Tuesday, December 21, 2010

Wayfaring Stranger

I'm kind of obsessed with covers and how different people can take a song all over the place. So there will be a few of these posts.

This particular song I find fascinating. I keep coming across it, and keep finding amazing covers. The more I learn about it the more I understand why I'm drawn to it, but the short version is I'm just drawn to it.

A brief history via Wiki:

"Poor Wayfaring Stranger" is a traditional folk song of unknown origin. There are many and varied opinions as to its origin. Some of the proposed origins are Appalachian folk, old Irish folk, and Catskills folk. One theory is that it originates from the Negro Spirituals and there was a deliberate concealment of the song's origins. Clearly the song is of a spiritual nature as the Wayfaring Stranger sings of the hardships of his temporal life passing by and refers to his journeying on to a better place. This song has been recorded countless times.

And here's a bunch of my favorite covers.

I learned of this song originally from this master, one of my favorites, Eva Cassidy

Second favorite version, Johnny Cash

Third favorite, Jack White from the Cold Mountain soundtrack

Tennessee Ernie Ford

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