Lyrics & Knowledge Personal Pages Record Shop Auction Links Radio & Media Kids Membership Help
The Mudcat Cafemuddy

Post to this Thread - Sort Descending - Printer Friendly - Home


Origins: Blue Mountain

DigiTrad:
BLUE MOUNTAIN


Related threads:
olddude - Blue Mountain (64)
Lyr Req: Blue Mountain (from Gordon Bok) (5)
Blue Mountain-Definitions (11)


Stringsinger 21 Dec 07 - 05:52 PM
fiddler 21 Dec 07 - 05:56 PM
Q (Frank Staplin) 21 Dec 07 - 07:23 PM
Ferrara 21 Dec 07 - 10:50 PM
Q (Frank Staplin) 21 Dec 07 - 10:56 PM
katlaughing 21 Dec 07 - 11:07 PM
Art Thieme 21 Dec 07 - 11:19 PM
Barry Finn 21 Dec 07 - 11:22 PM
katlaughing 21 Dec 07 - 11:29 PM
Art Thieme 22 Dec 07 - 07:45 PM
Art Thieme 22 Dec 07 - 07:46 PM
Barry Finn 23 Dec 07 - 01:02 AM
katlaughing 23 Dec 07 - 01:25 AM
Stringsinger 23 Dec 07 - 01:32 PM
Art Thieme 23 Dec 07 - 03:29 PM
open mike 23 Dec 07 - 08:23 PM
Andrez 24 Dec 07 - 03:32 AM
GUEST,Jim in KC 09 Apr 10 - 10:44 PM
Joe Offer 18 Nov 16 - 09:59 PM
GUEST,Bill Wagman 19 Nov 16 - 08:13 PM
GUEST,open mike 22 Oct 17 - 06:04 PM
Share Thread
more
Lyrics & Knowledge Search [Advanced]
DT  Forum
Sort (Forum) by:relevance date
DT Lyrics:



Subject: Origins: Blue Mountain
From: Stringsinger
Date: 21 Dec 07 - 05:52 PM

I wrongly asserted the name of the composer of "Blue Mountain" as Fred Price. It was Judge Fred Keller. Background on the song below.

1. My home it was in Texas
My past you must not know
For I seek a refuge from the law
Where the sage and the pinion grow.

Chorus:
Blue Mountain, you're azure deep
Blue Mountain, your sides are steep
Blue Mountain with a horsehead on your side
You have won my love to keep.

2. On the brand L.C. I ride
There's sleeper calves by my side
I'll own their hip side and shoulder
Before I grow older.
"Zapotero" don't you tan my hide.

3. I chum with Latigo Gordon
I drink at the Blue Goose Saloon.
I dance all night with them Mormon gals
And ride home beneath the moon,

4. I trade at Mons's store
With bullet holes in the door,
His calico treasure, my pony can measure
when I'm drunk and I'm feelin' sore.

5. In the summer they say it's fine
But the wintry winds doth whine.
Say there, dear brother,
If you need a mother,
There's Ev on the old Chuck Line.

History of the song below:




Options
Notes on "Blue Mountain" by Fred W. Keller?
From:        Adam Miller (autoharper@earthlink.net)
Sent:        Fri 12/21/07 5:38 PM
To:        Frank Hamilton (songlines2@hotmail.com)
A tragedy came in Monticello in the death of Jane Walton on July 24, 1891. Tom Roach came from Texas with a record of six killings before reaching Utah. He shot an Indian in Moab in 1888 to add another. Those who knew him best said he was a gentleman when he wasn't drinking. While the townspeople celebrated the 24th of July in Monticello, Roach was at home drinking heavily. Later that night he came to the dance with some cowboys. When his number in the square dance was called, Roach was outside and missed his chance on the dance floor. So when he came in he tried to push another fellow off of the floor. Frank Hyde intervened and Roach stabbed him. Bill McCord tried to quiet Roach and led him to the door. Roach drew his gun and shot McCord in cold blood.

