Album: Guitar Town (1986)


  • This song is sung from the perspective of a young man who wants to escape his town. It's a very American sentiment, as the country has so much opportunity, but many people lack the means to ever leave their small towns. The character in this story has a brother who got out by earning a football scholarship, but he is stuck working at the gas station and dreams of one day driving away in his Chevy.

    The song is similar in theme to many of Bruce Springsteen's compositions, including "Racing In The Street," and the Muppets classic "Rainbow Connection," where Kermit dreams of leaving the swamp - Steve Earle even uses the rainbow image in the line, "I wanna know what's over that rainbow." >>
    Suggestion credit:
    Dan - Saint Paul, MN

Comments: 3

  • Jay from Fairban, NeLeo: I agree and disagree. Im an American who lived in towns quite like this. There are no homeless children in vacant lots. And Earles not mad. Just bored, ready for change. Theres no anger here, and the town aint half bad. Just small, not alot of opportunity, maybe some crappy manufacturing plant to work at, maybe the same girl you have dated since the 6th grade, maybe the same sad drunk men sitting on the same broken down porch. Earle is looking at these outta state plates thinking, "I gatta go" but not because the town is in shambles, just because its all he knows, and he wants to know more.
  • Ross from Offaly, Irelandreally one of earles best songs, great song
  • Leo from Westminster 1, MdIn Steve Earle's Active Rock hit Someday, I see images of an America where opportunity does not exist. In the song, we see country stores that have been abandoned, gas stations on the interstate, vacant lots homeless children and an overall sadness on the people's faces with nothing to look forward to even in the Obama Age. In the Rock Song, we see Steve "working at the filling station on the interstate/Pumping gasoline/Counting out-of-state plates...They don't even know if there's a town around here Steven is taking his life ib his own hands. To hell with any consequence, Earle is mad as hell and can't take it anymore-he wants to leave and with his Chevrolet muscle car, Earle ain't never looking back. Brilliant sONG!!
see more comments

Editor's Picks

SugarlandSongwriter Interviews

Meet the "sassy basket" with the biggest voice in country music.

Dave Pirner of Soul AsylumSongwriter Interviews

Dave explains how the video appropriated the meaning of "Runaway Train," and what he thought of getting parodied by Weird Al.

Mick Jones of ForeignerSongwriter Interviews

Foreigner's songwriter/guitarist tells the stories behind the songs "Juke Box Hero," "I Want To Know What Love Is," and many more.

Grateful Dead CharactersMusic Quiz

Many unusual folks appear in Grateful Dead songs. Can you identify them?

Top American Idol Moments: Songs And ScandalsSong Writing

Surprise exits, a catfight and some very memorable performances make our list of the most memorable Idol moments.

Who Did It First?Music Quiz

Do you know who recorded the original versions of these ten hit songs?