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a change is gonna came
May 14, 2013 2:36 PM   Subscribe

Hit me with some joyful, hopey songs that are less "everything is going to be all right" than "the bad shit is over -- everything is all right!"

Could be triumph over adversity, or, less dramatically, just "things totally sucked, now they don't suck nearly as much, yay!" Looking for generally upbeat in tone. The "things sucked prior" part doesn't necessarily have to be explicit in the song, I just want something you'd listen to when you get that feeling. Just as a brain-nudge, songs that might come to mind for me in answer to this question would be Wintersleep -- Weighty Ghost; Erin McKeown -- Born to Hum; Sleater-Kinney -- Everything*. Thanks all!

*this song could seriously be about baby carrots for all I know. no freakin' clue. but it makes me feel like a superhero for three and a half minutes!
posted by threeants to Media & Arts (70 answers total) 87 users marked this as a favorite
 
A gospel song that is explicitly about the end of hard times: The Storm is Passing Over.
posted by not that girl at 2:40 PM on May 14, 2013


We Are The Champions, of course!
posted by Metroid Baby at 2:41 PM on May 14, 2013 [3 favorites]


I Can See Clearly Now
posted by apparently at 2:41 PM on May 14, 2013 [3 favorites]


Thank you for reminding me of this vintage Santana song: Everything is Coming Our Way.
posted by sageleaf at 2:42 PM on May 14, 2013 [1 favorite]


Marnie Stern - Transformer!
posted by troika at 2:42 PM on May 14, 2013


Standin' down on Main Street
Across from Mr, Blues
In my faded leather jacket
And my weathered Brogan shoes
A chill north wind was blowin'
But the spring was comin' on
As I wondered to myself
Just how long I had been gone

So I strolled across old Main Street
Walked down a flight of stairs
Stepped into the hall
And saw all my friends were there
A neon sign was flashin' "Welcome come on in"
It feels so good feelin' good again


Feelin' Good Again - Robert Earl Keen
posted by zabuni at 2:44 PM on May 14, 2013 [2 favorites]


the killers-everything will be alright
posted by QueerAngel28 at 2:47 PM on May 14, 2013


The Five Stairsteps, Ooh Child.
posted by Sara C. at 2:49 PM on May 14, 2013 [4 favorites]


I'm quite fond of this rendition of "A Change is Gonna Come" by the Dartmouth Aires. The CD version of it is also good, but (IMO) doesn't have the power of the live version.

Also, my personal anthem, Pink's "Fuckin' Perfect". Be warned, the video is pretty dark, and contains an attempted suicide.
posted by booksherpa at 2:50 PM on May 14, 2013


The Beatles, It's Getting Better All The Time.
posted by Sara C. at 2:51 PM on May 14, 2013 [2 favorites]


Florence + the Machine "Dog Days Are Over" always makes me feel triumphant when I hear it.
posted by jillithd at 2:52 PM on May 14, 2013 [8 favorites]


Morning Has Broken - Cat Stevens

Feeling Good - Nina Simone

At Last - Etta James
posted by markkraft at 2:54 PM on May 14, 2013 [4 favorites]


Somewhere Over the Rainbow (I like Israel Kamakawiwoʻole's version.)
posted by Multicellular Exothermic at 2:55 PM on May 14, 2013 [2 favorites]


Eels - Hey Man (Now You're Really Living)
posted by TheOtherGuy at 3:00 PM on May 14, 2013 [1 favorite]


Bob Marley, Three Little Birds ("Every little thing gonna be all right").
posted by languagehat at 3:04 PM on May 14, 2013 [2 favorites]


Every day it starts again
You cannot say if you're happy
You keep trying to be
Try harder, maybe this is not your year, The Weepies.
posted by sweetkid at 3:12 PM on May 14, 2013


Gotye - I Feel Better
posted by lovableiago at 3:20 PM on May 14, 2013


Estoy como nunca is in español...but rocks it out even if you can't follow the lyrics.
posted by pantarei70 at 3:22 PM on May 14, 2013


This will be our year, took a long time to come
posted by chrchr at 3:23 PM on May 14, 2013 [4 favorites]


