20 Songs About Bees

With the growing biodiversity crisis and concerns about food security and sustainability, bees are frequently in the headlines.

Their significance in our society as pollinators and honey producers has led to increased popularity in various artistic mediums, including film, social media, gaming, and contemporary art.

Humans have been intrigued by the buzzing sounds and signals bees make for centuries. The “drone” music style, popularized by the Beatles in “Tomorrow Never Knows,” gets its name from Old English words representing male bees.

Bee-inspired music and songs cover a wide range of experiences and emotions that humans seek to convey. In the 17th century, Charles Butler composed the angelic “Melissomelos” based on his keen observations of bee “voices” and their societal structure.

In popular music, bees have been used as metaphors to express human emotions and explore musical dynamics and mastery.

In this playlist, we have listed 20 most popular songs about bees.

20 Songs About Bees

1. “Kissing the Beehive” by Wolf Parade

“Kissing the Beehive” by Wolf Parade explores existential themes through its mysterious storytelling. The title, hinting at a sweet encounter with bees, metaphorically captures the intricate layers of the song.

The lyrics unfold a tale of risk and exploration amidst flowing rivers and shifting landscapes. Lines like “As if you didn’t know that it would sting, Kissing the beehive” depict a risky dance, while the recurring “Fire in the hole” acts as a haunting warning. The song paints surreal scenes, from a rifle tearing at the sky to the heartfelt plea: “I wish I could believe in you.” 

With their poetic lyrics and unique musical style, Wolf Parade crafts “Kissing the Beehive” into a compelling and thought-provoking piece within the indie rock scene.

2. “Honeybee” by Steam Powered Giraffe

“Honeybee,” from Isabella Bunny Bennett’s album ‘The Two-Cent Show’ (2012), started as a love song but changed into a reflection on lost love. Bennett wrote it during a breakup, and the song beautifully captures the feelings after a romance ends. Her lyrics gently describe the bittersweet memories that stay with us, like haunting eyes and a sweet grin. The metaphor of “Turpentine” suggests trying to erase painful memories.

The refrain, “Set me free, my honeybee,” adds an emotional plea. Using bees as a metaphor, the song tells a story about love’s complexity, creating a touching musical narrative.

3. “Be My Little Baby Bumble Bee” by Julie London

“Be My Little Baby Bumble Bee” is a charming song that beautifully conveys the playfulness of romance. Sung by various artists, such as Julie London, the lyrics playfully invite a special someone with whimsical lines like “Buzz around, buzz around, keep a-buzzin’ ’round,” comparing the lover to a bumble bee bringing home the metaphorical “honey of love.”

The lyrics express a desire for exclusive happiness, saying, “Let me spend the happy hours, roving with you ‘mongst the flowers.” The refrain, “Be my little baby bumble bee,” emphasizes the longing for a unique connection amidst numerous potential suitors. With its catchy melody and heartfelt lyrics, the song perfectly captures the essence of sweet, romantic devotion.

4. “Queen Bee” by Grand Funk Railroad

“Queen Bee” by Grand Funk Railroad is a rock anthem that’s all about infatuation and desire. The song paints a picture of someone special being the “queen bee,” highlighting their uniqueness and importance.

The lyrics express a strong desire to be with this person, even suggesting the idea of taking them away from others. The repetition of lines like “They can’t see what you mean to me” reinforces the singer’s belief in the depth of their connection. The bee metaphor goes beyond the title, with phrases like “My little queen bee, bzz” adding a playful touch.

In essence, Grand Funk Railroad’s “Queen Bee” is a passionate declaration of admiration, wrapped in the energetic vibe of rock and roll.

5. “Honey Bee” by Zee Avi

“Honey Bee” by Zee Avi tells a charming tale of a solitary honey bee cast out from its hive. The lyrics paint a vivid picture of the bee’s tenacity, coping with the loss of its stripes and wings by finding solace in nature. The bee sings alongside birds, embracing the wind as its companion.

The story unfolds as the determined bee strives to free another trapped bee, navigating challenges imposed by the hive. The song’s rhythmic repetitions of “param pam param pam” and “Para ra ra pa pa ra ram” add a playful and enchanting quality to the narrative.

6. “I’m A King Bee” by The Rolling Stones

The Rolling Stones’ rendition of “I’m a King Bee” pays homage to Slim Harpo’s 1957 swamp blues classic. Featured on their 1964 debut album, “The Rolling Stones,” the track showcases the band’s early blues influences. The song’s lyrics, written by Slim Harpo (James Moore), evoke a sensual metaphor where the protagonist, a “king bee,” buzzes around a hive, expressing desire and the promise of sweet rewards.

Mick Jagger’s charismatic vocals, paired with Brian Jones’ harmonica, bring a distinctive energy to the cover, adding a rock edge to the original blues composition.

