Something I look forward to every morning on my drive to work is the tail end of the 8 a.m. news/weather/traffic/sports report on Belleville radio station CJBQ (the station I grew up with here at the Manse) when morning-show host Matt Mitchell plays a song from the country-music archives. Sometimes those vintage songs are wildly obscure; sometimes they are songs that everybody knew once upon a time; sometimes they are oddities. It’s always an entertaining surprise to see what Matt will dig up.
Tonight is the end of a long week, and I think a little bit of music is what we all need. So I thought I’d share with you the total gem atop this post, which is one that Matt played one morning this week. It is the late Hoyt Axton‘s Boney Fingers (yes, I know it should be spelled “Bony,” but apparently “Boney” is how Hoyt chose to do it), which definitely falls into the category of “songs that everybody knew once upon a time.” Matt remarked on that too, noting how when Boney Fingers arrived on the airwaves, everybody, but everybody, was quoting it and laughing about it. He is dead right on that. Boney Fingers came out in 1974, and here in Queensborough, at least, its tagline (or maybe I should say punchline) was instantly being quoted by everyone. Come on, sing along with me: “Work your fingers to the bone, and what do you get? Boney fingers!”
I think Boney Fingers (the song) is also what you get when you mix L.A. folk-rock, deep country roots, and a good sense of humour – which I believe (if I do say so myself) is rather a good way to describe Hoyt Axton and his music in general. I always liked the guy, and his songs.
So in honour of it being Friday night, I think we should listen to another one. Here is Hoyt Axton and (did I mention L.A. folk-rock?) Linda Ronstadt with another classic that’ll take you back in time. Enjoy!