Song of America

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Album Description| Purchase Song of America | Song List


Album Description

Song of America is a three CD, fifty song collection that tells the history of our country through song, from 1492 through modern times. Conceived by former U.S. Attorney General Janet Reno as new versions of beloved songs interpreted by contemporary artists who span the folk, blues, rock, R&B, country, classical and hip-hop genres, this joint venture between Split Rock Records and 31 Tigers (via RED Distribution) offers listeners a way to connect or reconnect with America’s vast musical and cultural heritage.

Key tracks include John Mellencamp’s version of Woody Guthrie’s “This Land Is Your Land,” Blind Boys of Alabama’s “Let Us Break Bread Together,” Bettye LaVette’s transcendent take on Bruce Springsteen’s “Streets Of Philadelphia,” the first recording of The Black Crowes’ Robinson brothers singing with their father Stan (“Reuben James”), Martha Wainwright’s updated rendition of “I Am Woman,” Andrew Bird’s wistful account of “How You Gonna Keep ‘Em Down On The Farm,” Harper Simon’s “Yankee Doodle,” and The Del McCoury Band’s soon-to-be-classic take on Bob Dylan’s “The Times, They Are A Changin’.”

How to purchase Song of America

Song of America may be purchased from

Song list

Follow the link in the track titles to be taken to lyrics for each song. Asterisks indicate that lyrics for this title are not available online. The third column indicates which unit the song appears in the Voices Across Time Teacher's Guide and is linked to information in that unit, including available lesson plans.

song title Song of America artist VAT unit

Lakota Dream Song*

Earl Bullhead
not in VAT
Julie Lee
Blind Boys of Alabama
John Wesley Harding
Elizabeth Foster
Malcom Holcombe
Ed Pettersen
Harper Simon
The Wilders

Unit 2

Steven Kowalczyk-Santoro
Take 6

Unit 3

Beth Nielsen Chapman
Freedy Johnston
not in VAT
Trail of Tears*
Will Hill and Jehnean Day Washington
Minton Sparks and Pat Flynn
not in VAT
Fisk Jubilee Singers
Mavericks featuring Thad Cockrell
Joanna Smith
Janis Ian
Tim O'Brien
Otis Gibbs
Joni Harms
Stars & Stripes Forever*
Jake Shimabukuro
Jen Chapin
Andrew Bird
Karen Parks
Andy Bey
Jim Lauderdale
Old Crow Medicine Show
Suzy Bogguss
Folk Family Robinson
not in VAT
Scott Kempner
not in VAT
Elizabeth Cook and The Grascals
not in VAT
Devendra Banhart
The Del McCoury Band
Kim Richey
The Dynamites/Charles Walker
Ben Taylor
Anthony David
not in VAT
Martha Wainwright
Matthew Ryan
not in VAT
Bettye LaVette
not in VAT
Gary Heffern/Chris Eckman
not in VAT
not in VAT
Sleep, My Child (Schlof Mayn Kind)*
Judith Edelman/Neilson Hubbard
not in VAT
The Wrights
not in VAT
John Mellencamp

Note 2:  "Young Ladies in Town" is also known as "Address to the Ladies." When you follow the link for the lyrics, you will have to scroll to end of the page (Song 9) to get the lyrics.

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