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4th of July Weekend Anthem

Neil Young
Neil Young
Courtesy Photo

In celebration of the 4th of July weekend, what better music video to sum up the holiday’s energy and spirit than Neil Young’s classic, "Rockin’ In The Free World."

Released as a single off his 1989 comeback album, Freedom, an excerpt from Jimmy McDonough’s book Shakey, revealed the origin of the song's classic title as told by Young and Frank Sampedro. While on tour in the late 1980’s, Young and Sampedro were reading a newspaper that featured photos of the Ayatollah Khomeini’s deceased body being carried to his grave as mourners burned American flags in the streets. Sampredro turned to Young and said, “Whatever we do, we shouldn’t go near the Mideast. It’s probably better to just keep on rockin’ in the free world.” Young liked the phrase and asked Sampedro if he could use it in a song.

Freedom was released on October 2, 1989. Young recently performed "Rockin’ In The Free World" as the final song during Buffalo Springfield’s set at the 2011 Bonnaroo Music Festival.

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