Happy Canada Day and Independence Day! (2022)

 
 
When it comes to music there is a lot we here in Canada share with our American cousins to the south. There is also much we don’t directly share but have eagerly adopted such as Blues, Jazz, R&R and of course R&B/Hip Hop. When comparing things between the two countries the multiple of ten times often comes up, as the US has approximately 331 million people and Canada has 38 million, which is closer to 8.7 but we tend to round numbers. So given the disparity in population, despite the great music from Canada the US has always and continues to have considerable influence. If you are a Country Singer and or Songwriter sooner or later, you end up in Nashville. If you really want to know about the Blues, you must travel even further south.
 
Perhaps we Canadians have a bit of an identity complex when it comes to music, and for than matter a few other things, as there is no denying we have adopted a lot of music/musical styles from the US. Having said that we have some unique and original music in Canada such as several forms originating from our only officially French speaking province of Quebec, First Nations and Métis peoples. And although Newfoundland has Irish, Celtic and British roots you won’t find music quite like it anywhere else.
 
Without dropping some more statistics we here in Canada think we pull our own weight in terms of representation of most any musical genre compared to the US. As most of my regular readers will know I am stuck in the past, but despite by anachronistic musical tastes I can read a music chart from 2021 and 2022. Enough so that I see names like Drake, Shawn Mendes, Justin Bieber, and The Weeknd among the top artists in the USA/ World. Many will recognize names like Alessia Cara, Jessie Reyez and Ruth B, Daniel Caesar with producer extraordinaire Jordan Evans and speaking of producers there is a long list here as well. 
 
In past posts I talked about the iconic names known internationally to come out of Canada like Celine Dion, Leonard Cohen, Anne Murray, Joni Mitchell, Alanis Morissette, Gordon Lightfoot, Rush, Shania Twain, Michael Bublé, Neil Young, Bryan Adams, Nickelback and going back a bit, Paul Anka. Many of these artists are still touring and making great music. Along the way I have likely missed mention of Avril Lavigne and Carly Rae Jepsen as well as dozens more, my point being Canada is not in the back seat when it comes to recognizable names. 
 
In truth, in popular music there’s no competing with the USA. However, it seems (from what I have read) that music is becoming much more international, in large part due to the accessibility via streaming and that silly app that sounds like a clock. Now, there is an argument that streaming has stifled the emerging artist and the traditional methods of touring small venues had all but dried up even before the global crisis. Having said that local music scenes continue to find a way to survive. But back to my point, if you are asked to name the most iconic names in music, your list will include Beyoncé, Bob Dylan, Bruno Mars, Lady Gaga, Taylor Swift, Elvis Presley, Frank Sinatra, Post Malone, Madonna, Johnny Cash, Willie Nelson, or Kanye West, all from the USA. 
 
When it comes to lists and birthplace, I often see names like Rihanna, who is Barbadian, Nicki Minaj (Trinidad and Tobago) and Drake, The Weeknd and Joni Mitchell, listed as American artists. While some have become US citizens many origins get lost in the big American pie. The same can be said in other parts of the entertainment industry with many actors like Jim Carrey, Stana Katic, Rachel McAdams, the two Ryan’s (Reynolds and Gosling), Kiefer Sutherland, William Shatner, all born in Canada. I don’t have room to list the great actors to come from the USA.
 
We do share much more however, as there are dozens of well known songs and groups that have a US and Canada mix. Many iconic songs were written by Canadian Robbie Robertson while in The Band, and we also have; Arcade Fire, The Mamas and The Papas, The Lovin’ Spoonful, Blood Sweat and Tears and anything that Neil Young has been in like Buffalo Springfield and CSNY. The LA based Rock band Steppenwolf was founded by Canadian artists Jerry Edmonton, Goldy McJohn and German-Canadian John Kay, they would add American guitarist Michael Monarch and bass player Rushton Moreve.
 
Here are a few songs that you may not know have a Canada/US connection and as I am wont to do, let’s go back in time a bit first.
 
