Wednesday, May 10, 2006

Swamp Music

This is just going to have to be one of my would-be high-concept posts that ends up still-born, half-assed. But that’s cool. I was going to do a series of swamp-theme songs, ideally swamp songs involving murders. This was mainly just an excuse to foist Warrant’s "Uncle Tom’s Cabin" on anyone daring enough to go there with me. But then, no, when I think about "Uncle Tom’s Cabin," I’m not even totally sure there was actually a swamp involved, though the video seems swampy in my memory. And when I think about "Uncle Tom’s Cabin" I’m reminded of my other high-concept- sure-to-be-half-realized about doing something on songs that misappropriate famous pieces of literature (preferably American lit.) for rock use. Uncle Tom’s Cabin, as you know, is an anti-slavery novel by Harriet Beacher Stowe. Warrant’s "Uncle Tom’s Cabin" is a song about, I don’t know, corrupt cops and murder. Get the idea? From there I could only really come up with one other one: Metallica’s "For Whom the Bell Tolls," which I’m pretty sure is unrelated to the Hemingway book. There must be more. "Mody Dick" sort of makes the cut, but we really need one more solid to run with the theme. I’m sure it will come.

So that’s why you’re not listening to Warrant right now.

To the matter at hand. Let me just advise all of you Charlies Daniels doubters out there. Go get your copy of My Morning Jacket’s It Still Moves and pick just about any track off of it. Or pretend you’re listening to the Drive-By Truckers. How much difference is there? The other, less pleasant, connection is to the Edgar Winter Band. "Wooley Swamp" actually shares some DNA with "Frankenstein." And so there it is – Charlie Daniels Band perched at the intersection between wanky bloated blues-boogie albino art rock and southern-fried jingo jams, dixie dreggs.
"Legend of the Woolie Swamp" – Charlie Daniels Band

And to clear the swamp muck off your palate, Swamp Dogg and Duke Ellington.
"Total Destruction of Your Minds" – Swamp Dogg

"Chloe (Song of the Swamp)" – Duke Ellington and his orchestra

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