Oklahoma U.S.A.

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"Oklahoma U.S.A."
Song by The Kinks
from the album Muswell Hillbillies
Released 24 Nov, 1971 (US LP), 26 Nov, 1971 (UK LP)
Recorded Aug-Sep 1971 at Morgan Studios, Willesden, London
Genre Soft rock, folk rock
Length 2:38
Label RCA Victor
Songwriter(s) Ray Davies
Producer(s) Ray Davies
Muswell Hillbillies track listing
"Holloway Jail"
"Oklahoma U.S.A."
"Uncle Son"

Oklahoma U.S.A. is a song written by Ray Davies and performed by British Rock band The Kinks on their 1971 LP Muswell Hillbillies.[1]


The lyrics describe a young woman who leads a monotonous working class life, and imagines in her dreams she is in various Hollywood films, such as Oklahoma! ("But in her dreams she is far away/ In Oklahoma U.S.A./ With Shirley Jones and Gordon MacRae").[2][3] As the song progresses and she goes on with life she continues to dream of Oklahoma and Hollywood ("She walks to work but she's still in a daze/ She's Rita Hayworth or Doris Day/ And Errol Flynn's gonna take her away/ To Oklahoma U.S.A."). The song opens and closes with the lyrics "All life we work, but work is a bore./ If life's for livin', then what's livin' for?"[2][3]


The piece differs from the other songs on Muswell Hillbillies in the fact that it features a much quieter sound and overall feel. Mick Avory's drums are absent, and the only instruments used are an acoustic guitar, accordion, and keyboards (piano/organ).

Cover versions[edit]

Indie rock group Yo La Tengo covered it on their 1990 album Fakebook.[4] Country artist Lauren Adams covered it on her album Secret Heart,[5] and Leigh Harris recorded a version on the album House of Secrets.[6] The Spivs cover it on the album Kwirky.[7]



In-Line Citations[edit]

  1. ^ Muswell Hillbillies on Rolling Stone
  2. ^ a b Paper On Muswell Hillbillies
  3. ^ a b Lyrics
  4. ^ Amazon.com listing for Falebook
  5. ^ Info on "Secret Heart"
  6. ^ Listing For House of Secrets"
  7. ^ Kwirky on Kindakinks.net