Happy Texas Independence Day!


That’s right, Monday is Texas Independence Day – on March 2, 1836, the Texas Declaration of Independence was adopted (Texas was a spinoff from Mexico) and the Republic of Texas was born. It’s still an official state holiday in Texas, even though the republic survived only ten years – it was annexed by the USA in 1846.

In honor of the holiday, Harry’s Music is observing Texas songwriter week. There are a bunch to choose from and I’l get to as many of my favorites as I have time for throughout the week.

Leading off is Guy Clark, with a powerful live version of Desperadoes Waiting for a Train. It’s about a lesson a young man learns from an old man – death is inevitable, but we can’t let that knowledge determine the way we live.

The desperadoes of the title hear the train coming, and cock their guns and get their masks in place, ready to go. We see their bravado and we feel their excitement, but know trouble is at hand and know how it must end. The robbers know the ending too, I think, but still they charge the train, guns blazing.

Their charge, in the face of that knowledge, is an affirmation of sorts, and in the last verse of Desperadoes, when the old man, a day from death, adds “another verse to that old song,” it’s the same affirmation. Listen to Guy sing it and you can almost hear that train yourself.


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