My heart missed a beat … would it be there … I turned over the LP … yes!
‘Tige you were faithful, faithful to the end
Tige how I missed you. You were my best friend.’
This refrain popped into my mind and refused to go away – I wished that Elsie’s record player worked so I could hear it again.
I had been looking through the selection of LPs we have at the David Parr House when I came across a Slim Rodgers’ tribute to Jim Reeves called ‘Distant Drums’. This immediately transported me back to my childhood bedroom, lying on my bed with my blue, box record player on the floor, replaying one of the few 45s that my parents had and constantly repositioning the plastic arm to the beginning, making sure the needle was just right.
The song I was playing and replaying was ‘Old Tige’ – the B side to the single ‘Distant Drums’ and much better in my view than the A side. In the 2 mins and 58 seconds that it takes to play there are goring bulls, a faithful dog, a near drowning, floods, reunions, loss. Your emotions are wrung out and the pillow damp with tears. I hope that this will not spoilt it for you. If you are feeling strong, have a listen and enjoy the man with the ‘velvet voice’.
Click here to get the full story behind the song – but be warned it does involve a car crash, a broken bridge and a guardian angel!