Barry White

Cover Wars: Long Black Veil

[Originally Published: October 19, 2010]

Hey everybody, DaveO here – over the next few weeks I am turning Cover Wars over to some of the other Hidden Track contributors to change things up a bit. Please welcome, Andy Kahn.

Lefty Frizzell first recorded and released this haunting ballad in 1959. Written by Danny Dill and Marijohn Wilkin, it’s a first person, from the grave account of a man wrongly sentenced to death for a murder he didn’t commit. However, he’s unable to provide an alibi because that would reveal at the time in question he was sleeping with his best friend’s wife. The wife often goes to the narrator’s gravesite wearing the long black veil and mourning the secret that led to his execution. Since Frizzell’s original release plenty of other artists have tackled this heart-string-pulling ballad. A good lot of them are up for consideration below, but let me know in the comments if I missed your fav.

Cover Wars

The Contestants:

Dave Matthews: Those not steeped in the earlier folk stylings of the song might be most familiar with one of Dave Matthews’ performances. A staple of the Dave Matthews Band repertoire for years now, having first appeared on the 1999 live album Listener Supported, Matthews has also played duets with Warren Haynes, Tim Reynolds and as part of a tribute to Johnny Cash with Emmylou Harris.


READ ON for the scoop on the rest of this week’s contestants…

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