Song of the Day #3,093: ‘Dollar Bill Blues’ – Townes Van Zandt

hel_or_high_waterI’m thrilled to see Hell or High Water on a lot of year-end top ten lists and in the Academy Award conversation. Taut genre films like this one usually don’t get that kind of love. Even the Coen Brothers’ Oscar-winning No Country For Old Men, a similar film in some ways, had an artsy streak not present here.

Hell of High Water, written by Taylor Sheridan and directed by David Mackenzie, is a sun-baked Texas noir, a modern-day Western about two outlaw brothers robbing banks to save their ancestral home from foreclosure. Chris Pine and Ben Foster are well-matched as the brothers, and Jeff Bridges delivers a twist on his Rooster Cogburn as the Texas Ranger on their tail.

The film is a pretty straight-forward cat-and-mouse deal, but it has gained some resonance since the election. Rural white people who feel screwed by the system — Trump voters — don’t have their stories told by Hollywood very often. Both Hell or High Water and Manchester by the Sea (very different movies, to be sure) portray that demographic with compassion and humor. You empathize with and care about these characters, despite their flaws.

I’d probably hate to know how they voted.

If I had a dollar bill
Yes, I believe, I surely will
Go to town and drink my fill
Early in the morning

Little darling, she’s a red-haired thing
Man, she makes my legs to sing
Going to buy her a diamond ring
Early in the morning
Mother was a golden girl
I slit her throat just to get her pearls
Cast myself into a whirl
Before a bunch of swine
It’s a long way down the Harlan Road
Busted back and a heavy load
Won’t get through to save my soul
Early in the morning
I’ve always been a gambling man
I’ve rolled them bones with either hand
Seven is the promised land
Early in the morning
Whiskey’d be my dying bed
Tell me where to lay my head
Not with me is all she said
Early in the morning


2 thoughts on “Song of the Day #3,093: ‘Dollar Bill Blues’ – Townes Van Zandt

  1. Dana says:

    Unfortunately, I think we know exactly how they voted.๐Ÿ˜„

    I agree this was a great movie, which is high praise for someone who tends to eschew westerns.

  2. Peg says:

    I LOVED this movie; and I’m sure they all voted for Hillary ๐Ÿ˜‰

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