Top ten country songs about farming -- ahead of Farm Aid this weekend
|Photo courtesy of farmaid.org|
In 1985, Willie Nelson, John Mellencamp and Neil Young organized the first Farm Aid benefit concert in Champaign, Illinois, inspired in part by Bob Dylan's comments at the earlier Live Aid benefit that he'd hoped some of the money raised could go to Americans in danger of losing their farms to foreclosure. Farm Aid has raised over $40 million to date to foster a family farm system of agriculture. This year's event is being held on Saturday in Hershey, Pennsylvania, and features organizers Nelson, Mellencamp, Young and Dave Matthews, along with Kenny Chesney, Grace Potter & the Nocturnals, Jamey Johnson, and more.
In Farm Aid's honor, here are ten country songs that pay respect to farming. Don't be scared -- we left John Denver out of this one... though another John D. does show up once or twice.
10. Alabama - "Song of the South"
Country greats Alabama played the first two Farm Aid concerts back in '85 and '86, though their ode to a bygone era of farming wasn't released until late 1988.
Notable lyric:"Well somebody told us Wall Street fell, but we were so poor that we couldn't tell. Cotton was short and the weeds were tall, but Mr. Roosevelt's was gonna save us all."
9. Cadillac Ranch - Chris LeDoux
Alabama's failed farm family moves to town, gets a job and buys a warshin' machine. Chris LeDoux's on the other hand? They become slightly more entrepreneurial. We like where this one ends up because seriously... who wants to pitch hay when they can get drunk in the barn?
Notable lyric: "There's a bar in the barn and the place stays packed 'til the cows come home at the Cadillac Ranch."
8. Tom T. Hall - "Who's Gonna Feed Them Hogs"
Hog farmin' ain't easy, and Tom T. Hall asks an age-old question.
Notable lyric: "Four hundred hogs, they just standin' out there. My wife can't feed 'em and my neighbors don't care. They can't get out and roam around like my old huntin' dogs. Here I am in this dang bed and who's gonna feed them hogs?"