The first version of Red River Valley was probably written by someone in 1870 in the Canadian West, the actual location of the Red River Valley. Although by then part of the cowboy music DNA, one of the earliest versions was sung by Gene Autry in 1936 in the film of the same name. Autry (known as ‘The Singing Cowboy’) was one of the most important pioneering figures in the history of country music, considered the second major influential artist of the genre’s development after Jimmie Rodgers.
Everyone should listen to this song (check out Autry’s version on YouTube) or, in this case, at least see the lyrics of this song once in their life. What a great song of unrequited love. You can just imagine ‘ol Slim out on the trail by the campfire with a million stars above and the valley spread out below, thinking about the girl who he’d probably never see again. What a classic!
This is dedicated to Stacey R.