Singer-songwriter Steve Earle is best known among black folk for his rendition of “Way Down in the Hole” for Season 5 of “The Wire.”
I myself had never heard Earle’s music until 1999, when my man David Simon chose “South Nashville Blues” as the theme song for “The Corner.” (Re-recorded by Corey Harris and Henry Butler.)
Well, shame on me. Because Steve Earle is a major talent.
Last week I stumbled upon a documentary called “Heartworn Highways,” which was filmed in 1975. It features a very young Earle along with David Allan Coe, Townes Van Zandt, Guy Clark and other country troubadours.
Click here to hear Steve Earle performing “The Mercenary Song.”
That track is available as a FREE MP3. Follow this link to the “Heartworn Highways” website, then look in the right-hand column under “FULL MP3S.”
A video clip of Earle’s performance is up on YouTube: