Hot 100 and Top 10 positions on several other national charts. As a result, it remains a popular song with the word star in it.
Stars – Simply Red (1991)
This exquisite and soulful ballad from the pen of lead singer Mick Hucknall was a big hit for the band on its release in 1991. It’s essentially an honest love letter, setting out the protagonist’s feelings for the love of his life, a love that is unlikely to last the test of time.
The song is a wonderful showcase of how not to over-complicate things. The beauty is found in its simplicity. Mick Hucknall hits every note with perfection. Throw in a little piano and some great drumming, and you have a Pop hit.
“Stars” was the second single released from the album of the same name and went on to place in the Top 10 in multiple charts worldwide. It’s no surprise such a catchy and warm track had such mass appeal in so many countries.
Black Star – Radiohead (1995)
Masters of indie angst, Radiohead, knocked the ball out of the park with their second studio album, The Bends. Although it was never released as a single, “Black Star” is one of the standout tracks from a truly fantastic and highly influential album.
It’s an emotional track…
About a failing relationship that has got so bad it sucks all the life out of the protagonist. Anyone who has gone through such an emotionally draining experience should be able to identify with the lyrics of this song.
The black star of the song’s title could be interpreted as a metaphor for the extinguishing of hope, a light that has gone out, never to return.
Radiohead is one of the few guitar-driven bands that have managed to combine exceptional instrumental talent with an ability to convey raw emotion like no other. “Black Star” is a perfect example of this mix at work.
All Star – Smash Mouth (1999)
American Ska/Rock band Smash Mouth had their biggest commercial hit with “All Star”, an anthem they wrote for the outsiders of life. Guitarist Greg Camp wrote the song after reading fan mail which suggested many of their fans identified themselves as societal outcasts.
So, he wanted to write something to encourage them…
It’s an upbeat track with a positive message to take life by the horns and run with it. Hopefully, it helped a few of their listeners to have a little more confidence in themselves.
“All Star” was a pretty big hit in the US, climbing to #4 on the Billboard Hot 100. It gained further cultural prominence after being featured in several major Hollywood movies, including Inspector Gadget, Mystery Men, and Shrek. It’s also regularly trotted out at major sporting events.
Want More Songs About the World Above Us?
Well, take a look at our informative articles on the Best Songs About Space, Stars and the Universe, the Top Songs About The Moon, the Best Songs About Heaven, the Top Songs About Rainbows, and the Best Songs About the Sun and Sunshine for great musical selections.
Also, you need to hear them. So, check out our in-depth reviews of the Best Sound Quality Earbuds, the Best Headphones for Music, the Best Bass Earbuds, the Best Headphones For Rock & Metal Music, the Best True Wireless Earbuds, aa well as the Best Headphones Under $200 that you can buy in 2023.
Songs with the Word Star in the Title – Final Thoughts
So there you have it. Our list of the 10 best songs with star in the title. As we’ve seen, the word star can be used in many different ways and as a metaphor for many different things. I guess that’s why the ten songs on my list cover such a broad range of subjects.
Whatever the intended meaning, stars have long formed the inspiration for many a classic song. I limited my list to 10, but there are many others out there that didn’t quite make it. Let us know in the comments if you think we made any glaring omissions.
Until next time, look up, and happy listening.