Green River (song)

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This article is about the song by Creedence Clearwater Revival. For other songs with the same title, see Green River (disambiguation).
"Green River"
Green River label.jpeg
Single by Creedence Clearwater Revival
from the album Green River
B-side "Commotion"
Released July 1969 (1969-07)[1]
Format 7" 45 RPM
Recorded Sometime from March to June 1969[2] at Wally Heider Studios in San Francisco, California[3]
Genre Roots rock
Length 2:36
Label Fantasy
Writer(s) John Fogerty
Producer(s) John Fogerty
Creedence Clearwater Revival singles chronology
"Bad Moon Rising"
"Green River"
"Down on the Corner"

"Green River" is a song by American rock band Creedence Clearwater Revival. The song was written by John Fogerty and was released as a single in July 1969, one month before the album of the same name was released (see 1969 in music).[1]


The song "Green River" was based on a vacation spot for John Fogerty.[4][5] In an interview Fogerty gave to Rolling Stone in 2012, Fogerty stated:

What really happened is that I used a setting like New Orleans, but I would actually be talking about thing from my own life. Certainly 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.[6]

Fogerty added that the "actual specific reference, 'Green River,' I got from a soda pop-syrup label... My flavor was called Green River."[5]

Sales and airplay[edit]

"Green River" was certified gold (500,000 units sold) by the Recording Industry Association of America on December 13, 1990.[7]

Chart (1969) Peak
Austria (Ö3 Austria Top 40)[8] 5
Canada (RPM)[9] 5
Germany (Official German Charts)[10] 8
UK Singles (Official Charts Company)[11] 19
US Billboard Hot 100[12] 2

Cover versions[edit]

Mary Wilson of The Supremes worked with UK record producer Gus Dudgeon on a cover version in the early 1980s. It remains unreleased. Country band Alabama recorded a cover version of the song that appears on their 1982 album Mountain Music. The Minutemen included a live performance cover of the song on their 1984 EP Tour-Spiel. Bill Wyman's Rhythm Kings covered it on their first album, Struttin' Our Stuff.

Appearances in other media[edit]


  1. ^ a b Chronicle: The 20 Greatest Hits (CD liner). Creedence Clearwater Revival. United States: Fantasy Records. 1991. FCD-CCR2-2. 
  2. ^ Stephen Thomas Erlewine. "Overview: Green River by Creedence Clearwater Revival". Allmusic. United States: Rovi Corporation. Retrieved December 29, 2010. 
  3. ^ Green River (Expanded Reissue) (PDF) (CD liner). Creedence Clearwater Revival. United States: Concord Music Group. 2008. FAN-30877-02. 
  4. ^ Thompson, Art. "John Fogerty Summons His Creedence-Era Spirit on Revival"
  5. ^ a b Michael Goldberg (1993). Jann S. Wenner, ed. "Fortunate Son: John Fogerty - The 1993 Rolling Stone Interview". Rolling Stone. United States: Jann S. Wenner. Retrieved December 29, 2010. 
  6. ^ Greene, Andy. Q&A: John Fogerty on All-Star Duets LP, Unlikely Creedence Reunion, Rolling Stone, May 4, 2012
  7. ^ RIAA Certification Search
  8. ^ " – Creedence Clearwater Revival – Green River" (in German). Ö3 Austria Top 40.
  9. ^ "RPM - Item Display: Top Singles - Volume 12, No. 5, September 20, 1969" (PHP). Library and Archives Canada. March 31, 2004. 
  10. ^ " – Creedence Clearwater Revival Single-Chartverfolgung" (in German). Media Control Charts. PhonoNet GmbH.
  11. ^ "Archive Chart: 1969-12-27" UK Singles Chart.
  12. ^ "Creedence Clearwater Revival - Billboard Singles". Allmusic. United States: Rovi Corporation. Retrieved December 29, 2010. 

External links[edit]