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Origins: 'Duncan and Brady' explored

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DUNCAN AND BRADY
DUNCAN AND BRADY (2)


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GUEST,Pat Blackman 19 Jan 13 - 10:10 AM
GUEST,Pat Blackman 19 Jan 13 - 05:28 PM
Charmion 19 Jan 13 - 06:07 PM
GUEST 20 Jan 13 - 08:46 AM
GUEST,Lighter 20 Jan 13 - 09:53 AM
GUEST,Pat Blackman 20 Jan 13 - 01:04 PM
GUEST,Lighter 20 Jan 13 - 01:10 PM
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Subject: Origins: 'Duncan and Brady' explored
From: GUEST,Pat Blackman
Date: 19 Jan 13 - 10:10 AM

This week at Murder Ballad Monday we explore in-depth the ballad "Duncan and Brady" or "Been on the Job Too Long", from the incident that inspired it, through the development of the song, and finally to its many forms today.

1. "Duncan and Brady" / "Been on the Job Too Long" - Today: the story behind the song. While the resemblance between the song and the facts is not entirely coincidental, it's closer than you might think. Performances by Dave Van Ronk and Mark Bilyeu get us situated as we look forward to the story *of* the song later this week.

2. Twinkle, twinkle, little star... - If we can describe "Duncan and Brady" as a universe of songs that emerged after James Brady's shooting in St. Louis in 1890, then Pat's second post this week is like an advanced telescope, giving us a detailed look at what happened, musically speaking, after the Big Bang (literal and figurative).

Explore with us the earliest constellations of songs, as the folk process worked over the story in a variety of ways within diverse communities. Performances today from Wilmer Watts & the Lonely Eagles, Rhonda Vincent, and Lead Belly, as well as links to Spotify and YouTube playlists.

Come on in and take a look. It's a stellar contribution.

3. Re-ragged in red... - In a final bit of thoughtful rummaging for the week, Pat pulls out some of the finest garments in the wardrobe of song that is "Duncan and Brady." In today's installment, Pat presents a wide range of post-Lead Belly recordings. Some rock, some swing, but all of them tell a story (ok, not always the same story, but we're past that already...) Come on in and find a hidden treasure or two.


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Subject: RE: Origins: 'Duncan and Brady' explored
From: GUEST,Pat Blackman
Date: 19 Jan 13 - 05:28 PM

By the way, many comments here in my quest to know more about this ballad led to fruitful results. Thanks!


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Subject: RE: Origins: 'Duncan and Brady' explored
From: Charmion
Date: 19 Jan 13 - 06:07 PM

Nice blog. I'll be reading it regular-like.


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Subject: RE: Origins: 'Duncan and Brady' explored
From: GUEST
Date: 20 Jan 13 - 08:46 AM

Thanks Charmion!


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Subject: RE: Origins: 'Duncan and Brady' explored
From: GUEST,Lighter
Date: 20 Jan 13 - 09:53 AM

Interesting indeed, Pat.

The research raises the heretical possibility that "Duncan," "Stackalee," and "Frankie" were all written by the same person, presumably in or near St. Louis.


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Subject: RE: Origins: 'Duncan and Brady' explored
From: GUEST,Pat Blackman
Date: 20 Jan 13 - 01:04 PM

Thanks, Lighter. Agreed, that possibility does present itself rather strongly. It certainly would explain a lot. On the other hand, the bits and pieces I saw about the other two ballads seemed to suggest otherwise. Still, I didn't dig deep enough this time to take a definitive, well-supported position. Maybe if we get in to Stagger Lee this year I will!


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Subject: RE: Origins: 'Duncan and Brady' explored
From: GUEST,Lighter
Date: 20 Jan 13 - 01:10 PM

Please do!


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