Monday, August 06, 2012

My Music Monday

While clearly I'm a lover of music - be it pop, rock, country, folk, bluegrass, speed metal or straight-up gangsta rap (ok, i kid about those last two), I'm also a big fan of stories. It's a bonus when the two can be combined.

I'm not quite talking about "The Last Kiss" by the girl who gets hit by the train kind of thing. Bigger stories.

An example of this would be something like "the Wreck of the Edmund Fitzgerald".

While I can't say I'm a fan of Gordon Lightfoot's song, I do like when music can tell a story, at least when they do it well. You could say a previous selection, "Ode to Billy Joe" is somewhere in these lines, or Dylan's "Lily of the West",and to a degree Jefferson Airplane's "Wooden Ships"

Key-Dollar Sign-HA doesn't have this ability.

To be fair to that talentless hussy, these types of songs are found more in a folk genre than you'd find in talentless hussy pop or you know, straight-up gangsta rap. Way back before my time, songs told stories of history - family, death, etc. While not specifically a Scottish or Irish tradition, but those two did bring these to America, much in the form of Appalachian music.

There, that's your lesson for the day.

Today's song pick is "Cold Missouri Waters". While this version is by the folk group Cry Cry Cry in 1999, the song is a few years older than this.

The song tells the tale of 15 smoke jumpers / forest fire fighters in Montana in 1949. Actually, 63 years ago this week. The Mann Gulch Fire, as it was / is known.

I could tell you how it all comes out, but then you might not listen to the song. Let's just say, rarely do they make happy storytelling songs. But after you listen to it, you might read the highlighted wiki link that tells a little more detail than the four and one-half minute tune. (Ok, maybe that will be your second lesson for the day.)

Still Richard Shindell does a nice job on lead and Dar Williams and Lucy Kaplansky really do a nice job with the backing harmonies.

There is a crappy fan YouTube video, but it truly takes away from the song (in my HMO), so I'll just embed an audio player here.  I hope you like the song. I do.


Sean said...

"Sink the Bismarck", "Battle of New Orleans", "One Tin Soldier," and "John Henry" are 3 of my favorites (assuming you agree these fall into this category.)

Wonder Man said...

nice track choices