Tuesday, July 6, 2010

I've Been Working on the Railroad

A 5-string BanjoImage via Wikipedia
So how awesome a song is "I've Been Working on the Railroad"? Like, seriously - as nursery rhymes or old folk songs go, "I've Been Working on the Railroad" just rocks. It doesn't make a lick of sense, really, and is clearly just a medley of different bits of songs with vague connections between them (Hey! these two songs have the name 'Dinah' in them! Let's stick them together!). But, like "Happiness is a Warm Gun" (and that's the first time in the history of human speech that those two songs have been compared), the song works because of, not just despite, its disparate bits. It's like somehow it's trying to tell a larger story - one that in some way involves railroads, horns, kitchens and banjos... but you don't have all the details, so the full story remains elusive...

Or perhaps not. It might just be a silly little kids' ditty.

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