Skip to main content

Cross-posted at The Daily Music Break.

As usual, everything I thought about a song turned out to be wrong. I've Been Everywhere (above) -- a song that essentially is a list of cities strung together as a hitchhiker talks with a trucker who picks him up -- wasn't written by Johnny Cash. He only covered it -- and so did Hank Snow. It was written by an Australian singer. The details are at Wikipedia. That version used Australian cities. There are other versions as well.

The song has an interesting lyric twist. The first verse of the American version, according to Wikipedia, lists these cities: Reno, Chicago, Fargo, Minnesota, Buffalo, Toronto, Winslow, Sarasota, Wichita, Tulsa, Ottawa, Oklahoma, Tampa, Panama, Mattawa, La Paloma, Bangor, Baltimore, Salvador, Amarillo, Tocopilla, Barranquilla and Padilla.

The town of "Padilla" is quickly followed by an almost swallowed line: "I'm a killer." Cash, Snow and the original singer, Lucky Starr -- all sing it. It casts the song in a whole new light: This hitchhiker is on the run and is giving the trucker a warning. It's a good explanation for why he has seen so many cities.

Snow was terrific. His bio starts out with what for a New Yorker -- and perhaps a Brit -- is a confusing paragraph:

Clarence Eugene "Hank" Snow was born on May 9th, 1914 in the sleepy fishing village of Brooklyn, Queens County, on Nova Scotia's beautiful South Shore, just down the tracks from Liverpool. (Continue Reading...)

Below is I'm Movin' On, an important hit for Snow:
Ernest Tubb invited Hank to the Grand Ole Opry on January 7, 1950. He performed at the Opry for 46 years. His first few appearances received only luke-warm appreciation, until he wrote and recorded the song "I'm Movin' On", which became the top country song of 1950 and still holds the country music record for number of consecutive weeks at the number one chart position.

Originally posted to cweinsch on Thu Jul 11, 2013 at 05:33 AM PDT.

Also republished by An Ear for Music, Rebel Songwriters, and Protest Music.

EMAIL TO A FRIEND X
Your Email has been sent.
You must add at least one tag to this diary before publishing it.

Add keywords that describe this diary. Separate multiple keywords with commas.
Tagging tips - Search For Tags - Browse For Tags

?

More Tagging tips:

A tag is a way to search for this diary. If someone is searching for "Barack Obama," is this a diary they'd be trying to find?

Use a person's full name, without any title. Senator Obama may become President Obama, and Michelle Obama might run for office.

If your diary covers an election or elected official, use election tags, which are generally the state abbreviation followed by the office. CA-01 is the first district House seat. CA-Sen covers both senate races. NY-GOV covers the New York governor's race.

Tags do not compound: that is, "education reform" is a completely different tag from "education". A tag like "reform" alone is probably not meaningful.

Consider if one or more of these tags fits your diary: Civil Rights, Community, Congress, Culture, Economy, Education, Elections, Energy, Environment, Health Care, International, Labor, Law, Media, Meta, National Security, Science, Transportation, or White House. If your diary is specific to a state, consider adding the state (California, Texas, etc). Keep in mind, though, that there are many wonderful and important diaries that don't fit in any of these tags. Don't worry if yours doesn't.

You can add a private note to this diary when hotlisting it:
Are you sure you want to remove this diary from your hotlist?
Are you sure you want to remove your recommendation? You can only recommend a diary once, so you will not be able to re-recommend it afterwards.
Rescue this diary, and add a note:
Are you sure you want to remove this diary from Rescue?
Choose where to republish this diary. The diary will be added to the queue for that group. Publish it from the queue to make it appear.

You must be a member of a group to use this feature.

Add a quick update to your diary without changing the diary itself:
Are you sure you want to remove this diary?
(The diary will be removed from the site and returned to your drafts for further editing.)
(The diary will be removed.)
Are you sure you want to save these changes to the published diary?

Comment Preferences

Subscribe or Donate to support Daily Kos.

Click here for the mobile view of the site