Industry Reads

35 Top America Songs for July 4th

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From celebratory to critical, these tracks were inspired by the U.S. of A.

It is impossible to live in any of the 50 states in the U.S.A. and not know about schoolhouse classics like “The Star-Spangled Banner” and “This Land Is Your Land,” but those famous odes aren’t the only way to give a musical shout-out to America. Far from it — songs about America have been gracing the Billboard Hot 100 since it began in 1958.

In fact, since the country’s inception in 1776, artists have been tackling the complexities of living life under the stars and stripes with songs that both trumpet and deconstruct the concept of the American dream. Just as there’s a lot to be said in the country’s favor – the diverse cities, beautiful scenery, advancements in technology, culture and of course, music – there’s also a lot to be improved upon, as several of these musicians point out. Political divides, prejudice and poverty are unfortunately ever-present in the land of the free and the home of the brave, but hey, at least we’re free to talk – or sing – about what we need to do to fix it.

No matter your stance on the current state of things, there’s no shame in being proud of where you come from while simultaneously seeking change. Even that, in itself, is a deeply American value that we can all celebrate this July 4th.

So, in honor of the U.S.’s birthday, Billboard has hand-selected 35 songs talking about this big, great, complicated country of ours in their own special ways — from the critical (Bruce Springsteen’s “Born in the U.S.A.”) to the full-on celebratory (Miley Cyrus’s “Party in the U.S.A.”).

Find your next July 4th anthem below.

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