In the meantime, other men went for their guns, including one young man who returned with Charles Walton, Sr.'s gun. Mrs. Walton, who had been a friend of Roach's family, stepped forward expecting to quiet him. At that moment Roach and the young boy fired. Mrs. Walton fell dead. Roach rode away into the night. A posse followed him but he was never heard of again. No other townspeople lost their lives at the hand of outlaws in the county.
------------------------------------------------------------------------
Indians respected bravery in people. Jane Walton was once hoeing in the garden when Posey rode up and demanded "biscuits." "Wait until I finish hoeing this row," she said. "No wait - now!"said Posey. Mrs. Walton stubbornly went on with her hoeing. Posey pointed his gun at her; called her a liar and other much embellished epithets. She struck him over the head with her hoe. Posey fell, stunned. She was afraid she had killed him - but in spite of the terror of killing a man - turned her back on the fallen man.

Posey got up, gave a blood curdling yell and ran for his horse, leaving the seat of his pants in her dog's teeth. It was years later before Posey returned. He approached the house cautiously, pushed the door open gently, stuck his head in and said, "Squaw me no mad." She answered, "Hello Posey - me no mad." Posey's reply came, "Me heap hungry." "All right, Posey, as soon as I finish this little job I'll get your biscuits." Posey went out and chopped wood before his meal was prepared. Thus, each had the satisfaction of having his own way and at the same time restoring a long-time friendship.
------------------------------------------------------------------------
On a cool summers evening in the year 1929 most of the people of Monticello were attending the annual Old Folks Party at the old red schoolhouse. Just before 10 o'clock the sound of several loud gunshots were heard. Two tall cowboys in Stetson hats, boots, spurs, chaps and gun belts swaggered through the doors and forced their way through the crowd. Everyone was relived when they recognized two local men, Fred Keller and Roland Adams. They sang to the residents of Monticello a song Judge Keller had written to the tune of "Bound Down in the Walls of Prison." The song told the story of cowboys that plagued the Monticello pioneers when the town was new. The song eventually found it's way into a publication of ballads of the West. The boys of World War II were honored before they departed and they requested that it be sung.

"Blue Mountain" has come to be known as Monticello's anthem. To this day, when people outgrow our little community and go away to different parts of the world, they take with them the words and music of a song that can always take them home.

Judge Fred Keller tells the story of his song.

"Following my discharge from the United States Army in the summer of 1919, I began to search for a county seat where an untried young lawyer might make a living. Frontier life has a glamour and charm. . .so it was quite natural that I chose as the spot for this very serious experiment the little cow-town of Monticello, Utah, more than 100 miles from the nearest rail point. It is a custom in Monticello to give an annual party to all the inhabitants over sixty years of age. As a feature of one of the entertainments, I composed from the local cowboy lore a ballad which I call "Blue Mountain." I have had some satisfaction from the fact that it became one of the songs that was sung at the farewell parties held in Monticello for the boys summoned to the armed forces in World War II. The following is a brief statement concerning the life of the characters which inspired the song.

The Blue Mountain is an isolated range crowing the divide between the Colorado and San Juan Rivers in Utah. Until about the year 1875, the renegade Utes and Piutes were the only human inhabitants of this mesa, the Blue Mountain.

The first white settlers were cowmen and cowboys. The Carlyle's were prominent figures among these. They established a ranch on Spring Creek. They branded with three swipes or bars, one on the hip, one on the side and one on the shoulder. Among the cattlemen . . . of the region, their outfit was referred to as the "Hip, Side and Shoulder". They had two large competitors, The "LC" outfit and the Pittsburgh Cattle Company on the LaSal Mountains some forty miles north of the Blue Mountain.

On an otherwise naked slope of the Blue Mountain, spruce trees grow in the outline of a horse's head. This feature is very distinct in the winter, one sees the head of a blazed-faced horse . . .looking over the mesa. From earliest times the cowboys have considered the "Horse head" a scenic wonder.

