Songfacts®: You can leave comments about the song at the bottom of the page.
America was formed in England by sons of US servicemen who were stationed there. Lead singer Dewey Bunnell wrote this when he was 19. Although the song is commonly misinterpreted about being on drugs, it is not: Bunnell based the images in the lyrics on things he saw while visiting the US.
This was originally titled "Desert Song." (thanks, Dave - Phoenix, AZ)
This was the first single for America. They moved to the US a year later, after this became a hit.
Many people thought this was Neil Young when they heard it. It replaced Young's "Heart Of Gold" at #1 in the US.
"Horse" is slang for heroin. Some radio stations refused to play this because they thought it was about drugs. The band claims it is not.
This appears on a fifth-season episode of Friends called "The One With Joey's Big Break." In it, Joey and Chandler go on a road trip to Las Vegas (hence, "through the desert"). (thanks, Brett - Edmonton, Canada)
Pete produced Dwight Yoakam, Michelle Shocked, Meat Puppets, and a very memorable track for Roy Orbison.
Charlie Benante of Anthrax
The drummer for Anthrax is also a key songwriter. He explains how the group puts their songs together and tells the stories behind some of their classics.
One of the most popular classical vocalists in the land is lining up a trip to space, which is the inspiration for many of her songs.