“Red River Valley” is listed as a Traditional song and has been a hit for several Country artists over the years, although first recorded by American singers, Canadian Folklorist Edith Folke has uncovered evidence the origins can be traced to Western Canada before 1896. This predates recordings by a couple of artists I have mentioned in past posts, Carl T Sprague (as “Cowboy Love Song“) and Bascom Lamar Lunsford (as “Sherman Valley”) both recorded it in 1925. There are many different lyrics that follow the same theme and certainly the melody. More modern versions, if I can use that term, follow the name, “Red River Valley” as first recorded by Hugh Cross and Riley Puckett in 1927. Google search will give you this wonderful version from Marty Robbins, released in 1961. Including instrumentals there are 225 recordings of this song.
 
I have mentioned Shelton Brooks before, he is Canadian born and is of African descent. His family moved to Detroit when he was quite young. A talented musician and singer best remembered for writing the song “Some of these Days” (covered over 300 times) first recorded by Sophie Tucker in 1910, released in 1911 on cylinder and she did it again in 1927, released on 78 rpm. Serena Ryder (2006).
 
Bob Nolan (Clarence Roberts Noble) moved from his birthplace (April 13, 1908) of Winnipeg Manitoba to New Brunswick with his mother sometime after his parents’ divorce. After a couple more moves at age 13, he ended up in Tucson, Arizona to live with his father. Nolan would write “Tumbling Tumbleweeds“, first released in 1934 by The Sons of the Pioneers, a group he co-founded with Americans Leonard Slye (Roy Rogers) and Tim Spencer. In high school Nolan would write a poem, later it became a favorite Cowboy song titled “Cool Water” first recorded by Bob Atcher in 1940, followed by The Sons of the Pioneers in 1941. Nolans songs have been covered by Dan Blocker (Hoss on Bonanza), Patsy Montana, Pete Seeger, Tex Ritter, Johnny Cash, and a boodle of Hanks: Williams, Shizzoe,Thompson and in 1938, Hank the Yodelling Cowboy, also known as Hank Snow.
 
At age 17, Montreal born Alex Kramer’s first gig was playing piano at a silent movie theatre in 1920. He would later travel the US as a Vaudeville and Nightclub performer. His sideline as a Vocal Coach would lead to him marry one of his American students, Joan Whitney. The pair would write several notable songs such as “High on a Windy Hill” which was a hit for Gene Krupa (vocals by Howard Du Lany) in 1940, they also wrote “Candy” with Mack David (Baby It’s You). “Candy” has been recorded over 70 times but the original by Jo Stafford and Johnny Mercer remains the standout. Other artists that recorded their songs are Doris Day, Nat King Cole, Vic Damone, and the Andrews Sisters. They also co-wrote Jimmy Dorsey’s #1 hit song “My Sister and I” (vocals by Bob Eberly) with another well known composer, Hy Zaret who co-wrote “Unchained Melody”.
 
I have blogged about Buffy (Beverly) Sainte-Marie, who was born in Canada February 20, 1941, She is described as an Indigenous Canadian-American singer-songwriter and musician. Her other endeavors include social activism, educator, and visual artist. She has done much to help preserve first nations culture in Canada and the US. Oh, and she is also a composer, and has an Oscar to prove it. I was fortunate enough to see her perform at the Aeolian Hall in London, Ontario in November of last year. She is still in top form and it was an incredible experience. Here is a clip from her 2018 show.
 
Singer Bobby Curtola of “Fortune Teller” fame was born in Port Arthur Ontario but perhaps his most lasting legacy to Canada and the US is the jingle he wrote, composed and sang, “Things go better with Coca-Cola” in 1964.
 
Speaking of teen idols, again I have mentioned Paul Anka before and the fact that he wrote the theme song for The Johnny Carson show, but he also penned one of Buddy Holly’s most enduring songs “It Doesn’t Matter Anymore“. It became a hit soon after Holly died in the plane crash of 1959. Covered to great success by Linda Ronstadt in 1974 and Serena Ryder in 2006.  
 
