Singled Out: Water Tower Bucket Boys' Goatheads

06/01/2011
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Today Cory Goldman from Water Tower Bucket Boys tells us about "Goatheads" from their brand new album "Sole Kitchen". Here is the story:

This song is kind of a love song about a festival we go to every year in
Weiser, Idaho: the National Old Time Fiddler's Contest. It's held the third full week in June but we always show up a bit early. Its one of the highlights of our year and I don't think any of us have missed it since we started going. Its not a festival where you see a bunch of bands, we just go to hang out with friends from all over the country and play music for hours and hours and hours. And party. We're always as careful as possible not to book any gigs during that time, although once we did book a wedding and ended up rushing out there in the middle of the night afterwards. The festival has a fiddle contest and all that sort of stuff but I actually haven't ever seen that, we just hang out in a dusty, grassy field full of sticker bushes called Stickerville in between some weird abandoned buildings. The song is named after the nasty little stickers, called goatheads because that's what they look like. They have long sharp ends that stick up on all sides, so they're guaranteed to have one facing up for you to step on. The plant is used in Ayurvedic and Chinese medicine, and is supposedly an aphrodisiac...

The year that this song was written, this great band from Louisiana called the Red Stick Ramblers stopped by on their way to Seattle. They're an awesome Cajun band and there was a lot of that music being played, and food being cooked. There's nothing better than stumbling back to your camp at 4 in the morning to discover the crawfish etouffee is finally ready! We were listening to their album on the way home from the festival and I think I wrote the song that night, having so many Cajun tunes buzzing around my head is what gave that tune that flavor. The song is mostly about how I absolutely love the festival, but the lyrics at the end of the chorus "You can pick all night long, drink until dawn, and pass out on the hot dusty ground" is based on one ill-fated night that year. I decided it was a great idea to have an event in honor of our friend Jeff, who didn't make it that year, called "Dickel Dawn". I don't think that really needs any further explanation, suffice it to say that for a while when we performed this song I felt obliged to apologize to anyone in the audience who had been there!

We got to record this tune with Harley, the drummer from Tumbledown, and I really dig the energy of the drums on this one. Whenever we do tunes with a drummer I try to squeeze this one in. I especially like the texture of the fiddle and harmonica together, it makes me think of Cajun accordion which is a sound I really like a lot. This tune is a staple of our live shows as its one of the few waltzes that we have written, and the only drinking song slow enough to raise a beer in the air and slosh it around to.

Hearing is believing. Now that you know the story behind the song, listen for yourself and learn more about the album right here!

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