It is interesting that there are many great songs about schizophrenia. From Sonic Youth’s raw depiction in “Schizophrenia” to Radiohead’s cryptic yet evocative “Paranoid Android,” these songs offer glimpses into the multifaceted aspects of schizophrenia.
Whether directly addressing the disorder or weaving its themes into enigmatic narratives, these musical compositions shed light on the inner turmoil, confusion, and societal struggles experienced by those grappling with schizophrenia or similar mental health challenges.
Each song is a testament to the power of music in reflecting and understanding the human psyche’s intricate workings. Here are most beloved examples of songs about schizophrenia:
Sonic Youth – Schizophrenia
The first song of our list of songs about schizophrenia is Schizophrenia. Released in the late ’80s as part of the album Sister, Schizophrenia by Sonic Youth is an evocative exploration of the disorienting and tumultuous experience of living with schizophrenia.
The song encapsulates the confusion and struggle of the condition through its raw and emotional lyrics, offering a glimpse into the complex inner world of someone grappling with schizophrenia.
Radiohead – Paranoid Android
Featured on the album OK Computer released in 1997, Radiohead’s Paranoid Android isn’t explicitly about schizophrenia, yet it touches on themes of mental illness, including paranoia and dissociation. The lyrics, with their surreal and disjointed narrative, invite interpretations linked to the disorienting aspects of schizophrenia, reflecting a sense of unease and confusion.
This track is one of the most remembered songs among songs about schizophrenia.
Green Day – Basket Case
Green Day’s Basket Case, part of the album Dookie released in 1994, portrays the feeling of being at odds with oneself, dealing with anxiety, and grappling with a sense of losing control. While not explicitly about schizophrenia, the song’s lyrics resonate with aspects of mental health challenges, reflecting inner turmoil and confusion.
Thanks to this great band, we have a chance to listen to great tracks when we find songs about schizophrenia.
David Bowie – John, I’m Only Dancing
Though not explicitly about schizophrenia, John, I’m Only Dancing by David Bowie has been interpreted to explore themes of gender identity and mental health. Released in the early ’70s, the song’s lyrics have led some listeners to link them to schizophrenia or similar mental health struggles, offering a layered and ambiguous narrative.
Iconic artist David Bowie contributed to our list of songs about schizophrenia with John, I’m Only Dancing.
Motley Crue – Don’t Go Away Mad (Just Go Away)
Even though it is not as popular as other songs in our list, we suggest you listen to them. This song, part of Motley Crue’s album Dr. Feelgood released in 1989, contains references that some listeners interpret as alluding to schizophrenia or similar mental health struggles.
Its themes touch upon conflicting emotions and inner turmoil, echoing feelings of confusion and unrest.
Ozzy Osbourne – Crazy Train
Let’s continue our list of songs about schizophrenia with a great rock song. Released in 1980 as part of the album Blizzard of Ozz, Crazy Train by Ozzy Osbourne primarily discusses the world’s instability and chaos.
However, some interpret it as a metaphor for the experience of mental health disorders like schizophrenia, addressing feelings of confusion and disorientation.
Pearl Jam – Jeremy
Pearl Jam’s Jeremy, from the album Ten released in 1991, portrays the struggles of a troubled youth. Although not explicitly about schizophrenia, the song touches on mental health issues and societal pressures, reflecting a sense of inner turmoil and alienation.
We may remember this song with this lyrics: “Jeremy spoke in class today”
The Beatles – I Am the Walrus
Legendary band The Beatles has also been counted on our playlist with their song I am the Walrus. I Am the Walrus by The Beatles, released in 1967 as part of the album Magical Mystery Tour, contains surreal and disjointed lyrics.
Some listeners interpret these lyrics as a reflection of altered mental states like schizophrenia, offering a cryptic and enigmatic narrative.
Pink Floyd – Brain Damage
Part of the album The Dark Side of the Moon released in 1973, Brain Damage by Pink Floyd touches on mental illness and the dissociative experience. While not specifically about schizophrenia, the song alludes to states of altered consciousness and mental challenges.
While not explicitly about schizophrenia, this haunting track touches on the complexities of mental illness and the dissociative experiences one might face. With its ethereal melodies and enigmatic lyrics, ‘Brain Damage’ paints a vivid portrait of altered states of consciousness, inviting listeners on a surreal journey through the depths of the mind.
Anthrax – Madhouse
The last and oldest song on our list of songs about schizophrenia is Madhouse. Anthrax’s Madhouse, part of the album Spreading the Disease released in 1985, alludes to a state of chaos and confusion. While not explicitly about schizophrenia, the song evokes feelings that resonate with aspects of mental health struggles, reflecting inner turmoil and unrest.