Creedence Clearwater Revival – 1970

Continuing on a theme for a bit, if you don’t mind indulging me for that while. Whenever you’re driving somewhere its cool to have a very propulsive, energetic song going forward but heading home I kinda like a bit of a softie song…something a bit more contemplative (heck the trip is ending and it can’t get more meditative than that!). So, with that all in mind I’m going to post for each new band this month a genuinely awesome Hard/Heavy driving song and a Softie/Meditative track for the drive back home. So, how about some Creedence to get ball rollin’? I was about to do a nice little expose on Creedence’s “Ramble Tamble” from Cosmos Factory but Pitchfork actually did a quite nice little piece expounding on its greatness, totally taking away my thoughts, as seen here. The song itself, in all its ragged glory, is so unlike most Creedence songs in that the jams aren’t quite as structured or fitted together as cohesively as they should, but somehow the different parts work in a great stream of thought kind of way. Ain’t it just like America, with its disparate locales somehow finding a way to fuse into each other? Travel from Indiana into Kentucky and you’ll be plum dandy just realizing when the geographical border becomes a bit porous. Its one of the many things I love about this great nation of ours. This song for sure feels like that, at least to me.

Listen to Ramble Tamble at Grooveshark.

“Cotton Fields” from Willy and the Poor Boys notably isn’t a Creedence original, its an old Leadbelly song, covered countless times, but this is my favorite version. Its quite a masterful take on the spirit that Leadbelly wanted to hint at, I think. For all the backwardness or podunk-ness some of our hometowns can be, isn’t it always the memories of our family that kinda draw you back to reminiscin’ over them? Lord knows, the Louisiana Leadbelly was raised in, especially in the era of Jim Crow, plainly wasn’t a great place to live in for people of a darker complexion. Be that as it may, some kind of collective togetherness/hope through a shared struggle was what still made them dream of going back to their old country home. Creedence’s take is a beautiful piece of rambling country boogie strumming with more than a bit pseudo-East Texan drawl sung by John Fogerty that serves to make you feel like you’re there at the Texas-Louisiana border. Sometimes, don’t it feel nice to see those rolling hills and flat plains when you go back home, wherever that may be…

Listen to Cotton Fields at Grooveshark.