Sunday, December 19, 2010

Alcohol: a love song (part two)

Ealier this year, I published a post entitled Alcohol: a love song. It was about what I described as "one of the great all-time love songs — an ode to a tempestuous but profound love affair".

The song in question was Gogol Bordello's "Alcohol". It remains untouched in its raw passion and commitment to love, whatever the consequences.

It may not be matched, but loyal readers of this blog deserve a sequel. It comes courtesy of North Carolina outlaw country outfit Bourbon Crow, from their first album in 2006, appropriately titled "Highway to Hangovers".

Bourbon Crow take their country seriously, as any decent person should. They have deep respect for the outlaw legends, such as Johnny Cash, Waylon Jennings and Merle Haggard.

And they know that every country song worth anything is marked by referrence to one thing above all others: booze. Not uncommonly, booze is coupled with heartache. Hell, in Haggard's classic Tonight the Bottle Let Me Down, booze *is the source* of the heartache.

(I realise country music is renown for its relationship with misery, but that is truly the saddest song I've ever heard. I discuss it in my post Merle Haggard, country music and a dystopian nightmare that speaks to our deepest fears.)

Bourbon Crow stand, swaying unsteadily, in this proud tradition.

And they have produced a fine ode to alcohol, in which they defiantly defend it against the slanders poured on it ("and you get all the blame") and defiantly declare their love ("Alcohol is awesome, so fucking awesome").

At times like this, with serious suggestions of raising the drinking age to 21 in this godforsaken country, we need such public stances more than ever.

Still,it is not going all the way of the prohibitionists. An important victory was scored recently when the City of Sydney was forced to back down on enforcing a midnight closing times on pubs.

This is an important victory, if only because I could not have otherwise been in Petersham's Livingston Hotel on Saturday morning at 5am trying to convince some bloke I just met from Kent that I was an Argentine in order to try and pick a fight over the Falklands.

So, listen to this song with a drink to celebrate our victories and to remind ourselves why we fight the bastards trying to stop us drinking.

"As far as I'm concerned, AA stands for alcohol... is awesome"

Alcohol is Awesome

Dear alcohol last night we had a ball
i lost my left shoe
don't worry i don't blame you
your my best friend
there til the end

i love the the way that you taste
you put a smile on my face
and you get all the blame
as far as im concerned
A.A. stands for alcohol is awesome

all my friends are worried about me
they say i need a meeting
they say i got a problem
i don't have a problem
they said thats half the problem
and you get all the blame
as far as im concerned
A.A. stands for alcohol is awesome

alcohol is awesome
so fuckin awesome (keep repeating)

and you get all the blame
as far as I'm concerned
A.A. stands for alcohol is awesome

alcohol is awesome
so fuckin awesome (keep repeating)

If you want more Bourbon Corw on the importance of being drunk, there are a few more songs:
Alcohol Express ("Yes it's true, alcohol I love you")
In the Mood for a Drinkin' Song ("My girl has left me and my money's almost gone... and I'm just in the mood for a drinkin' song")
Ol Whisky Mountain ("I got this ol' guitar and a bottle of jack. I've got no plans, but I've got no regrets, so line 'em up bar tender, aint even started yet")
A Dead Body ("I'm too drunk to dig this grave, I've been drinkin for 17 days, and I'm livin the American dream, a dead body and the bottle of beam..." - this one truly sums up Carlo Sands' life)

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