John Denver: ‘Take Me Home, Country Roads’



Denver wrote this song with his friends Bill and Taffy Danoff, who were married at the time (Taffy later became Taffy Nivert). Denver was in Washington, DC to perform with the Danoffs, and after the show they went back to the couple’s home where they played him what they had of this song (John almost didn’t make it – he got in a car accident on the way over and was taken to a hospital for a thumb injury).

PLAY THIS FUN GAME

PLAY GAME

Denver helped them complete the song, and the next night they sang it together on stage. Denver knew he had a hit song on his hands, and brought the Danoffs to New York where they recorded the song together – you can hear Bill and Taffy on background vocals.


TakeMeHomeCountryRoads-Music2

Almost heaven, West Virginia
Blue Ridge Mountains
Shenandoah River,
Life is old there
Older than the trees
Younger than the mountains
Blowin’ like the breeze

Country roads, take me home
To the place I belong
West Virginia, mountain momma
Take me home, country roads

All my memories gathered ’round her
Miner’s lady, stranger to blue water
Dark and dusty, painted on the sky
Misty taste of moonshine
Teardrops in my eye

Country roads, take me home
To the place I belong
West Virginia, mountain momma
Take me home, country roads

I hear her voice
In the mornin’ hour she calls me
The radio reminds me of my home far away
And drivin’ down the road I get a feelin’
That I should have been home yesterday, yesterday

Country roads, take me home
To the place I belong
West Virginia, mountain momma
Take me home, country roads

Country roads, take me home
To the place I belong
West Virginia, mountain momma
Take me home, country roads

Take me home, now country roads
Take me home, now country roads

(source songfacts.com)
Writer/s: BILL DANOFF, JOHN DENVER, TAFFY DANOFF, TAFFY NIVERT, TAFFY NIVERT DANOFF, WILLIAM THOMAS DANOFF
Publisher: Sony/ATV Music Publishing LLC, Reservoir One Music
Lyrics licensed and provided by LyricFind

**Special Note: The Country Roads in this song are in West Virginia, but Denver had never even been to West Virginia. Bill and Taffy Danoff started writing the song while driving to Maryland – they’d never been to West Virginia either! Danoff got his inspiration from postcards sent to him by a friend who DID live there, and from listening to the powerful AM station WWVA out of Wheeling, West Virginia, which he picked up in Massachusetts when he was growing up.

ALSO READ & SING:

You’ll Love This John Denver Tune BUT Be Warned, You Won’t Be Able To Find It On CD’s!
John Denver: Annie’s Song
John Denver: “Back Home Again”
John Denver: “Sweet Surrender”

 


What do you think?

Comments

  1. The song “Country Roads” was written about a town in West Virginia that was called HEAVEN, West Virginia! The name was changed later on to COOL RIDGE, West Virginia which is how it stands now! This info. was related to me by friends that are residents there now, and were there back when it was HEAVEN!

    • If you want to believe that, it is up to you. They don’t say heaven, WVa , it says almost heaven as in describing the state. I can also find no mention by google that there was ever a town named Heaven or that Cool Ridge changed its name from Heaven to Cool Ridge

  2. I wondered whose voice it was I was always signing along with on harmony! Thank you for telling this story!

  3. My grandmother was a WV native from the Gasaway area, and she died when she was 99 years old in a nursing home in FLA. She requested that Country Roads be played at her funeral, so that is what we did!

    • My father was born and raised in West Virginia. We played this song at his funeral in 2005, for it brought back good memories of life with him. I still cry when I listen to it.

      • Sorry for your loss ! I to am a native of West Virginia ! I Truely love this mountain state ! Yes that song brings tears to my eyes also ! So glad you played this song for him ! It is a great song !

  4. As far as I recall from my visits, the Blue Ridge Mountains and the Shenandoah Valley are for the most part not in West Virginia at all, but in the western part of the State of Virginia.

    • you are so right >We do not have any Shanandoah Mountains or Blue Ridge Mountains. They are part of Virginia. Outsiders do not know the difference between West Virginia and Virginia.We still clumped together as one State, Virgginia. But He thought it was West Virginia.
      +

      • Afraid not, J Brown. The Blue Ridge Mountains run along the Eastern side of the Shanandoah Valley in Western part of Virginia…not West Virginia. The Shanandoah River is also 100% in Virginia. My suspicion is that the Danoff’s were traveling North in the Shanandoah Valley on their way to Maryland when the song was written and they thought they were in WV.

