Tag Archives: Warren Zevon

October 30 (803) Down There By The Train

8309875-railroad-tracks

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There’s a place I know
where the train goes slow
where the sinners can be washed
in the blood of the lamb
there’s a river by the trestle
down by Sinner’s Grove
down where the Willow and the Dogwood grows
down there by the train
down there by the train
down there by the train
down there by the train
down there where the train
goes slow
                     Tom Waits

Last time on Great River Radio, I played the Tift Merritt version of Tom Waits’ “Train Song” and I’ve been listening to that thing a lot in the last couple of weeks.  It is the great lyrics and the wonderful guitar playing of Eric Heywood that keep me coming back.  Then it had another effect on me, and that was to ponder why there are so many songs about trains in American music.  You could do hours and hours of train songs, even if you just limited yourself to the good ones.  But why?  Is it the lure of escape?  “My daddy told me, looking back/’best friend you’ll have is a railroad track'”… or is it the sound of the whistle and that lonesome sound of steel wheels on a steel track, long after the engine has passed?  Is it because they are going to take us to paradise?   “This train is bound for glory”?

I’m not doing train songs today – there are too many.  In some ways, it is too easy a project.  But I will be sprinkling some train songs by Tom Waits into the list, including a return of that Tift Merritt cover.  It is also Halloween tomorrow and though most of you are probably not going to be dressing up and going out trick or treating, I’ll slip a couple of ghostly songs into the mix.

I’ve also got new music from Polica, The 1975, Linda Thompson (with son Teddy) and Goldfrapp (this one is awesome.)  You’ve probably heard some of the new Paul McCartney by now, and I’ll have a typically McCartneyesque track from that one.  There is new music from The Head and the Heart and something amazing from the 2013 release by Ben Harper and the great Charlie Musselwhite.

It’s a nice mix on this gloomy day – listen in live this afternoon or later on the blog.

Details:

Great River Radio – Wednesdays 4:15-5:45 p.m.
Catch the live stream: http://www.stthomas.edu/ustclubs/kust/KUSTLive.html
Web/Listen Later: https://greatriverradio.wordpress.com
Facebook: http://www.facebook.com/GreatRiverRadio

Playlist
On The Road-Tom Waits
Cecil Taylor-Jonathan Wilson
Shake-The Head And The Heart
You Can’t Be Told-Valerie June
Sex-The 1975
New-Paul McCartney
Oh, The Joy-Trixie Whitley
Down There By The Train-Tom Waits
Three White Horses-Andrew Bird
Drew-Goldfrapp
Chain My Name-Polica
Werewolves Of London-Warren Zevon
I Scare Myself-The New Standards
In A Graveyard-Rufus Wainwright
Won’t Be Long Now-Linda Thompson/Teddy Thompson
Persuasion-Richard Thompson/Teddy Thompson
Train Song-Tift Merritt
Bottom of the World-Tom Waits
We Can’t End This Way-Ben Harper & Charlie Musselwhite

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Oct. 20 – Outlaws and Desperados

Cause ladies love outlaws
Like babies love stray dogs
Ladies touch babies like a banker touches gold
Outlaws touch ladies somewhere deep down in their soul
Ladies Love Outlaws (Lee Clayton)

Yes, as through this world I’ve wandered
I’ve seen lots of funny men;
Some will rob you with a six-gun
And some with a fountain pen
Pretty Boy Floyd (Woody Guthrie)

Today Great River Radio devotes an entire show to outlaws, whose bad behavior seems to have inspired the many songs in blues, country and rock and roll that take murder, robbery and incarceration as their subject.  Many outlaws have been romanticized and glorified over time as Robin Hoods, while others both horrify and fascinate us and the artists among us. Charles Starkweather and Caril Ann Fugate’s killing spree in Nebraska in 1958 inspired at least four movies and Bruce Springsteen’s song “Nebraska.”

Furthermore, there is a whole category of country music identified as “outlaw country,” characterized most notably by Merle Haggard, Willie Nelson and Johnny Cash, who were, in some cases, outlaws in every sense of the word.  Is there something about music that attracts bad boys and girls?  We’ll explore that possibility today on GRR, with songs from those outlaws, as well as Woody Guthrie, Joe Ely, The Clash, Warren Zevon, John Hiatt and, for some gender balance, Bettye Lavette and Fiona Apple.

Join Great River Radio today at 4:15 p.m. (CST) for 90 minutes of great music and occasionally thoughtful conversation. Or listen later via our show archive.

Details:
Great River Radio – Wednesdays 4:15-5:45 p.m.
Catch the live stream
Web/Listen Later
Great River Radio on Facebook
iChat/AIM: kustradio

Brian & Dan

Playlist
Ballad of Easy Rider-The Byrds
Ladies Love Outlaws-Waylon Jennings
Pancho and Lefty-Willie Nelson
San Quentin-Johnny Cash
Cops and Robbers-Bo Diddley
Tennessee Plates-John Hiatt
The Road Goes On Forever-Joe Ely
King’s Highway-Joe Henry
King of the Jailhouse-Aimee Mann
Criminal-Fiona Apple
Before the Money Came-Bettye LaVette
Bad Reputation-Joan Jett
All Hands on the Bad One-Sleater Kinney
Frank and Jesse James-Warren Zevon
Jesse James-Bruce Springsteen
Outlaw Blues-The Morning Benders
Pretty Boy Floyd-Bob Dylan
Nebraska-Bruce Springsteen
I Fought the Law and the Law Won-The Clash

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