Emmylou Harris and Rodney Crowell – Red Dirt Girl and Back When We Were Beautiful

Emmylou Harris and Rodney Crowell – Red Dirt Girl and Back When We Were Beautiful Live at Austin City Limits, 2013.

Remarkable performance. She still keeps it real.

Emmylou can sing with anyone but we love when she pairs up with Rodney!

“Red Dirt Girl”
Me and my best friend Lillian
And her blue tick hound dog Gideon
Sittin’ on the front porch coolin’ in the shade
Singin’ every song the radio played
Waitin’ for the Alabama sun to go down
Two red dirt girls in a red dirt town
Me and Lillian
Just across the line
And a little southeast of Meridian

She loved her brother I remember back when
He was fixin’ up a ’49 Indian
He told her, ? Little sister, gonna ride the wind
Up around the moon and back again”
He never got farther than Vietnam
I was standin’ there with her
When the telegram come for Lillian
Now he’s lyin’ somewhere
About a million miles from Meridian

She said, ? There’s not much hope for a red dirt girl
Somewhere out there is a great big world
That’s where I’m bound”
“And the stars might fall on Alabama
But one of these days I’m gonna swing
My hammer down”
Away from this red dirt town
I’m gonna make a joyful sound

She grew up tall and she grew up thin
Buried that old dog Gideon
By a crepe myrtle bush in the back of the yard
Her daddy turned mean and her mama leaned hard
Got in trouble with a boy from town
Figured that she might as well settle down
So she dug right in
Across a red dirt line
Just a little south east of Meridian

Yes, she tried hard to love him
But it never did take
Just another way for the heart to break
So she learned to bend
One thing they don’t tell you about the blues
When you got ’em
You keep on fallin’ ’cause there ain’t no bottom
There ain’t no end at least not for Lillian

Nobody knows when she started her skid
She was only 27 and she had five kids
Could-a been the whiskey, could-a been the pills
Could-a been the dream she was tryin’ to kill
But there won’t be a mention in the News of the World

About the life and the death of a red dirt girl
Named Lillian
Who never got any farther
Across the line than Meridian
Now the stars still fall on Alabama
Tonight she finally laid
That hammer down without a sound
In the red dirt ground

Songwriters: Emmylou Harris

Red Dirt Girl lyrics © Poodlebone Music, Sheltered Music

“Back When We Were Beautiful”

I guess you had to be there
She said you had to be
She handed me a yellowed photograph
And then said, see?

This was my greatest love
My one and only love
And this is me
Back when we were beautiful

I don’t feel very different
She said I know it’s strange
I guess I’ve gotten used to
These little aches and pains

But I still love to dance
You know we used to dance
But night away
Back when we were beautiful
Beautiful, yes

I hated when they said
I’m aging gracefully
I fight it every day
I guess they never see
I don’t like this at all
What’s happening to me?

But I really love my grand kids
She said they’re sweet to hold
They would have loved their grandpa
Those awful jokes he told

You know sometimes for a laugh
The two of us would act
Like we were old
Back when we were beautiful
Beautiful, beautiful, beautiful yes

But I guess you had to be there

Songwriters: Matraca Maria Berg

Back When We Were Beautiful lyrics © BMG Rights Management, Sony/ATV Music Publishing LLC, Universal Music Publishing Group

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