Thursday, June 20, 2013

Music Break: Songs About Trains

For this month's program, a few numbers about what might be my favorite mode of transportation.

To open, this is the Doobie Brothers with Long Train Running, written and sung by guitarist Tom Johnston, who also plays the harmonica solo.  At this time, the Doobies also included guitarist Pat Simmons, bassist Tiran Porter and drummers John Hartman and Michael Hossack.

From Fleetwood Mac's Kiln House album, Station Man was written by guitarists Danny Kirwan and Jeremy Spencer, along with bassist John McVie.  Kirwan sings the lead vocal and is backed up by Spencer and Christine McVie, who had not yet officially joined the band.  She also drew the album's cover art.  The song was later revived in the late 1970's when Lindsey Buckingham and Stevie Nicks were in the fold.

Speaking of stations, Cream found one of those in the White Room with black curtains.  I've always liked Eric Clapton's wah-wah guitar fills during the second verse.  Bassist Jack Bruce provides the lead vocals and Ginger Baker plays the drums.

In Casey Jones by the Grateful Dead, the engineer indulges in some self-inflicted chemistry.

Train Train by Blackfoot features not one but two guest harmonica solos.  The intro is played by Shorty Medlocke, who wrote this song, and who was the grandfather of guitarist/singer Rickey Medlocke.  The second solo is by Cub Koda, known better as the guitarist for Brownsville Station.  The younger Medlocke, who is now in Lynyrd Skynyrd, is joined by guitarist Charlie Hargrett, bassist Greg T. Walker and drummer Jakson Spires.

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