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21 Best Songs About Moving On & Letting Go

Beautiful music to celebrate moving on in life.



Best Songs About Moving On

The best songs about moving on and letting go come from all types of musical genres and styles, from heartwarming country songs to hardcore rock ‘n’ roll masterpieces.

It’s a topic with several meanings, and it has inspired music to accompany a long journey and for moving on after the breakdown of a relationship.

In this playlist, we’ve covered the concept of moving from all angles and included songs from some of the world’s greatest singers and bands you can listen to.


The 21 Best Songs About Moving On & Letting Go

Songs about moving reflect the pain and suffering of the loss of a family member or loved one, as well as the hopes and aspirations of setting out on a journey.

We’ve ensured this playlist captures the full spectrum of meaning and experience behind the idea of moving in all its forms to bring you a song for all occasions.

Now that you know our criteria, here’s our playlist of the 21 best songs about moving on and letting go:


21. “So Yesterday” – Hillary Duff

Released in 2003, “So Yesterday” by Hilary Duff is a great song that captures her impressive blend of pop and rock that has won her many fans.

The lyrics explore moving on from a relationship, singing, “When you started to ignore me / Do you see a single tear? It isn’t gonna happen here.”

“So Yesterday” is a wonderful companion piece to her great song about haters, “Haters,” which she released the following year.


20. “We’ve Only Just Begun” – The Carpenters

“We’ve Only Just Begun” by the Carpenters is one of their most well-known songs, and it was even featured in the horror movie, In the Mouth of Madness.

“And when the evening comes, we smile, so much of life ahead,” the lyrics sing expressively, continuing, “We’ll find a place where there’s room to grow (And yes, we’ve just begun).”

It’s a great song that exemplifies how well the Carpenters captured the spirit of folk music, and it was featured on their album Close to You.


19. “Should I Stay Or Should I Go” – The Clash

A considerably more upbeat song about moving is “Should I Stay or Should I Go?” by The Clash, their iconic release from the album Combat Rock.

This reggae-punk song was a chart-topping success, and it is still widely played at parties and on radio stations around the world to this day.

It’s a bold, energetic, classic song with a catchy chorus and strong vocals from a lead singer known for his aggressive and powerful presence.


18. “Fast Car” – Tracy Chapman

“Fast Car” by Tracy Chapman is another dynamic song about the moving process, which helped to cement her reputation in the music industry.

“You got a fast car, I got a plan to get us out of here,” she sings in this great song, continuing, “I been working at the convenience store, managed to save just a little bit of money.”

Released in 1988, “Fast Car” was the lead single on the self-titled debut album from Tracy Chapman, and it won several notable music awards that year.


17. “It’s Time” – Imagine Dragons

Featuring an impressive official video, “It’s Time” by Imagine Dragons takes us into indie rock territory for one of their most popular releases.

“It’s Time” explores the feeling of packing boxes and moving on from a relationship with expressive lyrics and beautifully arranged melodies and vocals.

Imagine Dragons followed up the track “It’s Time” with their iconic song about gold in 2015, “Gold,” which confirmed them as a hot band to watch.


16. “I’m Moving On” – Rascal Flatts

The song “I’m Moving On” by Rascal Flatts is one of the country music icon’s most moving works, released in 2002 on Totally Country Volume 2.

Rascal Flatts brings their inimitable vocal style to the table for this great song, exploring a new chapter in their career and setting their old life aside.

“I’m Moving On” is one of the best feel-good songs for anyone who wants to say good riddance to bad habits and embrace a fresh start.


15. “Movin’ Out” – Billy Joel

The Billy Joel song “Movin’ Out” is an upbeat entry in this playlist, originally appearing on his 1977 album The Stranger as its opening track.

“You can pay Uncle Sam with the overtime, is that all you get, for your money,” Joel sings in a narrative style, “If that’s what you have in mind / if that’s what you’re all about.”

Dubbed “Antony’s Song,” “Movin’ Out” owes some of its impressive production values and arrangements to producer George Martin, who famously worked with The Beatles.


14. “Unwritten” – Natasha Bedingfield

The Grammy Award-winning singer-songwriter earned critical and commercial acclaim for her song “Unwritten,” which was released in 2004.

Drawing on her trademark lush vocals and gorgeous instrumentation, “Unwritten” exemplifies the qualities that make Bedingfield a landmark performer.

The title track of Natasha Bedingfield’s debut studio album, “Unwritten,” is the perfect song for anyone’s cross-country journey, with a wonderful official music video.


13. “Gonna Move” – Paul Pena

Acoustic guitar legend Paul Pena released “Gonna Move” in 1973 on the album New Train, showcasing his excellent musical skills and performance style.

It’s another stirring song about the moving process representing a person’s desire to start fresh, leaving home in search of new beginnings and opportunities.

The album this song was featured on introduced Jerry Garcia on pedal steel guitar along with Merl Saunders, both of whom are best-known as members of the Grateful Dead.


12. “Begin Again” – Taylor Swift

Taylor Swift needs little introduction, having written and performed some of the best karaoke songs of all time, and she is a true star in the music industry.

Her lovely song “Begin Again” was released in 2012, and it features engaging lyrics exploring life in the aftermath of a damaged relationship and the feeling of starting fresh.

Merging pop and country music and with stunning vocals from Swift, “Begin Again” is well worth listening to and adding to your moving day playlist.


