Rock Songs That Tell a Story or 5 Songs for Drinking Beer

Rock songs that Tell A StoryI heard a song by Judge Smith called “Carpet Tile” (who would have thought a song about carpet tile would be interesting) and I heard a song by Robert Mullins called “Judgment Day”. While one is a pub song about the demise of the English economy after Margaret Thatcher and the other is a southern rock song about the treachery of West Virginia mining companies, they have one thing in common: they tell a story. (They are also about oppression of the common folk, but I didn’t want to go into that.)

I enjoyed these two songs so much that I thought I would put together a list of rock songs that tell a story. If it makes it easier for you to listen to these, you can get yourself a beer and sing along. You’ll find a couple of standards, but you’ll have have a couple of surprises to delight you along the way.

“American Pie” – Don McLean
It just seems right to me to start off with one that you would expect to be here. If you haven’t started with the beer yet take a shot of whiskey.

“Alice’s Restaurant” – Arlo Guthrie
Maybe this song isn’t a true rock song, but it’s close enough and I like it.

“Broadsword” – Jethro Tull
You probably won’t find this song on anyone else’s list, but I think it tells a cool story especially of you like Lord of the Rings and those sorts of things.

“Beyond the Realms of Death” – Judas Priest
You know I’m going to have to rock the list up just a little bit with some heavy metal. I’m not sure what the song is about for sure, but it sounds cool.

“Me and Bobby McGee” – Janis Joplin
I’ll close it out with another classic story song from our favorite flower child songstress.


  1. I recomend Jimmy Buffet’s “God’s Own Drunk” that he lifted from Lord Buckley.It’s from the “You Had To Be There” double live albulm. also “He Went To Paris” and “Pirate Looks At Forty” are great story songs.

  2. Haha those are some perfect suggestions. From such a wide variety of artists too. Including the youtube widgets was handy. Thanks.
    Jake @ Acoustic Guitar Straps´s last blog post ..Acoustic Guitar Straps

  3. Love the Judas Priest selection to this list. No idea what it’s about either, but it’s definately rockin!

  4. No demon alcohol by Ozzy? That would mix in well with the theme.

  5. I like the American Pie by Don McLean.. So nice!

  6. Surely Whisky in the Jar is worth a mention??

    I’d never heard that Arlo Guthrie track before reading your blog, so thanks a lot!

  7. Great selection! Opening a six pack now!

  8. Damn dude, nice post.
    I liked it lots of your music selection, and the idea of them enjoyed drinking is a wonder.
    Baixar Filmes´s last blog post ..A Imperatriz e Os Guerreiros Dual Audio

  9. Whiskey in the Jar appears on another list.

  10. Nice tracks. You brought the songs I come with the beer. Anyone? :) Cheers!
    Gibson Les Paul´s last blog post ..Gibson Les Paul Black Beauty

  11. Whiskey in the Jar needs to be added for sure.

  12. Heck half of ozzy’s catalog could probably be slapped in here.

  13. Nice to see Jethro Tull included above – one of my favourite bands. Think they’re on a new tour or about to start.

    What about Billy Bragg’s music? Always tells a story. One of my heroes – very anti Margaret Thatcher. Part of my history from my late teens/earlt twenties!
    Kids Elvis Costume´s last blog post ..Female Elvis Costume

  14. “American Pie” – Don McLean is GREAT!

    but “Whiskey in the Jar” is missing for sure…
    Parijs´s last blog post ..Eén dagje naar Parijs

  15. American Pie…that is the best song ever. Love it!

  16. Awesome list there brother. Don Mclean is the man! Hmm, though I do love hearing more upbeat sounds while drinking, it does amplify the urge in drinking more.
    Seth @ Drum Set Up´s last blog post ..Best Double Bass Drum Pedals

  17. Seth, you might want to try Drinking Songs for Hell Raisers:

  18. Great list! Couldn’t it include LOLA by the kinks? For drinking Champagne taste like chery C-O-L-A

  19. browsing some commentluv sites and came accross yours, played alice’s restuarant and it put a smile on my face, thank you!
    greg urbano´s last blog post ..St Pete Photo Walk

  20. Good Choices. i love american pie. It was made to memorize buddy holly and his plane crash.

  21. Some great tracks there, especially Janis’ Bobby McGee. Bob Dylan does some great stories, like the Hurricane. In fact Country music is story song heaven!

  22. Excellent to see “Beyond The Realms of Death” on the list!! Maybe would probably go for “Alcohol” by Yesterday and Today before they got a hold on the Aqua Net.
    Brian´s last blog post ..Early Poundin Metal From 72

  23. Here’s a few to take you back….even the country ones made it to the pop stations. Mine was WPGC – Morningside MD

    The Night the Lights Went Out in Georgia – Vicki Lawrence
    Ode to Billy Joe – Bobbie Gentry
    The Wreck of the Edmund Fitzgerald – Gordon Lightfoot
    Abraham, Martin & John – Dion
    Big Bad John – Jimmy Dean
    The Ballad of the Green Beret – SSgt. Barry Sadler
    Swamp Witch – Jim Stafford
    El Paso – Marty Robbins
    Battle of New Orleans – Johnny Horton
    Harper Valley PTA – Jeannie C. Riley
    Convoy – C.W. McCall
    Bad Bad Leroy Brown – Jim Croce
    Mack the Knife – Bobby Darin

  24. Much love for the me and bobby mcgee choice!
    Dan Price´s last blog post ..Personalized Guitar Straps

  25. I love me and bobby mcgee.

    Great voice!


  26. What’s the name of that Xmas song that begins, “Met my old lover in the grocery store…”? I like that one.

  27. I must agree with the comment about Bobby McGee!
    Tommy Patterson´s last blog post ..http-wwwplaxocom-profile-showsrcyjpcontactInfo

  28. Cool list!! Maybe add ZZTOP “Beer Drinkers and Hell Raisers”> !! Hey, Maybe a compilation album with 15 or so songs!?

  29. Awesome post! makes me wanna grab a bottle of whiskey…wild turkey, oh that reminds me, sober by the band muse “the wild turkeys been chosen…”

  30. I have never heard these songs but will download today. Thanks for posting..

  31. Please make sure that you download from a legitimate source so the artists can get paid.

  32. As cheesy as Macca can be I’ve always loved “Rocky Raccoon” and the little story told through the lyrics…and it involves a bit of drinking as well! (Though it’s not beer!).

  33. All of them are really good rock songs! And drinking beer is good to:-) Rock on from Sweden!

  34. George Thoroubread? I drink alone – one of my all time favorite drinking songs.
    Dave Houk´s last blog post ..Finding Love Through Internet Dating

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