This wide-ranging compilation features popular hits, introspective ballads, and a handful of love songs. From ’80s bands like The Police to iconic groups like The Beatles, this list has a little something for everybody.
Press play and check out this list of songs that start with the letter “E.” Every evening will be entertaining with this playlist!
Every Grain of Sand – Bob Dylan
“To see a world in a grain of sand. And a Heaven in a wild flower.” Appearing on Shot Of Love in the early 1980s, this album dealt with many religious themes due to Bob Dylan becoming a born-again Christian in the late ’70s. It also appeared on his 1985 album, Biograph. Emmylou Harris and Sheryl Crow performed this song as a duet at country artist Johnny Cash’s funeral.
Related: Check out this playlist of heaven songs.
Exile – Taylor Swift ft. Bon Iver
Bon Iver’s Justin Vernon co-wrote ‘Exile’ with Taylor Swift and also provides guest vocals for the track. The song finds two exes who come across each other in a chance encounter, and the sudden interaction brings up mixed emotions from the past. Never receiving any closure, both feel like they are in “exile” from the other.
Related: Listen to the best songs about an ex.
Everything Reminds Me of Her – Elliott Smith
“I never really had a problem because of leaving. But everything reminds me of her this evening.” Songwriter Elliott Smith sings of love gone wrong in his song ‘Everything Reminds Me of Her.’ That line is repeated several times throughout the song as he deals with judgemental people who have been able to move on from lost love while he still struggles.
Related: Here is our list of moving on songs.
Expecting to Fly – Neil Young
Before Neil Young struck out on his own and did a stint with Crosby, Stills, and Nash, he was in a band called Buffalo Springfield, who gained a lot of attention from their anti-war song ‘For What It’s Worth.’ Though he was technically still a part of Buffalo Springfield when he wrote ‘Expecting to Fly,’ a song about witnessing a longtime relationship end, he recorded it solo using non-band musicians.
Everybody Knows – Leonard Cohen
Songwriter Sharon Robinson helped out with lyrics to Leonard Cohen’s grim ‘Everybody Knows.’ Their work together on the song forged a lifelong working relationship, with Robinson co-writing several more songs with him. The tune tackles the tough subject of destiny, with Cohen and Robinson’s lyrics focusing on a higher power in charge while people pretend to have control over their outcome.
Related: Hear this song on our list of songs about destiny.
Everybody Hurts – R.E.M.
Drummer Bill Berry wrote ‘Everybody Hurts’ as an anti-suicide statement. R.E.M. singer Michael Stipe made sure to enunciate the lyrics clearly during the recording due to the serious subject matter, even though he purposefully sings with a bit of slur otherwise. After several years with the band, Berry decided to call it quits and move to a rural area to become a farmer while the band continued without him.
Related: Find this classic tune on our list of songs about being hurt.
Everlong – Foo Fighters
Though this Foo Fighters hit written by frontman Dave Grohl is often speculated to be about former bandmate and Nirvana frontman Kurt Cobain, Grohl has often given a different explanation. He has mentioned he wrote it in 1996 at a really low point in his life. After meeting a girl and falling in love, he was inspired to write Everlong as he found a new purpose in life. The lyrics were inspired by his then-girlfriend, fellow musician Louise Post.
Related: This song appears on our list of love songs for him.
Every Breath You Take – The Police
Recognized as America’s most popular song of 1983, ‘Every Breath You Take’ stayed at number one on both US and UK charts for several weeks. Before Sting became a solo artist, he fronted The Police and wrote the hit while in Jamaica. Though the song has an easy-going minor chord feel, the lyrics are more sinister. Many misinterpret the song as a love anthem, but Sting had actually confessed before it was written from the perspective of a stalker.
Related: You won’t be able to get enough of the best songs about obsession.
Everything I Wanted – Billie Eilish
While struggling with the pressures of newfound fame, pop singer Billie turned to her brother for support after having a nightmare in which she jumped off a bridge, and those around her seemed unaffected by it. She co-wrote ‘Everything I Wanted’ with her brother, Finneas. He encouraged her to improve the way she viewed herself. Eilish still felt disposable even though she’d achieved fame and fortune. This tune is about her battle with all of these emotions.
Related: Here are the best songs about feeling inadequate.
Everything in Its Right Place – Radiohead
Band leader Thom Yorke wrote ‘Everything in Its Right Place’ while on tour with Radiohead. Though the band was gaining popularity and becoming internationally known, he felt incredibly burnt out and exhausted. During the tour, he would often walk around in a daze. After a show one night, he walked off-stage and wrote this song. It appears at the beginning of Tom Cruise’s movie, Vanilla Sky.
