John Wayne’s “America, Why I Love Her”

With this being Memorial Day, I thought it best to post something patriotic, and how more patriotic can it get than John Wayne and hit 1973 album, America, Why I Love Her. Not many people know of this album, because “The Duke” was known primarily as an actor, and although this album does not contain any songs, it does feature several patriotic ballads recited by Wayne himself. It was a bestseller in 1973 upon it’s release, and then again in 2001 after the September 11th attacks, when it was re-released and sold more albums than it did when it originally came out.

The following video contains the most-heard track on the album. I posted the lyrics below so you can follow along.

America, Why I Love Her

Lyrics by John Mitchum

Recited by John Wayne

You ask me why I love her? Well, give me time, and I’ll explain…
Have you seen a Kansas sunset or an Arizona rain?
Have you drifted on a bayou down Louisiana way?
Have you watched the cold fog drifting over San Francisco Bay?

Have you heard a Bobwhite calling in the Carolina pines?
Or heard the bellow of a diesel in the Appalachia mines?
Does the call of Niagara thrill you when you hear her waters roar?
Do you look with awe and wonder at a Massachusetts shore…
Where men who braved a hard new world, first stepped on Plymouth Rock?
And do you think of them when you stroll along a New York City dock?

Have you seen a snowflake drifting in the Rockies…way up high?
Have you seen the sun come blazing down from a bright Nevada sky?
Do you hail to the Columbia as she rushes to the sea…
Or bow your head at Gettysburg…in our struggle to be free?

Have you seen the mighty Tetons? …Have you watched an eagle soar?
Have you seen the Mississippi roll along Missouri’s shore?
Have you felt a chill at Michigan, when on a winters day,
Her waters rage along the shore in a thunderous display?
Does the word “Aloha”… make you warm?
Do you stare in disbelief When you see the surf come roaring in at Waimea reef?

From Alaska’s gold to the Everglades…from the Rio Grande to Maine…
My heart cries out… my pulse runs fast at the might of her domain.
You ask me why I love her?… I’ve a million reasons why.
My beautiful America… beneath Gods’ wide, wide sky.



5 thoughts on “John Wayne’s “America, Why I Love Her”

  1. Tim

    I’m nearly 53 years old and this still brings tears to my eyes. I first heard this ballad in 1984 when I was serving over seas in a peacetime military that had just lost over 400 young Marines in an explosion. I bought this tape sometime before that attack and when I heard about the devestation to my comrades, I listened to this tape and openly wept. I knew what The Duke’s reaction would have been. John Wayne only won one oscar for his performances, the academy said that he only had to act in one film, which was “True Grit”. He may not have “acted” as much as the academy thought he should, but, he loved his country MUCH more than the liberals and progressives in Hollywood. I believe that is why he was only nominated and won one oscar. Mr. Wayne, from what I have heard, didn’t show up for nor accept that oscar. GOD bless John Wayne and his family and GOD Bless the U.S.A.!!!

  2. keith bilbrey

    frist of all i know most of us grew up with john wayne – i know i did when i frist heard this album i could not say a word- i had tears runing down my face- now i been around the world and went to war in nam- seen alot of things in my 60 years- but the words ? have away to set in your heart- and they all ways will -he is gone now and left us what he did love the most- that was love this country

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