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Great tunes that reference historic times and events

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Great tunes that reference historic times and events

Postby Nick Berigan » Sat Mar 23, 2013 1:37 pm

Tunes that reference events that make you want to learn a little more;
Acadian Driftwood (Robertson?)
Why Aye Man (Knopfler)
Veracruz (Zevon)
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Re: Great tunes that reference historic times and events

Postby Henry Vilas » Sat Mar 23, 2013 1:59 pm

Sailing To Philadelphia - Marc Knopfler & James Taylor
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Re: Great tunes that reference historic times and events

Postby Kenneth Burns » Sat Mar 23, 2013 2:29 pm

Boney M, "Rasputin"
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Re: Great tunes that reference historic times and events

Postby Igor » Sat Mar 23, 2013 3:03 pm

Kenneth Burns wrote:Boney M, "Rasputin"


A friend in high school had that tape, and played it all the way to Madison when we qualified for the state Forensics contest. Hated most disco, but didn't mind that. Good times.
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Re: Great tunes that reference historic times and events

Postby fennel » Sat Mar 23, 2013 3:04 pm

We're referencing historic times, now? This needs stopped.

This historic event of my first cat's death is recalled by the "Na Na Hey Hey Kiss Him Goodbye" song.
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Re: Great tunes that reference historic times and events

Postby Galoot » Sat Mar 23, 2013 3:15 pm

What an awesome idea for a thread! The first song that came to mind was James Keelagan's "Cold Missouri Waters" which is probably best known from the recording by the group Cry Cry Cry. It tells the story of the Mann Gulch Fire in Montana in the late 1940's.

Kris Delmhorst recorded an odd little tune about ten years ago called "Galuppi Baldessari" that is based largely on a poem by Robert Browning about the composer.
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Re: Great tunes that reference historic times and events

Postby Grubendol » Sat Mar 23, 2013 3:31 pm

A disaster-themed song came to my mind as well.

"Rox in the Box" by The Decemberists

It's about the Granite Mountain Mine fire near Butte, Montana in 1917, when dozens of miners were killed after a cave-in and fire, many suffocating to death while waiting for rescue. A sad and epic tale about mortality the plight of the working stiff.
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Re: Great tunes that reference historic times and events

Postby Kenneth Burns » Sat Mar 23, 2013 3:59 pm

Igor wrote:
Kenneth Burns wrote:Boney M, "Rasputin"


A friend in high school had that tape, and played it all the way to Madison when we qualified for the state Forensics contest. Hated most disco, but didn't mind that. Good times.

I freaking love that song.
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Re: Great tunes that reference historic times and events

Postby Kenneth Burns » Sat Mar 23, 2013 4:00 pm

Johnny Horton had a bit of a cottage industry in history-based country songs. "The Battle of New Orleans" is great, also "North to Alaska."
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Re: Great tunes that reference historic times and events

Postby fennel » Sat Mar 23, 2013 4:18 pm

Kenneth Burns wrote:"The Battle of New Orleans"
Strangely, that song calls to mind a night of doing shots in an American ex-pat's bar in Palma de Mallorca.
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Re: Great tunes that reference historic times and events

Postby Igor » Sat Mar 23, 2013 8:04 pm

- Not sure if it counts, but "Speedway at Nazareth" by Mark Knopfler is somewhat historical, though it also takes some liberties

- Nautical Disaster - The Tragically Hip

- Edison's Medicine - Tesla
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Re: Great tunes that reference historic times and events

Postby Steve Vokers » Sun Mar 24, 2013 4:52 am

How about The Band's "The Night They Drove Old Dixie Down."

Virgil Kane is the name
And I served on the Danville train
'Till Stoneman's cavalry came
And tore up the tracks again

In the winter of '65
We were hungry, just barely alive
By May the 10th, Richmond had fell
It's a time I remember, oh so well

The night they drove old Dixie down
And the bells were ringing
The night they drove old Dixie down
And the people were singing
They went, "Na, na, la, na, na, la"

Back with my wife in Tennessee
When one day she called to me
"Virgil, quick, come see,
There goes Robert E. Lee!"

Now, I don't mind chopping wood
And I don't care if the money's no good
You take what you need
And you leave the rest
But they should never
Have taken the very best
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Re: Great tunes that reference historic times and events

Postby Nick Berigan » Sun Mar 24, 2013 7:55 am

Yeah. I like that. And despite an early poster's need to take a shot, I do mean REFERENCING as opposed laying it all out. "..Stoneman's cavalry came and and tore up the tracks again..."

Makes you wonder want to fill in more detail or kind of puts you in the head of the participants or something.

"We had the back of Maggie's hand, times were tough in Geordie land." (Knopfler again). That kind of reference... Tells a story without banging you over the head with it.
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Re: Great tunes that reference historic times and events

Postby Meade » Sun Mar 24, 2013 8:29 am

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Re: Great tunes that reference historic times and events

Postby Right Bower » Sun Mar 24, 2013 9:08 am

You can take your pick from several Iron Maiden songs. "The Trooper" is probably my favorite.

Although the subject is brutal, Slayer's "Angel of Death" is classic metal from one of the best metal albums of all time.
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