Aquarius/Let the Sunshine In” was the smash hit from the musical Hair. It spent six weeks at #1 in 1969. The lyrics were written by two Americans, James Rado and Gerome Ragni, and Canadian Galt MacDermot composed the music. It’s perhaps best known by the 1969 release by The 5th Dimension in 1969 in the medley format, “Aquarius” is the main song with “Let the Sunshine In” as an add on which has only been recorded once as a stand alone song.  Including instrumentals there are 180 versions of the song. The Original Cast recording of Aquarius is listed as Warren Burton and Company in 1967, first released recording was credited to the guy who actually sang the song in the play, Ronald (Ronnie) Dyson and Company.
 
An American band known as Blood, Sweat and Tears lost their lead singer Al Kooper so thanks to Folk music star Judy Collins they hired Canadian David Clayton Thomas. Their self-titled record released late 1968 contained the hit songs’ “Spinning Wheel”, “And When I Die” and “You Made Me So Very Happy”. It topped Billboards’ album chart for 7 of it’s of 109 weeks. The album won an unprecedented five Grammy awards in 1969/70. They were the first artists to have three U.S. gold singles on the same album. 
 
Montreal born Andy Kim moved to New York and the Brill Building to pursue a career in music. He had a hit covering the Ronettes song “Baby I Love You” in 1969.  Kim, along with American songwriting legend Jeff Barry wrote “Sugar, Sugar” that same year which was a hit for Don Kirshner’s studio creation of The Archies. The song featured Kim and Toni Wine backing up Ron Dante (The Cuff Links) on lead vocals. The song would hit #1 for four weeks and was the Song of the Year for Billboard Magazine for 1969. You will also know him from a song he wrote himself, “Rock Me Gently” which was a #1 Billboard hit in 1974.
 
Eddie Schwartz is a Toronto songwriter who wrote “The Doctor“, a #1 hit on the Mainstream Rock chart for the Doobie Brothers. He wrote “Hit Me with Your Best Shot” for Pat Benatar and many other songs recorded by International artists. The song title was featured on the Jeopardy clue title board the other day.
 
Well, that’s a good bit of the older stuff, there are many more American-Canadian collaborations in bands, songwriting and producing but perhaps another day.
 
Trivia
 
Eddie Schwartz’ song “Don’t Shed a Tear” (with Rob Friedman) would become a hit for British singer songwriter Paul Carrack known for his lead vocals on “How Long” (Ace), “Tempted” (Squeeze) and “In the Living Years” (Mike + the Mechanics). In 1987 my wife and I were at Paul Carracks debut for the album One Good Reason in Toronto, I think it was the El Mocambo but not sure on that point. Anyway, when Carrack started into “Don’t Shed a Tear” the guy beside me happened to be the above mentioned Eddie Schwartz and he said “I wrote that song”, oh the brushes with fame I’ve had! Schwartz has had hit songs recorded by Donna Summer, Meatloaf and many more. Also, of note that evening, at least it was for me! Carrack’s voice started to crack, and he said just one word, “Nick” and without missing a beat, his bass player, the one and only Nick Lowe started into “Half a Boy and Half a Man” and the place nearly fell apart. Clearly full of Nick Lowe nerds like myself. He was a big supporter of Carrack and they have played together for years, the two shared back-up bands on several albums and tours. Look for Paul Carrack as the keyboard player in the video clip from 1984. Still going strong in 2022 Nick Lowe is making a tour stop opening for his protégé, Elvis Costello in Toronto in August, yes I will be there!
 

Boodle: Old Cowboy saying for a crowd of people.

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Happy Holidays 2021

Happy Holidays!

