Song of a Road (Re-mastered)
Ewan MacColl, Charles Parker & Peggy Seeger
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Considered by Ewan MacColl to be the weakest of the eight radio ballads created for the BBC radio service, Song of a Road could be considered a failure only in respect of its apparent focus on the mechanics of road-building as applied to the construction of Britain's M1 motorway. MacColl, Charles Parker, and Peggy Seeger were initially hampered in their efforts by a mixture of BBC executive demands that tempered the spirit of the team to begin with, and the initial oversight from the public relations office for the construction project — as MacColl noted in his liner notes, this latter problem was solved in part by getting into the worst corners of the 57 miles of the initial project, convincing the PR representative that she did not need to be present.
For all MacColl's conviction that they had softened their approach to the subject, he, Parker, and Seeger managed to include quite a bit of irony and tragic realism, both in the choice of interview clips and the often pointed lyrics — a self-important chief engineer's puffed-up speech leads into a satirical song about consulting engineers; in another instance, interview clips about the life of a long-term road gang worker lead to a song from a mother to her child about his long- absent father. Despite its age (this radio ballad was produced in 1959), Song of a Road is still vitally fascinating — more importantly, it bears repeated listening.
Born: January 25, 1915 in Salford, England
Years Active: '40s, '50s, '60s, '70s, '80s
Top Albums and Songs by Ewan MacColl
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||Glasgow Peggy||Classic Scots Ballads||3:10||$0.99||View In iTunes|
||The Battle of Harlaw||Ballads (Collection)||3:29||$0.99||View In iTunes|
||Whiskey Johnny||Blow Boys Blow (Remastered)||2:02||$0.99||View In iTunes|
||Sir Patrick Spens (Child 58)||English and Scottish Popular Ballads: Child Ballads, Vol. 1||5:33||$0.99||View In iTunes|
||The Ballad of Springhill||New Briton Gazette, Vol. 1||3:53||$0.99||View In iTunes|
||Lord Randall (Child 12)||English and Scottish Popular Ballads: Child Ballads, Vol. 1||3:41||$0.99||View In iTunes|
||The Trooper Cut Down in His Prime||The Unfortunate Rake||4:30||$0.99||View In iTunes|