The Dave Matthews Band created a sound that was original, fresh and so addicting. Their albums were filled with inspirational messages some political, some not. Their music was and still is deeply resonating with brilliant musicianship and spirituality. Their live shows have become legendary around the world. Like the Grateful Dead and Bruce Springsteen, once you see a Dave Matthews Band show you become a hardcore fan for life. This is one of the all time great bands in classic rock history.
Our 10 Essential Dave Matthews Band songs list is a subjective look at some of their best moments on record. They have released so much music over the years, it very difficult to choose only ten. Nonetheless, that’s what always makes this so much fun to do.
# 10 – What Would You Say
It’s fitting to open up our 10 Essential Dave Matthews Band songs list with the band’s first big hit and also their debut single. The great track “What Would You Say,” was released on the band’s debut album Under the Table and Dreaming. The album was released in the fall of 1994. “What Would You Say,” proved to be a big hit for the band. The song reached the top 10 on the United States Billboard Hot 100 peaking at the number nine position.
# 9 – Samurai Cop (Oh Joy Begin)
In just a flash we go from their debut single in 1994 to their latest record in 2018. The great Dave Matthews Band song “Samurai Cop (Oh Joy Begin),” was released on their 2018 album Come Tomorrow. The album was a huge success for the Dave Matthews band. Come Tomorrow hit number one on the Billboard Hot 200. “Samurai Cop (Oh Joy Begin),” was the album’s opening track. After a six year hiatus from releasing studio albums, the Dave Matthews band were back.
# 8 – Satellite
The sound of the 90s purring through your computer speakers is undeniable when listening to this classic Dave Matthews Band song. The song “Satellite,” was released on the album Under the Table and Dreaming. There debut album was so brilliant it’s difficult not to fill up this entire 10 Essential Dave Matthews Band songs list with songs just from their first album.
# 7 – The Space Between
How could you not love the wonderful chorus on this great Dave Matthews Band Song. “The Space Between,” is a perfect example of utilizing a minor chord verse into an effective major chord chorus resulting in a a great rock and roll song. The Dave Matthews Band song “The Space Between,” was released on the album entitled Everyday. The album was issued in 2001. It was The Dave Matthews Band’s fourth studio album.
# 6 – Everybody Wake Up (Our Finest Hour Arrives)
Could this be the most underrated Dave Matthews Band song of all time? This one is real special. It might not have been a big hit but who cares. This great song was released on the album Stand Up, (not to be confused with the Jethro Tull album of the same name). The album was released in 2005. The song “Everybody Wake Up (Our Finest Hour Arrives)” was released as the third single off the album.
# 5 – You & Me
“You & Me,” is another one of those great underrated Dave Matthews Band songs that true Dave Matthews Band fans all love. This beautiful song was released on the album Big Whiskey & the GrooGrux King. The album was released in 2009. “You & Me,” was the thirteenth song on the CD and the album’s closing track. The ultimate romantic song for parents around the world.
# 4 – TIE # 41 / Two Step
Another great Dave Matthews Band album that in similar fashion could be so easy to pull all the songs off this record and fill up this 10 Essential Dave Matthews Band songs list. In the end we went with a tie in this spot. Two amazing songs from the great Crash album. These songs are so amazing.
# 3 – TIE – Tripping Billies / Ants Marching
Sorry that we came up with another tie but we could not leave either one of these songs of this Dave Matthews Band songs list. “Tripping Billies,” was released on the great Crash album in 1996. Of course how could we compose a top 10 Dave Matthews Band songs list and leave off the classic Dave Matthews band song Ants Marching? This classic track was released on the band’s phenomenal debut album entitled Under the Table and Dreaming.
# 2 – Crash Into Me
Everyone loves this song and so do we. “Crash Into Me,” is probably the most popular Dave Matthews Band song. It’s soulful groove and lyrics exploring the world of voyeurism made for one of the most interesting recordings of the 1990s. This is a Dave Matthews Band classic and the voice of a generation. The song was released on the album Crash. The album was released in 1996.
# 1 – Mercy
If there is one art form on this planet that fuels all the possibilities of hope and healing it is music. Dave Matthews utilizes his extraordinary talents in composing one the most important song of his career. In the shadows of a time period when it seemed the world would never be the same, certain artists stepped up and provided a voice we all needed. This is an extraordinary song from an artist who had already released and amazing body of work. The song “Mercy,” was released on the album Away from the World. The album was released in 2012.
Top 10 Dave Matthews Band songs article published on Classic RockHistory.com© 2019
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