Sunday, August 16, 2015

People Get Ready

Salvation by train.
The ride is free, Jesus pays.
Thank God for the trip.

This 1965 song by Curtis Mayfield appeared on one of his albums with the Impressions. It's a song about freedom, using the Underground Railroad as its anchor, though the song is as much about spiritual salvation, the way that I read it. I used for the haiku the main refrain, "People get ready, the train is coming. Don't need to ticket, you just get on board." And the only thing that you have to say for riding this train to freedom is, "Thank the Lord." It's a gorgeous song. Dylan recorded it with the Band during their Basement Tapes sessions in 1967, and you can find that version on volume 11 of the Bootleg Series. He also recorded it in 1989 for the film "Flashback," though I'm not including soundtrack appearances in this collection.

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