11. “Moving” – Supergrass

British indie rock band Supergrass lit up the UK charts during the 1990s with several releases, which included the hit track “Moving.”

Released in 1999 with a lively official HD video, “Moving” reflects on the narrator’s constant search for meaning in life and the restlessness of being in one place.

Nominated for the Brit Award for “Song of the Year,” “Moving” is quintessential 1990s British indie music and a timeless song for anyone trying to stay positive.


10. “Wake Me Up When September Ends” – Green Day

The commercial punk band Green Day took a stab at the subject of moving with their song “Wake Me Up When September Ends.”

It’s another popular song about moving with a great official music video that captures the spirit of moving with the times and the passing of the seasons.

The song’s title cuts to the heart of the lyrics, as the lead singer reflects on the end of summer and the return of rain and the cold winter months.


9. “Never Grow Up” – Taylor Swift

We’re returning once again to Taylor Swift for another beautiful song about moving, “Never Grow Up,” which she released in 2010.

“You’re in the car on the way to the movies, and you’re mortified your mom’s droppin’ you off,” Swift’s vocals sing, “At 14, there’s just so much you can’t do.”

It’s another fantastic addition to Taylor Swift’s extensive discography, for which she’s won 12 Grammy Awards with many more nominations.


8. “Changes” – David Bowie

Responsible for some of the best songs of all time, David Bowie helped introduce the world to glam rock and revolutionize the music industry.

The track “Changes” is another example of his game-changing approach to music, with its catchy chorus and strumming guitars driving the music forward.

David Bowie released “Changes” on the album Hunky Dory in 1971, his fourth long-player featuring the hit song “Oh! You Pretty Things.”


7. “Go Your Own Way” – Fleetwood Mac

Like David Bowie, Fleetwood Mac has earned their reputation for influencing many great rock bands in the years since they were active.

“Go Your Own Way” is an ode to the iconoclastic figures in history and a celebration of all those who refuse to conform to conventional societal expectations.

Fleetwood Mac was initially formed in 1967, becoming known worldwide for their outstanding live performances and many sell-out tours.


6. “Breakaway” – Kelly Clarkson

2004 was a great year for Kelly Clarkson, a year in which she released “Behind These Hazel Eyes,” the beautiful song about eyes, and “Breakaway.”

“Trying hard to reach out, but when I tried to speak out, felt like no one could hear me,” she sings, “Wanted to belong here, but something felt so wrong here, so I prayed I could break away.”

The title track from her second studio album, “Breakaway,” helped make Kelly Clarkson one of the best-selling artists of all time, with 12 million copies sold worldwide.


5. “Midnight Train To Georgia” – Gladys Knight

One of the most enduring and popular rhythm ‘n’ blues singers of all time, Gladys Knight, released the hit song “Midnight Train to Georgia” in 1973.

It was originally written and performed by Jim Weatherly under the title “Midnight Train to Houston” before Knight gave it her own spin.

The official audio for the Gladys Knight version of “Midnight Train to Georgia” was featured in the powerful anti-war movie from 1978, The Deer Hunter.


4. “Don’t Forget To Remember Me” – Carrie Underwood

Like Kelly Clarkson, Carrie Underwood has become one of the most famous female vocalists of her generation, with millions of adoring fans.

Her song “Don’t Forget to Remember Me” is a fine example of how she’s earned her fame and recognition, with sweet and endearing vocals and moving lyrics.

“Don’t Forget to Remember Me” was released by Carrie Underwood in 2005, and it was featured on her best-selling album Some Hearts.


3. “Hit The Road Jack” – Ray Charles

Another icon of the jazz music genre to have tackled the subject of moving is Ray Charles, with the song “Hit the Road Jack” from 1961.

“Hit the road Jack and don’t you come back no more, no more, no more, no more,” the instantly recognizable lyrics go, “Hit the road Jack and don’t you come back no more.”

Ray Charles enjoyed a huge degree of success over several decades, with three number-one hits on the Billboard Hot 100 charts and a whopping 75 charting releases.


2. “Don’t Stop Believin” – Journey

Another well-known song that explores moving as a concept is the 1981 rock song by American band Journey, “Don’t Stop Believin’.”

It’s another song that uses the image of a moving train to capture the feeling of restlessness and the search for a new chapter in a life suffering from predictability.

“Don’t Stop Believin'” was featured on the Journey album Escape, and it remains one of their most loved pieces of music to date.


1. “Take Me Home (Country Roads)” – John Denver

John Denver’s 1982 song “Islands” is one of the best songs about islands ever recorded, but it’s not as well-known as “Take Me Home (Country Roads).”

Released over a decade before “Islands,” “Take Me Home (Country Roads)” is another moving and heartwarming song that has endured through the ages.

John Denver continues to earn a steady income from “Take Me Home (Country Roads),” and the song has even been included in the National Recording Registry.



So there you have it, the best songs about moving you can listen to and add to your playlist the next time you’re packing boxes to move or getting over a relationship.

These songs come from some of the most iconic singer-songwriters in music history, from sweet and affecting ballads to powerful and energetic rock songs.

If you’re overcoming a broken heart or simply preparing for new beginnings in your life, this diverse selection of songs should help get you in the mood.

What’s the best song about moving, in your opinion? 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.