Curtis Mayfield - Move On Up

And try feeling NOT pumped and dancey when you hear this song -- personally, I find it impossible: Sia - Clap Your Hands
posted by lovableiago at 3:24 PM on May 14, 2013 [1 favorite]


P.P. Arnold - Everything's Gonna Be Alright
Komeda - It's Alright Baby
posted by hydrophonic at 3:25 PM on May 14, 2013 [1 favorite]


The Beatles, "Here Comes the Sun." Because it has been a long, cold, lonely winter...but here comes the sun.
posted by MonkeyToes at 3:27 PM on May 14, 2013 [4 favorites]


The Eels: Peach Blossom
posted by rongorongo at 3:28 PM on May 14, 2013


Promising Traveler, by New Potato Caboose
posted by headnsouth at 3:33 PM on May 14, 2013


Rilo Kiley - With Arms Outstretched
posted by augustimagination at 3:37 PM on May 14, 2013 [1 favorite]


The Cure, Fight
posted by jonathanbell at 3:39 PM on May 14, 2013


And I can see, hear, smell, touch, taste, and I've got one, two, three, four, five Senses Working Overtime always makes me glad that I'm alive.
posted by she's not there at 3:40 PM on May 14, 2013 [1 favorite]


New Shoes by Paolo Nutini
posted by amaire at 3:59 PM on May 14, 2013 [2 favorites]


Ben Folds - Landed
posted by treehorn+bunny at 4:11 PM on May 14, 2013 [2 favorites]


Has nobody mentioned "Red Rubber Ball?"
posted by mneekadon at 4:15 PM on May 14, 2013


Doesn't entirely fit your criteria, i.e., it's not about being past difficult times. Rather, the lyrics acknowledge that life is/can be crappy, nonetheless, we are all right, right now. New Radicals You get what you give—one of the sweetest, most joyful songs about teenage angst every recorded.
posted by she's not there at 4:25 PM on May 14, 2013


I was having a passionate discussion about the need for these songs yesterday.

Pretty Good Year - The Loved Ones

July 4th, 2004 - Jason Anderson

This Year - The Mountain Goats

Film Noir - Gaslight Anthem (probably a bunch others)

My Last Semester - The Wonder Years ("I'm not sad anymore/I'm just tired of this place")

Critical Hit - Ghost Mice

8 Full Hours Of Sleep - Against Me!

Road To Joy - Bright Eyes

First Day Of My Life - Bright Eyes

Pretty much anything by Frank Turner.
Constructive Summer - The Hold Steady
posted by Charlemagne In Sweatpants at 4:39 PM on May 14, 2013 [2 favorites]


The Middle - Jimmy Eat World

Basically every emo, folk-punk, orgcore or Springsteen style band will have a bunch of songs like this and people will sing along to them at shows and everything will be fine. Try Titus Andronicus too, though I'm having trouble finding the hopeful bits.
posted by Charlemagne In Sweatpants at 4:45 PM on May 14, 2013 [2 favorites]


Good Day Sunshine.
posted by alms at 5:25 PM on May 14, 2013


First mention of "Walking on Sunshine" by Katrina and the Waves? Happy happy happy!
Also 2nding "Here Comes the Sun"
posted by bebrave! at 5:30 PM on May 14, 2013


Comes the Summer - Fiery Furnaces
posted by Charlemagne In Sweatpants at 5:34 PM on May 14, 2013


Happy to see them mentioned several times here already, but I'm a big fan of eels' version of "Feeling Good." Warning: As he is wont to do, E makes it sound like something of a tragic dirge. You can stream it here.

A few more:
Astronautalis, "The River, The Woods" (lyrics)
Brother Ali, "Bad Ma Fucka" (lyrics) or "Forest Whitaker" (lyrics)
Dismemberment Plan, "Following Through" (lyrics)
Ted Leo, "Biomusicology" (lyrics)

My #1 go-to song for this purpose is "Prizefight" (lyrics) by the indomitable Mike Mictlan. I don't know what I'm doing, but I keep my eyes on the prize.
posted by divined by radio at 5:38 PM on May 14, 2013 [1 favorite]


Doin' it Right by Daft Punk
posted by 4ster at 5:48 PM on May 14, 2013 [1 favorite]


Barry Manilow, I Made It Through The Rain.

