Archives for 30 October 2016

An American legend

The odd thing about the Banshee Guys, or Bratwurst Grills, or whatever B. G. stands for (as previously mentioned), is that they did not start off as a disco band. No indeed, their roots lay deep in the American folk-song revival of the postwar years, and in the course of mining that country’s traditions, they put to glorious music some of its most moving and enduring legends.

One of their most famous songs retells an ancient myth of the American Southwest, where to this day, the natives tell tales of that supernatural trickster, the Coyote. I reproduce the lyrics in full:

I started a chase which started the Road Bird running,
But I didn’t see that the chase was on me.
I set off the fuse which started the bomb exploding,
Oh, but my TNT, it was glued onto me.

I ran off a cliff, stood there as if it were solid and stiff.
Then I looked at the ground, and none being found, plummeted down,
Till I fell with a crash, which started the Road Bird beeping,
And a boulder broke free, and it crashed upon me.

Breathes there a man with heart so dead that he is not stirred to sublime emotions by the story of the Wily Coyote? Ah, it is a moving legend indeed; it has been clocked at over 60 miles per hour.