Monday, 13 April 2009


Beer. Personally I never touch the stuff but apparently it is quite popular. And it appears to have been for some time, as one of the classic English folk songs is all about the short and eventful life of John Barleycorn and how he did not die in vain.

There are many versions of this song. To any old hippies out there you probably think Traffic's version (the title track of their 1971 LP "John Barleycorn Must Die") is the bee's knees. But bees have room for many knees, such as Tim Van Eyken's version from 2006. Here they both are.

Of course if you want a song about the adverse effects of an excess of the juice of the barley you really need to look to the honky tonk singers. In my opinion there was none better than the late, great Gary Stewart. Here he is in the early 1970s with "Drinking Thing", being introduced by Charley Pride and a man with a beard (any ideas?)

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