With lines like “Well, I’m a king bee, baby, buzzing around your hive / Yeah, I can make honey, baby, let me come inside,” The Rolling Stones’ interpretation captures the primal and provocative essence of Slim Harpo’s timeless blues narrative.

7. “Wild Honey” by The Beach Boys

“Wild Honey” is indeed a song by the Beach Boys, written by Brian Wilson and Mike Love. Released in 1967 as the lead single from their album of the same name, the song has a catchy and upbeat feel, typical of the Beach Boys’ sound.

The lyrics describe the singer’s infatuation and deep affection for a girl who is likened to a “wild honey bee.” The repeated refrain “Sweet sweet wild honey bee, Eat up eat up eat up honey” emphasizes the sweetness and allure of the girl. The lyrics convey a sense of joy and excitement about being in love.

The mention of other “stud bees buzzing all around her hive” suggests that the girl is attractive and draws attention from others, but the singer feels fortunate to have been chosen by her. The playful and upbeat tone is consistent with the overall vibe of the 1960s pop and rock music scene.

8. “Honey Bee” by Tom Petty

“Honey Bee” by Tom Petty is a catchy blues-rock anthem featuring playful lyrics and infectious rhythms. In the song, Petty’s unique vocals invite listeners with the words, “Give me some sugar, little honey bee,” creating a sense of desire. The playful undertones continue as Petty humorously advises, “Don’t tell your momma, don’t tell your sister, don’t tell your boyfriend, little honey bee.”

Drawing inspiration from the blues tradition, Petty declares, “She likes to call me king bee, she likes to buzz ’round my tree.” These lyrics, combined with the gritty musical arrangement, vividly depict a passionate and secretive romance.

9. “Humble Bee” by John Wesley Harding

“Humble Bee” by John Wesley Harding tells a story of humility and unfulfilled desires. The opening lines hint at missed opportunities with the regretful admission, “Once upon a time, I could have had it all.” Comparing the singer to a “humble as a bumblebee” conveys a resigned tone.

The chorus drives home the theme, expressing the desire for everything despite the sting, with lines like “This is the sting, I still want everything” and “Here is the twist, you’re on my list, and here’s what I mean, you’re still the queen.” The persistent bee metaphor emphasizes the singer’s yearning for a past love, poignantly stating, “Just to hear the hum of your wings.”

10. “Bumble Bee (Sting Me)” by Wilson Pickett

“Bumble Bee (Sting Me)” is a song by Wilson Pickett. The lyrics express a playful and passionate invitation to a lover, using the metaphor of a bumble bee’s sting to convey the intensity of the romantic experience.

The lyrics suggest a desire for the sweetness of kisses and the powerful impact of love. The repeated refrain of “Hey bumble bee, come on and sting me” emphasizes the longing for the lover to take action and make a lasting impression.

The song captures the soulful and energetic style that Wilson Pickett was known for, and it reflects the themes commonly found in rhythm and blues and soul music of the time. The call-and-response style, characteristic of many soul songs, is also evident in the lyrics, with phrases like “Hey bumble bee” and “Come on and get busy with me” creating an engaging and participatory feel.

11. “Black Honey” by Graham Parker

“Black Honey” by Graham Parker tells a poignant story using metaphors of bees and honey to express the pain of loss and the desire for a sweeter past. The lyrics portray the singer’s soul as having turned bitter and dry, infused with “black honey” that once brought fulfillment.

The mention of the time before the “black honey went bone dry” highlights how this loss profoundly affected the singer’s life, irrespective of wealth. The song delves into themes of regret and yearning, with the refrain “Oh black honey’s in my soul” emphasizing the intense emotional struggle.

12. “Honeycomb” by Jimmie Rodgers

“Honeycomb,” penned by Bob Merrill in 1954, became a timeless classic when Jimmie Rodgers recorded it in 1957. This enchanting song topped the Billboard Top 100 and R&B charts, earning gold record status. The lyrics whimsically intertwine the creation of honey by bees with the creation of love, portraying life as a “darn good” journey.

The charming narrative describes how the Lord made bees and honey, and the honeycomb became a symbol of the singer’s sweetheart. With playful verses like “How the Lord made the bee, And the bee made the honey,” the song captures the joy of existence and the simple, sweet pleasures of love.

13. “Queen Bee” by Taj Mahal

“Queen Bee” by Taj Mahal is a soulful blues classic that pays homage to the sweetness of love. With a groove that rocks the soul, the song likens the singer’s beloved to a “Queen Bee,” emphasizing the irresistible allure and sweetness of their connection. Taj Mahal beautifully intertwines themes of love and nature, comparing the sweetness of his queen to that of a honey bee.

The lyrics describe the lover as “sweeter than a honey bee, yeah, baby been sweet on me,” highlighting the enchanting qualities of the beloved. The rhythmic strutting and dancing imagery in the lyrics, such as “She’s a strutter, she can shake it some,” add a lively dimension, creating a musical celebration of the intoxicating joy that love brings.

