Georgia on My Mind
Regional anthem of Georgia
|Lyrics||Stuart Gorrell, 1930|
|Music||Hoagy Carmichael, 1930|
|"Georgia on My Mind"|
|Single by Hoagy Carmichael and his Orchestra|
|B-side||"One Night in Havana"|
|Recorded||September 15, 1930|
|Studio||155 E 24th Street, New York City|
"Georgia on My Mind" is a 1930 song written by Hoagy Carmichael and Stuart Gorrell and first recorded that year by Hoagy Carmichael. It has often been associated with Ray Charles, a native of the U.S. state of Georgia, who recorded it for his 1960 album The Genius Hits the Road. In 1979, the State of Georgia designated Ray Charles's version the official state song. This song title is often mentioned during the 2020 United States presidential election due to Georgia being a battleground state both in the presidential and Senate races.
Background and composition
It has been asserted that Hoagy Carmichael wrote the song about his sister, Georgia. But Carmichael wrote in his second autobiography Sometimes I Wonder that saxophonist Frankie Trumbauer told him he should write a song about the state of Georgia. He jokingly volunteered the first two words, "Georgia, Georgia...", which Carmichael ended up using while working on the song with his roommate, Stuart Gorrell, who wrote the lyrics. Gorrell's name was absent from the copyright, but Carmichael sent him royalty checks anyway.
Ray Charles version
|"Georgia on My Mind"|
|Single by Ray Charles|
|from the album The Genius Hits the Road|
|B-side||"Carry Me Back to Old Virginny"|
|Genre||Soul, traditional pop|
|Ray Charles singles chronology|
The TV series Designing Women, which used an instrumental version of "Georgia on My Mind" as its opening theme, featured Charles performing his version of the song on a piano while the show's cast looks on during its opening credits during its sixth season, which aired from 1991-92.
|Belgium (Ultratop 50 Wallonia)||47|
|UK Singles (OCC)||24|
|US Billboard Hot 100||1|
The Hawks/The Band version
The song was a standard at performances by Ronnie Hawkins and The Hawks where it was sung by pianist Richard Manuel after 1964. When The Hawks broke up and formed The Band, they kept the song in their repertoire. They recorded a studio version of the song for Jimmy Carter's presidential bid in 1976. It was released as a single that year as well as on their 1977 album Islands.
Willie Nelson version
|US Hot Country Songs (Billboard)||1|
|US Billboard Hot 100||84|
|Canadian RPM Country Tracks||1|
|Canadian RPM Top Singles||86|
|Canadian RPM Adult Contemporary Tracks||16|
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- "Georgia on my mind". 3 November 2020. Retrieved 5 November 2020.
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- Carmichael, Hoagy; Longstreet, Stephen (1976). Sometimes I Wonder: The Story of Hoagy Carmichael (Repr. d. Ausg. New York 1965. ed.). New York: Da Capo. ISBN 9780306708091.
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- Morris, Chris, Liner Notes to Islands CD release
- "Georgia on My Mind (song by Willie Nelson)". musicvf.com. 27 May 1978. Retrieved 26 July 2016.
- "Willie Nelson Chart History (Hot Country Songs)". Billboard.
- "Willie Nelson Chart History (Hot 100)". Billboard.