This special Thursday edition of Saturday Soundtrack is timed for December 31st, when, for some reason, you may have a drink in your hand.
You may be drinking to celebrate the New Year and to welcome President-elect Joe Biden and Vice President-elect Kamala Harris. Or you may be lifting a glass to say goodbye to a year that has been horrid in almost every way possible. You may be toasting the soon-to-be end of an administration that has tried to kill democracy in America. Perhaps you are anticipating a Dry January and have decided to load up before the calendar turns over.
No matter the reason, here are a few songs for Jack, Jim, and all of their friends to get you in the mood, beginning with a couple from one of my old favorites, David Bromberg. The first, with Jefferson Airplane and Hot Tuna guitarist Jorma Kaukonen, is Keep on Drinkin’ — not the last time we’ll hear someone disregard the advice of their doctor.
The second Bromberg tune is a long-time favorite of fans — as you can tell by the sing-along nature of the chorus — I Like to Sleep Late in the Morning.
Norah Jones doesn’t normally go off on benders, but her “alternative” band, The Little Willies, get drunk singing a song written by the inspiration for the group’s name, Willie Nelson.
“I gotta get drunk I can’t stay sober
There’s a lot of good people in town
Who’d like to hear me holler
See me spend my dollars
And I wouldn’t think of lettin’ ’em down
There’s a lot of doctors that tell me
That I’d better start to slowin’ it down
But there’s more old drunkers
Than there are old doctors
So I guess we’d better have another round“
Even though the quality of the video isn’t great, the guitar solos by Jim Campilongo are amazing and worth the trouble.
The Watkins Family Hour with Sean and Sara Watkins calls up one of the saddest drinking songs around, The King of the 12 Ounce Bottle, on their debut album.
We don’t know how long we’re here for, do we?
So much beer, and so little time.
Chris Stapleton has sung his share of drinking songs. Here he is with his old band The Steeldrivers Drinking Dark Whiskey, Telling White Lies followed by the beautiful solo acoustic version of Whiskey and You.
And just because Stapleton left the Steeldrivers to begin his solo career, it doesn’t mean the band forgot how to drink.
“I’m drinking like a fish and dancing like a mule
Fighting like a chicken and talking like a fool
And I will ’till I don’t have to honkey-tonk my blues
‘Cause anything’s better than thinking about you
Sitting at home, knowing your gone
Watching the phone, drinking alone“
I don’t know, drinkin’ alone sounds so 2020.
Seriously, folks, don’t drink and drive. At all. Be safe. Enjoy yourself. And goodbye 2020…you’ve been a helluva year (and that’s a nice way to put it).
More to come…
Image: Bourbon (Photo Credit: The Adventures of Sarah and Derrick)
Bonus: And here’s one of many references in song to being with Jack (Daniels), Jim (Beam), and all of their friends, from the 2015 CMA Awards show.
“I can’t drink you away
I’ve tried Jack, I’ve tried Jim
I’ve tried all of their friends
But I can’t drink you away“
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