I’ve Been Everywhere Man!
And now for a little traveling music…
Hank Snow “I’ve Been Everywhere!” (1962) produced by Chet Atkins
performed on the National Life “Grand Ole Opry” in 1965:
“I’ve been everywhere, man/I’ve been everywhere, man/
Crossed the deserts bare, man/I’ve breathed the mountain air, man/
Travel, I’ve had my share, man/I’ve been everywhere!”
“I’ve Been Everywhere“ is a song which was written by Australian country singer Geoff Mack in 1959 and made popular by Lucky Starr in 1962. The song as originally written listed Australian towns. Original singer Lucky Starr released an EP called “Lucky’s Been Everywhere” that contained four different versions: United States, United Kingdom, Australia and New Zealand.
The North American version (with cities in United States and Canada) was sung by Canadian Clarence Eugene “Hank” Snow RIP (May 9, 1914 – December 20, 1999 and he became an American citizen in 1958), “I’ve Been Everywhere” was a number-one country hit in 1962 for “The Singing Ranger”. It was also sung by Australian singer Rolf Harris with English and Scottish cities in 1963 and by John Hore (later known as John Grenell) with New Zealand cities in 1966.
Hank Snow was a gifted songwriter and was elected to the Nashville Songwriters Hall of Fame in 1978, and the Country Music Hall of Fame, the Canadian Music Hall of Fame, and the Nova Scotia Music Hall of Fame in 1979. In Canada, he was voted the top country music performer ten times and inducted into the Canadian Country Music Hall of Fame in 1985. A victim of child abuse, he established the Hank Snow International Foundation For Prevention Of Child Abuse and Neglect in 1976.
NOTE: In 1954 Hank Snow persuaded the directors of the Grand Ole Opry to allow a young Elvis Presley to appear on stage. Snow used Elvis as his opening act and introduced him to Colonel Tom Parker. In August 1955, Snow and Parker formed the management team Hank Snow Attractions and signed a contract with Presley but soon Snow was out and Parker had control of Elvis.
Geoff Mack rewrote the song using an atlas supplied to him by his music publisher. Most of the cities in the U.S. version are located in North America, but two are in Central America (Costa Rica and Panama) and three in South America (Barranquilla, Tocopilla, and Argentina):
- First verse
Reno, Chicago, Fargo, Minnesota, Buffalo, Toronto, Winslow, Sarasota, Wichita, Tulsa, Ottawa, Oklahoma, Tampa, Panama, Mattawa, La Paloma, Bangor, Baltimore, Salvador, Amarillo, Tocopilla, Barranquilla and Padilla.
- Second verse
Boston, Charleston, Dayton, Louisiana, Washington, Houston, Kingston, Texarkana, Monterey, Ferriday, Santa Fe, Tallapoosa, Glen Rock, Black Rock, Little Rock, Oskaloosa, Tennessee, Hennessey, Chicopee, Spirit Lake, Grand Lake, Devils Lake and Crater Lake.
- Third verse
Louisville, Nashville, Knoxville, Ombabika, Schefferville, Jacksonville, Waterville, Costa Rica, Pittsfield, Springfield, Bakersfield, Shreveport, Hackensack, Cadillac, Fond du Lac, Davenport, Idaho, Jellico, Argentina, Diamantina, Pasadena and Catalina.
- Fourth verse
Pittsburgh, Parkersburg, Gravelbourg, Colorado, Ellensburg, Rexburg, Vicksburg, Eldorado, Larimore, Atmore, Haverstraw, Chatanika, Chaska, Nebraska, Alaska, Opelika, Baraboo, Waterloo, Kalamazoo, Kansas City, Sioux City, Cedar City and Dodge City.
The song was covered (and adapted for other countries) by many other artists over the years and most notably the U.S. version was recorded by Johnny Cash for his Grammy winning “Unchained” (Best Country Album) in 1996.
Johnny Cash “I’ve Been Everywhere”
Read the Blog> “Music Makin’ Mama from Memphis” (also by Hank Snow)
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Hank Snow sings “City of New Orleans”
“Good morning America how are ya
Say, don’t you know me, I’m your native son
I’m a train they call the City of New Orleans
I’ll be gone five hundred miles when the day is done…”