20 Songs About the Midwest

In the United States, the Midwest is often seen as the heartland – a region of the country that is known for its hard working citizens and traditional values. This image is reflected in many of the songs that have been written about the Midwest.

In this blog post, we will take a look at some of the most popular songs about the Midwest. We’ll explore what these songs say about the region, and we’ll also provide some background information on each of the tunes. You might just find your new favorite song about the Midwest after reading this!

1. “Midwestern Dirt” by Dear and the Headlights

Starting off the list is “Midwestern Dirt” by Dear and the Headlights. This song is all about accepting the fact that we’re all going to be covered in dirt at some point – it’s just a part of life in general, not just in the Midwest. It was released in 2007 as part of the Small Steps, Heavy Hooves album.

2. “Chicago” by Sufjan Stevens

The next song on our list is “Chicago” by Sufjan Stevens. This song is a love letter to the city of Chicago, and it talks about all of the different aspects of the city that make it special. It was released in 2005 as part of the Illinois album. You can stream it on all music platforms out there.

3. “Dayton, Ohio, 19 Something And 5” by Guided By Voices

“Dayton, Ohio, 19 Something And 5” is a song by Guided By Voices that pays tribute to the city of Dayton, Ohio.

The song talks about how the city has changed over the years, but it still remains a special place for those who live there. It was released in 1996 as part of the Tonics & Twisted Chasers album.

4. “Broadripple Is Burning” by Margot & The Nuclear So And So’s

This list will not be complete with a song about Indianapolis – and that song is “Broadripple Is Burning” by Margot & The Nuclear So And So’s.

This tune is all about the changing times in the city of Indianapolis, and how things are always moving forward – even if it doesn’t seem like it at first. It was released in 2008 as part of the Not Animal album.

5. “Chicago at Night” by Spoon

Up next is a song about chicago that has a different feel than the last one – “Chicago at Night” by Spoon.

This song is all about being left alone by the woman you love for the city of Chicago. It’s a sad song, but it’s also a beautiful one. It was released in 2001 as part of the Girls Can Tell album.

6. “Sweet Home Chicago” by Buddy Guy

Buddy Guy is a legendary blues singer, songwriter and guitarist who was born and raised in Chicago. “Sweet Home Chicago” is a classic blues song that has been covered by many artists over the years.

In this version, Buddy Guy pays tribute to his hometown with his soulful vocals and signature guitar licks. It was released in 1972 and you can find it on his Buddy Guy & Junior Wells Play the Blues album.

7. “Detroit Rock City” by Kiss

The next song on our list is “Detroit Rock City” by the rock band Kiss. This song is about rocking it out in the Motor City. It was released in 1976 and is one of the band’s most popular songs.

It can be found on their Destroyer album. This track now has over 30 million views on Youtube, making it one of the band’s most popular songs released.

8. “Midwest Midsummer” by Used Kids

Another song about the longing for home, Used Kids’ “Midwest Midsummer” is a beautiful ode to the Midwest.

The band perfectly captures the feeling of homesickness and nostalgia that comes with being away from the Midwest during the summertime. If you’re ever feeling homesick for the Midwest, this song will resonate with you.

9. “Carry Me Ohio” by Sun Kil Moon

Sun Kil Moon is a band that’s known for writing dark, depressing songs, and “Carry Me Ohio” is no exception. The song is about how the hometown he used to adore for its nature is now a place that’s been taken over by industry and pollution.

It’s a sad song, but it perfectly encapsulates the feeling of seeing your hometown change for the worse. You can find it on his Ghosts of the Great Highway album.

10. “Can’t Stand the Midwest” by Dow Jones and the Industrials

The next song is a bit of a departure from the others on this list. “Can’t Stand the Midwest” is a punk song by Dow Jones and the Industrials, and it’s about how the singer can’t stand living in the Midwest.

He talks about how he hates the weather, the people, and pretty much everything else about the Midwest. It’s a funny song, and if you’re sick of hearing people sing about how much they love the Midwest, this will bring you a new perspective.

11. “Omaha” by Counting Crows

The Omaha song by Counting Crows is a bit different than the others on this list. It’s not about longing for home or feeling nostalgia, but it’s still a great song about the Midwest.

The song is about how Omaha is in the heart of the US and how it should level up to be worthy of that title. It’s a great song, and if you’re from Omaha, you should be proud of this one.

12. “Minneapolis” by That Dog

“Minneapolis” by That Dog is another punk song, but this one is about how much the singer loves Minneapolis because of the cute boys that live there.

The lyrics are simple, but the energy of the song makes it one of the best songs about Minneapolis. It was released in 1997 as part of the Retreat from the Sun album.

13. “Way Out West in Kansas” by Billy Murray and Ed Smalle

Kansas City is the largest city in Missouri, but it’s also the seventh largest city in the Midwest. “Way Out West in Kansas” by Billy Murray and Ed Smalle is a hilarious song about a man who moves to Kansas City and finds himself way out of his element.

It was recorded in 1921 but is now underrated on Youtube so if you like it, be sure to give it a thumbs up.

14. “Minneapolis” by Lucinda Williams

Another song that features the beautiful city of Minneapolis is “Minneapolis” by Lucinda Williams.

It’s a slower, more reflective song that talks about someone you used to know who has moved away. It’s a sad song, but it’s also one of the most accurate representations of what it feels like to be from the Midwest.

15. “Sweet Home Chicago” by The Blues Brothers

The Blues Brothers are one of the most famous bands to come out of the Midwest and “Sweet Home Chicago” is their most famous song.

It’s a cover of a Robert Johnson song, but it’s been popularized by The Blues Brothers and has become an anthem for Chicago. It was also featured as a soundtrack for their self-titled movie.

16. “Hornets! Hornets!” by The Hold Steady

“Hornets! Hornets!” The Hold Steady is named after the NBA team, Charlotte Hornets. It’s a great song for any basketball fan, but it’s also a great representation of what it’s like to be from the Midwest.

The song is full of energy and excitement, just like the game of basketball. It was released in 2005 as part of their Separation Sunday album.

17. “Don’t Underestimate Midwest American Sun” by Kevin Morby

Next on the list is “Don’t Underestimate Midwest American Sun” by Kevin Morby. This song is about how the Midwest is often underestimated and how people from the Midwest are some of the most hardworking and down-to-earth people.

It was released in 2020 for their Sundowner album which can be streamed on all music platforms out there.

18. “9th and Hennepin” by Tom Waits

Tom Waits is a singer and songwriter from the Midwest who is known for his unique voice and style. “9th and Hennepin” is a dark and haunting song about a woman who turns to prostitution to make ends meet.

It’s a controversial song, but it’s also a great representation of the dark side of the Midwest. It was released in 1985 as part of his Rain Dogs album.

19. “Indiana” by Adrianne Lenker

If you’re looking for a  a more indie and mellow song, then “Indiana” by Adrianne Lenker is a great song to start.

It’s a ode to the singer’s home state and explores the idea of growing up and moving away. Everyone can relate to the feeling of both homesickness and wanderlust, making this song perfect for a Midwestern playlist.

20. “Man on Fire” by Good Luck

Finishing up our list of songs is “Man on Fire” by Good Luck. It’s a high-energy track but with sweet lyrics that talk about how a man may be so busy but at the end of the day, he still thinks about his girl. The perfect song for a road trip or a night out, this tune will get your Midwest heart pumping.

Final Thoughts

The Midwest has always been a special place for music. Not to mention, some of the most popular and influential bands in history have hailed from the Midwest. We hope you enjoyed this list and found some new music to enjoy from it. Thanks for reading!