Cats have become a staple of Internet culture, from cat memes to having their own language. I know it’s hard to think of a time before the Internet, but there was, and cats were still as pervasive in pop culture as they are now. Here are some older (and newer) songs about our favorite furry feline family members.
1. “Cool For Cats” by Squeeze
The second single off of Squeeze’s album of the same name, “Cool For Cats” is a boastful drunken pub crawl of a song. You know that derpy but confident look your cat gives you after chewing on a little too much catnip? This song captures that swagger perfectly.
2. “Cat Scratch Fever” by Ted Nugent.
We’ve already debunked the myth that Nugent was singing about Cat Scratch Fever in a scientific manner. Despite his technical inaccuracies and shameless come ons in the lyrics, it’s hard to not get into the hard rock vibe and sing along to this classic tune.
3. “The Lovecats” by The Cure
Word has it that The Cure’s lead singer Robert Smith was very taken by Patrick White’s novel The Vivsector, which inspired him to write this song. In the book, the protagonist, Hurtle, is horrified when he discovers his lover’s husband drowned a bag of stray cats. Smith must have been appalled as well, because his lyrics are about hanging out with a lover as if they were stray cats, laying around and wandering about the streets.
4. “The Lion Sleeps Tonight” by Tokens
OK, so this song may be about a large wildcat, but what cat hasn’t thought of themselves as a ferocious wild cat whose jungle is your laundry room?
5. “Nashville Cats” by The Lovin’ Spoonful
Have you noticed a trend with these songs? A lot of them have an easy, breezy vibe about them. Most cats are perfectly content being lazy and occasionally goofy. The Lovin’ Spoonful‘s “Nashville Cats” captures this laid back kitty mentality perfectly.
6. “Alley Cats” by Hot Chip
The lyrics may seem nonsensical at points, but we know there is deeper meaning behind them… just like the deeper meaning behind why your cat decided that your vintage armoire was a perfectly fine piece of furniture to use as a scratching post.
7. “Phenomenal Cat” by The Kinks
There’s an underlying double meaning to who The Kinks are talking about when they say “Fat Cat,” but for simplicity’s sake, let’s pretend it’s about your favorite feline friend and the sweet life you provide to them.
8. “Cat on Tin Roof” by Blonde Redhead
More of a sultry tune, Blonde Redhead‘s sometimes indecipherable lyrics almost sound like a cat. Seriously, how does that bizarre high pitched mewing noise come out of your cat? Maybe they’re secretly a member of this band.
9. “Pads, Paws, and Claws” by Elvis Costello
As most Elvis Costello songs go, this song is about a relationship gone sour. Here, Costello sings of a drunkard and his relationship with a flirty woman and how she “pads, paws, and claws.” Costello, we know exactly what you are talking about. We have all woken up more than once with our kitties pawing into our chests, begging for breakfast.
10. “What’s New Pussycat” by Tom Jones
No cat song compilation would be complete without Tom Jones‘ “What’s New Pussycat.” This cheeky song was the title song of the Peter Sellers starring film of the same name. While there is no proof that Jones wrote this about an ACTUAL cat, we can pretend he did.
“When He Calls Me Kitten” by The Kelly Deal 6000
A little bonus track for you here from Kim and Kelley Deal. Gotta love the kittens sounds Kelley makes on the guitar. It’s a term of endearment, but our cats are so dear to us. In the song he calls to her just to know she is there, and it’s easy for any cat lover to relate. When your cat falls asleep in some corner of the house, and you can’t find her, don’t you just call out sometimes so you can see her, and know she is there?
What’s your favorite kitty-centric song?