What?
posted by prize bull octorok at 6:04 PM on May 14, 2013 [1 favorite]


Compared to What by Les McCann & Eddie Harris.
posted by alms at 6:15 PM on May 14, 2013


Maybe too much the former than the latter, but dancing to "Better Things" by the Kinks (and covered in a very woo-woo fashion by Dar Williams) at my friend's wedding is a pretty amazing memory.

Also this is more strictly romance-related than I would normally go, but "King of All of the World" always makes me feel like, well, you know...
posted by kickingthecrap at 6:26 PM on May 14, 2013 [1 favorite]


Up! - Shania Twain, Canadian Goddess
posted by rhythm_queen at 6:34 PM on May 14, 2013


I was totally going to say Biomusicology. That whole album is amazing.
posted by bibliogrrl at 6:41 PM on May 14, 2013 [2 favorites]


Stay Free, by the Clash.

years have passed and things have changed
And I move anyway I wanna go
I'll never forget the feeling I got
When I heard that you'd got home
An' I'll never forget the smile on my face
'Cos I knew where you would be
An' if you're in The Crown tonight
Have a drink on me
But go easy...step lightly...stay free

posted by The corpse in the library at 7:28 PM on May 14, 2013 [1 favorite]


Stay Hungry, Stay Free, and do the best you can
posted by Charlemagne In Sweatpants at 7:31 PM on May 14, 2013


I don't suppose you're looking for examples from Baroque opera, but here you go anyway: Despair no more shall wound me and Happy happy shall we be.
posted by Orinda at 8:47 PM on May 14, 2013 [1 favorite]


Richard Thompson - I Feel So Good
posted by saul wright at 8:48 PM on May 14, 2013 [2 favorites]


Greg Street and Nappy Roots- Good Day
posted by jaksemas at 8:51 PM on May 14, 2013


and yes, agreeing with others- all of The Tyranny of Distance is incredible.
posted by saul wright at 8:52 PM on May 14, 2013


James Brown I feel good

oo check that footwork
posted by spbmp at 8:55 PM on May 14, 2013


Ashes on Your Eyes - Deb Talan
The Riot's Gone - Santigold
Shake it Out - Florence & the Machine
Shake Shake Shake - Bronze Radio Return
The Pilgriming Vine - Basia Bulat
Live for the Sounds - Brooke Waggoner
Manchester - Kishi Bashi
The Water - Johnny Flynn & Laura Marling (a bit zenny)
posted by aintthattheway at 9:30 PM on May 14, 2013


As mneekadon said, "Red Rubber Ball." It was written by Paul Simon, and became a hit performed by Cyrkle. "I think it's gonna be all right, Guess the worst is over now, The morning sun is shining like A red rubber ball."
posted by melesana at 10:12 PM on May 14, 2013


Long Time Comin', Springsteen.
These Are Days, 10,000 Maniacs
posted by Miko at 10:28 PM on May 14, 2013


Pinklon by the Mountain Goats
Beginning to See the Light by the Velvet Underground
posted by chairmanroflmao at 11:40 PM on May 14, 2013


Fire Fly - Childish Gambino (Donald Glover, Troy from Community)
posted by Charlemagne In Sweatpants at 12:19 AM on May 15, 2013


Hey Saul Wright, love your choice—just want to note that it's a pretty dark take on "upbeat" and "triumph over adversity".

I feel so good I'm going to break somebody's heart tonight
I feel so good I'm going to take someone apart tonight



(By Richard Thompson standards, of course, this is practically "Sunshine, Lollipops, and Rainbows".)
posted by she's not there at 12:26 AM on May 15, 2013 [2 favorites]


Both used in a Corona ad campaign.. But both glorious in conveying a sense of remembrance yet letting go of the past, living joyfully in the moment, and knowing the future will be free and kind.

