- 1. Back to Black – Amy Winehouse
- 2. You Don’t Own Me – Lesley Gore
- 3. I Love Kanye – Ye
- 4. Blank Space – Taylor Swift
- 5. Sick Boy – The Chainsmokers
- 6. Liar – Rollins Band
- 7. Backstabbers – The O’Jays
- 8. Jar of Hearts – Christina Perri
- 9. Under My Thumb – The Rolling Stones
- 10. You’re So Vain – Carly Simon
- 11. Linger – The Cranberries
- 12. Brand New Me – Alicia Keys
- 13. Don’t Come Around Here No More – Tom Petty
Narcissism and self-centered behavior are traits that can be difficult to deal with in personal relationships, but they also make for compelling subject matter in music. Many songwriters have explored the topic, producing works that offer insight into the experience of interacting with narcissistic and self-centered individuals.
In this article, we will take a look at the top 13 songs about narcissists and self-centered people, analyzing their lyrics and themes to better understand how these artists tackle the subject.
From classic rock hits to modern pop anthems, these songs cover a wide range of genres and styles. Some, like Pink’s “Don’t Let Me Get Me,” explore the ways in which self-doubt and insecurity can lead to narcissistic behavior, while others, like Kanye West’s “Runaway,” delve into the darker side of narcissism and its impact on personal relationships. By examining these works, we can gain a deeper understanding of the ways in which narcissism and self-centeredness can manifest in people’s lives, and the emotional toll that they can take on those around them. Whether you’re seeking catharsis or simply a deeper appreciation for the complexities of human behavior, these songs are sure to offer something of value.
1. Back to Black – Amy Winehouse
“Back to Black” is a soulful and haunting track from Amy Winehouse’s second and final studio album of the same name. The song explores the pain and desperation of a woman whose lover has left her for another woman, and the subsequent downward spiral that she experiences. Winehouse’s raw and emotional vocals are matched by the song’s simple yet powerful arrangement, which features a prominent horn section and a stark, unadorned drumbeat. This song is a powerful testament to Winehouse’s talent as a songwriter and vocalist, and its themes of heartbreak and self-destruction have resonated with fans around the world.
2. You Don’t Own Me – Lesley Gore
“You Don’t Own Me” is a classic feminist anthem that was first released in 1963 by Lesley Gore. The song’s lyrics, which were written by Gore and her brother, explore the idea that women are independent beings who deserve respect and equal treatment. The track’s driving beat and Gore’s powerful vocals make it an empowering and uplifting listen, and it has been embraced by generations of women as a symbol of strength and liberation. This song is an important piece of pop culture history and a testament to the power of music to inspire social change.
3. I Love Kanye – Ye
“I Love Kanye” is a tongue-in-cheek tribute to the rapper himself, and is one of the standout tracks from Kanye West’s seventh studio album, “The Life of Pablo.” The song features West rapping over a sample of a soulful piano loop, and is essentially a list of things that West loves about himself. While the song is undeniably self-centered, it is also a clever and self-aware commentary on West’s public persona, and his willingness to embrace and even parody the criticisms that have been leveled against him. This track is a must-listen for fans of West’s unique style and unapologetic approach to music.
4. Blank Space – Taylor Swift
“Blank Space” is a hit song from Taylor Swift’s fifth studio album, “1989.” The track is a satirical take on Swift’s reputation as a serial dater, and features her singing about how she loves “the players” and how they love her back. The song’s catchy melody and clever lyrics make it an instant classic, and Swift’s over-the-top persona in the accompanying music video has become an iconic pop culture reference. “Blank Space” is a testament to Swift’s songwriting skills and her ability to turn her own public image into a witty and entertaining piece of art.
5. Sick Boy – The Chainsmokers
“Sick Boy” is a dark and brooding track from American DJ and production duo The Chainsmokers. The song is a departure from the duo’s usual upbeat and danceable sound, and instead features heavy synth bass and distorted vocals. The lyrics of the song explore the idea of social media and the performative nature of online identity, with the “sick boy” of the title being a reference to the narrator’s own identity crisis. “Sick Boy” is a powerful and thought-provoking piece of music, and its themes of identity and authenticity have resonated with fans around the world.
