Back in 1980, sometime towards the Fall season, The Charlie Daniels Band released the studio album Full Moon, (Epic Records). I can remember this like it was yesterday, my late sister and I would sit around and listen to this great Charlie Daniels album and get the biggest thrill out of it. One song in particular, The Legend of Wooley Swamp was our favorite. This song evokes great memories of my late sister, with us being brought together through the music of the Full Moon album. This song scared the heck out of us back in 1980, it still gives me the jitters today. Talk about a cool and scary song… this one I should have put on my list of Scary Halloween Songs I posted recently. I really do not know how this legendary song slipped my Metal mind while compiling that list. Here is the story of The Legend of Wooley Swamp:
The lyrics tell the story of Lucius Clay, a greedy old man who would love and care for money more than people. Lucius Clay stored all of his money in mason jars, burying the jars all around his yard. On Summer nights, if the moon was right, Lucius Clay would dig these money filled – mason jars out of the ground. He would empty the jars of money on the floor of his shack and run his greedy fingers through it. Three young men named “the Cable boys” were trouble, they knew of Lucius Clay and all of his money. One night the oldest Cable brother decided he and his two brothers would go down to the Wooley Swamp and get the Lucius Clay money. Well, these brothers did find Lucius Clay, as he was digging up mason jars of money under a full moon. They beat Lucius Clay and threw his body into the swamp, watching as he was sucked down. As these Cable boys tried to run away with the jars of money, they realized they were being dragged down in quicksand themselves. As the Cable boys sunk to their death, they could hear the old man, (Lucius Clay), laugh. As Charlie Daniels relates the spoken word at the end of The Legend of Wooley Swamp - It’s been fifty years ago and you can go by there now. There’s a place in the yard in the back of Lucius Clay’s shack where the ground is forever wet. On summer nights, when the moon is right, down by the dark footpath, you can hear three young men screaming and you can hear one old man laugh.
This story as told in the song by Charlie Daniels, with his band behind him, is vintage. Yes, it is one hell of a scary song too. The Legend of Wooley Swamp makes for a perfect song to get ahold of for this Halloween season. Aw, heck, get ahold of the entire Full Moon album for Metal’s sake, it’s worth every penny. I am one Metalhead that is proud to admit my total fondness for this album, and the upmost respect for The Charlie Daniels Band and the music Charlie Daniels has created for five decades running. Call this song Country, Rock Country or call it Southern Rock. I like to call this song and the entire Full Moon album by The Charlie Daniels Band an American Classic.
You can find The Legend of Wooley Swamp on the Full Moon album, of course. This song is also found on many of The Charlie Daniels Band – Greatest Hits albums as well or on itunes. (I actually bought an extra copy of this song off of itunes myself). Regardless of what Rock genre you hold allegiance to, The Legend of Wooley Swamp and the Full Moon album is worth many, many, listens.
For a great look into the history of The Charlie Daniels Band, with tons of cool stuff, be sure to check out The Charlie Daniels Band website: http://www.charliedaniels.com