In celebration of July 4th, B-Sides is providing you with our version of a Top 10 playlist for American inspired, patriotic, and not so patriotic music to listen to this 4th of July! We put a spin on our Independence Day playlist, one that every kind of American can enjoy!
10.) “Surfin’ U.S.A.” by The Beach Boys – No one can forget the earlier light hearted music by the band, that focused on life in So Cal and was considered Surf Rock. This track is a great song for those who love and live for the summer side of 4th of July! One that involve sun, beach, and BBQ!
9.) “Blood-Red, White, and Blue” by Rise Against – Forming back in 1999 from Chicago, Illinois, American punk rock band Rise Against is very well known for their advocacy and activism support for various organizations such as PETA and It Gets Better Project. This song is about being against the war that have been going on in the Middle East. It is a controversial and political song that those who are in agreement with the band, would enjoy listening to.
8.) “Hero of War” by Rise Against – Although this band does not support war (like in their previous song that made the list) the band does however support our fellow US troops in their fight to protect America. This song is about what a young soldier has to go through in order to fight for the country he or she loves. This song is especially important for those who have a loved one in the US military and/or for anyone who supports the troops.
7.) “American Pie” by Don McLean – Don McLean is an American singer/songwriter that recorded this track back in 1971. It was the number one single for a month in 1972 in the United States. The song is about “the day that the music died” which was also known as the 1959 airplane crash that killed Rock N’ Roll legends Buddy Holly, Ritchie Valens, and The Big Bopper. The song was listed as the fifth song on the RIAA’s Song of the Century and it is an American classic that no one can forget.
6.) “So American” by Portugal the Man – Portland, Oregon band Portugal the Man came together back in 2005 and has released a total of 6 albums and 3 EPs. This song is about immigrant children growing up in the United States and seeing this country as their home country. Anyone who supports immigration or is an immigrant themselves can appreciate this song that directly speaks to them.
5.) “The Body of An American” by The Pogues – London celtic punk rock band The Pogues formed back in 1982. They split in 1996 and reunited back in 2001 and is still a band today. Although the band comes from a punk background they are known for their use of traditional Irish instruments, such as tin whistle, cittern, mandolin, and accordian. This song is about a British person being born and raised in America and is proud to be an American, even though they are technically from immigrant roots. It is a patriotic song showing that even those not originally from the US will always call this country their homeland.
4.) “American Girl” by Tom Petty and The Heartbreakers – Recorded in 1976, this song was Tom Petty’s second single to release from his self titled album, Tom Petty and The Heartbreakers. “American Girl” has been ranked number 76 on Rollingstone’s list of “The 100 Greatest Guitar Songs of All Time.” This is a song anyone can enjoy with its guitar infused catchy tune, that brings an image to mind of what the stereotypical all American girl is.
3.) “Born in the U.S.A.” by Bruce Springsteen – This song was the turning point in American rock singer/song writer Bruce Springsteen’s musical career. It released in 1984 and was a more light hearted approach to his music as compared to his previous work which was considered dark and pessimistic. Springsteen’s song was about the ordinary American fighting the daily struggle of following the American Dream. This is a great song for those who continue to fight the Dream today.
2.) “American Idiot” by Green Day -This song was featured on the Oakland, CA band’s seventh full length album also called American Idiot that released in 2004. The album sold over 15 million copies worldwide and 6 million alone in the United States. The song was about the chaos going on in America at the time George W. Bush was president; such as the war in the Middle East. It was about rebellion against the the propaganda being thrown at Americans, such as fear and hate. “American Idiot” also emphasizes the idea of freedom of speech because Green Day was able to write and sing a song like this without being silenced by their government.
1.) “America” by Imagine Dragons – Las Vegas alternative rock band known as Imagine Dragons released their debut album Night Visions in September of 2012. Billboard Magazine named them as one of “2o12’s Brightest New Stars.” Their song “America” is our number one choice because it speaks about people in this day and age who still want to live a successful life in this country and who truly consider it the land of freedom and opportunity!