Nine Songs About A Ville – Some Fictional, Some Real

While driving along a rural state route last week, I passed through several nondescript towns. One stood out, however, not because of the name of one of its half dozen businesses banjos food. Its small marker indicated that it was called Glenville, and its array of old houses on acres of farm land made it seem identical to all of its neighboring towns.

What distinguished it was a small building right on the Main Street, an old striped pole identifying it as a place where one might get a haircut. I chuckled when I saw the sign above its aluminum awning, indicating that its name was The Barber Of Glenville.

The owner obviously took the name from that famous opera The Barber Of Seville, which I first learned about through a classic Bugs Bunny cartoon. My next train of thought led to the many other towns ending with Ville, some of which appear in the titles of some of my favorite songs.

Here is a list of nine of those tunes that feature a Ville in their titles.

Loserville by Charles Hamilton

This term for a fictional town was created by the renown hip hop artist from Cleveland.

Margaritaville by Jimmy Buffett

His first big hit came from the Changes In Attitude, Changes In Latitude album, and from the he sailed on to a long musical career.

Danville Girl by Woody Guthrie

She wore a curl that used the same adjective as her hometown, according to this lovely ballad by the folk legend.

Last Train To Clarksville by The Monkees

Unknown to many of the die hard fans of the fun TV quartet, this hit was written about a boy’s journey to Vietnam after getting his draft notice.

Eight More Miles To Louisville by Grandpa Jones

Its proximity to the capital of country music makes it an appropriate setting for one of the greatest bluegrass performers ever.

Jacksonville by Sufjan Stevens

Most people think of this town as being in Florida, yet Stevens is referring to a place in the state after which his Illinois album was titled.

East Nashville Skyline by Todd Snider

This title track drew its name from the country flavored Bob Dylan album which spawned “Lay Lady Lay” and a collaboration with Johnny Cash.

Charlottesville by They Might Be Giants

Humorous songwriting has long been the attraction for TMBG, who try their hand once again at a city named neither Istanbul nor Constantinople.

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