Table of Contents
- 1. “Rock ‘n’ Roll is Alive (And It Lives in Minneapolis)” by Prince
- 2. “Walls of Red Wing” by Bob Dylan
- 3.“Good Old Days” by Macklemore & Ryan Lewis
- 4. “Big River” by Johnny Cash
- 5. “Duluth” by Trampled By Turtles
- 6. “The Biggest Ball of Twine in Minnesota” by Weird Al Yankovic
- 7. “Say Shh” by Atmosphere
- 8. “Minnesota Girl” by Green Day
- 9. “Skyway” by The Replacements
- 10. “Minnesota” by Lil Yachty
Minnesota, a state in the Midwestern region of the United States, has inspired numerous songs over the years. From Bob Dylan’s early years to Prince’s iconic career, many musicians have written and sung about their experiences in Minnesota. Here are ten of the best songs about Minnesota:”Like a Rolling Stone” by Bob Dylan: This song, considered one of the greatest in rock history, was written by Bob Dylan while he was living in Dinkytown, a neighborhood near the University of Minnesota campus.”Purple Rain” by Prince: This song, along with the album of the same name, helped to establish Prince as a musical icon. The song’s lyrics reference the “purple rain” that falls in Minnesota.”Prairie Home Companion Theme” by Garrison Keillor: This catchy tune is the theme song for the popular radio show A Prairie Home Companion, which originated in Minnesota.”Skyway” by The Replacements: This song pays tribute to the Skyway, a system of enclosed pedestrian bridges that connect buildings in downtown Minneapolis.”Funky Town” by Lipps Inc.: This 1980s disco hit was written and recorded in Minneapolis.”Paisley Park” by Prince: This song is named after Prince’s famous recording studio, located in Chanhassen, Minnesota.”Minneapolis” by Lucinda Williams: This song is a melancholy tribute to Minneapolis, written by the acclaimed singer-songwriter Lucinda Williams.”The Lonesome Death of Hattie Carroll” by Bob Dylan: This protest song, written by Dylan in 1964, tells the story of the murder of a black hotel worker in Baltimore, but references the murder of a black man by a Minneapolis police officer around the same time.”Positively 4th Street” by Bob Dylan: Another classic Dylan song, this one was written after he had moved to New York City, but references his time in Minnesota.”Calliope” by The Jayhawks: This haunting ballad, written by the alt-country band The Jayhawks, is about a circus that visited Minneapolis in the early 1900s.These songs, in different ways, capture the spirit of Minnesota and its people, from the Twin Cities to the rural areas of the state. They provide a musical tribute to the state’s rich history and culture, and continue to inspire new generations of musicians and listeners.
1. “Rock ‘n’ Roll is Alive (And It Lives in Minneapolis)” by Prince
“Rock ‘n’ Roll is Alive (And It Lives in Minneapolis)” by Prince is a lively and energetic song that celebrates the rock and roll scene in Minneapolis. Prince, a Minneapolis native, sings about the city’s thriving music scene and the importance of rock and roll music. The song has a catchy melody, funky guitar riffs, and Prince’s signature high-pitched vocals. The lyrics of the song are filled with references to other musicians and bands from Minneapolis, including The Replacements and Hüsker Dü, and pays tribute to the city’s vibrant music culture.
2. “Walls of Red Wing” by Bob Dylan
Walls of Red Wing” is a classic folk song written and performed by Bob Dylan. It was first released in 1963 on his second studio album, “The Freewheelin’ Bob Dylan.” The song tells the story of a young man who is sent to the Red Wing Correctional Facility, a maximum-security prison in Minnesota. Dylan’s haunting lyrics describe the bleak and oppressive conditions of the prison, including the high walls that surround it and the guards who keep watch over the inmates.The song’s melancholic melody and Dylan’s signature raspy voice create a somber and haunting atmosphere that effectively conveys the despair and hopelessness of life behind bars. The lyrics also touch on themes of powerlessness, injustice, and the dehumanizing effects of the prison system.Despite its specific references to Red Wing, the song’s message about the cruelty and injustice of the prison system remains relevant today. The song has been covered by many other artists over the years, and its enduring popularity speaks to its lasting impact and universal appeal.
Overall, “Walls of Red Wing” is a powerful and poignant piece of music that continues to resonate with listeners more than five decades after its initial release.
3.“Good Old Days” by Macklemore & Ryan Lewis
“Good Old Days” by Macklemore & Ryan Lewis is a nostalgic song that reflects on the past and the passage of time. The song has a slow, melodic beat and features Macklemore’s reflective and introspective rapping. The lyrics of the song encourage listeners to appreciate the present moment and not take life for granted. The song also features Kesha’s vocals, adding a layer of emotion and nostalgia to the track. Overall, the song is a poignant reflection on the fleeting nature of life and the importance of cherishing the good times.
