Because your affront to my virtue was a touch too much, but you left a little twinkle in my eye…

A couple of weeks ago Oliver and I were in the Malmö record store and café called Folk å Rock, one of my favourite places. I heard a singer on the radio that intrigued my ears: sharp, languid country folk that I didn’t recognize.

I asked the clerk (Ulf, as it turns out) what I was hearing.

Gillian Welch,” he said, “an American. First album in 7 years. Fantastic, isn’t it.”

Needless to say, I bought the album: stores that hire clerks that know their music need our support.

I’ve been listening to The Harrow & The Harvest ever since, and I’ve only grown fonder of it. My favourite track is from Tennessee, with the following passage:

Why can’t I go and live the life of riley?
Why can’t I go back home to apple pie?
Because your affront to my virtue was a touch too much
But you left a little twinkle in my eye

I don’t know quite why, but I love those last two lines.

Welch, it seems, has been around for a while – you might remember I’ll Fly Away from the soundtrack of O Brother, Where Art Thou?, a duet she sang with Alison Krauss – and has four earlier albums left for me to plumb the depths of.


lori's picture
lori on September 2, 2011 - 19:37 Permalink

I’ve been listening to this album nonstop too Peter. I love it so much I’ve actually made copies for a few friends… thinking that they would of course love it just as much as me… only to not have heard anything back about it from any of them. happy to hear someone else is as crazy about it as me. she’s amazing!

Ken's picture
Ken on September 2, 2011 - 20:13 Permalink

Funny, I just ‘discovered’ her a few weeks ago too.