For today’s song, I would like to feature my favorite CCR song. I would call CCR my third favorite group of all time behind the Beatles and the Doors. I think this song is the perfect mixture of country and blues. I just love it. Unfortunately, it is a B-side song and was overshadowed by some much more popular CCR songs on the album like Bad Moon Risen’. Well, I am taking the sheets off the song.
If you really listen to the lyrics, it can mean a lot of things to a lot of different people. Later in this blog, John Fogerty tells why he wrote it. The beauty is that it can mean something different to every different person and that is totally cool.
You know how sometimes it is easier to talk to a complete stranger than someone who is very close to you? Well, in my mind, this is what this song is about. I hope you enjoy!
Here is the album version.
Live version from 2010.
Here is a lesson on how to play the song on guitar.
Very good cover version of the song.
Wrote a Song for Everyone is a song that was written by John Fogerty and appears on the third album that Creedence Clearwater Revival produced called Green River. John Fogerty explains the basis for how the song was written.
“Inspired by my young wife at the time. It was early ’69, and I was 23 years old. We had our first child, who, at the time, was two and a half. I was sitting in my room, writing the songs, pushing my career. Without the songs, the career ends. You might be a great band, but without the songs, you’re not going anywhere. At one point, my wife and I had a mild misunderstanding, I wouldn’t even call it a fight, She was miffed, taking our young son out, wishing I would be more involved. But there I was, the musician manic and possessed the only guy holding things up. Without me, it all collapses, so I’m feeling quite put apon. As she walks out the door, I say to my self, “I wrote a song for everyone, and I couldn’t even talk to you.” I looked at my piece of paper and changed gears. How many great leaders can’t even manage their own families? So I went with that. “Pharaohs spin the message/Round and round and true/Richmonds about to blow up” referring to nearby Richmond, California. It was actually a true emotion that took on a larger meaning. It’s still a special song in the sense that it keeps my feet on the ground. You sit and write these songs, yet you try to talk to your own son and daughter and maybe you’re totally inadequate, trying to explain life to a child. We used to record our albums very quickly and I remember finishing five different songs in one afternoon. The fifth one didn’t work, and that was “Wrote A Song For Everyone.” I had to start over on that one.”
Green River is the third studio album by American rock and roll band Creedence Clearwater Revival, released in August 1969 after their second release Bayou Country which was released in January of the same year (see 1969 in music). In 2003, the album was ranked number 95 on Rolling Stone magazine’s list of the 500 greatest albums of all time. It features two of the band’s best-known songs, “Bad Moon Rising” and the title track. The album was remastered and reissued on 180 Gram Vinyl by Analogue Productions in 2006.
In January 1969, Creedence Clearwater Revival released their second studio album Bayou Country and released their breakout single “Proud Mary” b/w “Born on the Bayou“, which reached #2 on the Billboard Hot 100. Prior to recording their new album in March, Creedence conducted a test session at the recently-built Wally Heider Studios where they recorded three instrumental test tracks (two of which, “Broken Spoke Shuffle” and “Glory Be”, are included in the 2008 remastered CD). The recordings for Green River lasted until June. While completing the forthcoming album the band issued two singles: “Bad Moon Rising” b/w “Lodi” and “Green River” b/w “Commotion”, in April and July. Both reached #2 on the Billboard charts.
In an interview Fogerty gave to Rolling Stone in 2012, Fogerty states, “certainly in a song like “Green River” – which you may think would fit seamlessly into the Bayou vibe, but it’s actually about the Green River, as I named it – it was actually called Putah Creek by Winters, California. It wasn’t called Green River, but in my mind I always sort of called it Green River. All those little anecdotes are part of my childhood, those are things that happened to me actually, I just wrote about them and the audience shifted at the time and place.”
Rolling Stone called it “a great album” with the reviewer further stating “they are now creating the most vivid American rock since Music from Big Pink“. Allmusic gave the album 5 stars (out of 5) with Stephen Thomas Erlewine stating: “If anything, CCR’s third album Green River represents the full flower of their classic sound initially essayed on its predecessor, Bayou Country.”
- “Green River” – 2:36
- “Commotion” – 2:44
- “Tombstone Shadow” – 3:39
- “Wrote a Song for Everyone” – 4:57
- “Bad Moon Rising” – 2:21 †
- “Lodi” – 3:13 †
- “Cross-Tie Walker” – 3:20
- “Sinister Purpose” – 3:23
- “The Night Time Is the Right Time” (Napoleon “Nappy” Brown, Ozzie Cadena, Lew Herman) – 3:09
Wrote a Song For Everyone
Met myself a comin’ county welfare line.
I was feelin’ strung out, Hung out on the line.
Saw myself a goin’, down to war in June.
All I want, All I want is to write myself a tune.
Wrote a song for ev’ryone,
Wrote a song for truth.
Wrote a song for ev’ryone
And I couldn’t even talk to you.
Got myself arrested, Wound me up in jail.
Richmond ’bout to blow up, communication failed.
If you see the answer, now’s the time to say.
All I want, All I want is to get you down to pray.
Saw the people standin’ thousand years in chains.
Somebody said it’s diff’rent now, look, it’s just the same.
Pharoahs spin the message, round and round the truth.
They could have saved a million people, How can I tell you?