Southern Comforts: 25 Best Songs About the South

From "Sweet Home Alabama" to "Carolina in My Mind," we count down the top tunes celebrating life below the Mason-Dixon

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2. Ray Charles, "Georgia on My Mind"

In the 85 years since Indiana native Hoagy Carmichael first wrote "Georgia on My Mind," it's been covered by everybody from Louis Armstrong to Coldplay. The Beatles spoofed it in "Back in the U.S.S.R." ("and Georgia's always on my my my my my my my my my mind"), and Willie Nelson took it to Number One on the country charts in 1978. Nevertheless, the singer who owns it is Peach State native Ray Charles — there's a reason why his 1960 version used to be the track Georgia Public Television would play as nightly sign-off music. "Just an old sweet song keeps Georgia on my mind," Charles sings, pining for the pines. After he played it at the Georgia General Assembly in 1979, "Georgia on My Mind" was officially declared the state song.

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