Friday, August 5, 2011
Because I'm a nerd and because facts matter.
About ten months ago, I put together a video using iMovie of the original recording of Ghost Riders In The Sky by Burl Ives. This picture of Burl is from his early years as a folk singer, traveling around the country with his voice and his guitar. Ghost Riders In The Sky is not really a folk song, but a modern tune in the Western style. Burl recorded the simple version I found on iTunes a month before Vaughn Monroe turned it into a massive hit.
The difference in musical styles is significant and I like Burl's version better.
Honest people can disagree.
Someone named Markalson1938 posted this version of Burl singing the song. Way too show business for my taste, after Burl sold out. There is no way in Hell the second version Burl did compared to the first, which is an honest song by an honest artist.
I say this because I'm a nerd and facts matter. Some might like Burl's second version better, but hearing the original shows you how much people turned this great tune into an excuse for virtuosity, losing the simple, scary meaning of the tune.