Girish Mahajan (Editor)

Song for America (song)

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Released  1975
Genre  Progressive Rock
Writer(s)  Kerry Livgren
Recorded  1974
Label  Kirshner
Length  10:03 (Album version) 9:08 (The Best of Kansas version) 3:02 (Single edit)

"Song for America" is the title track from the second album of American progressive rock band, Kansas. It was written by guitarist/keyboardist Kerry Livgren during the period of heavy touring for their first album. The song was released on their 1975 album Song for America, and later released as the band's third single, although it did not chart. It is known for its symphonic structure, and its lyrics showing America's state before and after colonization. It appears on most of their live albums and DVDs. The song is one of Kansas' biggest hits from their period of obscurity, appearing on most of their greatest hits and live albums.

Contents

Structure

The song begins with a 3-minute instrumental overture. It is dominated by keyboards, violin, and bass. It has a symphonic structure. About halfway through the song, there is an extended instrumental section in 9/16 time. The final section of the instrumental overture closes the song, over 10 minutes long. The single version of the song had most of the instrumental parts edited out, and is cut down to three minutes.

Live versions

Several live versions of the song have been recorded. One is featured on the live Two for the Show, that has a piano solo near the end edited out. Kansas also plays it on their new live CD/DVD There's Know Place Like Home with the Washburn symphony orchestra.

Personnel

  • Kerry Livgren – piano, Moog synthesizer, ARP strings
  • Steve Walsh – organ, ARP synthesizer, lead vocals
  • Robby Steinhardt – violin, vocals
  • Dave Hope – bass
  • Phil Ehart – drums, glockenspiel
  • Rich Williams – acoustic and electric guitars
  • References

    Song for America (song) Wikipedia


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