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This three-song collection that we’re calling Southern Grammar is good for a few reasons. It gives the song “Brother, Do You Know the Road?”—formerly an orphan tune with no fixed address—a proper physical home. It also offers up a song called “He Wrote the Book” that was a near-casualty from the Lateness of Dancers sessions. Incidentally—and this I didn’t realize until we had gathered the material for this record—“Brother, Do You Know the Road?” and “He Wrote the Book” share a lyric that goes:
And though the storm’s passed over And the sun is in its place It’s been a long time And the rain, how I know it
Sometimes that feels just about as close to a summation of the HGM philosophy as I can get at. And this is the first and only time that I have ever shared words between two songs.
Finally, this version of “Southern Grammar” shows off the HGM road band, which includes Scott Hirsch, Phil Cook, Matt McCaughan, Matt Douglas, and Alexandra Sauser-Monnig, who are all friends and inspirations. The fine, fine crew at WXPN in Philadelphia engineered the recording of this song and graciously agreed to let us use it for this record.
M.C. Taylor - Guitar and singing
Brad Cook - Singing
Phil Cook - Dobro, organ, Wurlitzer, piano, guitar, and singing
Matt Douglas - Saxophone
Scott Hirsch - Bass guitar
Terry Lonergan - Drums
Matt McCaughan - Drums and singing
Alexandra Sauser-Monnig - Singing
“Southern Grammar”—previously released on Lateness of Dancers—was recorded by Christopher Williams at WXPN in Philadelphia for NPR’s World Café. “He Wrote the Book” and “Brother, Do You Know the Road?” were recorded by Scott Hirsch at the homes of Peter and Susan Kramer, Hillsborough, NC, and Joyce and Joel Martin, Oxford, NC, respectively. Additional recording by Brian Haran in Graham, NC, and Chris Boerner in Durham, NC.
Mixed by Scott Hirsch at Echo Magic, Brooklyn, NY. Mastered by Joe Lambert at JLM, Brooklyn, NY. Art, design, and layout by Maggie Fost.
All compositions by M.C. Taylor; copyright Prophecy Connection (BMI).