The Beatles is hailed as the most influential and successful band in history.
Their songs were romantic, their lyrics were deep and they didn’t just beat the popular bands of that time but also turned out to be a major influence on future music artists and musical groups. They even composed songs for other singers like Tommy Quickly and Cilla Black.
In their active years as a band, they composed and performed many songs that touched the listeners’ hearts so much that even today those songs are being liked by a lot of people.
Among all those hits, there have been some sad Beatles songs that tug at the heartstrings of the listeners and make them cry. So, whether you are an ardent Beatles fan or not, here is a list of the top 15 Beatles songs that make you sad.
15 Sad Beatles Songs That Will Make You Cry
1. Eleanor Rigby
Despite the nature of the origin of this song, Eleanor Rigby remains one of the most influential and enduring musical pieces of all time.
Mostly written by Paul McCartney, this song’s lyrics delve deep within the desolation and loneliness that is often felt by those who have suffered a life full of strife.
The song tells the story of two people Eleanor Rigby ( a lonely woman picking up the rice in the church after a wedding ) and Father McKenzie ( a priest who’s writing sermons for his empty church ).
The song becomes sharp when ‘Eleanor Rigby’ dies in the church, and Father McKenzie is the only one who buries her in a nameless grave.
Here is what the chorus of the songs looks like:-
All the lonely peopleEleanor Rigby by The Beatles
Where do they all come from?
All the lonely people
Where do they all belong?
Again written by Paul McCartney, this song has become one of the most popular Beatles’ songs so far.
Yesterday is a sad song with lyrics that are absolutely depressing as they speak about lost love which makes you think if there is anyone who hasn’t gone through such an experience in life.
The slow rhythm and the tone of the song make it even sadder, making the listener feel the pain that the singer is going through.
3. Let It Be
Despite being an extremely popular Beatles song, ‘Let It Be’ has a sad tone about it that makes the listener feel like crying.
The track was mainly composed by Paul McCartney who drew inspiration from his mother who died when he was fourteen years old.
The song basically tells the story of Paul McCartney seeing his late mother in a dream, telling him that maintaining hope and having faith will make everything alright. Just let it be…
This is definitely one of the best songs written by Paul McCartney that makes you think about life.
This is another great song composed by Paul McCartney that has a sad tone to it. The song speaks about the sorrows and hardships faced by black people living in America during that time.
As said by McCartney to ‘GQ’, he penned this song while he was sitting in his kitchen with his guitar and heard about the civil rights troubles that were happening in the ’60s in Alabama, Mississippi.
He added, “I just thought it would be really good if I could write something that if it ever reached any of the people going through those problems, it might give them a little bit of hope. So, I wrote ‘Blackbird.'”
Regardless of the sad political overtones, this song has a beautiful and moving melody and lyrics which touch everyone’s heart.
5. She’s Leaving Home
Inspired by a newspaper article about a 17-year-old girl (Melanie Coe) who ran away from her parents, ‘She’s Leaving Home’ is another Lennon-McCartney song about loss and hurt.
The lyrics mention how her parents were so worried about their daughter that she vanished without having a feeling of concern and how she would have been so much better had she stayed with them.
The newspaper headline read “A-Level Girl Dumps Car And Vanishes.” and her father was quoted as saying, “I cannot imagine why she should run away, she has everything here. She is very keen on clothes but she left them all, even her fur coat.”
Despite the sad lyrics, the song has a beautiful melody that gives it a soothing effect, making you feel what McCartney was feeling when he wrote this song.
Interesting Fact – This is one of those Beatles songs in which the band members did not play any instruments.
6. Long and Winding Road
This is one of the last Beatles songs Paul McCartney wrote which was inspired by the growing tensions within the band.
It talks about the countless mistakes one makes on their journey through life which can often lead to regret, but also mentions how there are enough moments of beauty to make up for all of them.
This song really touches you with its sorrowful tone, making you feel sad.
However, this is not just any ordinary sad song, it is one of those Beatles songs that doesn’t have a traditional chorus but has three different stanzas.
“The Long and Winding Road” is a sad song. I enjoy writing sad songs, as it enabled me to share deeper emotions. It’s also a good vehicle, as it allowed me to avoid going to a psychiatrist.Paul McCartney ( said during an interview in 1994 )
7. Hey Jude
‘Hey Jude’ is one of their most well-known songs, not only due to its catchy tune that many listeners can’t get out of their heads, but also because it was written by Paul McCartney to console John Lennon’s son Julian who was going through a lot of stress and anxiety on account of his parent’s divorce.
While not a sad song, it is definitely a song with messages of hope, positivity, and optimism that provides a certain consolation in its refrain.
And though it is directed towards Julien this classic has become an anthem for many because the lyrics are very much relatable.
This song was written by John Lennon for his mother, Julia Lennon who was killed under tragic circumstances by a car driven by an off-duty police officer in 1958 when John was only 17 years old.
This is the only song John recorded all by himself using an acoustic guitar and a finger-picking guitar style that he learned from Donovan Leitch ( Scottish Musician ) while in Rishikesh, India in February 1968.
Apart from the meaning of the song, it has a great melody with an arpeggiated guitar in the background that will make you cry and think deeply for sure.
9. Free As A Bird
If you are a hardcore Beatles Fan then you might know this one as this song was originally recorded as a demo by John Lennon at his home.
15 years later after Lennon’s death, his rest three bandmates Paul McCartney, George Harrison, and Ringo Starr completed it and released it as a lead single from the Anthology project.
This is another one of the most beautiful and sad melodies by the band that will make you wander through the time and think about Lennon, his music, and what he would have done if he was still alive.
This one will surely evoke some sad emotions in you.
10. In My Life
Of all the Beatles songs written by John Lennon, this is one of the most touching and emotionally heartbreaking. Not just because it tells of his recollections of people and places, but also because of the composition and melody.
According to Lennon, he considers this as his first real major piece of work because for the first time he wrote something about his personal life.
This track was released in 1965 from their ‘Rubber Soul’ album and named as the best song of all time by Mojo in 2000.
There are many cover versions of this song as well, some of the notable ones are by Ozzy Osbourne, Judy Collins, Johnny Cash, and George Martin.
11. I’ll Follow The Sun
An underrated gem from the ‘Beatles For Sale’ album that is not just sad, but also kind of beautiful.
It is also one of the earliest Beatles songs that Paul McCartney wrote when he was just 16 years old.
Paul never really explained the meaning of the song but as you go through the lyrics you can find that it is a simple teenage ballad that talks about lost love and moving on with life.
Here’s what the verse looks like:
One day, you’ll find that I have gone
But tomorrow may rain, so I’ll follow the sun
Overall it is a short and sweet song that will remind you of the teenage love and breakup that is so bittersweet.
Girl is one of the most melancholic and heartfelt songs written by John Lennon from the ‘Rubber Soul’ album.
While not a sad song in literal sense, it is regarded as one of the finest compositions by Lennon for its beautiful melody with a combination of soft vocals and sharp guitar chords.
When asked about the inspiration behind the song, John said “girl” was an archetype he had been searching for and would finally find in Yoko Ono.
He added: ‘Girl’ is real. There is no such thing as the girl, she was a dream, but the words are all right. It wasn’t just a song, and it was about that girl – that turned out to be Yoko, in the end – the one that a lot of us were looking for.
13. Oh Darling
14. Here Comes The Sun
15. Golden Slumbers / Carry That Weight
As you might know, The Beatles have a huge list of beautifully written songs that evoke deep emotion within us. These 12 are just a few that I think much more relatable than the rest. So, I hope you liked this list as much as I enjoyed writing it for you.
Thanks for reading!