Many of the cowboys who did the punching for the Blue Mountain cow outfits. . .had been in difficulties with the law in Texas and took sanctuary in the remoteness of the Blue Mountain. Some had the ambition to acquire herds of their own. The easy way to get into the cow business was by the process of "sleepering" calves. A cowboy would find a young calf with it's mother in a secluded canyon that isn't ridden very often. He catches the calf, and burns a line that may become a part of the finished brand which the mother of the calf carries, or it may be used as part of the brand that the cowboy making it claims. The calf is then released. The cowboy returns at the time the calf has grown to a weaner and if the owner of the cow has not completed the branding of the calf, the cowboy completes what he began on his own brand and then the calf belongs to him. The calf is referred to as a "sleeper" during the time it is first caught and the completion of the brand. If a cowboy was careless and other cowboys with whom he worked got in on the secret, he was referred to as "a hand with a long rope." A cowboy with a "long rope", if in the employ of the "LC" outfit, got along better with his foreman if most of his "sleepers" were from the "Hip, Side and Shoulder."

Nicknames were common among early cowboys. Bill Gordon, the round-up foreman of the "Hip Side and Shoulder" outfit was know as "Latigo". Another well known cowboy was "Yarn Gallus" so called because of the fact that each Christmas his mother back in Missouri sent a present of some knitted galluses. Another bore the title of "Doc Few Clothes." There are conflicting versions about how he acquired his name. Some say it was on account that he had a very scanty wardrobe and was not over scrupulous in the matter of sanitation. "Slick", a cowboy who neither gambled nor drank hard liquor, but saved his money and married a good-looking grass widow that came on to the frontier. She lived with him for just long enough to steal his roll (money) and then left for parts unknown. The efforts of "Slick" to catch her was a matter of jest around the Blue Goose Saloon and Mons's Store. "Slick" lived on and on through the years with the hope that she would some day return.

To the north of Monticello some sixty miles is a beautiful little valley. In it sits the charming little town known as Moab. The early cowboys of the Blue Mountain referred to it as the "Little Green Valley". More than one of the cowboys dreamed of the day when he could marry a good-looking school teacher and settle down in the "Little Green Valley."

Mon's Peterson, a member of the Mormon colony that settled Monticello, started a general store. The front door of "Mons's Store" was full of bullet holes fired from the guns of celebrating cowboys. One day, to be a little more original than the rest, a cowboy rode his horse through the door, took hold of the end of a bolt of calico, dallied it on the horn of his saddle and rode out on a run. Some Ute squaws were in town that day and I have it on good authority that they ran the cowboy' horse down and each cut off a dress pattern.

"Latigo" the foreman of the "Hip Side and Shoulder" outfit liked life on main street so he established the "Blue Goose Saloon." The conservator of law and order in Monticello was a Mormon shoemaker by the name of Nephi Bailey. He held the high office of Justice of the Peace and tried the cowboys for their offenses as well as making and repairing their boots. The cowboys called him "Zapitaro" which is the Spanish word for shoemaker.

The occasional dances given in the old log church were popular. To date a good-looking Mormon girl for one of these events was a stellar event in the life of one of the cowboys. They found no hardship whatever in riding horseback fifteen or twenty miles into Monticello and back to his camp in the early morning hours after the dance was over.

During the spring, summer and fall, the larger cow outfits required a considerable number of cowboys to brand up the calves and gather up beef. In the wintertime there was very little that could be done for cattle, and all except the top hands were laid off until the spring. Many of them existed through the winter by riding the "Chuck Line". The consisted of riding from one ranch to the other with no other object than to obtain sustenance by partaking of the hospitality of the rancher.

Among the Mormon settlers was a very talented, charming and hospitable woman by the name of Evelyn Adams. She and her husband founded a small ranch at Verdure Creek, some six miles south of Monticello. She was known to all the cowboys as "Ev". She fed them when they were hungry, nursed them when they were ill, and most of them looked upon her as a foster mother. Her cabin was the most popular spot on the "Chuck line". She is the sweetheart or heroine of my song. I think of her very tenderly.


Post - Top - Home - Printer Friendly - Translate

Subject: RE: Origins: Blue Mountain
From: fiddler
Date: 21 Dec 07 - 05:56 PM

Wow, I just think it is a great song!


Post - Top - Home - Printer Friendly - Translate

Subject: RE: Origins: Blue Mountain
From: Q (Frank Staplin)
Date: 21 Dec 07 - 07:23 PM

Song and story much appreciated.

