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These 15 Songs About Idaho Will Touch Your Soul Today

This may come as a surprise, but there aren’t too many songs out there written about our wonderful state. What’s up with that? But apparently everyone’s exes live in Texas, or something like that. Fortunately, we were still able to dig up 15 tunes that capture the spirit of Idaho in their own unique way. Have a listen!

1. “Idaho” – Reckless Kelly

This popular alternative country group made every Idahoan heart melt with this song.

2. “Idaho” – Feeder

Feeder is a British (Welsh) rock band that has been cranking out hits since 1992. “Idaho” is a heartfelt acoustic-style track on their latest album, Generation Freakshow.

3. “Private Idaho” – The B-52s


If nothing else, you know The B-52’s by their iconic single “Love Shack,” which has been remixed and parodied in dozens of movies since it hit airwaves in 1989. Their call-and-response summer groove style is just awesome to listen to!

4. “Idaho” – Buddy Rich and Gene Krupa

Light, swinging, and featuring two of jazz music’s greatest drummers, “Idaho” features the sassy sounds of Willie Smith on the alto sax floating easily over the drum battle carrying on in the background.

5. “Idaho” – Yonder Mountain String Band

“This place has captured me, wild flowers I can see. There ain’t no place I’d rather be.” Don’t you agree?

6. “Idaho” – Train


Texas is a scary place. Florida will probably kill you (if the tourists don’t, first), but Idaho is where it’s at according to Train. And who am I to disagree?

7. “Meet Me in McCall” – Brenn Hill


McCall is beautiful in the fall, as Brenn Hill says. But it’s pretty stellar in the winter too! And spring… and summer…

8. “Idaho (Where I’m From)” – Equaleyes

This peppy tune reminds us that no matter where we move to, Idaho will always be home.

9. “Idaho” – The BoDeans

A Rock and Roll Hall of Fame band comprised of “blue collar kids straight out of the heartland,” the BoDeans capture the sound of Idaho in this song despite being from Wisconsin.

10. “Idaho” – Ray Anthony & His Orchestra


The last surviving member of the Glenn Miller orchestra and said to be the original composer behind the Hokey Pokey (no joke), Ray Anthony’s Orchestra made numerous headlines in the 50s.

11. “Idaho” – Frankie Valli and the Four Seasons


Repeatedly named as the most popular vocal group in the world before the Beatles, The Four Seasons are one of the best-selling groups of all time. “Lovely Idaho” is right!

12. “Nowhere in Idaho” – Rednex


While “Idaho” never became nearly as popular as their hit “Cotton Eye Joe,” there’s no doubt that this Swedish bluegrass band is catchy.

13. “Idaho” – Josh Ritter


Josh Ritter was actually born and raised in Moscow, so you can bet that this soulful tune came straight form the heart.

14. “Idaho State Fair” – Johnny Granger


Circa 1951 and labelled New Zealand’s “Yodelling Drover,” Johnny Granger was a true singing cowboy, though it doesn’t appear that this country gent ever made it to Idaho. But what he lacks in experience, he makes up for with yodelling gusto.

15. “What’s Your Name” – Lynyrd Skynyrd

Okay, so this song isn’t technically about Idaho. But when Lynyrd Skynyrd references Boise, the world listens. As it turns out, the original first line of this song was changed from, “It’s 8 o’clock and boys it’s time to go” after lead singer Ronnie Van Zant found out his brother, Donnie, was opening his first national tour with his band .38 Special in Boise. Aww.

BONUS: “Here We Have Idaho” (State Song) – Performed by Rick Pickren

Originally titled “Garden of Paradise,” the 1915 music you know and love went through a number of verse additions over the years before it was officially labeled Idaho’s state song in 1931.

 

What do you think? Are any of these going to be on your next road trip playlist? Are there any other songs out there inspired by the Gem State?

Jennifer
Super-rad musician, scholar, and cat enthusiast who digs Idaho sunsets and spontaneous nature walks. When not basking in Idaho's awesomeness for Only In Your State, you can find me lovingly concocting environmental goodness at TheBlueReview.org.