14. “Everybody Needs a Little Sanctuary” by Grant Lee Buffalo

“Everybody Needs a Little Sanctuary” by Taj Mahal artfully combines themes of sanctuary with the intricate world of bees. In the lyrics, Taj Mahal describes the bees’ movement, “Swarm ’round the hive sweet honey bee, Swarm to and fro just as ya please,” creating a vivid image of bees in their natural habitat.

The song extends its metaphor to diverse places of refuge, with lines like, “Some men will seek it in the church, Only to find it on the sea.” Taj Mahal reflects on the universal need for sanctuary, whether in traditional places of worship or in the vastness of the sea. Through poetic language and a soulful melody, the song captures the essence of seeking solace.

15. “Another Set of Bees in the Museum” by The Olivia Tremor Control

“Another Set of Bees in the Museum” by The Olivia Tremor Control, like much of their work, are somewhat abstract and open to interpretation. The band was known for its experimental and psychedelic approach to music, and their lyrics often have a dreamlike or surreal quality.

Bees are known for their sounds, and the song’s title implies them as a symbol of music confined to study, rather than freely exploring nature. References to elements like bark, ants, snails, and sky may be symbolic, and the recurring ‘can we go?’ expresses a desire to break free from immediate surroundings, yearning for something beyond.

The idea of liberating the world of sound might be a nod to the band’s interest in pushing the boundaries of traditional music and exploring new sonic possibilities.

16. “Just Like Honey” by The Jesus and Mary Chain

The Jesus and Mary Chain’s “Just Like Honey” from their 1985 debut album “Psychocandy” is a seminal track in alternative rock’s noise pop subgenre. Penned by William and Jim Reid, the song’s allure lies in its admiration for a vivacious woman, portrayed as the queen of her world with a “honey-dripping beehive.”

Drummer Bobby Gillespie pays homage to The Ronettes’ “Be My Baby” with an opening drum riff. The lyrics vividly depict the girl’s vibrant spirit and the challenges of returning to a significant other. The recurring phrase “Just like honey” underscores the sweetness and richness of the experience.

17. “Bumble Bee” by The Searchers

“Bumble Bee” by The Searchers is a classic rock song that captures the anguish of a tumultuous relationship. With a catchy melody and poignant lyrics, the song tells the tale of heartbreak and betrayal.

The singer expresses feelings of being treated like a clown and recounts past wounds, vowing not to endure more pain. The metaphor of a bumble bee symbolizes the stinging impact of the partner’s actions. Lines like “You’ve hurt me like a bee, a bumble bee, and evil bumble bee” convey the emotional distress.

As the singer bids farewell, there’s a sense of finality and resilience, signaling the end of a love that once held the promise of paradise.

18. “The Birds And The Bees” by Jewel Akens

“The Birds and the Bees,” a 1964 single by Jewel Akens, is a playful and infectious classic that reached its peak in 1965. Written by the son of Era Records owner Herb Newman, the song explores the theme of love and intimacy through the metaphor of the “birds and the bees.”

With its catchy honky-tonk style reminiscent of 1950s hits, the lyrics humorously allude to the basics of sex education. Akens’ delivery and the upbeat melody contributed to the song’s international success.

Notably, the lyrics playfully mention bees, adding to the charm of the song. “Let me tell ya ’bout the birds and the bees,” Akens croons, weaving a timeless narrative about the facts of life and the universal experience of love.

19. “Ant Man Bee” by Captain Beefheart & His Magic Band

“Ant Man Bee” is a song by Captain Beefheart & His Magic Band from their album “Trout Mask Replica,” released in 1969. The album is known for its avant-garde and experimental nature, featuring a unique blend of rock, blues, and free jazz.

The lyrics of “Ant Man Bee” seem to explore themes of conflict and the struggle for freedom. The imagery of ants and bees is used metaphorically to represent different groups of people, possibly reflecting societal tensions and the desire for liberation. The repetition of the phrase “Uhuru, ant, man, bee” suggests a call for freedom or release from some form of constraint or conflict.

The reference to ants in God’s garden not getting along and the mention of war may symbolize human discord and the persistent conflicts that exist despite a shared environment. The bee taking honey and setting the flower free could be a metaphor for exploitation and liberation.

20. “Knees of My Bees” by Alanis Morissette

“Knees of My Bees” by Alanis Morissette is a song that seems to celebrate someone who’s incredibly inspiring and impactful. The lyrics use metaphors of bees like “You make the knees of my bees weak, tremble and buckle” to convey the profound effect this person has on the singer.

There’s admiration for their spontaneity, wisdom, compassion, and authenticity. It’s a tribute to someone who defies limits, follows their intuition, and lives with honesty and integrity. The phrase “You are a sliver of God on a platter” suggests a reverence for this person, portraying them as a divine presence in the singer’s life.

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