Story Behind the Song: ‘The Happiest Girl In The Whole U.S.A.’ by Donna Fargo
“The Happiest Girl In The Whole U.S.A.” was a huge hit song for Donna Fargo. The story behind this song is quite interesting.
Fargo, named Yvonne Vaughan at birth, was also professionally known as Mrs. Stan Silver. That was at her other career, a teacher.
One of her dreams in life was to teach. The other was to be a singer. By her mid-twenties she was doing both at the same time.
Living in California and teaching English as Mrs. Silver and playing on weekends as Donna Fargo. While school was out for an Easter weekend, husband Stan Silver took her to Nashville to record a song she had written titled “The Happiest Girl In The Whole U.S.A.”.
Silver pitched the song to all the major labels in Nashville. Producer Billy Sherrill liked the song and wanted to cut it with newcomer Tanya Tucker. Legend has it that Tanya turned it down.
Fargo insists she wouldn’t have let them record it anyway. She wrote the song for herself to record, not someone else. The only reason she became a songwriter in the first place was so she could become a singer.
Dot Records gave Fargo a contract. And while she was handing out assignments and grading papers in California, the song was climbing the charts in Nashville.
The song hit number one in June of 1972 for three weeks. At that point she told her students she had to quit her job. She and Silvers moved to Nashville.
By the time they got settled into their new home, they were overwhelmed with awards including a Grammy and Single of the Year honors with both the CMA and ACM. The song sold a million copies.
One might think because of the song’s title, it may have not done well in other countries. But on the contrary, it earned international acclaim.
Sources: The Billboard Book of Number One Country Hits, Wikipedia