The Mudcat Café TM
Thread #22674   Message #4150256
Posted By: GUEST,Jerome Clark
14-Aug-22 - 11:49 AM
Thread Name: Origin: Long Black Veil
Subject: RE: Origin: Long Black Veil
I think it's hilarious that Robbie Robertson thinks Danny Dill wrote "Streets of Laredo."

In the real world, "Cowboy's Lament" -- now better known as "Streets of Laredo" -- was written and published in 1876. Francis Henry Maynard, who wrote the lyrics to a traditional tune, was an actual cowboy. The melody was/is related to "Bard of Armagh," "Handful of Laurel," "Unfortunate Rake," and others united by a common theme of a young man's untimely death.

In the late 1950s and '60s country songwriters and stars wrote and/or performed pseudo-folk songs to cash in on the folk boom. (Arkansas folksinger/composer Jimmy Driftwood contributed "Battle of New Orleans" to Johnny Horton, as but one of many examples.) "Long Black Veil" was composed in the fashion of a traditional ballad for a growing popular audience then attracted to that sort of thing. Lefty Frizzell had a hit with it, but the first version I heard was on a folk-oriented mid-1960s Johnny Cash album;