15 Of The Best Songs About September

Written by Dan Farrant
Last updated

September is a month of transition and reflection. At this time, summer fades away, and autumn marks the start of a new season.

For many people, this time of year holds special meaning. It’s the start of a new school year, the leaves change colors, or we anticipate the upcoming holidays.

Musicians have long been inspired by the emotions and themes of September. And so they penned songs that capture the essence of this transitional month. From soulful ballads to rock anthems, we’ve chosen 15 of the best songs about September. Enjoy reading!

1. “September” By Earth, Wind & Fire

Let’s start our list with a song with “September” in the title. Earth Wind & Fire‘s entry is one of the most iconic songs about this particular month. “September” is a classic funk and disco hit that celebrates the joy and love of “the 21st night of September.”

The song’s infectious beat emphasizes a carefree “live in the moment” mindset. At the same time, the lyrics reflect on fond memories from the past and are capped off by the meaningless “ba dee ya,” a placeholder lyric that was never changed and contributed to the song’s status as a singalong classic.

The catchy chorus hints at a particular time that was important to the singer. But the real meaning of the lyrics is left up to the listener’s imagination.

2. “Wake Me Up When September Ends” By Green Day

Our next song, “Wake Me Up When September Ends,” is a rock ballad from Green Day‘s 2004 album American Idiot.

The song’s lyrics express the grief and pain of losing a loved one. It’s a tough time for the singer, and he wishes that days would go by past September. Apparently, the month reminds him of his loss.

The band’s lead vocalist, Billie Joe Armstrong, penned the song after his father died from esophageal cancer. The song was also a tribute to the casualties of the September 11, 2001 attacks.

3. “September” By Daughtry

Another rock ballad to grace our list is Daughtry’s “September.” Here, the singer reflects on the past with mixed emotions. A sense of nostalgia for a period when life was less complicated and the future held endless promise is present in this song.

The words to “September” will make you think about how memories change over time, even the ones you hold most dear. The song specifically mentions the month of September, which is often seen as a time of change and transition.

For Daughtry, September always brings back memories of growing up in Lasker, North Carolina. He was grateful for the experience since it strengthened his character. But he realized he had to get out of there to succeed.

4. “See You In September” By The Happenings

In our next song with “September” in the lyrics, the month marks the time when the man will see his lover again. The Happenings released “See You In September” in 1966, a pop and doo-wop classic.

In a way, the song is a goodbye to the singer’s love interest, although temporarily. The summer vacation takes her away from him, and they find themselves saying goodbye at the station.

The singer looks forward to seeing her again in September. However, he also acknowledges the danger of a summer romance that could take her away forever.

5. “Come September” By Natalie Imbruglia

So far, the songs on our list are about certain events that are memorable to the singer. Yet another song to add to this category is Natalie Imbruglia‘s “Come September” from her 2001 album White Lilies Island.

This song is a melancholy ballad that describes the physical and emotional pain of heartbreak. The singer’s world falls apart even as she searches for a way to cope and find hope.

Despite her difficult situation, the song also offers a glimmer of hope. It suggests that everything will be all right in the end, come September. The month signals the changing of the season, and it symbolizes a new start for her.

6. “September Song” By JP Cooper

This next song mentions “September” to refer to a love interest. In JP Cooper‘s “September Song,” the singer looks back to when he was 15 and in love. He longs for those innocent, pure, and carefree days of young love.

In the lyrics, the singer reflects on how time has passed. It used to be him and her sharing that long summer love. But as it turns out, the two individuals have grown up and moved on with their lives.

The song’s lyrics depict the bittersweet feeling of nostalgia, the sadness of the passage of time, and how it can change things. But one thing remains the same, though. She would still be his September song.

7. “September Gurls” By The Bangles

Up next is The Bangles‘ “September Gurls,” a power-pop song originally by the rock band Big Star. The song is about a man’s infatuation with a girl born in September and how he cannot resist her charm and beauty.

Despite being aware of the heartbreak that may come with loving her, he declares his love for her anyway. And he still ends up broken-hearted, saying, “December boy’s got it bad.”

We believe that the boy the song references is Alex Chilton, the Big Star’s lead singer, and writer of the song. He was born in December.

8. “The September Of My Years” By Frank Sinatra

If you’re looking for a song about nostalgia, look no further than Frank Sinatra‘s “The September of My Years.” This jazz classic talks about the experience of growing older and the bittersweet longing that often accompanies it.

