Memories of the Phonograph

The "Place in a Song" Phenomenon


An Atlas Obscura article in December 2018 asked the question "What's Your Favorite Song About a Place?

In 2001 I wrote my Phonograph Recollection and the "Our Song" phenomenon. The "Our Song" phenomenon has the power of a couple's special song to transport them back to a remembered event and place.

But if you have a favorite song about a place is just hearing the name of that place in the lyrics enough to transport you to that place, i.e., 'what songs just take you there"...?

The following is the Atlas Obscura article about the name of a place in a song where you've been.


What’s Your Favorite Song About a Place?

Tell us about the tunes that capture where you’ve been.

By Eric Grundhauser December 04, 2018

Some songs can really take you places (HOFFNUNGSSCHIMMER/CC BY-SA 2.0)


WHO DOESN’T LOVE THAT MOMENT when you hear the name of a place you’ve been, mentioned in a song? Whether it’s your hometown or just a place you visited once, in the best cases, songs about recognizable places can make you feel like you’re part of a bigger, shared experience.

Myself, I often think of the song “Salt Lake City” by the Beach Boys. Growing up in Salt Lake City, I could never imagine why someone would want to write a song about the city I wanted so badly to get away from. But they mention our local amusement park, Lagoon! And Park City (sort of)! Realizing that these iconic musicians were referencing some of the same places I haunted as a kid made my own experience feel a bit more important. To this day, despite not really liking the Beach Boys, I’ll always listen to that song.

What’s your favorite song about a place? Fill out the form below to tell us about it, and we’ll collect our favorite responses in an upcoming article, complete with a playlist of some the greatest place-based songs of all time. Let us know what songs just take you there (and where “there” actually is).(1)

What's your favorite song about a place?

Who performed it?

What makes the song special to you?




DB Postscript -- Here is an ad for United Airlines that is another kind of "Our Song." In this example the wife hopes that the "Our Song" will become an "Our Place"...and the place doesn't even matter. She just wants to go with him: "Take me along with you My heart will ride..."


1967 United Airlines: Our Song, Take Me Along print ad







(1) Atlas Obscura article with form for submitting favorite "Place" song