Whether you view the upcoming holidays as a secular event, religious or a bit of both there’s one thing that’s synonymous with this time of year- Christmas songs! You don’t have to celebrate Christmas as a religious holiday to enjoy a good song. Maybe you celebrate “Festivus” on December 23 which is a fictional/parody holiday created by Daniel O’Keefe of Readers Digest fame, it was of course made popular by Seinfeld as an alternative to Christmas. The topic of many songs is based on love, family and fellowship. So what’s wrong with that? Nothing I say! I have issued a post each year at this time and because of that I’m getting lazy this year and including much of that material with updated stats and links in today’s post. Read More »

"Tis or 'tis not? (the Season to be Jolly)

“Tis or ’tis not “the Season to be Jolly”?

 

As I discussed in my post last year on Christmas and Holiday songs they are the most covered and performed songs of all time. Yet this year many will struggle to be anywhere near jolly this Holiday Season. Our front line workers, in particular those in hospital and senior care settings have been and continue to put their lives on hold to care for others. I thank you all. However this may just be just what the doctor ordered so to speak, for as much as many of these songs are filled with joy, hope and kindness towards our fellow human beings many songs express a variety of other sentiments about the holiday season. Read More »

Happy St. Patrick's Day

Happy St. Patrick’s Day!

A day when typically many have celebrated perhaps a bit too much, all that is Irish, green and is in a beer glass. Most of us don’t have much reason to be celebrating this year I know, but if anyone knows about making through tough times it’s the Irish. Clichés and all it is recognized in most places as more of a secular fun day than the traditional church ceremonies by Irish Catholics. The Patron Saint gives the public an official holiday in Ireland, Northern Ireland and Monserat. In my Mother’s native province of Newfoundland it is also a public holiday that gets moved to the nearest Monday to give people a long weekend, as they really know how to party!  I understand from my best friend Steve who is of Irish descent the parts of the world that party and carry on is not the same way it is celebrated in most of  Ireland at all.

While in 2020 the gatherings may be cancelled there still will be some, albeit smaller ones than usual where the music of the Emerald Isle will be blaring out of if not pubs, clubs and bars perhaps just peoples homes. You’ll hear the worst renditions of Danny Boy ever sung by a bunch of drunken Irish wanna be’s. Karaoke singers will be belting out the classic St. Paddy’s Day songs and every musician with even a hint of the Gaeltacht blood will be (hopefully) working a small stage or a even just a stool somewhere in the world. If you are housebound, here is your own private bit of Irish music for March 17 or 16th in Newfoundland! I will indulge in a few of the classic style songs and then list just a sampling of the impressive list of artists that hail from Ireland and Northern Ireland.

Song for Ireland“, the wonderful Mary Black.

Fiddlers Green” by the consummate Irish group The Irish Rovers.

Whisky in the Jar” by the legendary Irish Folk band The Dubliners.

Poor Paddy Works on the Railway” is a traditional Irish Folk song, a rousing rendition from The Pogues.

Drunken Lullabies” as no list is complete without an original song from Flogging Molly

Rose Tattoo” while we are talking ‘Celtic Punk’ (above song) we must add the American band the Dropkick Murphys. Named after a professional wrestler not as I had thought, the Rugby Football move. Which incidentally, unlike my pal Steve I never quite mastered the “bouncing the ball before you kick it” thing back in the day when we played the game. However, Steve played Varsity as well so it has to be the Irish blood as they have played Rugby Football since the mid 1800’s.

The Night Pat Murphy Died“, Newfoundland’s own Great Big Sea. No longer playing together (some great solo stuff from the members) but they have an amazing repertoire of nine albums and the actor Russell Crowe is quite the fan and sometimes even a band member.

The ultimate classic pub drinking song to many is “Drunken Sailor” sung here by The Irish Rovers among a thousand others. It is a traditional folk song classified as a “Sea Shanty” and based on the very old Irish song “Óró sé do bheatha abhaile” (Oh-ro You’re Welcome Home) sung here by Seo Linn.

