20 songs about gratitude – Yardbarker

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During the Thanksgiving holiday, people tend to highlight the many things they appreciate. However, being thankful for something shouldn’t only be mentioned one day out of the year but practiced daily.  
Sometimes words of thanks don’t always come easy to people, but luckily, many artists have created songs to help them express their appreciation. Here are 20 songs that can help put listeners in a grateful mood. 
Pop singer Ariana Grande showed appreciation and growth on her 2018 hit single, “Thank U, Next.” The track hones in on themes of self-love and confidence after dealing with a breakup. On the pre-hook, she says, “One taught me love / One taught me patience / And one taught me pain / Now I’m so amazing.” Although Grande’s past relationships didn’t work out for her, she’s grateful for the life lessons. 
On Drake’s debut studio album, Thank Me Later, he teamed up with Timbaland on the closing track, “Thank Me Now.” As Drake reflects on his career, the track seemingly tells listeners to appreciate him for what he does for fellow artists, fans, and his family. 
On Dido’s hit 1999 single “Thank You,” the singer details how everything in her life could go wrong, but she appreciates her partner for giving her “the best day of my life.” The track was sampled in Eminem’s hit single “Stan,” which helped push “Thank You” to more mainstream success. 
In 2009, Jay-Z released his eleventh studio album, The Blueprint 3. Although the album’s second track, “Thank You,” wasn’t a single, it remains a standout. Jay teamed up with Kanye West and No I.D. on production, as he showcased his boastful style with an acceptance speech. 
Anyone who has ever watched DJ Khaled in interviews knows how much he emphasizes showing gratitude. On his 2021 album Khaled Khaled, the producer recruits Lil Wayne and Jeremih on the opening track “Thankful.” Khaled has a choir join them as Jeremih and Wayne show their appreciation for people who pray for them and their life. 
One thing that has always stood out about Boyz II Men is their harmonious skills. That was on full display on their single “Thank You,” an a capella track that finds the members appreciating people who’ve always had their backs. The song was a top 40 hit on the Billboard Hot 100. 
Rita Ora released “Grateful,” a track that was featured in the 2014 film Beyond the Lights. Written by Dianne Warren, “Grateful” is all about being appreciative of life’s storms and recognizing one’s blessings. 
After Kelly Clarkson became the first winner of American Idol, she released her 2003 debut album, Thankful. Teaming up with producers Babyface and The Underdogs on the title track, Clarkson shows her appreciation for her partner and how much he adds to her life. 
On Alanis Morissette’s 1998 single “Thank You,” the singer reflects on life after a trip she took to India. She seemingly has a clearer outlook on life as she appreciates any circumstance or trial that comes her way. 
On Earth, Wine & Fire’s track “Gratitude,” the lyrics may be minimal, but the band briefly shows their appreciation for the Lord making a way out of no way. In true EWF fashion, the song beams with a funky bass line and a strong horn section. 
Celine Dion teamed up with Ne-Yo to write and produce her 2013 track “Thank You.” In the song, Celine reflects on being down and out but still having someone there to support and care for her, and she ultimately believes she’s blessed to have someone like that in her life. 
Pop group ABBA shows gratitude for their talent in their single “Thank You For The Music.” They’re not only appreciative of the chance to share their talent with the world, but they are also pleased with how music can make people feel. 
In 1999, Mariah Carey released her seventh studio album, Rainbow. While “Thank God I Found You” was the album’s second single alongside Joe and 98 Degrees, Carey decided to drop a DJ Clue remix. This time, she sampled Keith Sweat’s hit “Make It Last Forever” and teamed up with Joe and Nas. “Thank God I Found You” is about being appreciative of the lover in Carey’s life. 
In 2009, Keith Urban released his sixth studio album, Defying Gravity. Although it wasn’t released as a single, “Thank You” is a track that Urban dedicated to his wife. He shows his appreciation to his partner for always being there and seeing him for his true self. 
In 1992, the Beastie Boys released “Gratitude,” the fourth single from their third album, Check Your Head. While the lyrics are somewhat minimal, the message is about people appreciating life as it happens. 
The electric bass line on “Thank You” by Sly & The Family Stone makes for a funky groove. The guitars on the track are so infectious that Janet Jackson sampled them in her hit song “Rhythm Nation.” 
Sometimes people feel a bit more at ease when they’re in a familiar place, especially the city they grew up in. Country singer Carrie Underwood knows this sentiment all too well in her song “Thank God For Hometowns.” She realizes the importance of appreciating her homegrown roots and how they keep her grounded. 
Sometimes all it takes is believing in a higher power for one to realize their blessings. Bob Marley and the Wailers know this well in their song “Give Thanks and Praises.” As the intro says, “Give praise and thanks to the Most High / Give thanks and praises so high / He will not deceive us my brethren / He will only lead us again.”  
On Ozuna’s song “Gracias,” the singer reflects on the ups and downs in life but is grateful for his tenacity to push forward. The acoustic track finds Ozuna giving thanks for grace, protection, and blessings. 
In 2017, Kehlani released their debut album SweetSexySavage. On the album’s outro, “Thank You,” Kehlani clearly knows their life isn’t led with perfection but wants to thank their loved ones and fans for supporting her, flaws and all. 
Mya Singleton is a freelance writer and photographer based in Los Angeles. Her work has also been featured on The Sports Fan Journal and AXS. Feel free to follow her talking all things music on Twitter @MyaMelody7
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