4. “Big River” by Johnny Cash
“Big River” by Johnny Cash is a classic country song that tells the story of a man traveling down the Mississippi River in search of love. The song has a lively tempo and Cash’s deep, distinctive voice adds a sense of urgency to the lyrics. The song is filled with vivid imagery of life on the river, including the sights and sounds of the steamboats and the people who live and work along the waterway. The song’s simple yet powerful message of searching for love and redemption is a common theme in many of Cash’s songs.
5. “Duluth” by Trampled By Turtles
“Duluth” is a folk-inspired song by Trampled By Turtles, an American indie-folk band formed in Duluth, Minnesota. Released in 2007, the song pays homage to the band’s hometown and showcases their signature blend of traditional bluegrass and modern indie-rock elements.The song’s lyrics paint a vivid picture of Duluth’s natural beauty, from the shores of Lake Superior to the hills and forests surrounding the city. The melancholic melody and wistful vocals capture the bittersweet nostalgia of looking back on one’s hometown with fondness and longing.
Despite its specific references to Duluth, the song’s themes of nostalgia, longing, and the complexities of hometown pride are universal. The band’s tight harmonies, intricate instrumentation, and dynamic energy make “Duluth” a standout track in their catalog and a beloved anthem for Duluthians and fans of Americana music alike.
6. “The Biggest Ball of Twine in Minnesota” by Weird Al Yankovic
“The Biggest Ball of Twine in Minnesota” by Weird Al Yankovic is a humorous and quirky ode to a bizarre roadside attraction in Darwin, Minnesota. The song’s melody is catchy and upbeat, with Yankovic’s signature accordion playing a prominent role. The lyrics of the song are filled with absurd imagery and tongue-in-cheek humor, describing the ball of twine as a wonder of the world and poking fun at the eccentricities of American culture. Despite its lighthearted tone, the song also touches on the universal human desire for adventure and discovery.
7. “Say Shh” by Atmosphere
“Say Shh” by Atmosphere is a thought-provoking and introspective song that explores the importance of silence and reflection. The song’s haunting melody is driven by a melancholic piano riff and Slug’s introspective rapping. The lyrics of the song encourage listeners to take a step back from the noise and chaos of everyday life and find solace in quiet contemplation. Slug’s reflective rhymes touch on themes of self-discovery, anxiety, and the search for meaning in a world that often feels overwhelming. The song’s powerful message of the importance of silence and self-reflection is a reminder to listeners to take a moment to slow down, breathe, and appreciate the beauty of the world around them.
8. “Minnesota Girl” by Green Day
“Minnesota Girl” by Green Day is a punk rock anthem that celebrates the spirit and independence of a girl from Minnesota. The song’s high-energy melody is driven by loud guitars and pounding drums, while Billie Joe Armstrong’s snarling vocals add a sense of urgency and rebellion to the lyrics. The song’s chorus is an ode to the free-spirited nature of the titular “Minnesota girl,” who refuses to be held back by societal norms or expectations. The song’s message of empowerment and individualism is a tribute to the punk rock ethos of doing things your own way, no matter what anyone else thinks.
9. “Skyway” by The Replacements
“Skyway” by The Replacements is a melancholic and bittersweet ballad that tells the story of a lost love affair. The song’s slow, dreamy melody is driven by gentle guitar and piano, while Paul Westerberg’s wistful vocals convey a sense of longing and regret. The song’s lyrics describe a couple who once walked the “skyway” – a pedestrian bridge in downtown Minneapolis – together, but have since gone their separate ways. The song’s chorus is a heartbreaking plea for the couple to reunite, with Westerberg singing, “Please come to me, with a dream in your eye.” The song’s poignant message of lost love and the search for connection resonates with listeners who have experienced the pain of a broken relationship.
10. “Minnesota” by Lil Yachty
“Minnesota” is a catchy and upbeat hip-hop track by American rapper Lil Yachty. The song, which was released in 2016, is named after the state in the Midwestern United States, but the lyrics don’t really have much to do with Minnesota itself.The song features Lil Yachty’s signature playful and melodic flow, with lyrics that mostly revolve around his success and his extravagant lifestyle. The chorus, which is probably the most memorable part of the song, is a repetitive and infectious chant that goes “Cold like Minnesota, cold like Minnesota.” The track is also notable for its use of a sample from the 1997 cult classic film “Austin Powers: International Man of Mystery.”The music video for “Minnesota” features Lil Yachty and his crew partying in a luxurious mansion, surrounded by beautiful women and expensive cars. The video is shot in a colorful and vibrant style, reflecting Lil Yachty’s playful personality and unique fashion sense.
Overall, “Minnesota” is a fun and lighthearted hip-hop track that showcases Lil Yachty’s unique style and personality. While the lyrics may not be particularly deep or meaningful, the song is sure to get you moving and singing along to its catchy chorus.