Can We Talk About the Didgeridoo?

by Jen on September 29, 2007

in Soundtrack of My Life

If you’ve been paying attention, you may have noticed that I updated my Current iPod Playlist in the Sidebar. When I whipped together this playlist, I added Dar Williams’ “As Cool As I Am,” but didn’t stop to wonder whether I should add the live version from Out There Live or the studio version from Mortal City. The Hubster and I picked up Mortal City when we saw her live last month, and I’ve only had a chance to listen to it once.

So today as the Monkeyboy and I were making a shopping trip (cut short by his crabbiness due to a cold), I listened to my new playlist. The version that made the list was the studio version and I have to say that I prefer the live version. (In fact, I find I prefer the live version of many of her songs, probably because she’s got that acoustic/singer-songwriter thing going). The studio version is more up-tempo and I feel that causes the lyrics to lose some of their “reflective” mood. But the true deal breaker for me was the didgeridoo.

Dar WilliamsAs Cool As I Am

I remember now when the Hubster and I played the CD on the way home from the show that we both exclaimed in surprise when we heard it. We were intrigued. In fact, although we laughed about it, we decided we were impressed that someone could effectively use one in an American folk song.

But now as I listen to it again, I just find it distracting. (It sounds a lot louder in my car than it does on that embeded version). It doesn’t mean that I dislike it; it just means that I prefer the version that’s just Dar and the guitar.*

*And yes, I know that rhymes. Not intentional.

Edited to correct: Upon a comparison listening of the two songs (not basing my opinion on just my memory), I realize that the version on Out There Live is also an up-tempo version with more instruments than just an acoustic guitar (no didgeridoo, though). And now I’m torn between the two versions. I don’t know if my memory of an acoustic version was based on seeing her live this summer, or what. Blame it on pregnancy brain…

{ 1 comment… read it below or add one }

1 Anonymous October 1, 2007 at 3:39 pm

There’s another version coming out on her live DVD/CD. It’s on you tube at

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