After the Civil War, many who were sought by the law or tangled with carpetbaggers went west to seek new lives. This window, for some later fugitives, remained open in some areas into the 1890s. It was a hard life and lonely without contact with friends and family at home, but prison or the gallows was the alternative.


Post - Top - Home - Printer Friendly - Translate

Subject: RE: Origins: Blue Mountain
From: Ferrara
Date: 21 Dec 07 - 10:50 PM

This information is wonderful, thank you.


Post - Top - Home - Printer Friendly - Translate

Subject: RE: Origins: Blue Mountain
From: Q (Frank Staplin)
Date: 21 Dec 07 - 10:56 PM

Bob Christmas left out the Brand LC verse, but added this one:

Yarn Gallas with shortened bale,
Doc Fewclothes without and soap
In the little green valley have made their sally,
And for the sick there's still some hope.

The last verse differs slightly:

In the summer the wind doth whine,
In the winter the sun doth shine,
But say, dear brother, if you want a mother
There's Ev on the old chuck line.

This version also was collected from the author, according to Christmas.
p. 136-137, with score, Thomas E. Cheney, Ed., "Mormon Songs from the Rocky Mountains," reprint 1881, Univ. Utah Press (original 1968, Am. Folklore Soc. Memoir, vol. 53, Univ. Texas Press).

The 'Yarn Gallus' verse also appears in Fife's "Cowboy and Western Songs, with score. Sung by Loyal Bailey, this version is "reproduced with permission of Judge F. W. Keller." It is obvious that the Christmas version is misheard.

Yarn Gallus with shortened lope
Doc Few-Clothes without any soap,
In the little green valley have made their sally,
And for Slicks there's still some hope.

Austin E and Alta S. Fife, 1959, reprint 1982, "Cowboy and Western Songs," no. 88, pp. 239-240.


Post - Top - Home - Printer Friendly - Translate

Subject: RE: Origins: Blue Mountain
From: katlaughing
Date: 21 Dec 07 - 11:07 PM

I learned it from Art Thieme and in fact sent him a picture by email of Blue Mountain when we drove over to see my dad in Utah one time. The whole time as we drove past it in the far distance I could hear Art's voice singing it.

Frank, thank you so much for background. Reminds me of some of our own family history of cattle ranching and sheepherders in Western Colorado.


Post - Top - Home - Printer Friendly - Translate

Subject: RE: Origins: Blue Mountain
From: Art Thieme
Date: 21 Dec 07 - 11:19 PM

Frank,
On my record of the song, I mistakenly say something like: "I'll own the back side and shoulder before I get older." Indeed, I thought the sangs words were describing a rustled and butchered cow---and back side and shoulder, I figured, must refer to cuts of beef/meat.

Faith Petric in San Francisco---herself, a fine folksinger and person, sent me a note back in the 1970s telling me in no uncertain terms how very WRONG I was. I still feel the heat of the embarrassment I felt then.

It's strange, a thousand people might be applauding, but it's the one who is booing that you "hear" and remember thirty years later. At least that's the way I am.

Thanks for introducing me to this fine song. I'd almost rather not know all those details. I prefer the vagueness of the poetic imagery.

Art Thieme


Post - Top - Home - Printer Friendly - Translate

Subject: RE: Origins: Blue Mountain
From: Barry Finn
Date: 21 Dec 07 - 11:22 PM

I picked this up at Faith's house back in the late 70's, from who I can't remember but it was well sung out there at the time. Here's another Blue Mountain thread from quite a ways back.

Barry


Post - Top - Home - Printer Friendly - Translate

Subject: RE: Origins: Blue Mountain
From: katlaughing
Date: 21 Dec 07 - 11:29 PM

Well now my Rog and I are thoroughly confused. When we went to see my dad, we drove from Western Colorado on over to Vernal; all well north of Moab and Monticello. On the way there, we saw a sign, in Utah, which said "Blue Mountain" and pointed off to the north of us, as headed west. It looked blue and it looked like a horse head on its side. So we took pictures, talked about the song, etc. That's what I took pictures of...now I find the state of Utah must have two of them, but durned if I can find any others on any online maps. I told Rog we may have to drive back up there just to see what we saw. If that isn't the darndest thing!


