American Baby

Album: Stand Up (2005)
Charted: 16

Songfacts®:

  • Matthews wrote this song the day after George W. Bush won re-election for US president in 2004. Matthews did not support Bush, and was encouraging others with his views not to give up hope. He told Rolling Stone: "The inspiration to that song, in part, is that we shouldn't lose sight of ourselves or of what makes this country great while we're fighting over how to defend it."

    "I'm very much in love with this country,” Matthews, who was born in Johannesburg, South Africa, added. "I certainly consider myself liberal, which to me just means that I want to embrace the differences between people, as well as the similarities, because I think that's what makes us spectacular. America has a lot of bitter past and a lot of suffering in a short period of time. It's got a lot of young ghosts and still-open wounds, but there’s a magic in America that I love, and that's one of the reasons I feel so strongly about speaking my mind. I'll fight in my way for America. But I won't fight for everyone's America. If someone else says America is a fundamentalist Christian nation that has to spread democracy through force, that's not the America I want to defend. That's somebody else's version. And I will defend America against that sort of idea. It's a troubling time in this country. But I like baseball, and I like apple pie, and I like double-scoop ice cream. I like jazz, I like rock & roll, and so I love America. I'll fight for it, however unfocused my silly liberal ideas are." >>
    Suggestion credit:
    Donovan Berry - El Dorado, AR
  • DMB already knew they were a great live band, but with Stand Up, they wanted to prove they could be a great studio band, too, so they enlisted Mark Batson - who had helmed Beyonce's solo debut, Dangerously In Love, the year before - as producer. "I have always seen the Dave Matthews Band as a slammin', hard-hitting rock band," Batson told Rolling Stone. "Some people perceive them on record to be smooth, and since I make records that bump and bang, the band felt I might be able to help them capture their vibe. But they also wanted to begin a new era with a new sound. So Stand Up, in a funny kind of way, was like approaching a first album - like an introduction to the twenty-first-century Dave Matthews Band."

    The album was recorded at Haunted Hollow Studio in Charlottesville, Virginia.
  • This evolved from a plucked violin riff from Boyd Tinsley. "I definitely wasn’t thinking that could be the major hook of a song when I was sitting there playing it," he recalled.

Comments: 2

  • Ramblinroyce from TexasThis song is as pertinent now in 2020 as it was in 2005...unfortunately. Actually, it may be even more applicable.
  • Robert from Los Angeles, CaVerry much a political song. I didn't think so at first, but then I read the lyrics. Simply beautiful song. Well written and composed.
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