Wednesday, November 4, 2009

do the one about the knife

Various Artists - Swamp Gold Vol. 6 - (Compiled by and available from Floyd's Record Shop) I've been embroiled in Floyd's swamp pop compilations of late researching this and that for the book, but the track on this one that really hooked my brain, besides Warren Storm's hyper-melodrama "Valley of Tears," the one place where everyone understands him, is Charles Mann's Cajun-esque cover of Dire Straits' "Walk of Life." This is so much a swamp pop song that I was convinced DS had covered it, but no, more evidence that my friend is right about Brothers in Arms. This song is swamp pop incarnate, these guys play gigs every night at little swamp bars and do the one about the sweet-lovin' woman, do the one about the knife. Mann's reclamation made me listen to a song I'd heard a million times, and trading real accordion for keyboards is a generally advisable move. Here's hoping someone has has applied some Zydeco strategies to Van Halen's "Jump"

According to Mann's biography:
At the suggestion of Swamp Pop music fan and British author, John Broven ("South To Louisiana", "Pelican Press"), Charles recorded a cover version of the Dire Strait's hit "Walk Of Life" seasoning the recording with the Cajun Accordion. The idea worked. The record was a hit not only throughout South Louisiana and East Texas, but in the England/UK market as well. An album leased to Zane Records and Cooking Vinyl in England became a big success. In particular the arrangement of "Walk Of Life" was so successful in the UK and Charles made several tours overseas with an appearance at the Glaston Berry [sic] Festival one year.

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