Famous songs about every state
Every state has an ode in song. California’s sandy beaches and green valleys have inspired tracks by Tupac Shakur, the Red Hot Chili Peppers, the Beach Boys, and Johnny Cash. "Empire State of Mind" and "Welcome to New York" are only two of the recent additions to the peck of songs celebrating New York's Big Apple. Country tunes abound with Texas pride.
But all states have songs written about them, and every state has an official state song—except for New Jersey, perhaps because it would force the state to decide between native sons Bruce Springsteen and Jon Bon Jovi.
In this list, Stacker highlights one famous song about every state. The tracks span all genres, topics, and decades. But they all have one thing in common: celebrating their respective state.
Read on for an interesting list of famous songs written about each state. Though you’ll find plenty of old favorites on this list, you might be surprised by the artists behind songs about Kansas, Washington, and a few others.
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Though this classic Southern rock jam is an ode to Alabama, it was actually written by a band from Jacksonville, Florida. Still, that fact doesn’t stop Alabamians from screaming the words at college football games and dive bars every time it comes on.
This Bee Gees song actually mentions several states—Nebraska, Oklahoma, Ohio and Alaska—but focuses on the “road to Alaska” metaphor. The image of Alaska as a faraway, lonely place certainly comes through the song.
The small city of Winslow, Arizona got its moment in the spotlight when the Eagles recorded this hit track in 1972. Any woman in town with a flatbed Ford probably has a special affinity for the classic rock song.
Bruce Springsteen’s narrator croons this folk song to his lover Mary, who is pregnant out of wedlock. By the end of the verse, he’s got a plan to run away together to Mexico—far, far from their home in Arkansas.
The pop star’s jam paints the Golden State in technicolor, with lines like “sun-kissed skin / bikinis on top.” While California isn’t all sandy beaches and tropical palm trees, residents still love singing along to the “West coast represent” sentiment.
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John Denver’s song about a young man finding himself in Colorado’s Rocky Mountains paints an idyllic picture of the wilderness. You can almost see the majestic firs, craigy peaks, trickling streams and silver clouds.
Garland rates Connecticut above Paris, Naples, Montana, and Capri in this love song to the state. She sings wistfully about its quaint villages, green hills, and peaceful lakes in this homesick tune.
It’s all about wordplay in this Perry Como song from 1959. He turns Delaware into a pun on “what did Dell wear,” California into “why did Cali phone ya?” and Minnesota into “she sipped a Minne-soda.”
Jimmy Buffett has become synonymous with beers on the beach, lazing in a lawn chair, and throwing a few back in Margaritaville—the “Floridays” lifestyle, in other words. Even the relaxed melody of this song emphasizes the state’s low-key frame of mind.
“Devil Went Down to Georgia” might be one of the all-time country classics, thanks to the impressive fiddling, rapid-fire wordplay, and toe-tapping melody. The image of the devil crouched on a hickory stump, playing the fiddle so fast that fire shoots out his fingertips is hard to get out of in your mind.
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