Filed under country music

Songs About Doctors

Doctors are a small elite breed, and few form bands – they are too busy mostly, but they are also very rarely mentioned in song. I love this one, because it is so well sung but also pure nonsense. What on earth is going on? The doctor is giving really dumb advice, but the patient is … Continue reading

A Song For His Granddad

Sam Palladio is a talented young actor/singer originally from Cornwall, England who is making a name for himself in the tv series,  Nashville. When he told his grandfather, who I think now lives in the Midlands, the response was, ‘What a coincidence’. During World War II he had been posted to The States to train … Continue reading

Music and Technology

One of the things that defines us as modern humans is the constant striving to do things bigger, better, faster, and the history of sound recording has been for more precision, from wax cylinders to tapes to vinyl and now digital. But the problem with digital is that it means the music has to fit … Continue reading

Songs about London Travel

I did a post a while back on the last tram of London. Here’s Robyn Hitchcock singing in an underground tram tunnel aided by a woman playing a saw of course. This is lovely and very very English. I love anything that lists old names. A while back I heard a couple of Americans waxing … Continue reading

Satchmo Dancing

Here is some more from David Byrne’s book, How Music Works. Music has been part of human culture for as long as there has been such a thing as culture, but it changed dramatically with the invention of recorded sound by Edison in 1887. His first machine was not to record music – it was … Continue reading

Pete Seeger RIP

Pete Seeger towers over folk music for so long it is hard to imagine him gone. Many years ago I wrote a poem based on his song Where have all the flowers gone, and inspired by the fact that he believed the German translation was better than his original. He sent me a postcard of … Continue reading

Stories That Make Us Feel Less Alone

Last night Gideon Coe had an interview with a really unusual  artist, Willy Vlautin of the band Richmond Fontain, an alt folk group known for the strong lyrics he writes. Here is their We Used to Think the Freeway sounded like a river:   But he has also published four novels and numerous short stories, … Continue reading

A Life Crying Out For a Film

With the imminent release of the Coen Brothers’ film Inside Llewelin Davis, set in the early folk scene  of Greenwich Village, perhaps someone will turn to the story of folksinger Jackson C. Frank. At the age of 10 a furnace at his school blew up, killing several students and causing 50% burns to him which … Continue reading



There is something rather special about seeing one of these birds on the River Taff, but I saw two in one day. I don’t like them as much as the cormorants, which are rather comical the way they hold up their feathers to dry. Herons are too tall, too skinny, too grey to be likeable … Continue reading