You've come to the right place if you're looking for the best Indonesian songs ever.
From Feby Putri to Payung Teduh, Indonesia's top artists have released some of the best music worldwide.
Let’s look at some famous Indonesian songs.
“Runtuh” by Feby Putri
Song Year: 2021
This beautiful song is one of Indonesia's top hits.
Indonesian folk artist Feby Putri earned international acclaim after releasing her hit single, “Runtuh,” which touches on the difficulties of chasing one's dreams.
The song's protagonist moves to Jakarta to make it big and finds herself trying to tame a busy mind instead.
Febi Putri is known for her debut single, “Halu,” released in 2019.
“Tak Segampang Itu” by Anggi Marito
Song Year: 2022
Anggi Marito's hit single “Tak Segampang Itu” is sung in the Bahasa language of Indonesia. This song was released in December 2022 and has climbed the local charts since then.
The song touches on the insecurities of being in a new relationship and the fears accompanying a breakup. The singer laments her inability to find someone else like her previous lover. The song reached number 15 on the Billboard chart, topping such hits as “Tally” by BlackPink and other hit songs.
“Bengawan Solo” by Sundari Soekotjo
Song Year: 1940
The most famous Indonesian song ever is “Bengawan Solo,” a traditional song performed and released by many artists across different languages. The version included in this article is but one cover of this all-time great.
“Tertawan Hati” by Awdella
Song Year: 2022
This song peaked at number eight on the Billboard charts for Indonesia—for a good reason.
This love ballad touches on the difficulties of accommodating a new relationship and all its attendant insecurities.
The singer laments how much she had to change to fit her new partner's requirements, asking herself if she has lost a part of who she is.
She explains that her relationship has worsened, yet she feels compelled to remain in it.
“Aku Bukan Jodohnya” by Tri Suaka
Song Year: 2021
Tri Suaka is an Indonesian male artist with millions of followers on Instagram and YouTube. This artist primarily focuses on subjects related to love and loss.
His hit single “Aku Bukan Jodohnya” discusses the beauty of a long-lasting relationship. However, the protagonist's love interest soon ends with someone else. The singer must accept losing his love because of his ego. However, he expresses his sincere joy at her new relationship, exhibiting healthy detachment.
The song is an excellent example of how to handle a relationship's end.
“Komang” by Raim Laode
Song Year: 2022
Since its release in 2022, this song has topped the charts in Indonesia and worldwide.
The song is about a long-distance relationship between the protagonist and his love interest, a woman who completes him. He claims that his love interest's beauty rivals the world's horror and that the distance will not drive them apart.
Raim Laode is a singer from Liya Togo, Indonesia, and he has been making music since early 2014. Since then, the singer has progressively entered the mainstream with his innovative blend of traditional Indonesian and dance/electronic music.
“Makna Cinta,” by Rizky Febian
Song Year: 2020
“Makna Cinta” is one of the most viewed videos on YouTube. Since this song's release in 2020, it has consistently remained at the top of the charts.
This song comes from the Bahasa tradition and is about the singer's struggle to find his true love, Anya Geraldine, a model in Jakarta.
The singer maintains that he now knows the meaning of love and plans to continue growing to accommodate this new relationship in his life.
Rizky Febian, meaning “Blessing of God,” is a famous Indonesian artist and TV presenter. His first single, “Kesempurnaan Cinta,” introduced him to the mainstream music scene at 17.
“Muak” by Aruma
Song Year: 2022
Aruma is an Indonesian singer, producer, and songwriter who brings an emotional charge to her music. Although she is only 19, her music has landed her on Spotify's top 50 charts. Her debut single, “Muak,” is about an insecure relationship.
This song touches on a relationship in which the protagonist is unhappy. She finds it difficult to heal from the past, as her relationship began passionately but has caused her tremendous pain. Because her love interest is not faithful to her, she feels a sense of loss and insecurity, and she cannot enjoy the good moments.
The song blends tender lyrics with a mournful sound, and its blend of pop and traditional music has inspired many to follow suit.
“Akad” by Payung Teduh
Song Year: 2017
Payung Teduh is an alternative rock and indie band from Indonesia. This band blends the jazz, alternative, pop, and indie genres to create its own sound.
Their hit single, “Akad,” is about an old man who once drove a taxicab and met many interesting people. He witnesses his passengers in states of joy, sadness, and business, and he often thinks of his dead wife, whom he misses dearly.
The song's end describes him celebrating his marriage anniversary at a cafe with a photograph of his dead wife, proving that true love never dies.
“Sial” by Mahalini Reharja
Song Year: 2023
Mahalini Reharja is a 23-year-old singer and songwriter from Denpasar, Indonesia. Although she has been making music since the early 2020s, her hit song “Sial” catapulted her into mainstream music for good.
This song is about the painful experience of falling in love. It discusses the disappointment of finding out that someone you love isn't who they say they are—a sentiment familiar to many. “Sial” means unlucky, underscoring the pain accompanying an unsuccessful relationship. The singer laments trusting someone who didn't deserve it and vows to do better next time.
“Widodari” by Denny Caknan ft. Guyon Waton
Song Year: 2021
Denny Caknan and Guyon Waton are renowned artists, musicians, and producers from Indonesia.
Denny Caknan is a Javanese pop and Koplo singer known for his songs “Cidro Asmoro” and “Jajalen Aku.”
“Widodari,” his newest release, is about a woman who enters his life and relieves his lifelong loneliness. He sees rainbows in her eyes, claiming she has brought color to a colorless existence.
He calls upon his ancestors to protect him and asks his lover to consider his feelings as he is deeply in love.