        If you’ve never been in that part of the country, you should plan a trip in mid-October and take a camera. You will immediately understand why it inspires us to sing its praises!

        • As a lifetime local of this area i’m curious to know if the Shenandoah river compiles a small part of the border of WV & Va then how is it 100% in VA?? It’s a shared river between the two states. Harpers Ferry is an area where the Shenandoah river and the Potomac river converge. It’s also an area where the Blue Ridge mountains meet the Appalachian Mountains. When John sings about the “Blue Ridge Mountains and Shenandoah river” this is what he is talking about. I was a Interpretive Park Ranger at Harpers Ferry National Park many years ago and it was told to us when the author of the song was writing it he was sitting on a mountain ridge (Maryland Heights) over looking the town of Harpers Ferry and the confluence of the two rivers (which also has you looking at (3) different states consisting on MD, WV & VA) which has him in the Blue Ridge Mountains looking at the Shenandoah river.

    • It says Shenandoah RIVER which runs through my home state of West Virginia in the Harper’s Ferry, WV area. The mountains have a dark blue tint over them at high elevations… & The Blue Ridge Mountain Range travels along T he eastern part of the state all the way South to Georgia… Not just in old Virginia.

    • It says Shenandoah RIVER which runs through my home state of West Virginia in the Harper’s Ferry, WV area. The mountains have a dark blue tint over them at high elevations… & The Blue Ridge Mountain Range travels along the eastern part of the state all the way South to Georgia… Not just in old Virginia.

    • Shenandoah River is in West Virginia and so is part of the Blue Ridge mountains. I know. Drive along the river and look at the mountains frequently. Born and raised here in West Virginia.

  5. I always sing that song “Country Roads” even as a kid because I never was a city boy I’ve always loved the mountain states and country my first taste of the sweet old country life was in a small town in the country of Vermont

  6. Years ago I would go to my sister’s house to help during the summer. They had the album and I loved listening to his music.

  7. Both the Shenandoah Valley and the Blue Ridge Mountains are part of the Eastern Panhandle of WV. Who ever said they were not part of this state is wrong. The Shenandoah River meets the Potomac River in Harper’s Ferry, WV. There are 3 states at that point. West Virginia, Virginia and Maryland. I live in the Eastern Panhandle of the state.

    • You are so right. I always heard that the Danoff’s were in Harpers Ferry at the peak where you can see for miles. They saw the Shenandoah, the Blue Ridge Mts. and continued their journey after they were inspired to write the song. It’s a safe bet that they have photos of the scene.

  8. John Denver was in West Virginia. He sang the song at the opening of the then new football stadium. Boy do I rember. It was the same day my second daughter was born. The ride to Mon General was something else.

  9. Growing up in WV I knew I lived in a. special place
    I love WV
    Always will
    Beautiful
    Wild Wonderful
    Almost Heaven !!

  10. The Song of my Gloria and me .
    Wait me in paradise where you are a angel with angels. I love you forever <3

  11. La canzone che ci accompagnò sempre in 16 anni di quell’amicizia -amore che mai più avrò e vivrò. Gloria, ti amai tantissimo e ti amerò per sempre. Arriverò presto da te che sei angelo tra gli angeli e vivremo ciò che la vita ci tolse <3

  12. My husband was born in the U.K. But lived in Morgantown Wva, because his dad taught at the university, we got married , moved back to the UK ,we have been back quite a few times with our 3 children, we still have many friends there, my husband passed away in April 16, due to a very aggressive cancer , he wanted it played at his funeral, which we did , it is like our family national anthem,Almost heaven West Virginia x

  13. Years ago we took our children to WV every year for a week or 2, then felt “homesick” for the beautiful state until next vacation time. Thirteen years ago, with family grown, we retired to Almost Heaven, where we fulfilled our dream of living in the woods on top of a ridge in the Mountain State. Clean air, beautiful scenery, easy-going life, nice folks, abundant wildlife – who could ask for anything more?

  14. I am born and raised up in big city and live my life in city till now…. I love traveling and country life fascinates me since I am a little girl… I love country songs a lot, especially this song, it moved me to tears whenever I hear it…

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