When it comes to colors, almost everyone likes some shade of blue. When it comes to music, both in song titles and song lyrics, the color blue is a perennial favorite. There's even an entire genre devoted to it: the blues!
Therefore, I decided to put together a list of the top ten songs about blue from as far back as the 1920s and as recent as the 1990s! But I want to cover all of the decades in between - the 1930s, 1940s, 1950s, 1960s, 1970s and 1980s - as well.
These songs are organized by how well each song has done on the charts. Plus, if you click on each song title, you can learn even more about each song. If you don't see your favorite blue song, be sure to leave a comment. Who knows, your submission could be the next entry!
With that, let's start at the bottom (but certainly not least) and work our way up to the #1 spot.
10. Blue Moon Of Kentucky
Written and originally recorded by Bill Monroe, it's considered one of the greatest bluegrass songs of all time. Elvis Presley's recording is lauded as the genesis of rockabilly. So it has to be on this list. While it doesn't have a Billboard chart history, no list like this would be complete without it.
Blue moon of Kentucky, keep on shining
Shine on the one that's gone and proved untrue
Blue moon of Kentucky, keep on shining
Shine on the one that's gone and left me blue
This one has a cool story. "Blue" was written by radio DJ Bill Mack in the early 1960s for Patsy Cline, but Cline died before it could be recorded. Rimes was the first to make it a hit - at only 13 years old! A Top 40 hit on the pop charts and a Top Ten hit on the country charts. In my book, a modern-day classic.
Oh, so lonesome for you
Why can't you be blue over me?
8. Blue Eyes Crying In The Rain
Originally written in 1945 by Fred Rose and released by Roy Acuff, it was released 30 years later by Willie Nelson on his concept album Red Headed Stranger. It was Nelson's first #1 country hit as a singer, and reached #21 on the pop charts. One of the greatest of all blue songs - in every sense of the word.
In the twilight glow I see
Blue eyes crying in the rain
When we kissed goodbye and parted
I knew we'd never meet again
7. Blue Bayou
Though it was a big hit for oldies revivalist Linda Ronstadt in 1977, it was first written and recorded by Roy Orbison. His version was Top 30 hit on the both pop charts and the R&B charts. A breezy, melancholy song in all the right ways, it's an underrated gem of a ballad, regardless of which version you like best.
I feel so bad, I've got a worried mind
I'm so lonesome all the time
Looking forward to happier times
On Blue Bayou
6. Summertime Blues
The seminal rock and roll summer song! Eddie Cochran reached #8 with it on the pop charts. Sadly, he was killed in a 1960 car accident that also injured Gene Vincent. "Summertime Blues" has been recorded by the Beach Boys, the Who and Blue Cheer. In 1994, Alan Jackson made it a #1 country hit.
I'm a-gonna raise a fuss, I'm a-gonna raise a holler
About a-working all summer just to try to earn a dollar
Every time I call my baby, and try to get a date
My boss says, "No dice, son, you gotta work late"
5. Blue Velvet
A #16 hit for Tony Bennett in 1951, "Blue Velvet" is considered Bobby Vinton's signature song. It reached #1 in the US in 1963. When it was re-released in 1990, it reached #2 in the UK. What's cool about Vinton is that his voice sounds just as good today, if not better, as he was in the 1960s.
She wore blue velvet
Bluer than velvet was the night
Softer than satin was the light from the stars
4. Blue Skies
One of the great standards, "Blue Skies" was written by Irving Berlin in 1926, and was an instant success. It was a #1 hit the following year for Ben Selvin. In 1978, Willie Nelson made it a #1 country hit. No matter the era after, this song has been very popular. It set the bar high for every blue-themed song to come.
Blue skies smiling at me
Nothing but blue skies do I see
Bluebirds singing a song
Nothing but blue skies from now on
3. Love Is Blue
One of the most famous pop instrumentals of all time. Composed by French songwriter André Popp (as "L'amour Est Bleu"), the 1967 version by Paul Mariat stayed at #1 in the US for five weeks. It was also a #23 hit in the U.K. for guitarist Jeff Beck. It's reminiscent of another "color" song: "Greensleeves".
Blue, blue, my world is blue
Blue is my world since I'm without you
Gray, gray, my life is gray
Cold is my heart since you went away
2. Blue Suede Shoes
"Blue Suede Shoes" is the rock and roll song. Sure, Elvis is known for it, but Carl Perkins wrote it and recorded the biggest hit version, reaching #2 on the pop and R&B charts and #1 on the country charts. The song itself is so good, Rolling Stone included both versions in the 500 Greatest Songs of All Time!
Well, it's one for the money, two for the show
Three to get ready, now, go, cat, go
But don't you step on my blue suede shoes
You can do anything, but lay off of my blue suede shoes
...And the number one oldies song featuring the color blue could only be...!
1. Blue Moon
Written by Rodgers and Hart as a ballad, it's a standard that's been recorded by dozens of crooners. But the Marcels' uptempo doo-wop cover took it to a whole other level. It reached #1 in both the US and UK, and was actually shocking to many purists! What shouldn't be a shock is that it's #1 on this list.
You saw me standing alone
Without a dream in my heart
Without a love of my own
Do you agree with this list? Have any suggestions for honorable mentions? I can think of a few myself, but I want you to decide.
Check out all of the lists here at Rock The Jukebox: