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23 Best Songs About Cheating

Exploring the songs anyone who’s been cheated on can relate to.

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Best Songs About Cheating

Anyone who has been on the receiving end of an unfaithful girlfriend or boyfriend will appreciate the best songs about cheating.

This is music that understands how it feels when someone you love betrays you and the effect a cheating partner can have on your life.

From powerful rock ballads to heart-wrenching pop songs from iconic singers, these songs about cheating are powerful odes to infidelity.

 

The 23 Best Songs About Cheating

Being cheated on is a near-universal experience, so it’s not surprising to discover that songs have been written on the topic across all music genres.

We’ve selected a broad selection of songs on the subject of cheating, from timeless rock songs to modern-day chart-topping hits from superstars.

Without further ado, here’s our playlist of the 23 best songs about cheating:

 

23. “Careless Whisper” – George Michael

George Michael dominated the charts during the 1980s, with “Careless Whisper” among his most popular releases that decade.

“I’m never gonna dance again, guilty feet have got no rhythm,” Michael sings in the song, “Though it’s easy to pretend I know you’re not a fool.”

In this case, it’s a song where the singer is the one who was unfaithful, and how Michael responded to his own infidelity.

 

22. “Unfaithful” – Rihanna

Rihanna gets straight to the point with the title of her song about cheating, with “Unfaithful” again about the singer being the cheating party.

She expresses her understanding that she’s at fault, singing, “To know that I’m happy with some other guy, I can see him dying.”

Rihanna’s success came in part thanks to releasing one of the best songs of all time, “Umbrella,” which featured Jay-Z.

 

21. “Lyin’ Eyes” – Eagles

While many of the songs about cheating are about cheating men, there are some that cover women who are unfaithful to their partners.

The Eagles’ song “Lyin’ Eyes” is one such song, and is about how sometimes you can tell someone is cheating just by observing their body language.

It was inspired by the band’s experiences performing at the Los Angeles club Dan Tana’s, where they observed women coming to have fun.

 

20. “I’m Not The Only One” – Sam Smith

Pop song “I’m Not The Only One” by Sam Smith takes on the point of view of a woman who is the victim of an adulterous marriage.

The lyrics dive into her self-medication, with Smith singing about “Jack Daniels for breakfast” and “valium mixed with antidepressants.”

As you can tell from the lyrics, it’s a depressing and sad song, featuring a music video that elevates this cheating song to another level.

 

19. “It’s Not Right, But It’s Okay” – Whitney Houston

Released by Whitney Houston in 1999, “It’s Not Right But It’s Okay” is about a couple in confrontation when the woman realizes her partner is cheating.

“Close the door behind you, leave your key,” Houston sings in her searing vocal style. “I’d rather be alone than unhappy, yeah, uh.”

It’s one of many hits from Whitney Houston, who won several Grammy Awards and was nominated for twenty-five additional prizes.

 

18. “Creep” – TLC

While Radiohead is well-known for writing a song called “Creep,” TLC took the title and gave it its own unique spin in 1994.

Written by Dallas Austin about a band member’s personal experiences with cheating, it’s a classic pop song about how cheating can drive us toward another partner.

A huge hit when it was released, “Creep” topped the US Billboard Hot 100 charts and helped TLC win over many new fans.

 

17. “Confessions Part II” – Usher

The Usher track “Confessions Part II” is another song that takes on the perspective of the cheater rather than the victim.

In it, Usher narrates his remorse for his infidelity, which led to getting his mistress pregnant while trying to make it up to his current girlfriend.

While many assumed it was a true story, Usher refuted this claim during an interview with MTV in 2004.

 

16. “Case Of The Ex (Whatcha Gonna Do)” – Mya

Mya’s “Case of the Ex (Whatcha Gonna Do)” is a great song about a boy who still talks to his ex-girlfriend, something most current girlfriends won’t tolerate.

It was written by Christopher “Tricky” Stewart, Traci Hale, and Thabiso “Tab” Nkhereanyne, with inspiring vocals and musical arrangements.

The song was featured on Mya’s second studio album, Fear of Flying, which was released in 2000.

 

15. “Whose Bed Have Your Boots Been Under” – Shania Twain

“Whose Bed Have Your Boots Been Under” is a fine example of Shania Twain’s musical talents, as well as her gift for innuendo.

It’s a song that reflects her sharp grasp of cheaters, with the lyrics, “And whose heart did you steal I wonder? This time did it feel like thunder, baby?”

Twain has released many popular songs, including one of the best songs about breathing, “It Only Hurts When I’m Breathing.”

 

14. “Me And Mrs. Jones” – Billy Paul

Billy Paul released “Me and Mrs. Jones” in 1972, discussing a man who is having an affair with a married woman called Mrs. Jones.

The implication is that both parties are cheaters isn’t lost, with the song’s lyrics stating, “We both know that it’s wrong, but it’s much too strong to let it go now.”

It’s a song that is loaded with implied tragedy, with both people knowing that it won’t last even as they meet in a cafe each morning.

 

13. “She Don’t Have To Know” – John Legend

Before John Legend began dating supermodel Chrissy Teigen, he wrote the song “She Don’t Have To Know” in 2004.

It’s another song detailing two people who are cheating on their partners, beginning with the man’s perspective before switching to the woman’s

“She Don’t Have To Know” was a popular song that benefited from the production skills of will.i.am, who collaborated with Legend on the track.

 

12. “Little Lies” – Fleetwood Mac

Fleetwood Mac band member Christine McVie wrote the song “Little Lies” in 1987, which was their last top ten hits.

This is a beautiful song about unrequited love and the consequences of cheating, and how she’d rather be deceived than be without a partner.

