Five Songs That Name Drop Amarillo And Aren’t Country Songs
Ask someone not from Amarillo to name a song about Amarillo, and nine times out of ten you're going to get Amarillo By Morning from the king of country, George Strait. After doing some digging, these five songs surfaced as alternatives to coming "...up from San Antone." And they aren't country songs.
Sidebar: Yes, there are several non-country songs about Amarillo. This list is not meant to be a complete representation.
This one has been covered by everyone from John Mayer, the Rolling Stones, and Chuck Berry. How could you sing an ode to America's favorite strip of highway and not mention Amarillo? John Mayer's version of this tune was used for the movie Cars and was nominated for a Grammy. Look for the Amarillo name drop right after Oklahoma City as the song takes us further west.
In this heart breaking little diddy from the Pretenders, a man is presumably taking his daughter west after losing his wife. Leaving behind the old life for a new one amidst heartache is the stage set for the Amarillo name drop. The name drop comes as the Oklahoma sunrise becomes Amarillo dawn.
While lyrically there isn't much to go on outside of Come On, and Drivin'; Amarillo gets the name drop as the destination for this wild ride. A lot of songs list Amarillo as a kind of gateway to the desert, or a place to leave. Two Lane Blacktop makes Amarillo the place to be.
This scandalous one comes from hard rockers Clutch (for the love of God, listen to Profits of Doom if you haven't). An outsider makes his way into town, where his "ways" are not appreciated by the locals. Namely the fact that he makes a move on the G.M. of a Tractor Supply's wife. Look for the Amarillo name drop near the end of the song.
Lincoln Durham often mixes blues and old fashioned rock n' roll with southern-gothic themes to tell tales of the weary and wicked at break neck speeds. This one from Durham hearkens to the days when Tom Waits would drop a truck driving reference in the middle of an album about booze, cigarettes, and late city nights when love goes bad. With a softer touch than some of the other songs on the album, Durham describes the loneliness and heartache attached to life on the road. Amarillo gets the name drop as the gateway to Colorado, and there's even a hat-tip to one of the more famous songs about Amarillo.