(If you listen to this song, let me know in the comments if you like it or not.)
Here’s a test. Try not to dance around the room waving your hands in the air when you listen to the song, “The Diplomat,“ sung by Maria Muldaur. It’s impossible.
[picapp src=”9/0/1/c/16.JPG?adImageId=6110565&imageId=3341326″ width=”234″ height=”422″ /] (Secretary of State Hillary Clinton and former President Bill Clinton – dancing like diplomats.)
How does Muldaur push your dance buttons? She has three things going for her.
1. Jug Music – This song, from Muldaur’s new album “Garden of Joy,” is played in the style of jug music, a fun, old-timey style that became popular in the 1920s and re-emerged in the 1960s. Jug band musicians use instruments such as jugs, washboards, guitars, banjos, etc., to create a sound with a nice bluesy bounce.
2. Personality – On “The Diplomat,” Muldaur walks us through the average person’s bad day. She sounds world-weary like the rest of us, but with a mischievous sense of humor – kind of like crying with a wink. Muldaur’s vocal approach is the blues, and during the really good parts she gets all raspy.
Muldaur has some great lyrics to work with, compliments of singer/songwriter Dan Hicks. Here’s a sample:
“An acorn fell from a tree and tried to bop me in the head
I say to the acorn, is it something that I said
I’m just practicing my diplomacy
Everything is everything and it’s alright with me”
“…Won’t somebody just throw me a bone
So I can chew the thing alone
Won’t somebody allow me to roam
So I can get on safely home”
3. Roots Music Know-How – Muldaur has some serious roots music credentials. Born in Greenwich Village in New York, she was part of the ‘60s folk revival that included Bob Dylan.
Over the years, she has hung out, sang or played with a who’s who of roots music legends, including Doc Watson, Bukka White, Mississippi John Hurt, Reverend Gary Davis, Son House, Jim Kweskin, John Sebastian, David Grisman, Geoff Muldaur (her ex-husband), Jerry Garcia, Joan Baez, Allen Toussaint and Bonnie Raitt.
Muldaur has recorded over 35 albums since her first solo album in 1973 that included her biggest hit, “Midnight at the Oasis.”
So if you’re ready to take “The Diplomat” dance test. Check the song out on the album, “Garden of Joy” by Maria Muldaur, released Oct. 6, 2009, Stony Plain Recording Co. Her Web sites include www.mariamuldaur.com and www.myspace.com/mariamuldaurtoday. She has a fan page on Facebook.
Also, if you’d like to hear another version of the song, Dan Hicks and the Hot Licks perform the tune on the album, “Tangled Tales,” released March 24, 2009, Surfdog, Inc.
Sources: www.mariamuldaur.com (bio page), www.heralddeparis.com (“Meet her at the Oasis: Maria Muldaur, Matriarch of Rock and Roll,” Al Carlos Hernandez, Oct. 4, 2009) and http://blogcritics.org/music (Music Review: “Maria Muldaur – Maria Muldaur & Her Garden Of Joy,” David Bowling, Oct. 5, 2009)
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