Dreams are mysterious, fascinating, terrifying, romantic, and even ethereal. Depending on your musical visionary and the genre of your dreams, there’s a huge assortment of music that presents each artist’s version of what those nighttime images mean. Each note and every word takes us to our place and time, with our portrayal and remembrances of illusions from our slumber.
Each of us can recall songs that communicate dreams with either music, lyrics, or a combination of both. Each generation will have their favorites, but some songs transcend time across all generations. These ten songs about dreams may be in your scope of musical taste but the connection you have is completely your own. See if they strike a chord with your spirit.
Best Songs about Dreaming
1. These Dreams – Heart
These Dreams was written by Bernie Taupin and Martin Page in 1985 and Heart recorded it on their album Heart, in January of 1986. With the power of the Wilson sisters’ voices, These Dreams was presented to us by the soft yet powerful vocals of Nancy.
Every perfect poetic stanza is the deep meaning of sleeping with visions in the mist. When the world is full of stress “these dreams go on when I close my eyes, every second of the night I live another life”.
The choice of musical tones and the background vocals and orchestra become a dreamlike ambiance. Incredible explanations and small voices that ask the questions about flying or walking “without a cut through a stained glass wall”. Imagery is so abundant and stunningly exact in this beautiful classic.
2. I Dreamed A Dream – Les Miserables
This beautiful and sorrowful lamentation of the Les Miserables character, Fantine is a captivating and chilling tale of her downward spiral into depression. Beautifully written for the 1980 musical by Claude-Michel Schönberg and John Cameron, with English lyrics by Herbert Kretzmer.
Losing everything and feeling that there is no purpose left except emptiness and hopelessness that is deeply rooted in the very core of a lost soul.
Remembering the hopes and dreams once believed in, and feeling them slip away into the darkness as a symbolic emotion of nothingness. By no means does this dismal song of tragedy have a happy ending for Fantine because she explains that “life has killed the dream” she dreamed.
3. Dream On – Aerosmith
To not include this powerful rock ballad written by Steven Tyler, himself, would be unimaginable in the realm of dream songs. Tyler was only 17 or 18 when he began writing Dream On, but the song was recorded on their debut album, Aerosmith, in June of 1973.
“Dream until your dreams come true” seems a simple declaration; although, everyone must come to this realization in their way, in their own time. Life can take you on a journey where you stumble or fall flat on your face. You look in the mirror and see the trials and hardships in those little lines.
Strength picks you up and gives you a shake back into the moment and your sparks are ignited. Never stop dreaming about what you love. Reach out for your desires and hopes, without doubt, until they come true. Upon hearing those reminiscent musical notes, Dream On with the passionate vocals of Steven Tyler, there’s a feeling of hope and the strength to never give up.
4. Dream – Imagine Dragons
This dynamic piece of power written by Alexander Junior Grant (a.k.a. Alex da Kid), brings images of a lifetime through the hauntingly beautiful voice of Dan Reynolds and Imagine Dragons, recorded on their album, Smoke and Mirrors.
Every quote, every wise word, and all the values gifted to us by our parents lie in question when lifelong beliefs are swiped from our hands, like when the kids at school said Santa was a myth. Through hardships and sorrow, in the end, all we want is to believe in our dreams.
5. Silent Lucidity – Queensryche
The power ballad is putting it mildly when it comes to this single from the 1990 Empire album from the band Queensryche. Very moving, evocative, and inspirational lyrics and music from Chris DeGarmo, lead guitarist, and backup vocalist. The beauty of the soul-stirring melody leads you to a dreamlike atmosphere as the haunting vocals of Geoff Tate make you want to close your eyes and feel the song in your core.
Lucidity in a dream means having some control of events, while still aware you are dreaming. The control gives you the power to teach your subconscious how to provide your destiny. Silent Lucidity‘s message provides the freedom to lead your desires into the real world, and never fear for your imagination to believe it is truth.
6. Boulevard of Broken Dreams – Green Day
American Idiot, the seventh album from Green Day in 2004, includes Boulevard of Broken Dreams which, like the entire album, explores the world of their main character, Jesus of Suburbia. While the entire band wrote the music, Billie Joe Armstrong wrote the words reflecting his solo trip to NYC, but it was a perfect fit for the life of Jesus of Suburbia.
When you “walk alone” there’s a certain pride that walks along with your “shadow” letting the world know you’re limitless. Through all your courage you still hope someone notices you’re alone and saves you from your rogue status. Even though dreams change or seem “broken”, life is still ahead so keep on focusing forward.
7. California Dreamin’ – Mamas and the Papas
Let’s roll the clock way back to 1965 when Mamas and the Papas released this timeless classic, written by John and Michelle Phillips. Beautiful harmonies express the sentiment of the grass being greener, not just on the other side, but in California.
Daydreaming is another way of putting a title to the music and lyrics of this amazingly rich folk-rock tune. Searching your memory would very likely conjure times when you wished you were somewhere warmer, cozier, cooler, less snow, or basking in the California sunshine. In the final analysis, you have to gratitude the attitude and appreciate home.
8. Daydreaming – Radiohead
This ambient ballad was released in May of 2016 and written by the members of Radiohead resulting in an elegy that may have familiar tones alongside lead singer and musician, Thom Yorke, reminiscent of the split from his wife of more than two decades.
Daydreaming may be noticeably light on words but filled with emotion and deep despondency. How dare the dreamers not learn their lesson to keep life on a very narrow path. Don’t believe in any future because there is no such thing as hope. But, if you’re daydreaming, controlling your adventure, then your dreams have just begun to take shape.
9. All Nightmare Long – Metallica
Dreams can sometimes come in the form of nightmares as this driving beat of a heavy metal jam draws you directly into the anxiety and fear. Metallica‘s Kirk Hammett, James Hetfield, Lars Ulrich, and Robert Trujillo composed this song and released it in December of 2008 on their album, Death Magnetic.
Undoubtedly everyone has encountered a horrible, frightening nightmare of some degree in their lifetime. All Nightmare Long sums up the agony and unrelenting fear and panic that lives with nightmares and comes out to play with our heads for a while as we try to find peace in slumber.
10. Dream Weaver – Gary Wright
Everything about this 1975 single from Gary Wright‘s album, The Dream Weaver, speaks the element of reflection and pensiveness. So beautifully written to take your spirit to another level of understanding what you can make happen in your sleeping moments.
Dreamweaver has the flavoring of the John Lennon song, God, which explores the ability to direct your dreams. Gary Wright “climbed aboard the Dream Weaver Train” and put the weaving into the hands of God. Be still and know every moment is brand new.