As nations there is little doubt both Northern Ireland and Ireland punch above their weight, there’s a pun in there if you want it. Many know the obvious Irish singing and playing artists as in the above mentioned list, and one of the most famous Rock bands of all time is U2, formed in Dublin in 1976. Also one of the best selling artists of all time at close to 170 million albums sold they have produced 14 studio albums and released 67 singles. They have 22 Grammy Awards, 7 Brit Awards and countless other accolades including being second only to the Rolling Stones (for bands) in box office income making them some of the richest recording artists on the planet. With so many great songs it would take several blogs to even put a dent in the list so I will just go with “One” released in 1991 on the album ‘Achtung Baby’.

Van Morrison was born in Belfast, Northern Ireland (August 31, 1945) and has a voice unmatched by very many. Once again too many great songs to mention and I’m going to go with one of my favourites that not many will know “Spanish Rose” was written by Morrison and released on the controversial and legal nightmare ‘Blowin Your Mind’ in 1967 (it’s a long story destined for a future blog). While we are here, the wonderful vocalist Ottilie Patterson (January 31, 1932-June 20, 2011) was born in Comber, County Down, Northern Ireland and sang for many years with the Jazz master Chris Barber. Another great was Ruby Murray, (March 29, 1935-December 7, 1996) born in Belfast, Northern Ireland. She had a #1 hit in the UK with “Softly Softly“. More recently there are artists such as  Rebekah Fitch and Lee Rogers.

Getting back to Ireland again we can listen to the recently departed Dolores O’Riordan who sang with The Cranberries (“Zombie“, 1994) for many years. There is also Christy Moore, EnyaSinéad O’Connor, HozierThe Boomtown Rats, Thin Lizzy and I could go on but just one more Imelda May.

References; https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Main_Page, Secondhandsongs.com,
 https://www.rollingstone.com/music/music-lists/u2-band-greatest-songs-bono-the-edge-205104/,  https://www.irishcentral.com/culture/famous-irish-musicians
images; https://www.irishcentral.com/opinion/proud-irish-st-patricks-dayhttps://www.u2.com/index/home

If you like my blog, please consider filling in the follow by email link at the top right hand of the page. Remember to confirm the subscription when you get the first email. Confidentiality is assured unless you are a close friend or family member then all bets are off. While I can compile data from my blog it’s not tracking in terms of any one’s identity. For past blog posts click on the menu at the top right corner. Pass it along to a friend who might enjoy it as well or post it to your timeline on FB. And many thanks as always for reading my blog!

Valentines Day Songs

Valentines Day Songs
(some of the happy and not so happy stories about love songs)

Not all songs with the title of “Valentines Day” are love songs. In fact many are not and some are quite depressing such as “Valentines Day” not surprisingly by Marilyn Manson. David Bowie’s “Valentines Day” is a about a mass shooting. Steve Earle has been married seven times which means he is either very good or very bad at it, his “Valentines Day” refrain sums it all up with an apologetic “I ain’t got a card to sign” sort of empty promises song. To be honest I have no idea what James Taylor’s “Valentines Day” is about at all and Billy Bragg definitively states “Valentines Day is Over” and it wasn’t a happy one. Linkin Park is not having a good “Valentines Day” either, not unlike “St. Valentine’s Day” from The Dream Academy.Read More »

Happy New Year!

Happy New Year!

As we walk, rock and or roll into 2020, a bit of music never hurt anyone and many songs have been written about the event. From old favorites to new these songs help us reflect on the year gone by and bring hope for the year ahead. I’ll keep this short post brief and get right to the music!

So we of course need to start with the oldest New Year song, a tradition since the late 1700’s in Scotland. The legendary Poet Robert Burns transcribed words he said he heard from an old man. It’s an amalgam of old poems and folk songs put to the tune of yet another old folk song which is listed on the Roud Folk Song Index as number 6294 out of over 25,000 songs.

“Auld Lang Syne” is roughly translated into several meanings, according to Wikipedia “into standard English as “old long since” or, more idiomatically, “long long ago”, “days gone by”, or “old times”. Consequently, “For auld lang syne”, as it appears in the first line of the chorus, might be loosely translated as “for the sake of old times”.

