Bookish Posts

Top Ten Tuesday: Songs Inspired by Literature


Top Ten Tuesday is a weekly meme that is hosted by That Artsy Reader Girl. This week’s topic is an Audio Freebie. I recently took part in the Song Request Book Tag which gave me the idea to write this TTT post about songs inspired by literatureHere is a list of some of my favourites.

“Resistance” by Muse – 1984 by George Orwell

Have I mentioned that I am a fan of Muse? 😊 I remember listening to “Resistance” on my iPod so many times and thinking how it was a brilliant love song. It was only after reading the dystopian novel 1984 that I realised this song was inspired by the book! It’s about the love story between Julia and Winston.


“Strange & Beautiful (I’ll Put a Spell on You)” by Aqualung – A Midsummer Night’s Dream by William Shakespeare

I adore this haunting song by Aqualung which references A Midsummer Night’s Dream in the lyrics:

I’ll put a spell on you
You’ll fall asleep and I’ll put a spell on you
And when I wake you, I’ll be the first thing you see
And you’ll realise that you love me

A Midsummer Night's Dream

“Who Wrote Holden Caulfield?” by Green Day – The Catcher in the Rye by J.D. Salinger

Lead singer Billie Joe Armstrong’s favourite book is The Catcher in the Rye. I found it interesting to learn that Billie Joe hated being made to read this novel in high school. He read it again as an adult and related to the main character, Holden Caulfield who feels like an outcast.


“Weight of Living Part 1” by Bastille – “The Rime of the Ancient Mariner” by Samuel Taylor Coleridge

This song by Bastille is a hidden track on their debut album Bad Blood. It has a number of references to Coleridge’s famous poem, including the lyrics:

Your albatross, let it go, let it go
Your albatross shoot it down, shoot it down
When you just can’t shake
The heavy weight of living

I like how Bastille have flipped the metaphorical allusion of the albatross. Dan Smith sings that the person should let go of their regrets by getting rid of the albatross around their neck.

“Wuthering Heights” by Kate Bush – Wuthering Heights by Emily Brontë

I had to include this on the list! Kate Bush wrote this song when she was just 18, after watching the ending of a BBC adaptation of Wuthering Heights. She then read the book and discovered that she and Emily Brontë share the same birthday – July 30. Her song is from the point of view of Cathy as she sings to Heathcliff.

Wuthering Heights

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Songs Inspired by Literature

What are your favourite songs inspired by literature? Have you read any of the books on this list? Let me know in the comments and feel free to link your Top Ten Tuesday post!

13 thoughts on “Top Ten Tuesday: Songs Inspired by Literature

  1. Oh wow, this is such a neat twist of the prompt! Never thought about it. I feel like I should have known some of these, and yet, they were all pretty much still a surprise to me. xD The only songs I can think of are Todrick Hall’s album “Straight Outta Oz” where the whole theme is inspired by The Wizard of Oz, and I thought that was super neat.

    Here’s my TTT.

    Liked by 2 people

    1. Thank you! I chose a pretty niche topic haha. Ooh, I love that Todrick Hall’s album was inspired by The Wizard of Oz. That sounds brilliant! Looking forward to reading your TTT post. 🙂

      Liked by 2 people

      1. It was definitely different. I recommend checking it out! Though, I like the songs off his newest album better (though, I’m not a big fan of the Wizard of Oz, so that might have something to do with it, too). If you look it up on YouTube, he does a whole video series for his album, which is really cool.

        Liked by 1 person

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