Soon after releasing “Some Gave All” as part of a multi-Platinum album of the same name, Billy Ray Cyrus recorded a performance that lives on today as necessary viewing for Memorial Day.
Fans were able to watch the performance during an ABC television special released in February 1993, nine months after Some Gave All was achieved unprecedented commercial success. It was the No. 1 album on the Billboard 200 for 17 straight weeks, thanks in large part to “Achy Breaky Heart.” This military remembrance closes the album, and while never released to radio, is arguably his second-most famous 1990s song.
Most of the ABC special was filmed at a concert in Reno, Nev., (per the South Florida Sun Sentinel), but other clips showed him returning home to Flatwoods, Ky. Cyrus — with defiance you’d only understand if you were alive and aware in 1992 — emphatically states that his tombstone will someday read “Some Gave All.”
The story of “Some Gave All” tells of a man named Sandy Cane, who didn’t die in battle but was forever burdened by what he experienced while serving in the U.S. military. It’s the song’s protagonist who first says:
“All gave some, some gave all / Some stood through for the red, white and blue / And some had to fall / And if you ever think of me / Think of all your liberties and recall / Some gave all.”
Cyrus’ ex-wife, Cindy Cyrus, is the co-writer with Billy Ray Cyrus on “Some Gave All.” They divorced in 1991.
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