Wednesday, April 15, 2009

cover: Bonnie 'Prince' Billy

"Each Heart String of Mine is Broken in Time"
Last night at Union Hall The Tallest Man on Earth, a Swede who is clearly steeped in and obsessed with American folk culture, covered the traditional "Goodbye Dear Old Stepstone." While not so much a shot at the Tallest Man, it was fairly obvious that his status as a foreigner truly impeded his version of the traditional, as if something was seriously lost in translation. Upon getting home, I immediately fired up Bonnie 'Prince' Billy's heartbroken and battered version of the song. Recorded for Daytrotter nearly 3 years ago, Bonnie Billy noted that "Bernard Lamar Lunsford learned this song in 1904 from Miss Lela Ammons of Robinsville, North Carolina. I learned it from Lunsford's recording." One listen to Will Oldham's version of the Appalachian folk song, and it's clear that nothing is lost in translation.

Bonnie 'Prince' Billy - Goodbye Dear Old Stepstone
(via Daytrotter)

Bonnie 'Prince' Billy "Goodbye Dear Old Stepstone" on KCMP

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