Song of the Week - Hurricane Angel - Feb. 22, 2010

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Song of the Week - Hurricane Angel - Feb. 22, 2010

Postby Becky » Wed Feb 24, 2010 10:43 pm

I do apologize for taking so long to start this thread!! Time has just been getting away from me. I remember first hearing this song and just being blown away by the words and also the fact that this was real. People lost everything...New Orleans would never be the same. At the time, I had never been to New Orleans so it was hard to imagine what it was really like despite what I saw on TV. My daughter, husband and I took our first trip to New Orleans a few weeks ago. Everyone had their own Katrina story. The first one we heard was from our taxi driver from the airport to the hotel. He spent 2 days on his rooftop before he was rescued. How do you stay on a roof in the heat without water/nourishment? We were there over a weekend when it was really cold so we didn't take any walking tours, but we did take a bus tour of the city and did see the lower 9th ward. If I recall correctly, our bus driver said that about 30% of the people had moved back. There is new construction....they built some houses in an area called Musicians Row. They wanted their musicians back. Also, Brad Pitt has committed quite a bit of money to build green homes. So things are improving...yet it's been so long and I don't understand why there is still so much devastation. You can see so many homes in complete disrepair with spray paint letting those who were out in search and rescue know what houses had been searched. I have never seen such devastation and just can't believe that all these years later, there is still so much work to do. I do feel like the people of New Orleans are so resilient and so proud of their city. Things are just taking too long.


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Re: Song of the Week - Hurricane Angel - February 22

Postby Richard + Jela » Thu Feb 25, 2010 9:09 am

Becky - thanks for kicking this one off. Your story about visiting New Orleans is very moving; the inhabitants suffered so much from a lack of action at the outset and now that seems to be further compounded by how long it's taking to repair the damage. I really feel for them.

I think that 'Hurricane Angel' is one of the best songs that EP has written - full of social commentary and tells a damming tale of what life is really like for those in the aftermath of 'Katrina' and also the impact of the economy on a working musician. Such powerful imagery. It is a song that in years to come people will hear and regard as a history lesson.

I get goosebumps everytime I hear the third verse:

'So I sat on my roof
in Lake Pontchartrain
Singing woe to my chimney
Singing woe to the rain
A stranger came by
I never caught his name
He's said he's rowing to the Rio Grande'

it's the way he sings that last line, with a catch in the voice, that really gets me..................every single time!

Such a powerful story song. I could go on but I'll give others the opportunity to contribute their thoughts.

Oh and Richard told me to say that 'Hurricane Angel' is one of his all time favourite songs - not just EP's but of all the musician's he listens to.


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Re: Song of the Week - Hurricane Angel - February 22

Postby Patti » Fri Feb 26, 2010 11:45 am

There are many songs that I say "I like" or " I love" or even a few" I can't stand" BUT there is only one I can say "it brought tears to my eyes the first time I heard it". This is it.

I'm sure I had read about it being discussed on the board and thought I'll hear it soon enough, or I'm glad another song being done on piano. I'm certain tears never entered my mind. But there I was at a table seated with 9 other people in Maine at one of the nicest venues I've been to, Stone Mountain Arts Center, when a few tears started trickling down my face. You could have heard a pin drop in the room and I think everyone in the room was having the same reaction. It is that good, it is that powerful of a song. I was at the table with Becky, Karen, Jela Richard and a few others. 8)

I've have seen a few versions of the song on youtube. One version Ellis is playing this on guitar, he talks a little of how the song came to be. But my favorite has to be the version linked below. One can only imagine what Ellis was feeling as he performed this on a beautiful baby grand piano at the Guthrie Center. ... GwMD8HoOkE
"Embrace what you have in common, celebrate what sets you apart" Ellis Paul

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Re: Song of the Week - Hurricane Angel - February 22

Postby KarenZ » Fri Feb 26, 2010 1:16 pm

So nice to read Becky's posting on the board.

Everythng about "Hurricane Angel" is perfect. Richard is's one of EP's best. :) Can't listen to the chorus without getting goose bumps. A few weeks ago I was introducing a new friend to EP's music by sharing the video of "Hurricane Angel" from the Guthrie Center....the link that Patti posted above. That in itself indicates what I feel for the song. And the Guthrie Center video includes the preferred toke. ;)

"Some people are born to make great art and others are born to appreciate it. It is a kind of talent in itself, to be an audience, whether you are the spectator in the gallery or you are listening to the voice of the world's greatest soprano. Not everyone can be the artist. There have to be those who witness the art, who love and appreciate what they have been privileged to see." -- Ann Patchett in Bel Canto.

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Re: Song of the Week - Hurricane Angel - Feb. 22, 2010

Postby monicar » Wed Mar 03, 2010 8:44 am

Very powerful and moving song and in typical Ellis fashion, one of those stories that you can see in your mind while listening.

Even though I can't imagine in my wildest dreams what the people in New Orleans went through and are still going through, I can still relate to so many things in this song.

I find myself often singing "3 bucks a gallon, man their making it clear" every time I go to the gas station.

Thanks, Becky, for sharing your story and sorry for taking so long to chime in.

Monica R.

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