Post - Top - Home - Printer Friendly - Translate

Subject: RE: Origins: Blue Mountain
From: Art Thieme
Date: 22 Dec 07 - 07:45 PM

I have a ton of various folks' explanations of this song in my files; ones that I've picked up over the years. I know there is one that was printed in "Come For To Sing" magazine (Chicago) with my version of Blue Mountain---a rather lengthy piece, as put together by the editor of the mag, Emily Friedman. That was the early '70s as I remember it---and I was on the cover of that issue. Nowwww, where did I put that thing??? If I find it, I'll post it---but my phone line is messing up big time tonight.

Art


Post - Top - Home - Printer Friendly - Translate

Subject: RE: Origins: Blue Mountain
From: Art Thieme
Date: 22 Dec 07 - 07:46 PM

Oh, and Skip Gorman did a fine version too.

Art


Post - Top - Home - Printer Friendly - Translate

Subject: RE: Origins: Blue Mountain
From: Barry Finn
Date: 23 Dec 07 - 01:02 AM

Hi Art

I still have the notes given to me by Faith, it's from the PSG (?) Newsleter on Sept 1970 by the San Francisco Folk Music Club.
It's pretty close to what Frank posted above but Frank has a bit more of it & I seem to have some of what Frank might be missing. If you'd like the rest I'll post it here.

Skip leaves out the "Yarn Gallus" verse, Molly Stouten does lovely harmony with him on the chours. His words are slightly different from what I have on Fred Keller's notes & slighly different from the above posted too.
Captailized words are what's different & () means omissions. (within) Below in the notes also means extra from Franks notes or () again means omissions.

Blue Mountain (F.W. Kellar)

I'll post the words as I have them.

1. My home it was in Texas
My past you must not know
For I seek a refuge from the law
Where the sage and the pinion grow.

Chorus:
Blue Mountain, you're azure deep
Blue Mountain, WITH sides are steep
Blue Mountain with () horsehead on your side
You have won my love to keep.

2. FOR the brand L.C. I ride
AND THE sleeper calves ON THE side
I'll own THE "Hip-Side-and-Shoulder"
WHEN I grow older.
"ZAPITARO" don't () tan my hide.

3. I chum with LAD-DIE-GO Gordon
I drink at the Blue Goose Saloon.
I dance AT night with THE Mormon GIRLS
And ride home beneath the moon,

4. I trade at MONSE'S store
With bullet holes in the door,
His calico treasure, my HORSE can measure
When I'm drunk and () feelin' sore.

5. "Yarn Gallus" with GUN & ROPE
"Doc Few-Clothes" without any soap,
In the little green valley have made their sally,
And for "Slick's" there's still some hope.

6. In the summer time () it's fine
IN the WINTER THE WIND doth whine.
BUT say, () dear brother, If you WANT a mother
There's Ev on the old Chuck Line.


Hell, might as well type out the notes as I have them too. A good bit will be the same as Fank's but the little bit that's extra may be meaningfull to you, Frank, Kat & a few others.


"Following my discharge from the United States Army in the summer of 1919, I began to search for a county seat where an untried young lawyer might make a living. Frontier life has a glamour and charm
(that I have neer been quite able to get out of my system),
so it was quite natural that I chose as the spot for this very serious experiment the little cow-town of Monticello, Utah, more than 100 miles from the nearest rail point.

The Blue Mountain is an isolated range crowing the divide between the Colorado and San Juan Rivers in Utah.(The first white settlers were cowmen and cowboys. Two young English brothers with the surnane of Carlyle).The Carlyle's were prominent figures among these. They established a ranch on Spring Creek. They branded with three swipes or bars, one on the hip, one on the side and one on the shoulder. Among the cattlemen . . . of the region, their outfit was referred to as the "Hip, Side and Shoulder". They had two large competitors, The "LC" outfit and the Pittsburgh Cattle Company () some forty miles north of the Blue Mountain.