This song touches on timeless themes of powerlessness in a relationship. Yet, it celebrates the love that brings us together in the end.
“Hari Bahagia” by ATTA Halilintar & AUREL Hermansyah
Song Year: 2021
ATTA Halilintar is the first Indonesian YouTuber and singer to earn the Diamond Play Button on YouTube.
This pop star is also a social media influencer with nearly 30 million subscribers. His songs have received considerable attention for their profound lyrics and catchy melodies.
“Hari Bahagia” means “fortunate” in Indonesian, and the song is about the beautiful beginnings of a loving and nurturing relationship. The singer expresses joy in finding the right person and hopes this relationship will flourish despite its challenges.
“Serana” by For Revenge
Song Year: 2022
This haunting song boasts a reflective quality that draws the listener in. It touches on the subject of a love lost to time and distance. Although “Serena” is a relatively new song, it has climbed the local charts. It is now one of the most popular videos on YouTube.
For Revenge is a famous Indonesian band formed in Bandung in 2006. The lineup consists of Hagie Juliandri, Archims Pribadi, and Abie Nugraha. They offer beautiful ballads and indie rock songs that have transformed popular music in Indonesia. The band continues to break barriers with its innovative music.
“Cemburu” by Dewa 19
Song Year: 2000
Dewa 19 is an Indonesian rock band formed in Surabaya, East Java, in 1986. They are considered one of the best bands in Indonesian music history and continue to make modern music.
“Cemburu” comes from the Bahasa language and touches on the experience of watching one's former lover turn into a new partner. The singer expresses his desire to kill his love interest's new boyfriend as he watches them kiss, exclaiming his desire for revenge.
The song is one of Dewa e 19's most popular, though the band has released many hit singles since their emergence in 1986.
“Cinta Ini Membuuhku” by D’MASIV
Song Year: 2008
The title of this song, “Cinta Ini Membuuhku,” means “This love is killing me,” and it's an apt title for this song.
The song discusses the theme of a “tired heart,” trying to convince the singer that his relationship is worth fighting for. However, he sees the cracks in the veneer and challenges the expectation of a happy ending.
D'Masiv is an Indonesian rock band initially formed in Jakarta. It comprises six members, including Nurul Damar Ramadan, Rian Ekky Pradipta, Dwiki Aditya Marsall, Rayyi Kurniawan Iskandar Dinata, Wahyu Piadji, and Vegry Harindah Husain.
The band is known for its unique sound, and they have been making hit music since 2006.
“Salah” by Potret
Song Year: 1997
Although this song was released in 1997, it remains one of the most famous Indonesian songs in the country's musical history.
“Salah” is about a woman whose love has been lost to others. She laments the loss of her lover, claiming he has been with other women.
However, the song takes a turn when the woman claims that she has been visiting other men, and they must not have been meant to be.
Potret is a ska and pop band formed in Indonesia in the early 1990s. The band continues to make music today, and lead vocalist Melly Goeslaw remains popular in Indonesia.
“Aku Cinta Kau Dan Dia” by Ahmad Band
Song Year: 1998
Ahmad Band is an Indonesian supergroup rock band. They formed the band in 1998 and only released one album, so they are considered a one-off supergroup.
Their hit single, “Aku Cinta Kau Dan Dia,” is about a man in love with two people simultaneously. He wants to decide between them but worries that he will let go of something good when he does. But, because both relationships are young, he cannot make a choice.
Ahmad Band was the brainchild of Ahmad Dhani, and he continues to make music under his solo record deal to this day.
“Melompat Lebih Tinggi” by Sheila On 7
Song Year: 2003
This song has a unique rock and pop influence and sounds similar to American music in the early 2000s.
“Melompat Lebih Tinggi” was released in 2003 and discussed the virtues of relationships formed in hardship.
The song describes the protagonist's persistence in remaining happy and expressing joy despite his struggles. He explains that we are all connected and can lift each other no matter the difficult moments.
The song's beautiful message appealed to millions in Indonesia and around the world, earning top spots on the Billboard 100.
Sheila On 7 remains one of Indonesia's most famous bands.
“Cintaku” by Chrisye
Song Year: 1977
“Cintaku” is about finding love in an otherwise complex world. The song is dedicated to the people who embrace love, and the singer compares this love to the world's natural beauty. He claims that “there is no power that exceeds the beauty of loving,” a message that transcends popular music and appeals to many.
Although this song was released in 1977, it continues to enjoy tremendous popularity across Indonesia. The singer, Chrisye, is a progressive pop singer and songwriter from Jakarta. His 40-year career has led to over 20 studio albums and many more independent projects. This song remains one of the most famous modern songs in Indonesia.
“I Will Fly” by Ten2Five
Song Year: 2004
This song is about the magic of falling in love. The music touches on the beauty of a new relationship and learning everything about another person. However, it takes a turn when the protagonist is separated from the person she loves, dismayed at learning to love all over again.
Ten2Five is a Jakarta musical group consisting of Imel, Didit, Arief, Lea, Udin, Teguh, Robin, and Poltak. Members formed the band in 1998 and continue to earn considerable popularity for their music.
Best Indonesian Songs, Final Thoughts
However, the songs on this list represent some of the most famous Indonesian songs. They all feature timeless lyrics and beautiful melodies. Due to Indonesia's burgeoning music industry, you can expect much more to come!
The traditional music of Indonesia is known as gamelan and consists of a basic orchestral ensemble, but as you’ve seen Indonesian music is as diverse as it is beautiful. I hope you enjoyed them.