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Tupelo (song)


Tupelo (song)

Single by Nick Cave and the Bad Seeds
from the album The Firstborn Is Dead
Released July 29, 1985
Format 12" vinyl, 7" vinyl
Recorded December 1984 at Hansa Studios, Berlin, Germany
Genre Alternative rock, post-punk
Length 5:01
Label Mute Records
Writer(s) Barry Adamson, Nick Cave, Mick Harvey
Producer(s) Flood
Nick Cave and the Bad Seeds singles chronology
"In the Ghetto"
"The Singer"
The Firstborn Is Dead track listing
  1. "Tupelo"
  2. "Say Goodbye to the Little Girl Tree"
  3. "Train Long-Suffering"
  4. "Black Crow King"
  5. "Knockin' on Joe"
  6. "Wanted Man"
  7. "Blind Lemon Jefferson"
  8. "The Six Strings that Drew Blood"
  9. "Tupelo" (single version)

"Tupelo" is the second single by Australian post-punk band Nick Cave and the Bad Seeds and the only single from the band's second album The Firstborn Is Dead.

Background and production

The song was written by Barry Adamson, Nick Cave and Mick Harvey in mid-late 1984. Using biblical imagery, the song describes the birth of Elvis Presley during a heavy storm in Tupelo, Mississippi.[1] The song is loosely based on the John Lee Hooker song of the same title, which also focuses on a flood in the same town. The "looky looky yonder" motif that is featured in the song is derived from a song of the same name recorded by Lead Belly, usually found as part of a medley which Cave himself covered under the title "Black Betty" on Nick Cave and the Bad Seeds' third album, Kicking Against the Pricks.

"Tupelo"'s b-side, "The Six Strings That Drew Blood", was recorded in March 1985 at Trident Studios in London and was a re-recording of a song Cave originally recorded with The Birthday Party during the Mutiny EP sessions in 1982. The original version of the song is included on The Birthday Party's Mutiny/The Bad Seed compilation album. "Tupelo" was released on 29 July 1985.

Track listing

All songs written by Nick Cave except where noted.

  • Standard 7" vinyl[2]
  1. "Tupelo" (Barry Adamson, Nick Cave, Mick Harvey) - 5:01
  2. "The Six Strings That Drew Blood" - 4:50
  • Standard 12" vinyl
  1. "Tupelo" - 5:01
  2. "In the Ghetto" (Mac Davis) - 4:08
  3. "The Moon Is In The Gutter" - 2:38
  4. The Six Strings That Drew Blood - 4:50

Cover versions


Chart (1985) Peak
UK Indie Chart[3] 1

See also


  1. ^
  2. ^
  3. ^
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