The first recording was by ‘Guy Lombardo and His Royal Canadians’ in 1939. Guy Lombardo who was dubbed “Mr. New Year’s Eve” performed the first nationwide (heard in Canada as well) radio broadcast from the Roosevelt Grill in the Roosevelt Hotel in New York City from just after the stroke of midnight in 1929 and in later years the Waldorf Astoria Hotel through to 1976. The song was heard on Radio and TV after the ball drops at Times Square for many years, I’m not sure if it still is. The first vocal recording of the song, not particularly surprising is by Bing Crosby in 1947. Sung by millions of people around the world there are well over 400 versions both vocal and instrumental. The Beach Boys (1964), Rachel Ann Morgan (1990).

Dick Clark’s New Year’s Rockin’ Eve became the replacement for Guy Lombardo, but the first edition on the eve of 1972 was actually ‘Three Dog Night’s New Year’s Rockin’ Eve 1973‘ with Dick Clark serving as the Times Square ‘Reporter’ and show Producer. The next year was hosted by George Carlin before Clark took over in 1975.

I’d have to say there does not seem to be a song that has replaced “Auld Lang Syne” as a popular sing-along, but certainly one that gets a lot of airplay is ” New Year’s Day” written by Bono (credited as all songs are to U2) and recorded by U2 (1983). Not purpose written as a song for the new year it’s actually inspired by the Polish Solidarity movement led in great part by Lech Wałęsa, coupled with words of love about his then new wife, Ali (Stewart) Hewson. Bedouin Soundclash (2006), Stella Starlight Trio (2012).

New Years Day” by Bon Jovi (2016), not so well known a song but about new beginnings.

A more recent “New Years Day” (2018) recorded by Taylor Swift and written with  Jack Antonoff. Not exactly a happy go lucky let’s party in the New Year song but it’s quite deep and reflective. A very fine song. So far I’ve just found some YouTube covers.

Here are some more songs about the New Years Eve or the New Year in general; “What Are You Doing New Year’s Eve” written by Frank Loesser first recorded in 1947 by Margaret Whiting. Ella Fitzgerald (1960), Kacey Musgraves (2016), “New Year’s Eve” Tom Waits (2011), “New Year’s Resolution” Otis Redding & Carla Thomas (1968). The ultimate New Year’s party song “1999” written and performed by the late and great Prince from his 1982 album ‘1999’.

Happy New Year and all the best for 2020!

Click below for my Spotify playlist “MMC Blog New Year” for these and a few other songs. I’m not advertising but you can listen to Spotify for free if you sign up, my personal opinion it’s great. I was using YouTube Music but I switched to free Spotify, very happy 🙂  I’m with the paid subscription service now so I can share playlists going forward.

https://open.spotify.com/playlist/5RcLKIi5m1tAxu84iM3Lsh?si=qFdJ1AniRn6uT9iNl0NkVQ

References; https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Main_PageSecondhandsongs.com
https://www.songfacts.com/facts/bon-jovi/new-years-day

If you like my blog, please consider filling in the follow by email link at the top right hand of the page. Remember to confirm the subscription when you get the first email. Confidentiality is assured unless you are a close friend or family member then all bets are off. While I can compile data from my blog it’s not tracking in terms of anyone’s identity. For past blog posts click on the menu at the top right corner. Pass it along to a friend who might enjoy it as well or post it to your timeline on FB. And many thanks as always for reading my blog!

Christmas and Holiday Songs

The most covered Christmas Carols and Holiday Songs

Most people love them, some loathe them and the rest perhaps are somewhat indifferent. Wherever you sit on the spectrum, this music is unavoidable at this time of year. From the traditional carol to the old favorites and the new there is never a shortage of choice and escaping it takes a lot of effort. So if you want to read a story about Christmas and Holiday Songs, I’ve got you covered. 😉Read More »

Remembrance and Veterans Day

Veterans Day and Remembrance Day

In Canada and the Commonwealth on Remembrance Day we observe the end of WWI to remember those who sacrificed their lives and those that gave service. Since that time it has come to mark military service throughout our history, giving us the peace and prosperity we now enjoy. In the United States it is called Veterans Day and similarly those who served and sacrificed in the military are remembered and honoured. We of course must not forget the others who suffered, sacrificed and supported the military in other ways, least of all the parents and families.Read More »

