Back Porch Bluegrass
1963 | Folk
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“The revenuers came for him, a-sippin' though the woods. -- Dooley kept behind them all, and never lost his goods."
- The Dillards are an bluegrass band from Salem, Missouri, popularly known for their appearance as "The Darlings" on The Andy Griffith Show.
- The Dillards are notable for being among the first bluegrass groups to have electrified their instruments in the mid-1960s.
- The Dillards joined Elton John on his first American tour in 1972.
THE HOT TAKES
Well, well! More tunes about alcohol! I absolutely love the idea of calling IRS agents "revenuers." It's like calling police officers "road pirates." Why use their official titles? What they actually do is a different story, after all. The whole state is drunk--not with the product of Dooley's 40-gallon still, but with power. This is a fun reminder that good work never goes unpunished.
I love me some bluegrass! The Dillards were superstars of the bluegrass world, making several appearances on The Andy Griffith Show, as the brothers in the musical family The Darlings. They lived way up in the hills and had their own set of rules to live by. There was even one episode where Andy has to go up there and they basically tell him he ain’t the law there. Oh the days when people didn’t worship the cops! I have oft lamented the loss of the great spirit of Southern anarchy that has come about within my lifetime. When I was a kid I remember old folks talking about how a man should be left to live as he saw fit and how the feds and police were interlopers into a person's life. That has now all been replaced by thin blue line stickers and vehement pledging of allegiance to the masters. The spirit of defiance is still there, it’s just been twisted and malformed into the defiance of all others in favor of The State. Indoctrination works, and unfortunately what The South used to be, compared to what it has become, is a great example.
You'd think we would have learned by the time this song came out that prohibition doesn't work...but we didn't. It's obvious that prohibition just doesn't work with anything else? I know and I presume you do since you found your way here, that it's different in no way. Prohibition doesn't work and moreover it makes life more difficult for people meeting a societal desire. Dooley could have lived a better life providing better service and goods to his community if he didn't spend so much time running from the theft and abuse by the state. Sure they take a comedic approach to the tale but in real life it rarely ends up so quaint.