Sunday Morning Coming Down

I received a really lovely couple of emails from long-time viewer George this week.

George and I have been in touch for many months now, since I was first unable to source a track for The Chain which he helped me out with. Since then, we’ve exchanged emails every now and then, often talking about politics or current affairs, but more often than not, about music.

The first email I got from him this week advised me that he had ordered a copy of an album I’ve featured a couple of times before here; the second was telling me it had arrived, he was listening to it and loving it, and thanking me for bringing it to his attention.

I replied that since I knew of the record because my dad owned a copy when I was a kid, it should be him George thanked, and that I’d pass on his thanks to him.

Which I did yesterday, and he seemed pretty chuffed that someone else had bought an album as an indirect result of him purchasing it forty-odd years ago.

So I figured it would be appropriate to post something else from the album in question. Perhaps the most well-known version of today’s track is performed by The Whites and appears on the soundtrack of the Coen brothers’ 2000 movie “O Brother, Where Art Thou?”, and is a song recorded many times by the Carter family dynasty – in fact, it’s practically The Carter Family’s theme tune. A.P. Carter’s tombstone even has a gold record of the song embedded in it.

Here’s the version from The Nitty Gritty Dirt Band’s “Will The Circle Be Unbroken” triple album, complete with explanatory introduction by none other than Mother Maybelle Carter:

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The Nitty Gritty Dirt Band – Keep on the Sunny Side

If that doesn’t put a smile on your face, then I don’t know what will.

More soon.

Sunday Morning Coming Down

First making her name in the Pacific Northwest, where she’s been called “Seattle’s Emmylou,” and heralded as one of the best songwriters to come out of Washington State, Zoe Muth began by playing bars and cafes as a young pre-school teacher, saving up her minimum wage earnings and beer bucket tips to pay for her 2009 debut album, Zoe Muth and the Lost High Rollers.

Today’s song comes from the follow-up album, 2011’s “Starlight Hotel” and sits nicely in that category: “Song Titles Which You Would Only Find in Country Music”, and describes that moment when you find that someone you’re attracted to turns out to have bloody awful taste in music:

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Zoe Muth and the Lost High Rollers – If I Cant Trust You With a Quarter (How Can I Trust You With My Heart?)

More soon.

Sunday Morning Coming Down

Okay so this thread has maybe been a little top-heavy on the Kristofferson recently.

So this morning, let’s have some George Jones.

Covering Kristofferson, obviously.

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George Jones – Why Me Lord?

Now, George Jones is a legend, but he’s not the only legend to have covered that song:

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Johnny Cash – Why Me Lord?

Oh go on then. If you insist. The original.

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Kris Kristofferson – Why Me

More soon.

Sunday Morning Coming Down

In 2015, Tom Jones, aged 75, released his 41st studio album “Long Lost Suitcase”.

In recent years, his role on The Voice UK aside, Jones has been striving to return to his musical roots, his credibility (rightly) dented by such hits as “Sex Bomb”.

Which reminds me: I found myself in Cardiff one night when he happened to be playing, at Cardiff Castle I think. I was heading towards The Hog’s Head, a bar (that used to be) alongside the Owain Glyndŵr, and found the square outside packed with women of a certain age, all drinking and getting their knickers ready to throw at him. I picked my way through the throng, but ultimately found my passage blocked by a very, very large lady with her sizeable back to me.

“Excuse me…” I said, tapping on her shoulder.

She turned to face me, and I saw that she had the word “Sex” written in lipstick on one cheek, and “Bomb” on the other.

“You’ve not heard of the Trades Description Act, I assume?” I said (under my breath, obviously), before ducking smartly into the bar.

Ever since he’s stopped dying his hair and proclaiming that he thought he was “gonna dance now”, Jones has started making bluesy, soul records again; now he lets his voice do the talking, if that isn’t a weird thing to say.

And here, he tackles one that’s a little bit Country:

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Tom Jones – Why Don’t You Love Me Like You Used to Do?

Short, but sweet.

More soon.

Sunday Morning Coming Down

This isn’t really a Sunday morning kind of song. It’s more of a 2am, slumped over a bar, battered on bourbon, kind of song.

But it does have one of those song titles that you only find in country music.

So this is for all of you who were slumped over a bar at 2am this morning.

Or, for any of you who have mullets like this:

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John Prine – Yes I Guess They Oughta Name A Drink After You

More soon.

Sunday Morning Coming Down

This morning, an absolute classic Country song.

I mean, it must be a classic, just look at all the folks who have recorded versions of it over the years:

Guy Mitchell, George Jones, Leroy van Dyke, Kitty Wells, Jack Reno, Johnny Tillotson, Willie Nelson, Waylon Jennings, Jerry Lee Lewis, Dwight Yoakhan, Martina McBride, Rosanne Cash, Connie Francis, The Playtones, Buck Owens, and most recently Sean Spicer (featuring a DJ Trump on really small handclaps) who categorically made the very best version, released on Bowling Green records, which sold several gazillion copies, which is the best amount to sell, more than any other record has ever sold ever, and don’t let the press or the media tell you any different.

Putting biting satirical comment aside for a moment, here’s the first version ever released, in 1959, by Ray Price, just months before Guy Mitchell released it, also in 1959 when it made #1 in the U.S. Billboard Hot 100. Price’s version made #2 in the U.S. Billboard Hot Country Singles chart:

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Ray Price – Heartaches by the Number

More soon.