By Jeremy Hammond:
My cover of “City of New Orleans” by Steve Goodman is influenced by Willie Nelson’s version of the song. The rhythm fittingly drives on like the wheels on a locomotive, and it has a fun chord progression.
** EDITOR’S NOTE **
This is one of those songs I feel like I’ve known forever. The more likely time frame is since I was about ten or twelve, listening to my father’s seventies music cassette tapes. Of course, I know the 1972 Arlo Guthrie version from his album, Hobo’s Lullaby. It turns out Steve Goodman played it for Guthrie at a bar called the Quiet Knight in Chicago, after which Guthrie recorded his cover.
If the quality of a song can be judged by the caliber of people who have recorded it, then this is an outstanding tune. It has been recorded by Willie Nelson, Johnny Cash, John Denver, Judy Collins, and Jerry Reed, and has been performed most recently by Jimmy Buffett in 2005 and former Red Hot Chili Peppers guitarist John Frusciante in 2006.
And now I’m thrilled to add Jeremy Hammond’s name to that long and prestigious list of cover song artists. Jeremy’s music video performance is an excellent, entertaining, faithful rendition that anyone who knows this song will enjoy. If this is your first time hearing the song, perhaps you’ll go out to a CD store (or at least YouTube) and check out the other versions. Jeremy continues to select songs that fit perfectly into the acoustic cover song format, so hurry back soon for another installment of the Guest Sessions at the Laptop Sessions music video blog!