Mt Warning, Sinking Sun
(Band site)

Here we sit now
towards the setting sun
Think of all the roads that we've been down

Time may pass us,
we won't mind
We got our bags and we got our rags
Oh we're doing fine,
yeah we're doing fine

We will talk about all our good times
Know that there's so much more
that we're gonna find

Every next morning
We'll set our sails
Borne to the horizon
It never fails, it never fails

We'll think of the places
we've never been before
We'll think of the faces
and of their stories
yeah of their stories
of their stories
and of their stories

We will talk about all our good times
Know that there's so much more
that we're gonna find..


Years Around the Sun, Miles Away
(a little more obscure, but I get a similar vibe from it)

what was said what was done
as the time had a ride
all the ways we could run
all the things we could try oh my,
could you tell me where this is going to lead?

...

and our minds were meant to sail
take a rest from our thoughts
take a break from this world
and we'll feel miles away
from the places that we used to be

as we lay in the sand
and we stare at the sky
watch the moon dancing why
as the stars latch our eyes
oh my, there's no place on earth
I'd rather be..

...

and our minds were meant to sail
take a rest from our thoughts
take a break from this world
and we'll feel miles away
from the places that we used to be


...
posted by Ahab at 12:43 AM on May 15, 2013


clash i'm not down
posted by bizwool at 4:51 AM on May 15, 2013


Clare Bowditch - On This Side
Patrick Wolf - The Magic Position
Elbow - One Day Like This
Neko Case - Magpie to the Morning
Kate Miller-Heidke - Ride This Feeling
Skipping Girl Vinegar - Chase the Sun
posted by Athanassiel at 5:31 AM on May 15, 2013


Weirdo that I am, I have a couple of go-to songs for exactly the mood you're describing:

Stan Rogers - The Mary Ellen Carter
And you, to whom adversity has dealt the final blow
With smiling bastards lying to you everywhere you go
Turn to, and put out all your strength of arm and heart and brain
And like the Mary Ellen Carter, rise again.


Great Big Sea - When I Am King
Wake up, without a care. Your head's not heavy, conscience clear
Sins are all forgiven here, yours and mine
Fear has gone without a trace
It's the perfect time, it's the perfect place.

posted by hanov3r at 7:14 AM on May 15, 2013 [1 favorite]


Finally See Our Way - Art Vs Science
Better Days - Divinyls
Dog Days Are Over - Florence and the Machine
Baby I'm Getting Better - Gyroscope
Good Times - Hoodoo Gurus
I Am Mine - Pearl Jam
Good Fortune - PJ Harvey
Today - Smashing Pumpkins
Fucken Awesome - Spiderbait
Message to My Girl - Split Enz
Alright Supergrass
posted by h00py at 7:18 AM on May 15, 2013 [2 favorites]


Came in, looked for "The Dog Days Are Over" and "This Will Be Our Year" and "Good Fortune", was not disappointed.

The Nina Simone cover of "Here Comes The Sun" is good too.
posted by ifjuly at 8:34 AM on May 15, 2013


Snow Is Gone - Josh Ritter
It's been a long time coming
But now the snow is gone

posted by borkencode at 10:08 AM on May 15, 2013 [1 favorite]


I'm Still Standing - Elton John
The Beginning - RuPaul
Brand New Day - The Wiz soundtrack
I'm Free - The Who
Survivor - Destiny's Child
posted by SisterHavana at 10:39 PM on May 15, 2013


Our Day Will Come
by Ruby and the Romantics is a family favorite of mine.
posted by hick57 at 12:40 AM on May 16, 2013


Oh, Things Can Only Get Better, D:Ream.
posted by Miko at 6:28 AM on May 16, 2013


A late entry, Shout to the Top by the Style Council.
posted by vespabelle at 12:40 PM on May 17, 2013


One of mine, here at Mefi Music: It Gets Better.
posted by flapjax at midnite at 6:12 AM on May 20, 2013 [1 favorite]


Beautiful Life - Ace of Base
posted by Bokmakierie at 8:11 PM on May 21, 2013


LCD Soundsystem-Dance Yrself Clean
posted by QueerAngel28 at 12:16 PM on May 31, 2013


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