Down Past The Bottom

Album: Good Souls Better Angels (2020)
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Songfacts®:

  • Lucinda Williams' friend, Pennsylvania-born-and-raised songwriter Greg Garing, wrote this song. Originally recorded by Wanda Jackson for her 2012 Unfinished Business album, Williams told Uncut magazine she thought the honky-tonker was a "really cool traditional country song," but sounded too similar to others she'd done in the past.

    The singer's husband and co-producer Tom Overby suggested they have a look to see what they could do with it. The band started playing, Williams improvised some lyrics, and they ended up with a dark-night-of-the-soul hard rocker, which she described as "this totally punked-out garage-rock version of a country song."

    Williams added: "The punk thing is so closely aligned to real country full stops what Hank Williams did. What Johnny Cash and Merle Haggard. What Iggy and The Stooges did. It's all about attitude."
  • Lyrically, this is one of several Good Souls Better Angels songs that employ American gothic and religious imagery. "I've always been drawn to that imagery," Williams told The Irish Examiner. "It's a beautiful way to explain things... I've always loved and been fascinated by it."
  • Longtime Wallflowers band member Stuart Mathis supplies the song's raw, ferocious guitar playing.

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