Many of the cowboys who did the punching for the Blue Mountain outfits (were young men of the adventurous type who) had been in difficulties with the law in Texas and took sanctuary in the remoteness of the Blue Mountain. Some had the ambition to acquire herds of their own. The easy way to get into the cow business was by the process of "sleepering" calves... (a refined type of larceny)

Nicknames were common. Bill Gordon, the round-up foreman of the "Hip Side and Shoulder" outfit was know as "Latigo". Another well known cowboy was "Yarn Gallus" so called because ()each Christmas his mother back in Missouri sent a present of some knitted galluses. () "Slick", was a cowboy who neither gambled nor drank hard liquor, but saved his money and married a good-looking grass widow that came on to the frontier. She lived with him for just long enough to steal his roll (money) and then left for parts unknown.

The "Little Green Valley" was some 60 mile north of Monticello slopong gently to the banks of the Colorado River. More than one cowboy dreamed of the day he might marry a school teacher & settle down there. (In the early 80's a small colony of Mormons came to Monticello & built a log cabin church. It had rather a crude seeple in which hung an acient bell. A drunken cowboy considered it a first-class prank to take a shot at the bell as he was leaving town after a good spree.

A member of the Mormon colony () started a general store (which was named for him , Mons's Store. Staple merchanddise consisted of calico, gingham, sugar, coffee, Bull Durham, Horse Shoe chewing tobacco, whiskey & other necessities of life.) The front of the store was punctured with many) bullet holes fired from the guns of celebrating cowboys. One day, to be a little more original than the rest, a cowboy rode his horse through the door, took hold of the end of a bolt of calico, dallied it on the horn of his saddle and rode out on a run.()

Latigo Gordon () liked life on main street so he established the Blue Goose Saloon (which ranked in importance with Mons's Store as a revendezous for the cowboys.)

The conservator of law and order in Monticello (during these boisterous days) was a Mormon shoemaker by the name of Nephi Bailey. He held the high office of Justice of the Peace and tried the cowboys for their offenses as well as making and repairing their boots. The cowboys called him "Zapitaro" which is the Spanish word for shoemaker.

(The cattle of the large cow outfits with headquathers around the Blue Mountains were upon the open range throughout the entire year. In the spring they drifted to the higher elevation, & in fall drifted back again to the shelter & warmth of the canyons that run down to the banks of the Colorado & San Juan Rivers.) During the spring, summer and fall, the larger cow outfits required a considerable number of cowboys to brand up the calves and gather up beef. In the wintertime there was very little that could be done for cattle, and all except the top hands were laid off until the spring. Many of them existed through the winter by riding the "Chuck Line". (Riding the Chuck Line) consisted of riding from one ranch to the other with no other object than to obtain sustenance by partaking of the hospitality of the rancher. Among the Mormon settlers was a very talented, charming and hospitable woman by the name of Evelyn Adams. She and her husband founded a small ranch at Verdure Creek, some six miles south of Monticello. She was known to all the cowboys as "Ev". She fed them when they were hungry, nursed them when they were ill, and most of them looked upon her as a foster mother. Her cabin was the most popular spot on the "Chuck line". She is the sweetheart or heroine of my song. I think of her very tenderly.

(The mesa of Blue Mountain has an elevation of approximately 7,000 feet & sustains a vegetative cover over huge pinions, junipers, sage brush & blue stem grasses. The climate of the Blue Mountains country is one of exhilarating freshness in the summer, but in the winter a fierce wind twirls the snow into drifts that do not disappear until late April. Until about the year 1875, the renegade Utes & Piutes were the only human inhabitants of this mesa, the Blue Mountain, & it's surrounding canyons. On an otherwise naked slope of the Blue Mountain, spruce trees grow in the outline of a horse's head. This phycial feature is very distinct in the winter, & at a distance as great as 30 miles, one sees the head of a blazed face horse with an arched neck looking over the mesa. From the earliest times the cowboys have considered the horsehead a scenic wonder.)

