In 1955, Tex Ritter formed the music publishing firm Vidor Publications Inc. alongside Country Music Hall of Famer Johnny Bond. “Remember the Alamo” became the first song in the company’s catalog and was released as the B-side of “Gunsmoke.”
Though it was never a hit single and did not initially make a big impact on the folk community, the song has been covered by several significant folk and country artists. These artists include The Kingston Trio, Willie Nelson, Asleep at the Wheel, and Johnny Cash, whose version on his Ring of Fire: The Best of Johnny Cash album reached No. 1 in the United States.
Meaning Behind The Song
Written by Texan folk singer and songwriter Jane Bowers, “Remember the Alamo” gives the audience a glimpse of the 180 soldiers on their last days during the Battle of the Alamo — the now-infamous battle that occurred on March 6, 1836.
Several notable figures who fought at the Alamo were also mentioned in the song, including Mexican general Antonio López de Santa Anna, who headed the attack with 4,000 men. Of course, there are the heroes, Texans Jim Bowie, William Barrett Travis, and Davy Crockett — the Alamo commanders who insisted on remaining in place despite being outnumbered. They defended Alamo alongside the nearly 200 Texan defenders.
“Hey, Santa Anna, we’re killing your soldiers below! That men, wherever they go, will remember the Alamo,” it goes. And like most songs by Tex Ritter, it showcased the country icon’s deep, lived-in voice that was a perfect conduit for songs of the Old West.
Revel in one of the best country music classics and listen to “Remember the Alamo” by Tex Ritter by playing the video below. The song indeed holds a torch for the Texans’ efforts against Mexico in creating an independent republic.