Wednesday, 11 March 2009
Since writing two chicken song posts on a whim in January I've been surprised to discover just how much music has been devoted to the farmyard fowl.
Following my last chicken post a colleague told me I'd omitted his favorites by Uncle Dave Macon, The Meters and Link Wray. Another co-worker suggested I listen to King Crimson's "classic improv piece" Mother Hold the Candle Steady While I Shave the Chicken's Lip (which I did but won't be sharing in case it has the same effect on you that it had on me). I've also recently bought the diverting music list book Hang the DJ and found that it contained a 10-song rundown of chicken songs.
These are the three suggestions I welcomed as well as the Rufus Thomas track I was unable to find first time around. I fear this is becoming an obsession and there'll be a further post shortly with another quartet of cluckers.
MP3: The Meters - Chicken Strut
This was a minor hit for the New Orleans funk band in 1970 and demonstrates one of the great appeal of chicken songs to musicians: it allows them to make comical bird noises (see also The Funky Chicken).
More Meters: official site | Amazon | 7digital
MP3: Rufus Thomas - Fried Chicken
The Funky Chicken may be Rufus Thomas's most famous birdy song but this is certainly the greasiest and greatest. I wanted to include it on my first chicken song post but couldn't track it down. I finally found it a compilation called Pulp Fusion - Bustin' Loose.
More Rufus Thomas: Wikipedia | Amazon | 7digital
MP3: Uncle Dave Macon - Bake That Chicken Pie
Macon was one of the first Grand Ole Opry stars and if you saw episode one of BBC Four's brilliant Folk America series you'll know what an amazing character and self publicist the "Dixie Dewdrop" was. This song was recorded in 1927 but had been popular for decades as a minstrel number.
More Uncle Dave: Wikipedia |Amazon
MP3: Link Wray and his Ray Men - Run Chicken Run
I saw Bob Dylan at Brixton Academy the month Link Wray died in 2005 and was delighted to hear Bob start the show with a rendition of the classic Rumble (Dylan also paid tribute to his surroundings with a Clash cover). No vocal chicken impression required here - the guitar does all the work.
More Link Wray: Wikipedia | Amazon | 7digital
As I said, stay tuned for even more chicken songs very shortly and please suggest any more I might enjoy.
Chicken Songs For The Soul
Chicken: Anyone For Seconds?