Happy Independence Day (updated)

Happy Independence Day/4th of July to our American Cousins! Seems appropriate we ( July 1, in Canada) have our birthdays so close together. And a hello to my new readers from blogarama.com!
When it comes to cover songs, I will never run out of blog ideas from the south, particularly when it comes to the roots of the blues, country and rock. Today I wanted to find some songs about the USA that focus on a Patriotic theme (not hard to find) but also have been a) covered by other artists and b) some that are not necessarily as ‘pro’ or at least painting a not so positive light on an aspect of American society and c) have been perhaps mis-interpreted by some.
Born in the U.S.A.” written by Bruce Springsteen from the album of the same name released in June 1984. My youngest sister and I went to see Bruce at the CNE stadium during this tour in July 1985, as always with Bruce, a great show. I have attached a link that includes lyrics, so you can see that this song is not very complimentary of the US involvement in the Vietnam War. Yet its anthem like format and the repeating of the “Born in the USA” line has made it somewhat of a point of nationalistic pride, rather than the anti-war protest song that it is.
Covered over 25 times, although most of them are not very good.
Neil Young and Crazy Horse covered this in 2014, interesting fact that Bruce and Neil shared a band member, Nils Lofgren was a founding member of Crazy Horse and later joined the E-Street Band.
Dierks Bentley, “Home” written by Dan Wilson, Brett Beavers and Dierks Bentley (Dierks played my hometown of  London June 30th, 2018). Clearly a patriotic tribute to the USA. Covered by Dan Wilson one of the co-writers
 The Beach Boys “Surfin’U.S.A. (1963) written by Brian Wilson (Mike Love uncredited) and Chuck Berry. Wait, Chuck wasn’t in the Beach Boys! Seems the writer(s) of the song followed the tune “Sweet Little Sixteen”, as I understand the story Chuck heard the song Surfin’ USA, and immediately recognized his song. Long story short Chuck got added to the songs credits, no doubt lawyers and record exec’s got involved, money changed hands, royalties paid and everyone is happy! It’s an upbeat song about the cool surfing crowd in the 1960’s, with a nod in the song to an Australian beach as well.  I know I’m not the only one to question Brian Wilson…while quite proper to acknowledge the amazing surfing in Australia, but why then call the song “Surfin’ U.S.A.”? Should be ‘Surfin mostly in the U.S.A’! Nevertheless a great song!
Blind Guardian (1996), Jesus & Mary Chain (1988), Chris Farmer (2008), Chris toured with the Beach Boys from 1997-2007.

Lee Greenwood “God Bless the U.S.A.” seems to top the list as the most popular pro America song and there’s no misinterpretation here. Covered about 20 times to date. Written by Lee Greenwood.
Covered by Home Free (2007)
Toby Keith is all over this Patriotic list with “American Soldier”, Made in America” and Courtesy of the Red, White and Blue.
American Soldierwritten by Chuck Cannon and Toby Keith released in 2003, cover by the Deltones (btw not the Australian group “The Deltones”)
Interesting that this category includes songs (popular in the U.S.) written and recorded by Canadians, that being a previously blogged song “American Woman” by the Guess Who and “Rockin’ in the Free World” (aka the USA), by Neil Young.
 https://niagaraatlarge.com/2010/07/01/celebrating-canada-day-and-the-fourth-of-july-through-fearful-turbulent-times/, youtube.com.

If you like my blog, please consider filling in the follow by email link at the top right hand of the page. Remember to confirm the subscription when you get the first email. Confidentiality is assured unless you are a close friend or family member then all bets are off. While I can compile data from my blog it’s not tracking in terms of anyone’s identity. For past blog posts click on the menu at the top right corner. Pass it along to a friend who might enjoy it as well or post it to your timeline on FB. And many thanks as always for reading my blog!