Wolverton Mountain


This is a sad song, aye...  A really sad song. We learned it for our set tonight... Ya know, we give and give, and all we ask you to do is take. This is a historical number... There's a tip bowl by the door... Thank ya very much for coming.

Can somebody give me an E?  No, somebody from the band... An E. Okay, thank you Elroy, hold up just half a sec, my G string's gone out on me... again... okay then, okie dokie, here we go.

Uh... Oh wait... Sorry... run down and get your dobro out of the minivan, Chester... Can't play this dang song proper without a dobro...

This is gonna take a lot of you folks back. Heh, heh, some of you younger uns, it's gonna take you back fore you was even a gleam in your daddy's eye. This goes all the way back to 1992... Heh, heh... Shucks man, that's a little joke; we're talkin bout 1962. It was the very first hit for a gentleman by the name of  Clyde King, and I think it could well've been his only hit, coulda been. Song by the name of Wolverton Mountain. And it's a real sad tune, and we're proud to be playing it for you here tonight at BJay's... Uh-one, two, three, four...

They say don't go on Wolverton Mountain,
If you're looking for a wife.
'Cause Clifton Clowers has a pretty young daughter,
he's mighty handy with a gun and a knife.

come on vamp behind me boys...

Now that was a pretty serious warning back there in 1962. I mean the Ruskies, they had the A-bomb, but most of us... most of us was much more afraid of a man who was pretty handy with a gun and a knife. Some of y'all might be thinking that Clifton Clowers is a one heck of a funny name, but I'll just bet you would never say that sorta thing to his face. He was a proud man, a good man, a man who worked hard and protected his pretty young daughter.

 Her tender lips are sweeter than honey
 And Wolverton Mountain protects her there.
 The bears and birds tell Clifton Clowers
 If a stranger should wander there.

bout time for a dobro solo, Chester...

Now it's right about here that this song starts weirding me out just a little bit. I mean, this ain't some fictional place we're talking about, no sir, this takes place right upstream in Conway County, Arkansas. This Clowers joker apparently had his pretty young thing locked up on top of a mountain and the bears and the birds were helping him out. Birds, that I can believe just the tiniest little bit, but I'm tellin ya hoss, the bears would sooner take a bite out of your ass than to help ya out.

All of my dreams are on Wolverton Mountain.
I want his daughter for my wife.
I'll take my chances and climb that mountain
Though Clilfton Clowers, he may take my life

take it on down, fellas

Now wait a second here. Old Clifton might have been pretty good with a gun and a knife, but I think that Clyde is just a little bit on the paranoid side with the kind of observations that he's making about Mister Clowers. Tell you a few things. Clifton was a World War I veteran and a member of the Mountain View Baptist Church where he was a deacon for several years.

I got my own opinion... Something tells me that this one hit wonder, the effeminately named Clyde King, something tells me that maybe he was a tad lightweight it the balls department. Nancy boy, ya know what I mean? And something else is botherin me. I'm thinking, what with Clifton being born in... in 1891, for Christ sakes,  just how young was that pretty young daughter by the time Clyde laid eyes on her, anyhow?

Ah, these old songs. they really make you think. Allright, let's take it home, boys...

I'm going up on Wolverton Mountain,
It's too lonely down here below.
It's just not right to hide his daughter
From the one who loves her so.
Her tender lips are sweeter than honey
And Wolverton Mountain protects her there.
The bears and birds tell Clifton Clowers
If a stranger should wander there.
But I don't care about Clifton Clowers,
I'm gonna climb up on his mountain,
I'm gonna take the girl I love.
I don't care about Clifton Clowers,
I'm gonna climb up on his mountain,
I'm gonna take the girl I love.

Thank you. Thank you. God dangit, I just learned the chords, that did come out pretty good. Thank you. Whoo, boy, that's one weird song there.... Weird ass song. I think that one's out of our repertoire, that's the direction I'm leaning toward. Whole thing just gives me the shudders...

2004, Mark Hoback