Barry


Post - Top - Home - Printer Friendly - Translate

Subject: RE: Origins: Blue Mountain
From: katlaughing
Date: 23 Dec 07 - 01:25 AM

Thanks, Barry! I love reading the stories behind the songs. I will have to find an old newspaper article I found one day at the library. I was looking at microfilm to find an article about my great-granddad's shoot-out. Anyway, the article was about some cowboys and cowmen going after some renegade Utes, down in the area near this song's origin. The time of the article was just about when the story of the song is from. As soon as I find the copy I made, I will check it for some of the names in the song's origins. Who knows? Could have been some of the same folks.

I thought I remembered that "galluses" were suspenders. Just checked and found out I remembered correctly.:-)


Post - Top - Home - Printer Friendly - Translate

Subject: RE: Origins: Blue Mountain
From: Stringsinger
Date: 23 Dec 07 - 01:32 PM

Art, thanks so much for the information. I consolidated it and sent it to Skip Landt
who handles the Old Town School of Folk Music newsletter. Enough info is known about the song now so that it can be sung and understood. The tune apparently is "Bound Down In The Prison Walls", an old hymn that Judge Keller used for the lyrics.

It's this kind of thing that makes Mudcat a superlative site for folk music.
I hope we can have more of this kind of thing.

Frank Hamilton


Post - Top - Home - Printer Friendly - Translate

Subject: RE: Origins: Blue Mountain
From: Art Thieme
Date: 23 Dec 07 - 03:29 PM

Barry and all, Thanks to everyone for all of this enlightening info. Threads like this one are my favorites. Frank, I know Skip and Fran. Fine people!


Post - Top - Home - Printer Friendly - Translate

Subject: RE: Origins: Blue Mountain
From: open mike
Date: 23 Dec 07 - 08:23 PM

Skip Gorman did a fine version of this one on A greener Prairie
http://www.skipgorman.com/

It brings to mind the "other" song which i first heard from Robin and Linda Williams...across the blue mountains...
http://sniff.numachi.com/pages/tiBLUEMNTN.html


Post - Top - Home - Printer Friendly - Translate

Subject: RE: Origins: Blue Mountain
From: Andrez
Date: 24 Dec 07 - 03:32 AM

I only ever knew this song through Jody Stechers version but fell in love with the song on first hearing about 25 years ago.

The history in the posts above is truly fascinating but it doesnt seem possible to Google an image of the blue mountain and the horse head so its hard to picture. Locally (in OZ) the closest place I can think of that reflects is Mt Warning in Northern NSW and it was in that district where I first heard Jody's version of the song.

Cheers,

Andrez


Post - Top - Home - Printer Friendly - Translate

Subject: RE: Origins: Blue Mountain
From: GUEST,Jim in KC
Date: 09 Apr 10 - 10:44 PM

My dad was born and raised in Blanding, and knew many of the characters in the song. He says Aunt Evvie's cooking really was that good! Here's a photo of what the USGS insists on calling the "Abajo" mountains: http://www.suu.edu/faculty/mulderink/ServiceLearning/vicki_tracy.htm


Post - Top - Home - Printer Friendly - Translate

Subject: RE: Origins: Blue Mountain
From: Joe Offer
Date: 18 Nov 16 - 09:59 PM

Late in 2016, former Grateful Dead member Bob Weir came out with an album titled Blue Mountain. The chorus of the song is identical to what we know, but the verses are new. Don't know if any of the literature accompanying the CD gives any credit to Bob Keller and the history of this song.
-Joe-

As usual, the Grateful Dead Lyric and Song Finder does a great job of giving the background of this song (giving credit to Mudcat, too).
Thanks to Bill Wagman (Davis, California) for pointing out this new recording to me.

Blue Mountain

Lyrics: Bob Weir, Josh Ritter, Josh Kaufman/[Fred Keller]
Music: Bob Weir, Josh Ritter, Josh Kaufman/[Fred Keller]

One of the songs on Bob Weir's new album Blue Mountain. He played an extract in an interview with Dan Rather in August 2015, introducing it:.

"It's an old cowboy tune that I've wanted to pull together for ... I first learnt it in the bunkhouse, I think, or I first heard it, and I've wanted to pull it together for fifty some years, and finally I'm doing it. In order to do that, I've had to write some of the verses that I didn't remember, and just go back - I guess it's the thought process."

