10 Classic Rock Songs About America
via David Towl/YouTube
Fight For Your Right To Rock
They may be big rockstars but at the very core, they’re patriots too. And though they’ve been around the whole world, there’s really no place like home. From songs about the flag and the government to the people and the veterans – these tunes will make you nostalgic and wistful.
Check them out…
10. Don McLean – “American Pie”
One of the most iconic songs ever. There have been numerous assumptions and speculations as to the song’s meaning but Don McLean set the record straight when he said, “They’re beyond analysis. They’re poetry.”
9. Steve Miller Band – “Living in the U.S.A.”
Is there anything more American than “Somebody give me a cheeseburger”?
8. KISS – “Rockin’ in the U.S.A.”
They’ll tell you all about homesickness. How they’ve flown “real close to heaven” and traveled to France, England, Germany, and Denmark. Yet, there’s “Nowhere else I’d rather stay” but in the U.S.A.
7. Bruce Springsteen – “Born In The U.S.A.”
Written by The Boss himself, this song sheds light on how American veterans are treated when they come home. This has been misinterpreted by listeners. In an interview, Springsteen clarified, “In my songs, the spiritual part, the hope part is in the choruses. The blues, and your daily realities are in the details of the verses. The spiritual comes out in the choruses, which I got from gospel music and the church.”
6. Chuck Berry – “Back in the U.S.A.”
Rumor has it that Berry wrote this when he came home to the US from Australia and saw how the Australian Aborigines lived. He also sang about the American things he longed for like drive-ins, hamburgers, and jukebox.
5. Lynyrd Skynyrd – “Red, White, and Blue”
Written shortly after the September 11 attacks, Johnny Van Zant talked about the song in a commentary. He said, “We’re big supporters of our troops and we’ve always felt that’s a Skynyrd crowd; we always go back to our fans, we write about our fans and we love our fans. We’ve been blessed to have fans with us for years and years and years for multi-generations now and we’re supporters of our troops and our families. That song is basically written about our fans.”
4. Neil Young – “Rockin’ in the Free World”
One of Neil Young’s most popular tunes, this song talked about the George H. W. Bush administration and American social problems.
3. Simon & Garfunkel – “America”
The song, which is about two lovers hitchhiking across America, was inspired by Paul Simon’s own road trip with his then-girlfriend.
2. Johnny Cash – “Ragged Old Flag”
Cash wrote this when President Richard Nixon was forced to resign during the Watergate scandal. This is often played during Veterans Day and the Fourth of July.
1. Jimi Hendrix – “The Star Spangled Banner”
Jimi Hendrix showed everyone how it’s done during the 1969 Woodstock Festival. His rendition of the National Anthem was something no one heard before. And it will remain the standard by which others are measured.