The lyrics express a sense of resignation to the fact that one’s youth has passed by quickly. One moment it’s summer. The next, it falls, and spring and winter pass by just as quickly. It makes him realize just how much he missed out on, such as having a family.

Despite the longing, the song depicts a sense of acceptance and gratitude for the memories and experiences that have made up a long and well-lived life.

9. “September Morn” By Neil Diamond

Another song about nostalgia is from American singer-songwriter Neil Diamond. “September Morn” was released in 1979 as a single from his album of the same name.

In the song, the singer thinks about a particular romance he had in the past. He remembers them as “two lovers playing scenes from some romantic play.” They danced through the night until that one September morning. Memories of it bring back old feelings.

Years later, they meet again. She has changed, and he barely recognizes her. But seeing her stirs the same feelings of that one September morning.

10. “September When I First Met You” By Barry White

The soulful and romantic song “September When I First Met You” reminisces about the day the singer met his love interest in September. This song came from Barry White‘s album The Man.

In the lyrics, the singer implores his lover to go back to that one specific day in September when they first met. He could feel something in the air that day and realized what it was when he saw her. Falling in love at first sight, he tried to convince her to give him a chance. She did, and it was a night he’d never forget.

The singer promises to treat every day like it’s September and never forget how it felt when they first fell in love.

11. “September Grass” By James Taylor

Reliving old memories of a girl that a man once loved is the premise behind James Taylor‘s “September Grass.” This folk and country ballad was from his 2002 album October Road.

The memories bring pain; the singer realizes as he goes back to a time he shared with his ex. It was September when the summer was at its end. He recalls how he lay down on the grass with her and how that moment changed him forever.

Time has passed since then, and he wonders where she is at the moment. Still, he wishes he could go back to that day in time when it was just him and her lying on September grass.

12. “Pale September” By Fiona Apple

A haunting and reflective song, Fiona Apple‘s “Pale September” is about the transformative power of love. You can find this song from her 1996 album Tidal.

The singer describes a time when she felt cold and hollow, as if her heart had gone dormant. The changing of seasons from hot summer to cold autumn symbolizes what she was going through at that moment. But then she meets someone who changes everything.

Apple wrote the song after a breakup with her ex-boyfriend. The lyrics reflect the emotional aftermath of the relationship.

13. “A Lonely September” By Plain White T’s

From the looks of it, “A Lonely September” by Plain White T’s is a song for your TOTGA or the one that got away.

From the rock band’s 2001 album Stop, the song reminisces a past relationship and the lingering feelings that come with it. The singer didn’t mean to fall in love with her, but he did. Even after separating, he still thinks about her.

Despite his best efforts, he struggles to move on and forget about his ex. He hasn’t gotten over her and believes that their love story deserves a second chance.

14. “The Late September Dogs” By Melissa Etheridge

It’s a painful experience to be left by someone you love. Melissa Etheridge sings about this pain in “The Late September Dogs.”

The singer hasn’t gotten over the permanent absence of her lover. She longs for him night and day, calling out for him in the street. The pain is unbearable that she begs for the sky to rain and wash away this pain.

But all she gets is silence, which feels like “the steel that pierces and cuts me to the bone.” She continues to search for relief from her pain, to no avail.

15. “September When It Comes” By Rosanne Cash And Johnny Cash

For our last song on the list, we have “September When It Comes” by Rosanne Cash and her father Johnny Cash. The song was released on her album Rules of Travel‘ in 2003, and it is a poignant reflection on mortality and the passing of time.

In the song, Cash seems to be singing about her own birth. The singer grows up to be a teenager who might have been rebellious during this age. She eventually runs away from her world toward the people who care for her.

In her old age, she reflects on the passage of time and the inevitability of change. She recognizes that she is never the same person again.

Summing Up Our List Of September Songs

What’s good about the songs above is having that deep emotional resonance. We might not experience the things that the songs depict, but we can easily relate to the emotions contained in each song.

The songs also show us that September becomes special or memorable due to the relevance that people attach to it. Some people celebrate the joy and beauty of the month. Others acknowledge the pain and sadness that can come with it.

What about you? Is September a special month for you? Even if it’s not, we hope you liked the songs we have included in our compilation.

Photo of author

Dan Farrant, the founder of Hello Music Theory, has been teaching music for over 15 years, helping hundreds of thousands of students unlock the joy of music. He graduated from The Royal Academy of Music in 2012 and then launched Hello Music Theory in 2014. He plays the guitar, piano, bass guitar and double bass and loves teaching music theory.