The merciless cold that crippled most of Canada is finally relenting. The type of cold that cracks your skin and forces you to huddle for warmth almost instantaneously. The type of cold that burns your lungs and kills your spirit. The type of cold that makes you wonder how the homeless persevere.
Live! at the laundry room, courtesy of the throw back folkpunkers The Cannisters, could easily have been carried from place to place on bindle sticks. Grainy and raw, these songs are cheap booze inspired, depression era secrets traded on boxcars and sung around barrel fires. Take the bottle, drink up and hope for even a moment’s warmth.
When close their live record with a scrappy take on a Gram Parson joint, it comes full circle. I don’t know if it’s a tip of the cap or an unearthed live take – the only version I have from Gram is comes in at less than three minutes and other than the chords and chorus, is completely unrecognizable even when placed beside The Cannisters version – but it’s how folk music used to live. Folk songs for the people, not above the people, sung differently in each small town and by each singer.
This song is proof that our spirit will never give in or give up.