El Condor Pasa – Simon And Garfunkel
Paul Simon came across an instrumental folk song while performing in Paris and loved the melody so much that he decided to put words to it. Thus the instrumental transformed into ‘El Condor Pasa’ and appeared on their 1970 album, the timeless Bridge Over Troubled Water. The song has an almost childlike quality, but the overall tone remains sad. The lyrics consist of Simon talking about everything he’d rather be.
Eleanor Rigby – The Beatles
When Paul McCartney began writing ‘Eleanor Rigby’ he didn’t have a specific idea in mind. The name comes from him combining the first name of a famous actress, Eleanor Bron, and the name of a convenience store, Rigby and Even’s. As he worked on the lyrics, the song transformed into a story about two older, lonely people (Eleanor and Father Mackenzie) and the details of their daily lives.
Related: Find this song on our playlist of songs about being alone.
Eve of Destruction – Barry McGuire
Written by songwriter P.F. Sloan in 1964, ‘Eve of Destruction’ was originally banned by radio stations because the lyrics contain anti-government sentiment. In reality, the song is an honest take on an anti-war philosophy. The lyrics tackle sending soldiers off to battle, enemies of freedom, racism, and much more. While it was commercially banned, consumers ultimately decided the song was worth a listen. ‘Eve of Destruction’ eventually shot to number one on the charts.
Related: Listen to our playlist of war music.
Evil Ways – Santana
“You’ve got to change your evil ways, baby. Before I stop lovin’ you.” This tune about a wandering woman and jealous lover was originally written by Sonny Henry, a guitarist for the Latin Jazz percussionist Willie Bobo. When Santana decided to cover it he made it all his own by adding a 90-second guitar solo. He commissioned Journey’s lead vocalist, Gregg Rolie, for the vocals.
Everything’s Not Lost – Coldplay
This inspiring anthem clocks in at seven minutes and closes out Coldplay’s 2000 album, Parachutes. Frontman and songwriter Chris Martin wrote the tune as a message of hope, and he felt the entire album also encompassed that theme. A hidden track plays shortly after ‘Everything’s Not Lost’ ends. ‘Life Is For Living’ is a short one but solidifies the hopeful nature of Parachutes.
Related: Get your hopes up with this hopeful music.
Emotional Rescue – The Rolling Stones
Stones fans didn’t like ‘Emotional Rescue’ very much, but it still charted high at number 3 in the US for a short period. During the album’s creation, bandmate Keith Richards wasn’t too involved because he was working on getting sober. This left many creative decisions in the hands of band leader Mick Jagger. In this tune, he sings about getting a girl back. Most of the lyrics are sung in falsetto.
Endless Cycle – Lou Reed
The upbeat instrumentation and production of Lou Reed’s ‘Endless Cycle’ is opposed by lyrics full of pain and unbridled honesty. The song tells the story of children who grow up in abusive households and repeat the same cycle when they get older. The gut-wrenching song appears on Reed’s 1989 album, New York.
Everything That Happens – David Byrne
Songwriting duo David Byrne and Brian Eno fuse the unusual combination of gospel and electronic genres with their album Everything That Happens Will Happen Today. ‘Everything That Happens’ appears on the album and is part of the creative project which tackles several themes, including technology, humanity, and trying to remain optimistic during troubling times.
England – The National
The open-ended lyrics of The National’s ‘England’ have left many fans speculating over the years as to what the song truly is about. Some feel it is a love song between two people who live far away from each other. Other fans feel it’s about writer’s block and the pressures that come along with having to produce music for a label.
Related: Travel to our playlist of songs about the world.
Ella Megalast Burls Forever – Cocteau Twins
A song evoking all things nocturnal, ‘Ella Megalast Burls Forever’ appears on Cocteau Twins’ 1988 album Blue Bell Knoll. “When nighttime passed through my heart…” The Scottish indie/rock band’s subjective lyrics open the song to interpretation as feelings of longing for something, being lost, and reflecting on the passage of time are explored.
Related: Rest easy with this playlist of nighttime music.
Exodus – Bob Marley
Reggae icon Bob Marley was deeply religious and often incorporated Rastafarian theology in his music. ‘Exodus’ is one of those songs featuring themes of returning to one’s homeland and encouraging his people to rise up and find their power. The song appears on Bob Marley and The Wailer’s 1977 album by the same name.
Related: Get inspired by the best willpower songs.
