100. Matchbox 20 , Bright Lights
What a whiny loser. His partner is chasing her dreams on Broadway, and instead of wanting her to succeed he wants her to fail so she can come back to him. Ugh. You’d think this might be the worst, but there are actually 99 piano-driven songs even worse than this one.
99. Billy Joel, Goodnight Saigon
The worst lullaby in the history of lullabies. He’s trying to get his imaginary daughter, Saigon, to go to sleep, and his strategy for doing so is singing about war and people coming back in body bags. If she falls asleep at all, she’s going to wake up screaming, and Billy will have no one to blame but himself.
98. Sara Bareilles, Love Song
So confusing. She calls it “Love Song” and then the song isn’t about love at all. Maybe she could call it “Stubborn Song” or “Trying to Sabotage Myself in the Music Business Song,” but it’s not a love song. Maybe it’s catchy, and maybe it’s an interesting reflection on artistic freedom, the misleading title makes it the 98th worst piano song.
97. Barry Manilow, I Write the Songs
More dishonesty. Not only did he not write this song, but the song wasn’t even about the songs he did write. It wasn’t about him at all, unless you subscribe to the theory that Barry Manilow and Brian Wilson are actually the same person, which is your right. If you believe that, you might believe this song is great. But for the rest of us, it’s the 97th worst.
96. Kanye West, Rihanna & Paul McCartney, Four Five Seconds
What is four five? It can’t be four or five, because it has already been said that this is an approximation, and four is almost five and five is almost four. Maybe it’s four fives, which is twenty, but twenty and four five have the same amount of syllables, so might as well say twenty. And forty-five seconds seems way too long, but maybe they knew Trump would become president and it’s a reference to that. Either way, it’s confusing. Also, Kanye might have been wilin’ already because he thought it was a good idea for him to sing.
95. Tom Lehrer, We’ll All Go Together When We Go
This peppy ditty about nuclear Armageddon is especially haunting 50+ years later considering the current political climate, and songs with jokes are not supposed to be terrifying. This blatant violation of the “don’t-juxtapose-tone-and-content” rule lands it at number 95 of the worst piano songs of all time list.
94. Stevie Wonder, Signed, Sealed, Delivered I’m Yours
If Andy Samberg had a time machine and sat in on this recording session, he likely would have told Stevie “You’re not a piece of mail, you’re a rock star!” and thrown him on the ground. Or at least tried to. Throwing a grown man on the ground is not easy, and neither is landing a song on this chart, but this is the first of multiple times that Mr. Wonder managed the latter.
93. Coldplay, Fix You
This person has enough problems, and then Chris Martin offers to light her bones on fire. Not helpful. Not helpful at all. Once someone’s bones have been ignited, that person cannot be helped. They cannot be fixed. As Yoda said, there is no try, and this is especially true after bones have been ignited.
92. Carole King, Natural Woman
What was she before? A robot woman? Pinocchio’s sister? Neither of those things are true, and there is nothing else about her life story to suggest there is anything unnatural about her womanhood. So making her feel like what she is isn’t really special, and while she does show a special talent in this song, the flawed thesis still lands the song on this list of worst songs.
91. OneRepublic, Counting Stars
Counting stars is a terrible idea. If you count dollars, you might lose some sleep, but if you count by thousands it shouldn’t take too long. You can’t count stars by thousands. You have to do it one by one, and the stars are prohibitively numerous, and it’s really easy to lose track of which ones you’ve counted already. And is he young? Is he old? Can’t be both, but he thinks he is. Ryan Tedder should have changed his name to Jon Snow for this song, because he knows nothing.
90. Fats Domino, Blueberry Hill
The titular experience could be thrilling, but not the good kind of thrilling. If you walk on a hill made of blueberries, especially if you are on the heavy side, you are going to fall in and the only way out is to eat your way out. Additionally, blueberries are high in both fiber and water, so eating them is bound to lead to bodily functions best done in a bathroom, or at least a reasonable distance away from the food you are about to eat. This is a truly disgusting song, and it is incredible that there are 89 piano songs worse than this one.
89. Queen, Don’t Stop Me Now
There’s nothing wrong with having a good time, but this song expresses a desire to take a call and share this good time while constantly moving at high speeds ranging from about a hundred miles per hour to the speed of light. Additionally, this song does not seem to operate within the science fiction universe, and attempting to travel at the speed of light without a warp core or hyperspace drive is going to result in certain death. Same for burning through the sky at two hundred degrees. Unless the song is from the perspective of an immortal alien with superpowers, in which case his speed and heat will make his companion unable to stop him, as he or she will be dead.
88. 10,000 Maniacs, Because The Night
The night does not belong to people just because they are lovers. It doesn’t belong to anyone. You cannot own the night any more than you can marry the night, the endless entity with a thousand eyes and countless stars, and to think otherwise is dangerous hubris. But not surprising in this case, since this song also suggests that Natalie Merchant believes human lovers can breathe fire.
87. Justin Timberlake, What Goes Around…Comes Around
Liar. It’s not okay. No amount of potential karmic comeuppance will fix a broken heart. It’s also not okay to call someone baby when they’ve broken up with you and clearly don’t want you calling them that anymore. This song would be the absolute worst, expect for the 86 others on this list.
86. Elton John, Daniel
He clearly hasn’t seen his brother in years, and can’t remember if he looks like a person or a cloudy vision through tears, so maybe it is possible that his blind brother is more perceptive than he is. But this is still the Waiting For Godot of songs, since we wait the whole time to see if Daniel shows up and it’s unclear if he ever will, which is annoying and therefore terrible.
85. Billy Joel, Pressure
If someone is struggling with pressure, what school of thought suggests an aggressive piano-rock song directed at this person is going to fix them? Whatever school this is, their degrees should be no more valid than those from Trump University. And maybe you have to learn to pace yourself, Billy. If you keep shouting like this, you might have to stop doing concerts before you’re seventy-five.
84. Train, Drops of Jupiter
Clearly Train should stick with terrestrial transportation, because they know nothing about space travel. Sailing across the sun is a bad idea. A ship might burn up at two hundred degrees, and the sun is way hotter than that. Also, Jupiter is really cold, so even tiny drops from that planet are likely to freeze a person’s hair, and possibly their brain, much like Pat Monahan’s science brain must have been frozen while he wrote this song.
83. Christina Perri, Jar of Hearts
An embalmer, or perhaps a mad scientist’s assistant, had trouble separating his work from his personal life, and she thought it was a good idea to date him. And when she finally has the sense to leave, she wants to be seen as a strong, independent, and smart woman. Nope. Not happening. Maybe the first two, but not smart. She made her operating table, and now she has to sleep in it and hope her organs are still there when she wakes up.
82. Genesis, That’s All
It’s not “just a shame” It’s more than that. It’s a toxic relationship with no sign of changing, let alone improving. And Phil Collins insists on staying in a tumultuous pairing with this person with whom he has nothing in common, sending the message that while it’s not ideal it’s ultimately okay, but this is not okay. It’s an awful message, and it would be the absolute worst song if not for the 81 others.
81. Stevie Wonder, My Cherie Amour
Very inconsistent, wording in the song. Language indecision, is something that’s wrong. When you start with English, then you switch up to French in the same phrase, indecision makes a stench. And this song stinks. Some people say it’s one of the all-time great love songs, but these people ignore the fact that in the title alone Stevie Wonder can’t decide whether he is speaking English or French. And that is inexcusable.