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The Illinois Waltz


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Didn't use my J-35 on this one but I thought I'd post it anyway. This is a song I co-wrote with a guy from my hometown, John Crouch. John is a sixth-generation grain farmer; some of the land he farms has been in his family for over a century and a half. I can't think of anything except my family name that's been in my family that long. When he sings about life in a small town or on the farm, it's the real deal.


Aside from being a nice guy, John is also a pretty good songwriter and performer. He has a straightforward style and a good eye for detail. He writes an occasional blog on farm life and last year I was reading one of his blog entries and thought, "Throw in some words that rhyme and you've got a song." So I did, and he and I worked on it. We wound up doing slightly different versions so we could each sing our own versions with conviction. Over the weekend, I edited down my version into the form you see here. It was an exercise in editing; I cut my version from four verses to two. I figured those two said what I was trying to say, and everything else was getting in the way.


John has invested in some nice instruments -- Martins, a Collings, Taylors, Taks -- but he has yet to buy a Gibson. Every summer when I'm visiting my hometown I tell him it is high time he bought one. It is his only shortcoming....


So here is "The Illinois Waltz (Another Year)" by John Crouch and David Hanners:




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