#UTH: Priceless Antique Pistol Shoots Startled Owner

There are lots of things I like about this song. First of all, it’s kind of a sleeper; a deep album track because it’s not the kind of song that a lot of people like right off the bat. But there’s always a song or two on my records that I include for my own enjoyment, and this is one of them. After awhile you get a bit of a sense of which songs will resonate with people quickly and which ones take longer, although sometimes I get surprised. But so far I’ve been right about this one. It goes over well live, but no one ever really asks for it. But yeah, those arty, weird ones are important to me. ‘A Leader on Losing Control’, from the Horse Soldier record is another one in that category.

This tune was kind of a breakthrough for me in terms of creativity this time around, too. I was having kind of a dry spell for a year or so; I’d write and write and bang my head against the wall and nothing good would come of it. In hindsight I probably should have just gone and done something else for awhile and stopped trying so hard. But anyway, after a long drought this song came along, and it sort of broke the dam for this record. I started getting a bunch of stuff after this one came down the pipe, so it’s kind of meaningful to me that way, too.

I love the melody on this one. The way it kind of snakes through the G and F chords at the end of every verse makes me happy, and it’s a melody that feels really good to sing. The yodelling I kind of dig, too. I think it’s a fairly unique yodelling melody/harmony. The story of the song appeals to me, too, the way it’s kind of vague but extremely specific at the same time. And the newspaper headline-esque title is cool too, in it’s vagueness. It’s funny because speaking about the song this way makes me sound like I’m bragging about it, but I’m really not because I feel like I discovered it more than I created it, as if I stumbled across a really cool shell on the beach. It doesn’t even feel like it’s mine; it feels like the whole song was sitting out there in space somewhere, waiting for someone to find it.


  • Terry Ross Says

    Hey Corb, Pistol was my favourite song right off of the bat with album (although Motorrad has a special place too, I hope I get to ask you questions about its origin over a beer someday).

    Leaving the melody aside for a moment, I love the evocative lyrics (e.g. black powder pistols breath) and the style where you flip perspectives from the killer (elegant and stylish way to kill) to the victim (elegant and stylish way to die).

    You have a special talent for taking concepts and revisiting them within the same project…example 1 "I want to be in the Cavalry" you did the reprise version of the song in the same album…example 2: You did the whole Cabin Fever album twice in different styles and example 3: in 'pistol' (and other songs) you take a verse and tweak it a little so the paradigm it evokes is totally different. Enthralling stuff.

    Hope to see you on the tour, at a pub or riding the R1200C on the Cowboy Trail.

  • Can't wait to get this on vinyl!

  • Jennifer Says

    I just wanted to thank you for bringing a new phrase into my life: a fit of bovine rage…says so much!

  • Steve Says

    I love this song – proof that four chords can be really clever and sophisticated. There aren’t many suits yodelling in Calgary morning traffic, but I’m one of them.

  • Wendy Murfitt Says

    love your tunes guys 🙂 I was introduced to you music through my brother, bless his soul…. a number of years ago..on Vancouver island. present day….Vernon bc would love what you play….hint hint…nudge nudge LOL cheers! w

  • Dean Broughton Says

    Corb, here is a link to the Gastown Sessions we did with you at the Sun a few weeks back.

  • Linda Says

    Corb, yodeling has always held a special place in my heart. Very few country artists even sing like this anymore. My grama use to sit at the piano and yodel and play. She was a very sweet and lovely lady and your music reminds me of her. Thanks so much for another great song.

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