Saturday, March 24, 2012

Do Y'all Take Requests?

Of all the great aspects of the trips, I think my favorite is the music in the evenings. We've got so many truly talented musicians with incredible taste in music, and it's really amazing to sit around and listen.

But at the same time it's also a source of some tension, since those of us with no, say, musical talent of any kind, are left to wonder if we're just pissing everyone off when we only sing the parts we know, off key and out of tune, to boot.

To that end, I'd like to nominate a couple of explicitly riverine songs to add to the repertoire, both by the late John Hartford, a man who knew a thing or two about hanging out. Best of all he sang in a baritone, often monotone, and more or less changed the tunes every time he sang, so you can't really go too wrong.

I remember seeing him perform Skipping in the Mississippi Dew on TV when I was a wee lad, either on the Smothers Brothers or maybe Flip Wilson. I immediately thought it was the coolest thing ever.

 The way the beat mimics the sound of stern wheel pounding against the surface of the water, and the escapism of it all, just seems like a perfect option. And if we do that one, then there's another, probably too hard for our banjo picking skills, but kind an an ode to an old river man that also is just about perfect for our idiom.

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