Patti Smith Songs Ranked

Patricia Lee Smith (born December 30, 1946) is an American singer-songwriter, musician, author, and poet who became an influential component of the New York City punk rock movement with her 1975 debut album Horses. Called the “punk poet laureate”, Smith fused rock and poetry in her work. Her most widely known song is “Because the Night”, which was co-written with Bruce Springsteen. It reached number 13 on the Billboard Hot 100 chart in 1978 and number five in the U.K. In 2005, Smith was named a Commander of the Ordre des Arts et des Lettres by the French Ministry of Culture. In 2007, she was inducted into the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame. On November 17, 2010, Smith won the National Book Award for her memoir Just Kids. The book fulfilled a promise she had made to her former long-time roommate and partner, Robert Mapplethorpe. She placed 47th in Rolling Stone magazine’s list of 100 Greatest Artists published in December 2010 and was also a recipient of the 2011 Polar Music Prize. Here are all of Patti Smith songs ranked.

Don’t miss out on the CLASSIC music of Patti Smith below! Click to enjoy award-winning songs and timeless pieces from this master musician!

20. My Blakean Year (Trampin’, 2004)

“That blazing train of a voice is a wonder to behold and she is magnificent in the long trek of tracks like “Radio Baghdad” but there are also straightforward stunners like ” My Blakean Year” which allow easier access to her complex world.”

19. Smells Like Teen Spirit (Twelve, 2007)

“Patti added some poetry of her own to the country-infused “Smells Like Teen Spirit”, transforming the song into a sort of anthem for lost children.  I suppose it already was, but the original version is directed inward, Patti explodes it outward.”

18. Kimberly (Horses, 1975)

“The song Kimberly, with some great poetic lyrics, and then there’s Break it Up, which is one of my favorites on the album because it has Tom Verlaine playing guitar, and he can make Poison a one star instead of half, which is a huge overstatement

17. Piss Factory (Land (1975–2002), 2002)

“Piss Factory” is nothing but words and piano, and it was already clear as early as 1974 that the would-be concept of ‘punk’ had more to do with ‘spirit’ than it did ‘sound.'”

See more: Patti Smith Albums Ranked

16. China Bird (Gung Ho, 2000)

“China Bird” is simply one of the most beautiful songs you will ever hear and “Glitter in Their Eyes” is pop, it is vigorous and it is roaring.”

15. Gone Again (Gone Again, 1996)

“Times change, lives change. Gone Again, with that colorless, gloomy cover, is a gloomy album in sound as well for the most part.”

14. Frederick (Wave, 1979)

“This is a great, honest, romantic, yet realistic love song. I describes the feeling without getting idealistic or quixotic, at least I don’t take it that way. What a great song!”

13. Till Victory (Easter, 1978)

“It is in evocation of the spirit that fuels rock and punk, one that has always existed in pure human expression and forever will, always at the margins of society. So necessarily, right from the bombastic “Till Victory” this is an album that revels in the power of rock.”

12. Rock N Roll N***er (Easter, 1978)

“”Rock ‘n’ Roll Nigger” almost succeeds in summing up everything good about Patti Smith in a single song. The binomial “Babelogue” – “Rock ‘n’ Roll Nigger” is truly remarkable.”

11. Ask the Angels (Radio Ethiopia, 1976)

“A brilliant song from her second, not quite brilliant long-player. The B-side is interesting, if not quite up there with the Stones version.”

10. Glitter In Their Eyes (Gung Ho, 2000)

“I’ve listened to it about four times and the only thing I take from it is not the music or the lyrics or how she sings, but what a dreary, chilly trek of a record Gung Ho is.”

9. Paths that Cross (Dream of Life, 1988)

“The songwriting, both lyrically and musically, on a ballad like ‘Paths That Cross’ offers authentic emotion and a fine guitar riff, but it was never going to satisfy those pining for a new ‘Jesus Says / Gloria’.”

8. Free Money (Live at the Bottom Line, New York, 1975 (FM Radio Broadcast), 1975)

“FREE MONEY is one of Patty Smith’s best songs. The lyrics are brilliant: evocative and even thought provoking. Her voice is in fine form, and the band was pulled together. Brilliant guitar work. Pretty much brilliant everything. Can’t find any downside to this classic punk tune.”

7. Redondo Beach (Horses, 1975)

“Redondo Beach, a nice reggae punk song (the genres go together well, as proved by the Clash), and then we dive into one of two extended tracks Birdland.”

See more: Daft Punk Albums Ranked

6. Summer Cannibals (Gone Again, 1996)

“”Summer Cannibals,” written with her late husband, is a fresh blast of energy and vigour. Smith’s naked-sounding vocal performance, miked very close so as to spotlight her voice’s imperfections, is genuinely anguished.”

5. Gloria (Horses, 1975)

“There’s a temptation, I think, to play into the hands of the high-brow evaluation of pop by reading far too much into Patti Smith’s “Gloria”. The basic concept was, after all a bit of a wind-up in any case, with Patti trading on her reputation as a poet, but if so a poet seemingly determined to stomp words and phrases into submission rather than treat them with veneration”

4. Gloria: In Excelsis Deo (Horses, 1975)

“Thus what we get is a gloriously (sic) nihilistic romp, which pretty much takes the original and wipes down the kitchen with it. Most every aspect of “Gloria” – from the opening line “Jesus died for somebody’s sins, but not mine”, through the ritual savaging of a classic that’s had its day, to the removal of poetry from its pedestal – is an act of iconoclasm.”

3. Dancing Barefoot (Wave, 1979)

“Probably the best track from Wave, although while the song is wonderful Todd Rundgren’s production is also an essential element in its success (the almost velvet softness of the opening drums bit always hooks me). Patti’s quietest love song is also her most shamanistic.”

2. People Have the Power (Dream of Life, 1988)

“Despite laboring under the impression that she was the “priestess of punk” for all of those years, at heart Patti Smith was nothing more than a hippie performing amplified poetry, some of it quite good and some of it absolutely dreadful.”

1. Because the Night (Easter, 1978)

“Smith’s lyrics and vocal performance gave the song a powerful sense of desperation, and her band lent Springsteen’s original composition an immediacy befitting of their punk credentials. While Smith and Springsteen never worked together directly on “Because the Night,” its fully-realized end result stands as one of the highlights of either artist’s career.”