10 Songs That Teach Lessons About Money

Topics: Reading time: 5 minutes

Most pop stars are not known for their conservative spending habits, and it is not unusual to see the outrageous money antics of the rich and famous splashed across the tabloids. Justin Bieber is reported to spend $750 on a haircut, which is a drop in the ocean compared to the alleged $1 million a year to fund his extravagant party lifestyle. Similarly, Kayne West is said to have had his bottom teeth removed and replaced by a gold and diamond-encrusted bar.

Most of our accountants would balk at the frivolity of pop stars and point out that they too will need debt negotiators when the singles start to flop. Yet, there are a number of songs which offer some sound financial words of wisdom. Below are 10 songs that not only are entertaining but also teach us a few valuable lessons about how to handle our cash.

1. “Money Money Money” by ABBA

First, ABBA famously sang “I work all night, I work all day, to pay the bills I pay. Ain’t it sad?” Most of us feel that life can be a bit of a never-ending treadmill session, trying to keep afloat whilst waiting for the next paycheck to hit our account. Even if you aren’t running up a lot of debt, one unexpected emergency can set you back in the red.

The lesson here is unless you are about to find instant Eurovision fame to suddenly swell your financial coffers, it’s wise to anticipate those sudden car repair bills or costly trips to the dentist. The moral here is “it’s a rich man’s world”, but a bit of sound financial planning can get you out of debt traps. It’s time to create that emergency fund!

2. “Material Girl” by Madonna

While there are people out there who select a mate by the size of their bank balance, most people choose a partner for love. Still, it’s worth considering a partner’s financial know-how when choosing someone to spend the rest of your life with.

As Madonna points out “only boys that save their pennies make my rainy day.” We may be living in a material world, but sensible savings plans are definitely the new black. It’s okay to be a “Material Girl,” but keep things within reason.

3. “Money’s Too Tight to Mention” by Simply Red

In 1985, Simply Red sang about the struggles of having been laid off from work and feeling overwhelmed by your financial situation. Though the character in the song goes to the bank “to see what they could do,” money is still tight.

Luckily, when your financial situation gets overwhelming, there are a number of avenues open to seek help. To ensure you don’t receive any debt collection calls, you can explore many debt solutions.

4. “Lady in Red” by Chris de Burgh

Next, Chris de Burgh notoriously sang about how “amazing” his “Lady in Red” looked. Whether you’re male or female, the feeling of being in debt is anything but alluring. What’s more, you will seem less eye-catching to banks or other lending establishments if you have a history of bad credit.

Repairing your credit history can take years, but small steps can help with future creditworthiness. For example, having regular salary payments going into your account and not going past your overdraft limit. Not sure your current rating? Learn how to check your credit for free.

5. “Thrift Shop” by Macklemore and Ryan Lewis

Your accountant may not have hip hop blaring from his Nissan X-Trail, but he will appreciate some of the lessons this song teaches us. The first is that you don’t have to put yourself into debt to look great. As Macklemore says, “I’m like, ‘Yo – that’s $50 for a t-shirt’.”

If you can’t live without a regular retail therapy fix, use coupons or vouchers to identify the best offers out there. The second lesson is that fashion is cyclical, therefore saving your old wardrobe, or hitting Vinnies may be the answer to those wardrobe dilemmas. “No for real – ask your grandpa – can I have his hand-me-downs?”

6. “You Can’t Always Get What You Want” by Rolling Stones

This 1969 Rolling Stones song is indicative of the rock’n’roll Zeitgeist of the era. With the initial rebellious optimism, followed by disillusionment, it’s important to recognise that you really “can’t always get what you want.”

Overstretching ourselves comes at a price. The lyrics “but if you try sometimes you might find, you get what you need” show us that having a long term financial plan to work hard and save money means we can start achieving some of the financial milestones in life. You may not be able to compete with Mick Jagger in terms of his yacht or champagne lifestyle, but you’ll be happier in the long run.

7. “Goodbye Yellow Brick Road” by Elton John

Though Elton John might be known for his fancy lifestyle, he undoubtedly knows the value of the simpler things. His song “Goodbye Yellow Brick Road” longs for the beauty of going back to the basics. He sings, “You can’t plant me in your penthouse, I’m going back to my plough.”

Sometimes we have to realise that the glitz and glamour isn’t as great as it looks. The best things in life, as the saying goes, are free. Family, love, and friendship don’t have to cost anything.

8. “Opportunities” by Pet Shop Boys

Who doesn’t love a song about working hard and playing harder? In “Opportunities,” the Pet Shop Boys talk about the importance of seizing the moment and working smarter, not harder. The world is full of ways to make money, but you have to “know when to take them.”

In our current world, there are so many ways to make money on your own. From side hustles to the gig economy, why not explore your own world of opportunities?

9. “Taxman” by The Beatles

The only guarantees in life are death and taxes. The Beatles said it best, “If you drive a car, I’ll tax the street, if you try to sit, I’ll tax your seat.” No matter your financial status, everyone has to worry about taxes.

Luckily, taxes don’t have to be stressful. Not only are there ways to lower how much you owe, but filing can be simple. A bit of preparation for the “taxman” goes a long way!

10. “Rich Girl” by Hall and Oates

Though it’s easy to think the wealthy have it “all,” money doesn’t get you that far. Buying the fanciest clothes and things might feel cool for a little bit, but it’s shallow and worthless at the end of the day. Hall and Oates sang it best, “Say money, money but it won’t get you too far.”

This song teaches listeners to focus on non-material things. This is what’s really worth all the wealth in the world. Money is nice, but it doesn’t get you as far as love.

Your Financial Playlist

Songs about money can be fun, but they can also teach us some valuable lessons in life. Take time to use music as a means of introducing the topic of saving money to children, as sound financial habits should also start early. These songs above are also a reminder that money is only one part of life, and it’s not the most important thing.

Struggling with your own financial wellness? We’re here to help. Call us today on 1300 368 322, chat with us live now or fill in the contact form below to let us know when to reach you.

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