6. Liar – Rollins Band
“Liar” is a hard-hitting rock song from the American band Rollins Band. The track features powerful vocals from frontman Henry Rollins, who sings about the duplicity of a person who he perceives as a liar. The song’s aggressive guitars and driving beat make it a classic of the alternative rock genre, and Rollins’ confrontational lyrics and delivery make it a cathartic listen for anyone who has ever been betrayed or deceived. “Liar” is a testament to the power of rock music to channel raw emotion and express the frustrations of everyday life.
7. Backstabbers – The O’Jays
“Backstabbers” is a classic soul song from the American group The O’Jays. The track features smooth vocals and a catchy melody, but its lyrics tell a cautionary tale about people who pretend to be your friends but secretly wish you harm. The song’s upbeat tempo and infectious chorus make it a dance floor staple, but its message about the dangers of trusting the wrong people gives it a deeper emotional resonance. “Backstabbers” is a timeless example of the power of soul music to tell a story and convey a message of truth and wisdom.
8. Jar of Hearts – Christina Perri
“Jar of Hearts” is a haunting ballad from American singer-songwriter Christina Perri. The track features melancholy piano and string arrangements that perfectly match the song’s lyrical themes of heartbreak and betrayal. Perri’s powerful vocals convey a sense of pain and longing as she sings about a former lover who has returned, seeking forgiveness. The song’s chorus, with its memorable refrain of “who do you think you are?”, has become an anthem for anyone who has ever been wronged in a relationship. “Jar of Hearts” is a timeless and emotive song that has connected with fans around the world.
9. Under My Thumb – The Rolling Stones
“Under My Thumb” is a classic rock song from British band The Rolling Stones. The track features an iconic riff and driving beat that make it instantly recognizable, while its lyrics explore themes of male dominance and control over women. Although the song’s lyrics have been criticized for their misogynistic content, they also contain a sly critique of the male ego and the dangers of toxic masculinity. “Under My Thumb” is a quintessential example of the Stones’ brand of bluesy, rebellious rock music that has inspired generations of musicians and fans around the world.
10. You’re So Vain – Carly Simon
“You’re So Vain” is a classic pop song from American singer-songwriter Carly Simon. The track features a memorable piano melody and catchy chorus that have made it one of the most recognizable songs in popular music. Its lyrics are filled with pointed barbs aimed at a self-centered lover who is obsessed with his own image and fame. Despite the song’s biting commentary on narcissism and vanity, it also has a playful and upbeat feel that has made it a timeless classic. “You’re So Vain” has become a staple of radio playlists and pop culture references for decades since its release in 1972.
11. Linger – The Cranberries
“Linger” is a song by Irish alternative rock band The Cranberries. Released in 1993, the track features lead singer Dolores O’Riordan’s distinct vocals and the band’s signature blend of rock, pop, and Celtic influences. The song tells the story of a relationship that has come to an end, but one party still wants to hold on and reminisces on the good times. The lyrics explore themes of heartbreak, longing, and emotional manipulation. “Linger” is a beloved song that has endured over the years, thanks to its relatable themes and memorable melody that continue to resonate with listeners today.
12. Brand New Me – Alicia Keys
“Brand New Me” is a song by American singer-songwriter Alicia Keys, released in 2012. The track features Keys’ soulful vocals and showcases her signature blend of R&B, soul, and pop music. The song’s lyrics revolve around self-discovery and personal growth, as Keys sings about shedding the layers of her past and embracing a new, empowered version of herself. With its uplifting message and catchy chorus, “Brand New Me” is a song that encourages listeners to let go of their past and embrace the journey of self-discovery and growth, making it an inspiring anthem for anyone seeking to start anew.
13. Don’t Come Around Here No More – Tom Petty
“Don’t Come Around Here No More” is a song by Tom Petty and the Heartbreakers that was released in 1985. The song is about a person who is tired of being used and manipulated by their partner. The lyrics convey the message that the protagonist has had enough and no longer wants the other person in their life. The song features a psychedelic sound and draws on elements of Indian music. It was a commercial success, reaching the top 20 in the US and the UK. The music video, which is inspired by Alice in Wonderland, has also become iconic.