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Story telling songs


Gotta go with the masters of New American Folk: Dave Alvin and Tom Russell.

Tom was a New York cab driver and one day Robert Hunter (Grateful Dead lyricist) was a passenger, Tom sung this song to Robert and that night Tom was on stage with Robert.



Of course Iron Maiden are great at this: check out The Talisman on Final Frontier.

I also remember Magnum were good at songs that told a story as well:



Murder by Death's Who Will Survive and What Will Be Left of Them is a great concept album.

Mewithout you has some good songs/albums that are story driven as well.


Gotta add the Drive by Truckers as well

Here's some brutal lyrics:

They powered up the city with hydro-electric juice.
Now we got more electricity than we canever use.
They flooded out the hollow and all the folks down there moved out, but they
Got paid so there ain't nothin' else to think about.
Some of them made their living cutting the timber down, snaking it one log at
A time up the hill and into town. T.V.A. had a way to clear it off real fast.
Lots of men and machinary, build a dam and drown the rest.
Uncle Frank lived in a cabin down on Cedar Creek, bought fifteen acres when he
Got back home from overseas. Fifteen rocky acres, figured no one else would
Want, till all that backed up water had to have some place to go.
Uncle Frank couldn't read or write. Never held down a job, or needed one in
His life. They assured him there'd be work for him in town building cars. It's
Already going down.
The cars never came to town and the roads never got built and the price of all
That power kept on going straight uphill. The banks around the hollow sold for
Lake-front property where Doctors, Lawyers, and Musicians teach their kids to
Uncle Frank couldn't read or write so there was no note or letter found where
He died. Just a rope around his neck and the kitchen table turned on it's side


Not just songs, but also one side of an albul and the whole album are among my favorites.

Some examples: The Wall (whole album), 2112 (side A), Scenes From a Memory (the whole album), The Fountain of Lamneth (side B of Caress of Steel), And Then There Was Silence, Patches.
Hemispheres? ;)

Uncle Bob


Woke up this morning, my dog was dead,
Someone disliked him and shot him through the head.
Woke up this morning, my cat had died,
I know I'll miss her, sat down and cried.
Came home this evening, my hog was gone,
People here don't like me, I think I'll soon move on.
Now somethings happened, that would make a saint frown,
I turned my back and my house burned down.


A widow's life is no life at all
Look said the ghost, there in the hall
Her big brown eyes
And northern beer
Pulled her through her living years
Won't you wear the
Won't you wear the
Won't you wear the
The gravedigger's work is almost done
A hole in the ground spits dirt at the sun
The water-tank is dirty and dry
Dust from the creek covers the sky
Won't you wear the
Won't you wear the
Won't you wear the
Five years without a sound
The railroad's melted down
Ten years further on
A husband in the ground
Won't you wear the
Won't you wear the
Won't you wear the, black hat



Some great ones here but the one that immediately comes to mind is this - "Up The Junction" by (UK) Squeeze - great lyrical flow & no chorus to speak of. A personal history in 3 minutes.


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