And of course: Songs *praising* your state, province, or city.

(From people who are from elsewhere, that is…)

I always get a kick out of raging leftie folky David Rovics’ ode to Vancouver, which compares my little burg favourably with New York City – because there are places you can smoke a bowl in public without fretting. The song is called The Cannabis Cafe, but the eponymous establishment is no more.

*I wish I was up in Vancouver
At the Cannabis Cafe
Smokin’ good old sinsemilla
at the beginning of the day

But here I am in New York City
Hiding out in Central Park
Getting kidnapped by the police
Today sometime before dark*

…somehow I get the impression that Mr. Rovics doesn’t really “get” Vancouver, though. It still boggles my mind to hear such fantastic, incredibly upbeat picking in concert with the line “I took the bus over to Hastings Street…”


So who sings nice things about your home, and how do they strike you?

Cause I’m in love with a Jersey Girl…

Tom Waits wrote it, Springsteen made it famous.

Ukiah by the Doobie Brothers. I think they nailed it – Ukiah is a nice city set in a beautiful location.

Rovics gets it very wrong. Well, it has been a few years since I’ve smoked any herb, but I often smoked weed publically in NYC w/o fear of reprisal. Just take a walk down Avenue A in the East Village on summer nights and every other block you can smell the ol’ ganga scent. In fact, in Central Park, there’s a small glen in the rambles (just on the other side of the brigde over the boat pond, opposite Bethesda Fountain) where I spent many summer days tokin’.

There are numerous songs that gush about New York, but the one that refers to the area nearest my actual apartment / home would most likely be “the 59th Street Bridge” song (a.k.a. the “Feelin’ Groovy” song) by Simon & Garfunkel. That’s about aten minutes walk from me.

One of the most famous of all is Kader & Ebb’s New York, New York.

If you can make it there, you’ll make it anywhere
It’s up to you, New York, New York

Todd Snider’s Rose City Blues hits a soft spot for me.

True, though I prefer Billy Joel’s New York State of Mind. I grew up and moved out of NYC for a few years, I couldn’t stand it, I just had to move back.

Of course there are many songs about New York City, this is just my favorite.

Heck, if you count the theme song to The Nanny there’s even one about my neighborhood within NYC :slight_smile:

Too numerous to count for San Francisco. My favorite I guess would be “San Franciscan Nights” by The Animals

“Young child old child feel allright, on a warm San Franciscan night” (Windows Media Link)

I think that’s exactly what the man meant by “hiding out in Central Park.” It’ feels a little different to walk into one of the little cafe/salon type places where you can get some coffee and snacks, settle into an easy chair, listen to some tunes, and spark up a joint and a conversation. :stuck_out_tongue:

My Kind of Town


Lake Shore Drive

Can you guess where I am from?

Gordon Lightfoot did “Alberta Bound”, but it’s less complimentary of the province and more derogatory of Toronto.

The Guess Who did ‘Running Back to Saskatoon’, which mentioned towns in Alberta and Saskatchewan:

**Ohio ** (“Why, Oh, Why, Oh, Why, Oh, Did I Ever Leave Ohio?”) from the show Wonderful Town. Someone should write a (long) song answering that question.

There’s a bunch of 'em, but Lynyrd Skynyrd says it best for me in Sweet Home Alabama:

In Birmingham they love the governor
Now we all did what we could do
Now Watergate does not bother me
Does your conscience bother you?
Tell the truth

Sweet home Alabama
Where the skies are so blue
Sweet Home Alabama
Lord, I’m coming home to you
Here I come Alabama

Of course, every state has its official state song.

In Florida, the state song is Stephen Foster’s “Old Folks at Home,” better known as “Swanee River” –

Needless to say, our African-American Floridians don’t like it and some have tried to offer a new state song . . . but I’ve never heard one suggested that is nearly as catchy and hummable. So it is, so it goes.

I’m not there now, but there’s only one place I call home, so

Well, it’s not my home town but my girlfriend is from Boston and yet had never heard “Roadrunner” by Jonathan Richman & The Modern Lovers.
It has now become a hit with her and her family.

Hey, don’t forget There’ll be a Hot Time in the Old Town Tonight

The best of the best, though, is Lou and Peter Berryman’s Your State’s Name Here , which includes the immortal lyrics–sung just as written–

No sky could be deeper, no water so clear
As back in the meadows of [Your state’s name here]
I’m gonna go back, although I don’t know when
There’s no other place like [Your state’s name again]

And the chorus

I’d love to wake up where [The state songbird] sings
Where they manufacture [The names of some things]
Like there on the bumper, a sticker so clear
An I, then a heart, and then [Your state’s name here]

Here are the full lyrics
Your State’s Name Here

And their official site

Lou and Peter Berryman