Album: Swampblood (2007)
Play Video

Songfacts®:

  • "When I Die" came to Shack Shakers singer-songwriter JD Wilkes in a dream where he heard the crooner Dex Romweber of Flat Duo Jets singing it. Wilkes says that many of his songs start as dreams.
  • Like many of the songs on the Swampblood album, this song deals with death. It finds Wilkes asking a loved one to comfort his corpse as he will be awaiting her in the afterworld.
  • Wilkes hoped to have Romweber sing the song on the Legendary Shack Shakers' album Swampblood, but he ended up singing it himself.
  • Wilkes recorded the piano part for the song immediately after waking from the dream in which he heard it. "I woke up in the middle of the night with it still in my head, ran to the piano and taped it on a little Walmart tape recorder, he said in his Songfacts interview. "So the piano you hear is me capturing the song immediately, with it still ringing in my head from my dream. The lyrics I put to it later, kind of half-remembering what Dex was singing. It was just simple: three rhymes, three little lines, about not wanting to die alone. It's a very honest thing, it was like a song-catching from your own dream state."

Comments

Be the first to comment...

Editor's Picks

The Police

The PoliceFact or Fiction

Do their first three albums have French titles? Is "De Do Do Do, De Da Da Da" really meaningless? See if you can tell in this Fact or Fiction.

Tim Butler of The Psychedelic Furs

Tim Butler of The Psychedelic FursSongwriter Interviews

Tim and his brother Richard are the Furs' foundation; Tim explains how they write and tells the story of "Pretty In Pink."

Sam Phillips

Sam PhillipsSongwriter Interviews

Collaborating with T Bone Burnett, Leslie Phillips changed her name and left her Christian label behind - Robert Plant, who recorded one of her songs on Raising Sand, is a fan.

Rock Stars of Horror

Rock Stars of HorrorMusic Quiz

Rock Stars - especially those in the metal realm - are often enlisted for horror movies. See if you know can match the rocker to the role.

Concert Disasters

Concert DisastersFact or Fiction

Ozzy biting a dove? Alice Cooper causing mayhem with a chicken? Creed so bad they were sued? See if you can spot the real concert mishaps.

Wolfgang Van Halen

Wolfgang Van HalenSongwriter Interviews

Wolfgang Van Halen breaks down the songs on his debut album, Mammoth WVH, and names the definitive Van Halen songs from the Sammy and Dave eras.