“Little Lies” enjoyed a resurgence in popularity in 2016 when the song was featured to promote the television series Younger, starring Hilary Duff.

 

11. “You Know I’m No Good” – Amy Winehouse

While so many cheating songs take on the perspective of the victim, Amy Winehouse owned up to her own cheating in the song “You Know I’m No Good.”

Recorded in 2008, it explores her marriage as it fails, with vocals that sing about how the breakup led to her being unfaithful.

Winehouse’s exceptional voice has been used to great effect in many tunes, including one of the best karaoke songs of all time, “Back In Black.”

 

10. “How Could You” – Mario

Mario’s “How Could You” is all about the painful process of discovering the person you love is cheating on you and how to cope with this realization.

“How could you call him all the names that you used to call me,” he sings in the song, continuing, “How could you, how could you just forget about me.”

The song was accompanied by a memorable music video in which Mario is followed around as he uncovers the clues of his lover’s cheating.

 

9. “Irreplaceable” – Beyonce

Beyonce is no stranger to writing catchy pop songs about relationships, and she tackles the topic of cheating in her song “Irreplaceable.”

It’s an empowering song for any woman who has been cheated on, with lyrics singing about packing up the belongings of the cheater and moving on in life.

With multiple chart-topping hits on the Billboard Hot 100 charts to her name, Beyonce continues to lead the way with popular and famous songs.

 

8. “You Oughta Know” – Alanis Morissette

One of the biggest hits released by Alanis Morissette, “You Oughta Know,” was written and released in 1991 when she was just 21 years old.

“You Oughta Know” explores her position as a former lover who has been cheated on and how she isn’t going to go down without a fight.

“You Oughta Know” is also widely considered to be one of the best songs about revenge and is essential listening for anyone dealing with a cheating boyfriend.

 

7. “The Boy Is Mine” – Brandy Ft. Monica

Brandy teamed up with Monica for the song “The Boy Is Mine,” which sees the duo battling it out as they realize they’re dating the same man.

“You need to give it up, had about enough (enough),” the lyrics sing, continuing, “It’s not hard to see the boy is mine (boy is mine).”

With themes of love, jealousy, and bitter rivalry, it’s become one of the true classics of female-led R&B songs.

 

6. “Should’ve Said No” – Taylor Swift

“Should’ve Said No” was written by Taylor Swift as a story about a girl who uses her guitar to deal with the fact that she’s been cheated on.

The lyrics explore the regrets she has for not saying no and going home, instead allowing herself to get caught up with the wrong man.

In the end, she stands up for herself when the cheating partner begs for her to take him back and excuse him for his actions.

 

5. “Wake Up Call” – Maroon 5

Discovering a partner has been cheating on you can be a rude awakening, as “Wake Up Call” by Maroon 5 understands.

It’s about the timeless story of someone seeing red when they realize they’re being cheated on, with the lyrics, “Came without a warning, so I had to shoot him dead.”

“Wake Up Call” was featured as a single on the second studio album from Maroon 5, It Won’t Be Soon Before Long, released in 2007.

 

4. “Jolene” – Dolly Parton

A playlist of songs about cheating and relationships wouldn’t be complete without an entry from the iconic country music singer-songwriter Dolly Parton.

One of her biggest hits, “Jolene,” is an emotionally charged song that understands the beauty of another woman and how this might tempt a man to cheat.

Parton wrote several huge hits over the years, including one of the best songs about work, “9 To 5”, featured in the movie of the same name.

 

3. “Before He Cheats” – Carrie Underwood

Another great country music singer who tackled the thorny issue of cheating is Carrie Underwood, with the song “Before He Cheats.”

“I took a Louisville slugger to both headlights,” Underwood sings, continuing, “I slashed a hole in all four tires; maybe next time he’ll think before he cheats.”

It’s a biting song that packs a real punch in spite of its deceptively laid-back style and another success for Underwood’s impressive discography.

 

2. “It Wasn’t Me” – Shaggy

One of the biggest chart hits about cheating is undoubtedly “It Wasn’t Me” by Shaggy, a tongue-in-cheek pop song about cheating on a partner.

The classic lyrics read, “But she caught me on the counter (It wasn’t me), Saw me bangin’ on the sofa (It wasn’t me), I even had her in the shower (It wasn’t me).”

This great song about cheating was inspired by a standup sketch from Eddie Murphy, who instructed cheating men to say, “It wasn’t me” if caught cheating.

 

1. “Cry Me A River” – Justin Timberlake

Perhaps the saddest song about cheating of all is Justin Timberlake’s “Cry Me A River,” which some believe the singer released after breaking up with Britney Spears.

Adding fuel to the speculative fire, the music video for “Cry Me A River” featured a blonde woman, with lyrics about the animosity felt when someone is cheated on.

Justin Timberlake has enjoyed a hugely successful career with many hits, including one of the best songs about light, “Morning Light.”

 

Summary

We hope you’ve enjoyed this playlist exploring songs about cheating, featuring several chart-topping hits as well as more obscure classics.

It’s a sore subject for anyone who has been cheated on, but these songs can act as a cathartic process that helps you to overcome losing a lover.

While infidelity isn’t going anywhere soon, singers and bands will no doubt continue writing music that reflects the powerful emotions it brings up.

What are the most relatable songs about cheating you’ve listened to? Leave a comment below. 

Andy has been producing music since the early days of Cubase and spent much of the 2000s mixing house and techno with his trusty Technics 1200s. Fast forward two decades, you'll find him in his home studio experimenting with the latest music production software, tinkering with Ableton plug-ins, and occasionally trying (and failing) to complete Cuphead for the hundredth time.

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