Cats have become a staple of internet culture. It seems like you can’t turn on a screen without seeing a cat meme or viral cat video these days.
I know it’s hard to think of a time before the internet, but there was. And it may surprise some youngsters to know that cats were just as pervasive in pop culture way back then as they are now.
Here are some of the greatest 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 silly-but-confident look your cat gives you after chewing on a little too much catnip? This song captures that swagger perfectly.
2. ‘The Love Cats’ 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, lying around and wandering about the streets.
3. ‘The Lion Sleeps Tonight’ By The Tokens
Okay, so this song may be about a large wildcat, but what cat hasn’t thought of themselves as a ferocious wildcat whose jungle is your laundry room?
If you’ve got a little house lion at home, try singing them this song. Maybe it’ll soothe your savage beast.
4. ‘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.
5. ‘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.
If you’re still upset about that, this song will send chill vibes to cool you down.
6. ‘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.
After all, your kitty is certainly phenomenal!
7. ‘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 kitty? Maybe they’re secretly a member of this band.
8. ‘Pads, Paws & 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’ve all woken up more than once with our kitties pawing into our chests, begging for breakfast.
9. ‘What’s New Pussycat’ By Tom Jones
No cat song compilation would be complete without Tom Jones’s “What’s New Pussycat.”
This cheeky ditty was the titular song of a film with the same name starring Peter Sellers. While there is no proof that Jones wrote this about an actual cat, we can pretend he did.
10. ‘When He Calls Me Kitten’ By The Kelly Deal 6000
You gotta love the kittens sounds Kelley makes on the guitar. Kitten is a term of endearment in the song, and it’s easy to see why — because 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 them, don’t you just call out to your kitten sometimes so you can see them, and know they’re there?
What’s your favorite kitty-centric song? Are there any others great cat songs that belong on the list? Let us know in the comments below!