Watch the Iconic John Denver Sing “Take Me Home, Country Roads”

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Considered John Denver’s signature song, “Take Me Home, Country Roads” still has an impact on the listener that’s hard to pin down — for any one of us here in the Texas Hill Country, its anthem is relatable on every level.

The humanitarian, conservation champion, and country-folk icon was the best performing artist throughout the 1970s. And, in spite of his complicated legacy, there can be no questioning the heart behind some of the nature-inspired songs.

Little known fact: The song was originally written by an obscure duo who had become Denver’s opening act, called Danoff and Nivert.  The pair had originally planned to sell the rights of the song to the one and only Johnny Cash.

When they met Denver and sang it to him however, the three stayed up until dawn the next day rearranging the lyrics and perfecting its melody so that he could include it on his next album. Within a year it had become a huge hit, and it now lives on as West Virginia’s official state song.

Watch a rare 1990s recording of John Denver singing “Take Me Home, Country Roads”: