Top 10 Billie Eilish Songs

Billie Eilish was never the typical pop star, but she evolved into one no one ever knew was needed.

Videos by American Songwriter

Her layered storytelling opened a songbook plumbing the depths of self-love and dread, mental health, loss, love, depression, and some of the things that are often easier to get out in song than words with each lushly arranged around textured and impulsive beats by her brother, co-writer, and co-producer Finneas O’Connell.

[RELATED: Billie Eilish on Struggling With Body Image: “I Feel Like My Body Was Gaslighting Me For Years”]

Born Billie Eilish Pirate Baird O’Connell on December 18, 2001, Eilish was just 13 when she was already uploading her music onto SoundCloud and soon hit the Billboard charts—albeit on the lower end of the spectrum—with her debut “Ocean Eyes,” which peaked at No. 84 on the Hot 100. Now two albums into her career—from her 2019 debut, When We All Fall Asleep, Where Do We Go? and the more empowering follow-up, Happier Than Ever—Eilish is already the recipient of seven Grammy Awards, a Golden Globe, and an Academy Award.

Celebrating one of the youngest, biggest talents in music, here’s a chronological look at just 10 of Eilish’s best songs.

1. “Ocean Eyes” (2015)
Written by Finneas O’Connell

Though “Ocean Eyes” would later appear on Eilish’s 2017 debut EP, Don’t Smile at Me, she first released the song on SoundCloud in 2015 when she was 14. Originally, Finneas wrote the song for his band the Slightlys but realized it was a much better first for his sister’s vocals.

I’ve been watchin’ you for some time
Can’t stop starin’ at those ocean eyes
Burning cities and napalm skies
Fifteen flares inside those ocean eyes
Your ocean eyes

No fair
You really know how to make me cry
When you gimme those ocean eyes
I’m scared
I’ve never fallen from quite this high
Fallin’ into your ocean eyes
Those ocean eyes

2. “Six Feet Under” (2016)
Written by Finneas O’Connell

Though the term “six feet under” is often used to reference someone who has died, in the song, Eilish is talking about a love that has ended, one that she can’t get over. The music video was edited with the help of Eilish’s mother, Maggie Baird, an actress whose first role was on the soap opera Another World in the early 1980s. Coincidentally, Baird also starred in the HBO series Six Feet Under.

Help, I lost myself again
But I remember you
Don’t come back, it won’t end well
But I wish you’d tell me to

Our love is six feet under
I can’t help but wonder
If our grave was watered by the rain
Would roses bloom?
Could roses bloom

3. “Bored” (2017)
Written by Billie Eilish, Finneas O’Connell, Aron Forbes, and Tim Anderson

By 2017, Eilish released her debut EP, Don’t Smile at Me, which featured the single “Bellyache.” That same year, she released a separate single, “Bored,” which was featured on the first season of the Netflix teen drama 13 Reasons Why, based on the 2007 novel by Jay Asher. The mid-tempo ballad explores the revelation of a former love’s mistakes.

I’m not afraid anymore
What makes you sure you’re all I need?
Forget about it
When you walk out the door and leave me torn
You’re teachin’ me to live without it

4. “lovely,” with Khalid (2018)
Written by Billie Eilish, Finneas O’Connell and Khalid

Contributing once again to the second season of 13 Reasons Why, Eilish collaborated with Khalid on the more chamber pop-bent “lovely.” Pulled along by delicate piano and strings before its build, “lovely” delves into depression and is a message of hope, of finding a way out of the dark.

“We called it ‘lovely,’ because the song was sort of really freaking depressing, so then it’s like ‘Oh, how lovely,’” shared Eilish. “Just taking everything horrible like you know what? This is great. I’m so happy being miserable.”

Thought I found a way
Thought I found a way out (found)
But you never go away (never go away)
So I guess I gotta stay now

Oh, I hope some day I’ll make it out of here
Even if it takes all night or a hundred years
Need a place to hide, but I can’t find one near
Wanna feel alive, outside I can’t fight my fear

To date, “lovely” remains Eilish’s most-streamed song on Spotify with more than 2.1 billion plays.

5. “when the party’s over” (2019)
Written by Finneas O’Connell

Eilish shares one of her most captivating vocals on the Finneas-penned “when the party’s over,” off her debut album, When We All Fall Asleep, Where Do We Go? The song tells the story of a recurring painful love that plays out like a church hymn. The video for “when the party’s over” features Eilish dressed in white and drinking an opaque liquid as black tears begin to run down her cheeks.

Don’t you know I’m no good for you?
I’ve learned to lose you, can’t afford to
Tore my shirt to stop you bleedin’
But nothin’ ever stops you leavin’

Quiet when I’m comin’ home and I’m on my own
I could lie, say I like it like that, like it like that
I could lie, say I like it like that, like it like that

Don’t you know too much already?
I’ll only hurt you if you let me
Call me friend but keep me closer (call me back)
And I’ll call you when the party’s over

6. “Bad Guy” (2019)
Written by Billie Eilish and Finneas O’Connell

By the time she was 17, Eilish had a bigger introduction to the world with “Bad Guy.” Her first No. 1 single on the Billboard Hot 100, the electro-pop track is her reaction to someone who thinks they’re a tough guy.