Easy – Commodores
“Easy like Sunday morning!” This Commodores hit song ushered them into cross-genre popularity. Before ‘Easy,’ they were almost exclusively a funk band. But after its release, they were embraced by the pop community with open arms. Lead singer Lionel Richie wrote the song after feeling relief over a breakup with his girlfriend.
Related: Wake up to these Sunday morning songs.
Eight Days a Week – The Beatles
Written for their movie Help, The Beatles penned ‘Eight Days a Week’ after hearing the phrase (though it’s disputed) from band member Ringo. When Lennon helped co-write the tune, he looked at it from the perspective of love. If an extra day was added to the week, he’d spend all the time with his girl. The 1964 number one hit is featured on their album Beatles for Sale.
Related: Clap along with the best clapping songs.
Every Rose Has Its Thorn – Poison
Not many rock power ballads have been written in laundromats, but Brett Michaels crossover chart-topper ‘Every Rose Has Its Thorn’ was penned during a laundry session. His career was just starting to take off, and his girlfriend was missing him due to his strenuous work schedule. His workload ultimately led to their breakup. While doing laundry, he wrote the song with the rose symbolizing his career and the thorn as the one that got away.
Related: This song features on the best songs with flowers.
Everyday People – Sly & The Family Stone
Sly & The Family Stone was a ’60s soul band featuring members from different backgrounds and ethnicities. They wanted to capture that in a song and came up with ‘Everyday People.’ The lyrics center around the belief that no matter where you’re from or what color you are, everyone is equal. It’s an uplifting hit focusing on unity and understanding.
Related: Head over to the best songs about unity.
Edge of Seventeen – Stevie Nicks
“Words from a poet and a voice from a choir.” While Fleetwood Mac star Stevie Nicks was in Australia, she got word that John Lennon had been killed. Though she didn’t know Lennon personally, she had several friends who did, and they had shared endless “Lennon” stories with her. She began writing ‘Edge of Seventeen’ in honor of John. During this time, her uncle also died of cancer, so the tune became a tribute to both of them.
Escape (The Pina Colada Song) – Rupert Holmes
“If you like Pina Coladas and getting caught in the rain.” Rupert Holmes had no idea how popular his song ‘Escape’ was going to be when he released it in 1979. Though the song is actually about a troubled marriage ending, the reggae-inspired beat and tropical vibe give the tune an upbeat sound, making it a commercial hit. It’s been used in many advertising campaigns for tropical destinations and movies like The Sweetest Thing and Wanted.
Related: Escape to our playlist of songs about getting away.
Everybody’s Talkin’ – Harry Nilsson
Songwriter Fred Neil originally wrote ‘Everybody’s Talkin’,’ but it didn’t chart well. In 1969, the movie Midnight Cowboy starring Dustin Hoffman and John Voight came out, and Harry Nillson’s version of ‘Everybody’s Talkin” was included in the soundtrack. It became the film’s most popular song, surpassing the movie’s title song written specifically for the screenplay.
Related: You might recognize this tune from The Hangover soundtrack.
Evil Woman – ELO
“There’s a hole in my head where the rain comes in.” This line in ELO’s song ‘Evil Woman’ was inspired by a Beatles tune, ‘Fixing a Hole.’ The song appears on the band’s Face The Music album, which came together quickly. While the rest of the band was out one morning, bandmate Jeff Lynne played around on a piano and started writing ‘Evil Woman.’ By the end of the day, the band had recorded the song for their album.
Earth Angel – The Penguins
“Earth angel. Will you be mine?” The Penguins’ ‘Earth Angel’ was an early doo-wop song that ultimately proved to be one of the most popular songs of all time for the genre. The romantic lyrics tell the classic love story of a guy falling madly in love with a girl and asking her if she’ll be his.
Related: You’ll love our list of angel songs.
Everyday is Like Sunday – Morrissey
“A strange dust lands on your hands.” Partly inspired by a novel from 1957 titled On The Beach, Morrissey paints a dismal picture not often associated with Sundays in ‘Everyday is Like Sunday.’ As he roams an empty seaside town in the song, certain lyrics pay homage to the book, which follows a group of people dealing with the ill effects of nuclear fallout.
Related: Run over to our end of the world songs list.
Everybody Needs Somebody to Love – The Blues Brothers
Solomon Burke co-wrote ‘Everybody Needs Somebody to Love’ with Bertrand Russell Berns, one of the 1960s most in-demand songwriters, and Jerry Wexler. The song became popular, even among fellow artists. The Rolling Stones covered Burke’s tune on their album The Rolling Stones Now! Comedians Dan Aykroyd and John Belushi covered the tune for their wildly popular movie The Blues Brothers.