Brooks & Dunn/youtube.com

Released in June 2001, “Only in America” is a song recorded by American country music duo Brooks & Dunn. It was the second single from their album, Steers & Stripes.

One-half of the duo, Kix Brooks co-wrote the song with Don Cook and Ronnie Rogers, although it features Ronnie Dunn on lead vocals. Reaching its peak on the Billboard Hot Country Singles & Tracks charts for the week, “Only in America” was also the second of three consecutive Number One hits from that album in 2001.

Moreover, the song’s lyrics outline the lives of various people across the United States — a school bus driver and her bus full of children in the first verse, and a pair of newlyweds (a ‘welder’s son and a banker’s daughter’) in their limousine in the second verse — before observing in the chorus that “only in America” do such people “get to dream as big as [they] want to.

A patriotic song

Although the song was recorded and released several months before the September 11, 2001, terrorist attacks, Brooks feels that the song got grouped in with other. Similarly, other patriotic songs were released in response to the attacks. In addition, the song was also featured at the beginning of the Oliver Stone film World Trade Center.

Rolling Stone reviewer Andrew Dansby described the song was an “advertisement waiting to happen.” Chris Neal of Country Weekly called the song a “flag-waving opener” to Steers & Stripes, but nonetheless made note of the song’s “rock-solid riff.

Used as a campaign song

Only in America” was used extensively during president George W. Bush’s successful 2004 re-election campaign. Extensively used on the Campaign trailJohn Kerry also had it played at the Democratic National Convention in 2004.

In addition, the song played when Barack Obama announced Joe Biden as his vice president in Illinois in 2008. Also, it was featured after Democratic presidential candidate Obama’s acceptance speech in Denver on August 28, 2008. It has been used at campaign events in Obama’s 2012 reelection campaign.

Only in America” has been used often in campaign events for Newt Gingrich. It was in 2012 when he bid to receive the Republican Presidential Nomination. Moreover, Scott Walker used the song after his first speech when he survived a gubernatorial recall on June 5, 2012. Mitt Romney also uses the song in many of his political rallies. When Ted Cruz dropped out of the 2016 primaries, he closed his announcement with this song. Towards the end of the 2016 election, the Republican nominee, Donald Trump used the song for various rallies.

Indeed, the lyrics of the song clearly show patriotism, so, here it is…

Sun coming’ up over New York City
School bus driver in a traffic jam
Staring out at the faces in a rear view mirror
Lookin’ at the promise of the Promised Land

One kid dreams of fame and fortune
One kid helps pay the rent
One could end up going to prison
One just might be president

Only in America
Dreamin’ in red white and blue
Only in America
Where we dream as big as we want to

We all get a chance
Everybody gets to dance
Only in America

Sun goin’ down on an LA freeway
Newly weds in the back of a limosine
A welder’s son and a banker’s daughter
All they want is every thing

She came out here to be an actress
He was a singer in a band
They might just go back to Oklahoma
And talk about the stars they could have been

Only in America
Dreamin’ in red white and blue
Only in America
Where we dream as big as we want to

We all get a chance
Everybody gets to dance
Only in America

Only in America
Dreamin’ in red white and blue
Only in America
Where we dream as big as we want to

We all get a chance
Everybody gets to dance
Only in America

Yeah Only in America

Only in America

Where we dream in red white and blue
Yeah we dream as big as we want to

Only in America

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