All posts tagged “murder ballads

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Duncan & Brady

Here’s an American murder ballad from the late 20s. It’s been recorded by lots of performers, including Leadbelly, Bob Dylan and Dave Van Ronk.  Here are two interesting versions…  

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Who was Delia Green?

There are numerous American folk tunes that have their roots in true stories. There is Stagger Lee, Tom Dooley, Charles Guiteau, John Hardy, Pretty Boy Floyd and many more, a fascinating and bloody history. Most of these are about men, and most of them involve… Read More

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Bad Man Stagger Lee

The tall tale of Stagger Lee has been recorded countless times in many styles. The bad man Stagger Lee has been Stacker Lee, Stack-O-Lee, Stack Pole and more. We all know what happened. That bad old Stagger Lee killed Billy Lyons over a $5 Stetson… Read More

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John Hardy

John Hardy is a tune that has been around the block a few times. To say it is well recorded is an understatement. Here’s Cedric Watson and the Mad Minstrels with an unique version featuring gourd banjo, fiddle and stand-up bass. I know Watson’s work… Read More

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Duncan & Brady

Back to our series on murder ballads. Duncan & Brady is also known as Been on the Job Too Long or Twinkle Twinkle Little Star. It’s all about the shooting of a policeman named Brady by a bartender named Duncan. This tune has been quite… Read More

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East Texas Red

I think I may make the series of thematic music posts I’ve been making on the subject of murder ballads a weekly post rather than continue it daily. While only one reader has mentioned that I seem to be playing a lot of violent music,… Read More

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El Paso

Let’s continue with another Daily Dose of Murder Ballads this evening by heading down to border country. Here’s Marty Robbins singing his career-defining tune El Paso. Robbins wrote this tune and first recorded it for his Gunfighter Ballads and Trail Songs album of 1959. By… Read More

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Stackolee

Lee Shelton lived from March 16, 1865 – March 11, 1912 in St. Louis Missouri. Who was Lee Shelton and why should we care? Well, Mr. Shelton shot William Lyons on Christmas night 1895. Shelton, was sent to the big house where he eventually died… Read More