The Louvin Brothers, “Satan's Jeweled Crown”

William Cody Watson

The Louvin Brothers, Via.

Satan's jeweled crown, I've worn it so long.

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Ira and Charlie Loudermilk, better known as the Louvin Brothers, were a couple of good ol' boys with a nice Baptist upbringing. They sang about how Christ pulled them from sin and hedonistic, chaotic lifestyle. Take what you will from their music and their beliefs, but truth be known, brother Ira was a raging alcoholic; known for beating up on both his mandolins and his women. Hell, his third wife shot him in the back after he tried to strangle her. In the end, he would end up killed by a drunken driver…. Isn't it ironic, don't you think?

Regardless of their history, “Satan's Jeweled Crown” from their highly-recognizable album Satan Is Real is a haunting western ballad of salvation that I felt should grace your ears. It can truly be an uplifting song if you choose, but to me, it's like listening to a ghost moaning from a cellar. There's something archaic and poignant to the track, and that grabs and pulls me down into some sort of personal, spiritual rabbit hole. I must admit, it's quite amusing, in a slightly disturbing way, to hear Satan mentioned so much, sang with those drawls, over that music. I love it.

Charlie has grown old, now 83, and continued to work. He's collaborated with the likes of George Jones, Jeff Tweedy, and Elvis Costello. He's now in the process of using alternative methods to combat pancreatic cancer, as a recent surgery did not go as intended. Here's to Charlie, let's hope he gets through it…

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