You Can't Teach An Old Dog New Tricks

Album: You Can't Teach An Old Dog New Tricks (2011)

Songfacts®:

  • The title track of American blues musician Seasick Steve's sixth studio album was inspired by a sobering reality check after receiving a call to play at Glastonbury's 40th anniversary. He explained to The Sun: "I was gonna be on the main stage and we were gonna play for 100,000 people, which we did end up doing. I was really drunk and I started to have this conversation in my soused brain. 'S---, maybe I should get some new clothes. Maybe I should get some guest artists to make it special. Maybe I should get a light show too.' Then this hammer comes on my head and I'm like, 'Steve, shut up. People like you because you do what you do. If it ain't broke, don't fix it. And you wouldn't be able to fix it anyway.' What business do I have trying to be fancy?"
    Inspired, Steve picked up his hubcap guitar and penned this song.
  • Another "old dog" who plays on this track is John Paul Jones, who was born January 3, 1946. The four string maestro also contributed to another canine-titled track on the album, "Back In The Doghouse" plus the closer, "Long, Long Way."
  • Seasick Steve appeared on the BBC Breakfast news programme on May 31, 2011 where he performed with one of his legendary homemade instruments. As well as playing part of the video for the title track of his new album, the two presenters asked him what had inspired it. The song has a fairly obvious autobiographical origin.

    Steve Wold was born in 1941, but it was not until he appeared on Jools Holland's Hootenanny programme on New Year's Eve 2006 that he could be said to have arrived. Since then he has achieved both well-deserved commercial success and critical acclaim.

    In spite of his innate modesty, it is difficult to believe that Steve has learned nothing since his fortuitous run-in with Jools Holland, but perhaps he hasn't heard Dennis Waterman's recording of "It's Alright". >>
    Suggestion credit:
    Alexander Baron - London, England

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