"That's called 'Blue Mountain' [Dan Rather: And this is on a new album?] It's gonna be, yeah. This is sort of the bedrock - I'm probably gonna write maybe a dozen more verses for it."
The portion he sang was as follows:
I was born in a manger in Texas
The doggies and paints come round
My days there were troubled and restless
All the trouble I looked for, I found

My welcome wore thin, down in Texas
For reasons you won't want to know
Well I roped and I broke and I rambled
To where the sage and the pinon do grow

Blue mountain, you're azure deep
Blue mountain, your sides are steep
Blue mountain with a horse head on your side
You've stolen my love to keep
You've stolen my love to keep
The full lyrics on the recorded version are:
Blue mountain, you're azure deep
Blue mountain, your sides are steep
Blue mountain with a horse head on your side
You stolen my love to keep
You stolen my love to keep

Well I was born in a manger in Texas
All the pintos and paints come round
My days there were troubled and restless
All the bad news that I looked for, I found

My welcome wore thin down in Texas
For reasons you probably know
Well I roped and I broke and I rambled
To where the sage and the pinon grow

Blue mountain, you're azure deep
Blue mountain, your sides are steep
Blue mountain with a horse head on your side
You stolen my love to keep
You stolen my love to keep

Here is a snake in the rainbow
And here is the balsom and bow
And here are the ladders of light up to heaven
But blue mountain is all I need now

Oh, what kind of cut purse is the evening
To scatter her diamonds behind
We're all given a first and a last one
And blue mountain will be both of mine

Blue mountain, you're azure deep
Blue mountain, your sides are steep
Blue mountain with a horse head on your side
You stolen my love to keep
You stolen my love to keep
Bob Weir Recordings
     Date Album
     2016 Blue Mountain 

The chorus and some lines in the first two verses come from a song written by Judge Fred Keller. There's an account of the origins of the song here. The full lyrics of the original version are:
My home it was in Texas
My past you must not know
I seek a refuge from the law
Where the sage and pinon grow

Chorus
Blue Mountain, you're azure deep
Blue Mountain with sides so steep
Blue Mountain with horse head on your side
You have won my heart to keep

For the brand "LC" I ride
And the sleeper calves on the side
I'll own their hip side and shoulder, before I grow older
"Zapotaro", don't you tan my hide

I chum with Latigo Gordon
I drink at the Blue Goose Saloon
I dance at night with the Mormon girls
And ride home beneath the moon

I trade at Mons' store
With bullet holes in the door
His calico treasure my horse can measure
When I'm drunk and feeling sore

Yarn Gallus with shortened lope
Doc Few-Clothes without any soap
In the little green valley have made their sally
And for Slicks there's still some hope

In the summer time it's fine
In the winter the wind doth whine
But say, dear brother, if you want a mother
There's Ev on the old chuck line


Post - Top - Home - Printer Friendly - Translate

Subject: RE: Origins: Blue Mountain
From: GUEST,Bill Wagman
Date: 19 Nov 16 - 08:13 PM

In response to Joe's note, *no* there is no credit given to Fred Keller. He also does a song he calls 'Only A River' which uses 'Shenandoah' but again, no acknowledgment that it is based on and uses traditional tune and some words.


Post - Top - Home - Printer Friendly - Translate

Subject: RE: Origins: Blue Mountain
From: GUEST,open mike
Date: 22 Oct 17 - 06:04 PM

Bob Weir from his latest album   
I think the lyrics sound like
"We are all given a first and a last love,
And Blue Mountain will be both of mine."


Post - Top - Home - Printer Friendly - Translate
  Share Thread:
More...

Reply to Thread
Subject:  Help
From:
Preview   Automatic Linebreaks   Make a link ("blue clicky")


Mudcat time: 12 December 6:21 PM EST

[ Home ]

All original material is copyright © 1998 by the Mudcat Café Music Foundation, Inc. All photos, music, images, etc. are copyright © by their rightful owners. Every effort is taken to attribute appropriate copyright to images, content, music, etc. We are not a copyright resource.