Always On My Mind (cover)

July 24, 2015 8:24 AM

Resonator and baritone uke, trying to channel Willie Nelson though maybe via John Darnielle a little it turns out.

This ended up coming together suddenly this morning in a weird way; a comment about music a little while ago in the epic Emotional Labor thread on the blue got me thinking about just making it happen even as it got me looking a little more askance at the underlying emotional "yeah, but..." message of the whole thing.

Questionable emotionally manipulative thesis aside, though, it's just a darned pretty song.

I've been thinking about covering Always On My Mind on and off for a while now; I actually first heard it as Pet Shop Boys song years ago (via Dance Dance Revolution, of all places) and became aware that it was an older country/crooner standard only later on. I still prefer PSB's cool disaffected synthpop take, but Willie Nelson's approach in particular has grown on me over time, and I've got this shiny new resonator guitar sitting around, and, so here we are.

I'm missing my upright bass and my traditional steel string guitar and my piano here; all of those I think would have made nice additions and rounded out the sound some, but even just the bass to fill in the bottom some more would help.

posted by cortex (5 comments total) 14 users marked this as a favorite

Nice one, cortex.
posted by flapjax at midnite at 2:12 AM on July 27, 2015

Sweet and mellow, cortex. Harmonies and guitar part really enjoyable. Hits the right emotional notes in the vocals. Really nice!
posted by BlackPebble at 11:18 AM on July 27, 2015

I love this.
posted by Ambrosia Voyeur at 4:13 PM on July 31, 2015

Oh yeah! Just gotta work on yer Texas accent. This really is nice.
posted by a humble nudibranch at 2:13 PM on August 16, 2015


You said you were "sort of more actively side-eyeing the presumptuous of the premise and presentation of the lyrics", which I totally get. But, I think that's kindof the entire point of the song.

We're all shitty people sometimes, in reality. No one lives up to being their ideal self; the best of us are just constantly working to do better, and closer approach that ideal. Sometimes we look back on something we did that was really shitty. We didn't know how shitty we were being then, but we've lived and learned and worked at being better people, and now we can see it plainly. And it hurts.

And that's what this song has always been to me (being most familiar w/ Willie's version). Yeah, it definitely describes a guy behaving poorly towards a woman. But you can't miss that it's about the regret he feels about it now. And how he is in the process of coming to understand what he had done wrong.

Maybe it's even a cautionary tale to other guys, "Don't be like me, and wait until after your love has already left to realize you're being a dick."

(Although, maybe that's just me, and the rest of you have always been 100% awesome. :)
posted by teatime at 12:42 AM on December 3, 2016

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