Tag Archives: Arlo Guthrie

City of New Orleans – Song Lyric Sunday – City/State/Country

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City of New Orleans – Song Lyric Sunday – City/State/Country

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For SLS today we have songs that feature ‘city/country/town/state/county’. Thanks, Jim!

To join in this fun weekly challenge, and to see other entries, just click the link below.

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https://jimadamsauthordotcom.wordpress.com/2021/05/29/it-takes-a-village/

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There are a lot of songs to choose from for this prompt. I always liked this one. It does mention some cities, and America, and even the train is named the City of New Orleans.

It has been recorded by several other artists, including the original songwriter’s, and even Willie Nelson did a cover.

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From a Wiki article:

City of New Orleans” is a country folk song written by Steve Goodman (and first recorded for Goodman’s self-titled 1971 album), describing a train ride from Chicago to New Orleans on the Illinois Central Railroad‘s City of New Orleans in bittersweet and nostalgic terms.

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More info on how this song came to be written can be found on ‘Song Facts’ – https://www.songfacts.com/facts/arlo-guthrie/city-of-new-orleans

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“City of New Orleans”, by Arlo Guthrie, was released in 1972 on his album, “Hobo’s Lullaby”. It was written by Steve Goodman, and is on the Reprise label.

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Riding on the City of New Orleans
Illinois Central Monday morning rail
Fifteen cars and fifteen restless riders
Three conductors and twenty-five sacks of mail
All along the southbound odyssey
The train pulls out at Kankakee
Rolls along past houses, farms and fields
Passin’ trains that have no name
Freight yards full of old black men
And the graveyards of the rusted automobiles
Good morning America how are you?
Say, don’t you know me? I’m your native son
I’m the train they call the City of New Orleans
I’ll be gone five hundred miles when the day is done
Dealin’ card games with the old men in the club car
Penny a point ain’t no one keepin’ score
Pass the paper bag that holds the bottle
Feel the wheels rumblin’ ‘neath the floor
And the sons of pullman porters
And the sons of engineers
Ride their father’s magic carpets made of steel
Mothers with their babes asleep
Are rockin’ to the gentle beat
And the rhythm of the rails is all they feel
Good morning America how are you?
Say, don’t you know me? I’m your native son
I’m the train they call the City of New Orleans
I’ll be gone five hundred miles when the day is done
Nighttime on the City of New Orleans
Changing cars in Memphis, Tennessee
Half way home, we’ll be there by morning
Through the Mississippi darkness
Rolling down to the sea
But all the towns and people seem
To fade into a bad dream
And the steel rail still ain’t heard the news
The conductor sings his songs again
The passengers will please refrain
This train got the disappearing railroad blues
Good night, America, how are you?
Say, don’t you know me? I’m your native son
I’m the train they call the City of New Orleans
I’ll be gone five hundred miles when the day is done
Source: Musixmatch
Songwriters: Steve Goodman
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