Tuesday 11 February 2014

Drinking Songs

    I look forward to Tuesdays all week long.  It’s on Tuesday nights when we have our jam session.  I started doing music again regularly a year ago, after about a 40 year absence, and love it.  Usually there are only about 5 or six of us that show up with our instruments, but we always have a good time. 
    There are usually some guitars, a banjo, a dobro, a washtub bass, an electric bass,  a box drum, last week there was a keyboard, and I usually add a mandolin to the mix.  We go around the circle and take turns suggesting a song to play.
    I usually try to come up with a new song or two every week.  Tonight I am going to introduce “Copper Kettle,” a song I remember Joan Baez doing way back during the folk revival and always liked it.  Back in high school I was in a folk singing group that used to play it.
    As I worked myself back through the song, which is about making whiskey on a still, it struck me just how many of the songs we play have lyrics about drinking and alcohol.  I find this very curious, since I introduced a lot of them and I don’t drink at all, and never really have.
    Besides “Copper Kettle,” I have introduced Fred Eaglesmith’s “Alcohol and Pills”, the folk standard “Mountain Dew”, and James Taylor’s “Bartender’s Blues.”   We also do the Byrd’s “You’re Still On My Mind” with the lyrics “an empty bottle, a broken heart, and you’re still on my mind”, and Bob, our dobro player, sometimes does “Cigarettes, Whiskey, and Wild, Wild, Women”.
    Anyone looking at our song list would certainly get a distorted view of the life I lead.

You can see my Paintings at:  www.davidmarchant.ca

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