Best Choice for Virginia’s Official State Song

“Sweet Virginia Breeze” by Steve Bassett and Robbin Thompson

Second Place: “Virginia: The Home of My Heart” by Susan Greenbaum

Third Place: “Carry Me Back to Old Virginny”

Right on! Now the state with the groovy 1970s travel slogan, “Virginia Is for Lovers,” (well, 1969, but who’s counting) has a smooth ’70s state song to match. Written by Steve Bassett and Robbin Thompson in 1978, “Sweet Virginia Breeze” is one cool, catchy blast of beach music meets country-politan rock with such lyrics as: “The sweet, sweet Virginia breeze / is blowing ripples ’cross my coffee cup.” After nearly two decades without a state song, Gov. Terry McAuliffe declared two of them official in February: “Sweet Virginia Breeze” was named the popular state song, as it was with Best of Richmond voters, while “Our Great Virginia” was the traditional appointee. But there were other traditional choices left out, and our readers included votes for “Virginia: the Home of My Heart,” written by Richmond singer and songwriter Susan Greenbaum. And then there’s “Carry Me Back to Old Virginny,” which was the former state song (using Virginia in place of Virginny) retired in 1997 because of offensive, some would say racist, lyrics.

Editor’s note: This entry reflects a correction to the print version, which incorrectly attributed information about “Our Great Virginia” to “Virginia: the Home of My Heart.” Style regrets the error.


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