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10 Great Songs About Reincarnation and the Afterlife


Cosmic Dancer by T-Rex

Written by: Marc Bolan
Album: Electric Warrior 1971
Genre: Soft Rock

Cosmic Dancer is a ballad by the London-based glam rock band T-Rex. It's probably one of their best-known songs but it wasn't ever released as a single. The movie Billy Elliot (2000) increased its popularity and introduced the song to a new generation. The song is about reincarnation. The Electric Warrior album was produced by Tony Visconti.

I danced myself out of the womb
Is it strange to dance so soon
I danced myself into the tomb
But when again once more
I danced myself out of the womb
Is it strange to dance so soon
I danced myself out of the womb

Past Lives by Kesha

Written by: Kesha Sebert, Ben Folds
Album: Warrior (Deluxe Edition) 2012
Genre: Acoustic Rock

Past Lives is a love song by Nashville singer-songwriter Kesha. The song imagines a couple that continually meets and falls in love through multiple incarnations of their lives. Kesha wrote the lyrics and guitar instrumental, Ben Folds wrote and conducted the violins, and The Flaming Lips produced the song. Backup vocals are sung by Wayne Coyne. Past Lives is about reincarnation.

There's just somethin' 'bout you I know,
Started centuries ago, though.
See, your kiss is like a lost ghost,
Only I would know.

But, I, I keep on fallin' for you,
Time after time, time after time.
I'll make you mine, time after, time after time.

Tears in Heaven by Eric Clapton

Written by: Eric Clapton and Will Jennings
Album: Rush 1992
Genre: Soft Rock

The heartbreaking ballad Tears in Heaven is about the tragic loss of English singer and guitarist Eric Clapton's 4-year-old song Conor who fell from a window of a 53rd-floor apartment in New York City. Clapton pours out his grief and loss in the song. He wonders if his son would know him if he saw him in Heaven. Clapton wrote the first verse and asked Jennings to write the other verses. The song is about life after death. It was produced by Russ Titelman. The song appeared on the soundtrack for the film Rush.

Would you know my name
If I saw you in heaven?
Would it be the same
If I saw you in heaven?

I must be strong
And carry on
'Cause I know I don't belong
Here in heaven

Spirit Slips Away by Thin Lizzy

Written by: Phil Lynott
Album: Fighting 1975
Genre: Soft Rock

Spirit Slips Away is a ballad by the Irish rock band Thin Lizzy. The song is about what happens right after death. It's a beautiful song that portrays death as something peaceful. The album was produced by the late Phil Lynott.

And when the music that makes you blue
Unfolds its secrets, the mysteries are told to you
May the angels sing rejoice to you
That fateful day when your spirit slips away

Wuthering Heights by Kate Bush

Written by: Kate Bush
Album: The Kick Inside 1978
Genre: Art Rock

Wuthering Heights is a haunting ballad by English singer-songwriter Kate Bush. The song is based on the terrifying scene in the novel by Emily Bronte where the ghost of the character Catherine Earnshaw appears and begs to be let into the house. She's lonely in the afterlife because she misses the love of her life Heathcliff. The song was produced by Andrew Powell.

Too long I roam in the night.
I'm coming back to his side, to put it right.
I'm coming home to wuthering, wuthering,
Wuthering Heights

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The Afterlife by Paul Simon

Written by: Paul Simon
Album: So Beautiful or So What 2011
Genre: Folk Pop

The Afterlife by New York singer-songwriter Paul Simon is a humorous look at life after death. The protagonist goes to heaven, fills out forms, waits in a line, and even tries to hit on a girl. The album was produced by Phil Ramone and Paul Simon.

Buddha and Moses and all the noses
From narrow to flat
Had to stand in the line
Just to glimpse the divine
What’cha think about that?
Well, it seems like our fate
To suffer and wait for the knowledge we seek
It’s all His design
No one cuts in the line
No one here likes a sneak

Reincarnation Song by Toad the Wet Sprocket

Written by: Glen Phillips
Album: Dulcinea 1994
Genre: Alt Rock

Reincarnation Song is by the Santa Barbara, California alternative rock band Toad the Wet Sprocket. The song is about a person who dies and thinks he'll go to Heaven. Instead, he's reincarnated and sent back to live another life with a new mother. Dulcinea was produced by Gavin Mackillop.

I thought this light would comfort me
I thought it would be easy
But there's a tugging at my sleeve
So much baggage I brought with me to leave

Something so big I can't understand from trying to I would go mad
So I hurry back to little earth for another life, another birth

Another life another birth


Heaven by Talking Heads

Written by: David Byrne, Jerry Harrison
Album: Fear of Music 1979
Genre: New Wave

Heaven by the New York new wave band Talking Heads is about the afterlife. The song portrays Heaven as a monotonous place where nothing ever changes. The song seems to be asking whether living forever would actually be a good thing or if it would just be endless boredom. It was produced by Brian Eno and the Talking Heads.

There is a party, everyone is there
Everyone will leave at exactly the same time
It's hard to imagine that nothing at all
Could be so exciting, could be so much fun

Heaven, Heaven is a place, place where nothing, nothing ever happens
Heaven, Heaven is a place, a place where nothing, nothing ever happens

Highwayman by The Highwaymen

Written by: Jimmy Webb
Album: Highwayman 1984
Genre: Country

The Highwaymen was a group comprising Kris Kristofferson, Johnny Cash, Waylon Jennings, and Willie Nelson. They recorded three albums together. The song Highwayman describes four lifetimes of a person who will continue to live on and on. The album was produced by Chips Moman.

I was a highwayman. Along the coach roads I did ride
With sword and pistol by my side
Many a young maid lost her baubles to my trade
Many a soldier shed his lifeblood on my blade
The bastards hung me in the spring of twenty-five
But I am still alive.

Déjà Vu by Crosby, Stills, Nash & Young

Written by: David Crosby
Album: Déjà Vu 1970
Genre: Folk rock

Déjà Vu is a song about reincarnation by Crosby, Stills, Nash & Young. The group comprised David Crosby, Stephen Stills, Graham Nash, and Neil Young. David Crosby said about the song:

I'm one of those people who thinks we go round again. The Buddhists have got it right - it's a wheel and we get on and get off. I think life energy gets recycled. That's why I wrote Déjà Vu.

The song was produced by the group.

If I had ever been here before
I would probably know just what to do, don't you?
If I had ever been here before on another time around the wheel
I would probably know just how to deal with all of you

This content reflects the personal opinions of the author. It is accurate and true to the best of the author’s knowledge and should not be substituted for impartial fact or advice in legal, political, or personal matters.

© 2014 LT Wright


LT Wright (author) from California on February 19, 2014:


Benjamin Breeg is great song and there was very interesting marketing around that song when it was released.

Gary T on February 18, 2014:

Other than the Thin Lizzy and Paul Simon songs, I know all of these and they're all fantastic songs esp. Cosmic Dancer, Wuthering Heights, Past Lives and The Highwayman. Another great song is The Reincarnation of Benjamin Breeg.

LT Wright (author) from California on February 18, 2014:

Thanks Lady Guinevere.

Debra Allen from West Virginia on February 18, 2014:

I had forgotten some of those bands. Great picks.

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