The official state song of Oklahoma is the theme song to the Rogers and Hammerstein play of the same name. With lyrics written by Oscar Hammerstein II and musical score composed by Richard Rogers, the song Oklahoma! was adopted as the official state song in 1953. Adapted from the play Green Grow the Lilacs, the Broadway musical production of Oklahoma! opened in 1943 and closed in 1948. While the musical production featured numerous songs depicting life in the Oklahoma Territory at the turn of the 20th century, the theme song Oklahoma! extolled the virtues of the state's agricultural industry and vast prairie land. As such, Title 25, Sections 94.1 through 94.3 of the Oklahoma state statutes, adopted May 11, 1953, name the Rogers and Hammerstein hit as the official state song of Oklahoma.
According to state Chapter 3, Title 25 statutes, which name the official state song of Oklahoma and its particulars, the words and music of Oklahoma! are both the official song and the anthem of the state. Further statutes, specifically statute 25-94.2, charges the state librarian with maintaining official documentation and a recording of the song. A separate section of the statutes — specifically state statute 25-94.3 — provides an official line-by-line, verse-by-verse record of the lyrics for the state song of Oklahoma.
Oklahoma! is one of the few officially recognized state songs to have enjoyed a position on the Billboard music charts. Released as a commercial recording in 1955, the soundtrack including Oklahoma! preempted the release of a film adaptation of the Broadway musical. Billboard history shows the song hitting number one on the charts in September, 1955. For a consecutive four weeks, the official state song of Oklahoma maintained the top spot, followed by an additional 305 weeks further down the list. Certified as a double platinum album by the Recording Industry Association of America, Oklahoma! also enjoyed multiple Academy Awards in 1955.
Aside from Oklahoma! being the officially recognized state song of Oklahoma, four other songs enjoy official status in the statutes of the state of Oklahoma. Adopted in 1988, the song Faded Love is the official country song for Oklahoma. For younger residents, the state adopted Oklahoma, My Native Land as the official childrens' song. Folk song enthusiasts were rewarded in 2001 with the addition of Oklahoma Hills as the official folk song. Years 2009 and 2011 saw the introduction of Do You Realize? and Swing Low, Sweet Chariot as first the rock and roll genre, and then the gospel genre's official state song of Oklahoma, respectively.