New Year’s Day
When we’re not recording, we still tend to be playing our instruments. They are the tools of both our work and our relaxation. Opposite is a little video of us jamming out Long Black Veil while taking a break from making the album.
This is one of those songs that for years I thought was an old folk standard (by the most prolific duo in history: Mr Trad. and Mr Arr.), but it was actually written in 1959 by Danny Dill and Marijohn Wilkin, and first recorded by Lefty Frizzell.
It is my ambition to write a song that one day gets swallowed up by the collective imagination; something that can live on independently of its creator, like Summertime or Georgia On My Mind. Long Black Veil is definitely one of those songs.
It also has a special significance for me. It was the first song that Cleg and I ever played together. We met in autumn 2006 at a pub gig we were both performing at in Manchester. He came back to mine for a few drinks and ended up staying a week. We became a folk duo and this was part of our set.
We haven’t performed this song for at least four years, but as soon as I started playing it Cleg remembered every harmony and chord. The others got the hang of it in a matter of seconds. This video is how it came out.
Right, back to work…