“It’s like, ‘OK if you’re gonna be that, then I’m gonna be all types of fake too,’” said Eilish. “Great, ‘I’m the bad type, the make your momma sad type, make your girlfriend mad type’—which I’m not that, but if you can be fake with everyone and try to prove that you’re something that you’re not, then I can do it too.”

Eilish admitted that she was inspired by rapper JID’s song, “Never,” and “Stuck In The Mud” by Isaiah Rashad, which pauses in the middle and continues to a different beat. “Bad Guy” made Eilish the first artist born in the 21st century to release a chart-topping single.

So you’re a tough guy
Like it really rough guy
Just can’t get enough guy
Chest always so puffed guy
I’m that bad type
Make your mama sad type
Make your girlfriend mad tight
Might seduce your dad type
I’m the bad guy, duh

7. “No Time to Die” (2020)
Written by Billie Eilish and Finneas O’Connell

In 2022, Eilish and Finneas won their first Academy Award for the theme song to the 007 film No Time to Die. Originally released in February 2020, “No Time to Die” caught the attention of fans of the long-awaited James Bond film, starring Daniel Craig, reaching No. 16 on the Billboard Top 100. Prior to picking up the Oscar in 2022, the song also won the Golden Globe Award for Best Original Song in 2022 and a Grammy Award for Best Song Written for Visual Media in 2021. 

“This is so unbelievable, I could scream,” said Eilish during her Oscar acceptance speech. “Thank you to our 007 family.” Eilish went on to thank the No Time to Die cast and crew and the duo’s collaborator and former Smiths guitarist Johnny Marr. “Thank you Johnny Marr,” added Eilish, “for taking it and making it worthy of James Bond.”

I let it burn
You’re no longer my concern
Faces from my past return
Another lesson yet to learn

That I’d fallen for a lie
You were never on my side
Fool me once, fool me twice
Are you death or paradise?
Now you’ll never see me cry
There’s just no time to die

8. “My Future” (2021)
Written by Billie Eilish and Finneas O’Connell

Off Eilish’s second album, Happier Than Ever, “My Future” was Eilish’s first release since “No Time to Die.” The dreamy and poignant track, which peaked at No. 6 on the Hot 100, was written by Eilish and Finneas at the beginning of the pandemic and accompanied by an animated video, created by Australian artist Andrew Onorato.

“I think that the most straightforward meaning is the future me, the future person that I’m going to be —but also the future world that I’m going to live in and the future friends I’m going to have and the future people that I’m going to surround myself with,” said Eilish of the song. “It’s really about not wishing away the present and the past and wishing you were in the future, but just being hopeful and content with the idea of change. And I can’t wait to see what it holds.”

‘Cause I, I’m in love
With my future
Can’t wait to meet her
And I, I’m in love
But not with anybody else
Just wanna get to know myself

9. “Everything I Wanted” (2021)
Written by Billie Eilish and Finneas O’Connell

Also featured on Happier Than Ever, “Everything I Wanted” details a dream Eilish had, one where she’s leaping off a building to her death.

“We [she and Finneas] started writing it, because I literally had a dream that I killed myself, and nobody cared,” revealed Eilish of the song. “All of my best friends and people that I worked with basically came out in public and said, like, ‘Oh, we never liked her.’ In the dream, the fans didn’t care. The internet shit on me for killing myself, all this stuff, and it really did mess me up.”

I had a dream
I got everything I wanted
Not what you’d think
And if I’m being honest
It might’ve been a nightmare
To anyone who might care

Thought I could fly (fly)
So I stepped off the Golden, mm
Nobody cried (cried, cried, cried, cried)
Nobody even noticed
I saw them standing right there

10. “The 30th” (2022)
Written by Billie Eilish and Finneas

Eilish and Finneas premiered two new songs, “TV” and “The 30th” live during their Happier Than Ever Tour, before releasing a surprise acoustic EP, Guitar Songs, featuring both acoustic tracks. On the pensive “TV,” Eilish reflects on a distance from friends, escaping by watching television, and the overturning of Roe v. Wade, while the more stirring “The 30th” recounts a story of someone close to her who survived a tragic accident on November 30.

Sometimes you look the same
Just like you did before the accident
When you’re staring into space
It’s hard to believe you don’t remember it
Woke up in the ambulance
You pieced it all together on the drive

In 2022, Eilish and Finneas filmed two videos, one for each track, at the Cloud Forest at Gardens by the Bay in Singapore, a space for sustainability and conservation. The videos were directed by Singaporean director Choānn in partnership with Singapore Tourism Board, as part of their international campaign SingapoReimagine.

Photo: Andreas Rentz/Getty Images

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