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Song for D.C.


The Rookie
Dec 9, 2009
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Greenville, NC
The other day, I was listening to a song that's quickly becoming a favorite of mine. It's called Empire State of Mind and it's by famed rapper Jay-Z (it also features singer Alica Keys) and there's something about it that really just gets to me. It gets my blood pumping, my head nodding, and I feel a strange sense of pride for a city I've only visited twice in my life. It's a great tune, but it got me thinking: where's the song for my hometown, Washington, D.C.? I've heard songs about New York, Chicago, Los Angeles,and even Miami....but I can't recall hearing a love/tribute song of any kind to my beloved city.

It's not like we haven't had our share of great musicians. Marvin Gaye, Duke Ellington, and even the March King John Phillips Sousa were all born in D.C.; but none of them wrote memorable odes to their hometown.

So, what's the deal? Where's the great anthem Washingtonians can hold on to and call their own? Where's the song that makes our hearts swell with civic pride every time we hear it? Is it just that Washington doesn't inspire great music or is it just something no one's gotten around to doing yet? I WANT MY CITY'S ANTHEM AND I WANT IT NOW, DOGGONIT! :-(

That was too easy. :)
Om: Cool tune; but it's more of a ode to the Redskins, not so much the city as a whole.

Lanky Livingston: That's a pretty good one. I really hope Wale makes it big someday. I know he's a city favorite right now in the District.

Having said that, it doesn't seem like a definitive song for D.C. Doesn't move me like other "civic odes."
Eezy Money did a remix to the Empire State of Mind, his version is called Capital Conscience, it's just what you want, all about D.C.

Awesome remix. I think it's important for D.C. natives (or those from the Washington Metropolitan Area) to show just as much pride for their city as those who hail from New York or Chicago or anywhere else. Our city might not have the same glitz as some other cities, but being a Washingtonian is nothing to be ashamed of, either. Lord knows I miss that city, despite it's flaws.
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I agree entirely. I love the city and the area and it sucks knowning that nobody really represents D.C. The rapper Wale talks a lot about D.C in his songs, have even heard every team mentioned or a player from every team. If you haven't heard him you should check him out too, most of his stuff has to do with the DMV (D.C, Maryland, Virginia).

I think that's one reason I like Chris Paul so much. I know a lot of people find his Redskins songs to be horrible, stupid, etc, but it's one of the few people who talk about D.C.

A friend of mine is suppose to be making a shirt soon that has I <3 NY, but he's going to have an X over NY and have D.C next to it or below it. I definitely like the idea because all I ever see is NY hats and all that crap. This is D.C for crying out loud. I would definitely wear it in NY too.
I think the reason why D.C. is over looked is because there isn't a lot of glitz and show in the city. I mean, I believe it's a law that no building can be higher than the Capital Dome. This is a city where dreams come true and reputations are gained and lost, but not in the same way as other cities.

I think (a much younger) Maureen Bunyan said it best in this old WTOP promo my father sent me through an e-mail.

"Washington is a city of processes, not a city of events."
I think the answer is even simpler than that son...although certainly DC has its permanent residents, more than probably any major city, it's a transitory place. There are essentially mass exoduses that occur when there's a change in Administration's in the White House and all of the related government bodies. Combine that with the fact that the borders of what we refer to as 'DC' really encompass large surrounding suburban communities all over Maryland and Virginia, and you've got a very diverse mix of people constantly coming and going that is very difficult to 'define' in the way other large metropolitan cities can.

I can remember even growing up in a northern virginia neighborhood in the 1960's and 70's, sure a few families came and stayed, but the vast majority of our neighborhood's occupants routinely changed. They came and went with regularity.

I think both those things play a huge role in the lack of a real 'DC identity'.
As my father says to me. When we think of D.C, one of the first things that comes to mind is the Redskins, when others think of D.C, it's just the government.
That's true, Boone. Everyone seems to come and go in Washington, and the people that just pass through don't seem to be as fond of it as many of the natives are. I can't blame them. I mean, the weather can be dismal, the traffic is ungodly, and city is built upon a swamp. There's not too much to get excited about there.

It's tough to find a true D.C. native, too. The one's that really have their roots in the city and the area. People just seem to come and go.
I was born in D.C, have lived in VA my entire life, but I love D.C more than anything.

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